MSU roundup: Softball falls to #15 WT, tennis scores road wins

MSU coach Mark Ryal talks to his team between innings during their LSC game against #15 West Texas A&M Friday night / Source: KAUZ
MSU coach Mark Ryal talks to his team between innings during their LSC game against #15 West Texas A&M Friday night / Source: KAUZ

WICHITA FALLS, TX (KAUZ) - A big fifth inning allowed 15th-ranked West Texas A&M (24-5, 7-3 LSC) to get by MSU Texas (11-12, 6-10 LSC), 12-6, in the Lone Star Conference series opener at Mustangs Park on Friday. Leading 3-1, the Lady Buffs pushed across five runs in the fifth to pick up the win.

Sophomore outfielder Lauren Lindgren paced the Midwestern State offense, going a perfect 4-for-4 with a two-run double and two runs scored. The Guyer product recorded the first 4-for-4 performance of her career, marking the second time she collected four hits in a game.

Starting pitcher Gracie Bogle (3-4) was tagged with the loss, giving up eight runs on 12 hits with four walks and four wild pitches in five innings of work.

After WT plated a pair of runs on four hits in the top of the first, the Mustangs answered in the bottom of the inning. Sophomore outfielder Tucker Caraway reached on an error to open the frame and advanced to second when senior third baseman Kelcee Thompson was hit by Kilee Halbert's first offering with one out. Both runners moved into scoring position when catcher Shanna McBroom sailed a throw over Halbert's head on the return throw to the rubber. Junior first baseman Samantha Loos picked up the RBI on a groundout to cut the deficit in half, 2-1.

Bogle settled in and kept the high-powered Lady Buffs offense off the board in the second and third innings before adding a run in the fourth. Stevie McLemore laced a leadoff single into right and moved up to second on a wild pitch. Aggressive baserunning allowed McLemore to advance to third on a groundout to the right-side of the infield before coming home on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Ashley Hardin.

Disaster struck in the top of the fifth for the Maroon and Gold as WT pushed across five runs on five hits. With one out, the Lady Buffs logged four-straight hits, including two for extra bases to score three runs. After a lineout to short, Hardin lined an RBI single to right, followed by a wild pitch with runners on the corners. MSU escaped further trouble as Bogle struck out Suka Van Gurp with the bases loaded.

Trailing 9-1 in the bottom of the sixth, MSU stayed alive with a rally to keep the comeback bid alive. Lindgren collected her third hit of the night on a leadoff single to right-center, followed by a walk to junior second baseman Carli Woolsey. Freshman shortstop chopped a one out single up the middle to plate Lindgren, but the Mustangs were unable to chip away further.

After a three-run top of the seventh for WT, the Mustangs hung a crooked number of their own in the bottom of the frame, but it was not enough to complete the upset. MSU loaded the bases with no outs on a pair of free passes and a leadoff single from Thompson. On her fourth hit of the night, Lindgren snapped a 38-inning stretch without an extra base hit for the Maroon and Gold on a two-run double into the right field corner. A wild pitch and a groundout allowed freshman pinch runner Marley Eller and Lindgren to score, but a pair of popups ended the MSU threat.

Seven different players from WT logged multi-hit performances as the Lady Buffs collected 16 hits in the win.

Midwestern State is back on the diamond tomorrow, wrapping up the three-game set with No. 15 West Texas A&M with a doubleheader. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. at Mustangs Park.

#19 Mustang men roll past RMAC foes in Colorado

The 19th-ranked MSU Texas men's tennis team claimed a pair of wins over RMAC opposition on Friday in Pueblo. Midwestern State coasted to an easy 9-0 win against the 45th-ranked Thunderwolves, winning in straight-sets across the board. In the nightcap, the Mustangs rattled off an 8-1 win with the lone loss coming in a tiebreaker.

Freshman Alex Martinez Roca and sophomore Angel Palacios bounced CSUP's Cade Boedeker and David Mould, 8-2, at the No. 3 line to open the match. Senior Vasudev Vijayaraman and sophomore Denney Norrie followed with an 8-3 victory over James Ryan and Dante Alcala at No. 2. The tandem earned their team-leading 10th win of the season, moving to 10-3 on the year. MSU's 36th-ranked pair of junior Dillon Pineda and freshman Nolan McCaig fought off a valiant effort from Thomas Pudney and Ogulcan Deniz, 8-6, at the No. 1 flight to stretch the Mustangs' lead to 3-0.

The Maroon and Gold extinguished any hopes the Thunderwolves might have had of coming back very quickly in singles. 26th-ranked Palacios rattled off a 6-1, 6-1 win over Deniz at No. 3, winning his 11th-straight match and bolstering his record at the No. 3 line to 9-0. McCaig clinched the match for the Maroon and Gold, winning 6-3, 6-3 against Boedeker at No. 4. Coming in at No. 28 in this week's Oracle/ITA singles rankings, Vijayaraman scored the day's biggest upset, knocking off 14th-ranked Pudney, 7-6 (5), 6-3 at the No. 1 line for his second win over ranked opposition this season. Norrie added insult to injury, expanding the MSU lead to 7-0, dropping only one set to Steven Alcala, 6-0, 6-1, at the No. 6 flight before Roca and Pineda completed the sweep at the No. 5 and No. 2 lines, respectively.

In the nightcap, the Mustangs built a 2-1 lead after doubles and claimed wins on all six singles courts to clinch the win.

The doubles team of Pineda and McCaig posted an 8-5 win over Nick Farmen and Will Agritelley at No. 1 while Roca and Palacios improved to 10-1 on the year with an 8-1 win against Max Lindgvist and Mitchell Steadman at No. 3.

In singles, freshman Jean Muniz earned his seventh win of the season, improving to 6-0 at the No. 5 flight after a 6-2, 7-6 (4) victory against Agritelley.

21st-ranked MSU women storm past Thunderwolves, Mavericks

The 21st-ranked MSU Texas women's tennis team picked up a pair of South Central region victories over RMAC foes on Friday in Pueblo. Midwestern State swept Colorado State-Pueblo, 9-0, in the opener and rolled Colorado Mesa, 8-1, to improve to 7-5 on the season.

In the day's opening match, the Mustangs made quick work of CSUP in the sweep. The 18th-ranked duo of junior Maddy Coffman and sophomore Ashley Ramirez bested Samantha Cachutt and Acacia Dettman, 8-1, at the No. 1 flight. MSU's pair of senior Daria Panferova and freshman Maddie Rowe claimed an 8-1 win over Sarah Megilligan and Kristin Jensen at No. 3. The tandem of sophomore Bianca Duff and junior Greta Lazzarotto remained unbeaten and improved to 9-0, taking down Kali Hamilton and Nia Matthews, 8-4, at No. 2 to complete the sweep in doubles.

MSU lost a combined four games on the first three singles courts to finish to pick up the win. Ramirez rattled off a straight-sets win against Megilligan, 6-0, 6-1, at No. 4, followed shortly by 50th-ranked Panferova in a 6-0, 6-2 victory over Dettman at No. 3 to clinch the match. Duff rolled through Matthews, 6-0, 6-1, at the No. 2 line to push the MSU lead to 6-0 before Coffman, the nation's No. 49 singles player, won her team-leading eighth match against Hamilton, 6-1, 6-3, at No. 1. Lazzarotto moved into 12th all-time in career combined wins, passing Faye D'Hamecourt (2006-09) and Christi Teakell (1995-98) with her 96th victory, dominating Cachutt, 6-2, 6-0, at No. 5. Sophomore Emilija Segetlija completed the sweep for the Maroon and Gold, ousting Jensen, 6-2, 6-1, at the No. 6 flight.

In the evening match against Colorado Mesa, MSU's doubles kept its impressive streak alive. The Mustangs won at least two doubles matches for the 11th-straight outing and have swept six of the last seven opponents, including three-straight. The duo of Duff and Lazzarotto improved to 10-0 on the year, rolling to an 8-5 win over Emily Beckley and Rebecca Osterberg at No. 2 while Panferova and Rowe climbed to 7-0 in an 8-2 victory against Georgia Hansen and Nicole Kitsuse at No. 3.

Coffman earned her ninth win of the year, upsetting 21st-ranked Kristen Kirby in straight-sets, 6-1, 6-3 at the No. 1 flight. The Flower Mound native improved to 31-7 in her career with her second win of the season against a nationally ranked opponent.

Midwestern State's men and women return to the courts on Saturday, March 24, for a matchup with Metro State-Denver in Pueblo. First serve is slated for 11 a.m.

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