MSU roundup: softball sweeps two, both tennis teams roll

File: MSU coach Mark Ryal talks to his players during a game / Source: KAUZ
File: MSU coach Mark Ryal talks to his players during a game / Source: KAUZ

WICHITA FALLS, TX (KAUZ) - The MSU Texas softball team rallied for four runs in the bottom of the sixth to complete a doubleheader sweep against Western New Mexico on Friday in Silver City. Midwestern State took the first game of the day, 14-10, before closing out an 8-7 victory in the finale.
In the first game of the day, the Maroon and Gold scored in every inning but the sixth, pounding out 14 runs for the victory. Senior infielder Taylor Brintzenhoff became the 38th-player in program history with a multi-home run game, going 2-for-4 with four RBI. Sophomore Tucker Caraway earned the win to improve to 2-2 and tied the school-record with four runs scored, the fifth-time in program history. Caraway finished a triple shy of the cycle, going 4-for-5 with a double and a home run. Senior catcher Amanda Thomas added three hits and three RBI with a homer while sophomore outfielder Lauren Lindgren drove in four.
In the nightcap, WNMU grabbed an early lead before MSU began to chip away. Trailing 3-0 in the third, freshman shortstop Caycee Griffin launched her third long ball of the season to get the Mustangs on the board.
Caraway started a rally to give MSU another run in the top of the fifth, rifling a one-out single to right before sophomore outfielder Kelsey Eropkin reached on an error. Lindgren lined a single through the left-side of the infield, easily scoring Caraway from second, cutting the deficit to one, 3-2.
After retiring the side in order in her first pitching performance of the season, Kelsey Knox led off the top of the sixth with a double into the right-center alley. Griffin tacked on her second RBI of the game, following with a double of her own to left center, tying the game at 3. With two outs, Eropkin lined a single back up the middle to give the Mustangs their first lead of the game before Lindgren followed with a two-run bomb to left for a pair of insurance runs.
A leadoff single, followed by a home run from Carolyn Castillo pulled WNMU within one before a double from Yasmeen Gastelum put the tying run on base. A groundout to the right-side and a single from Ariana Maldonado plated the equalizer.
A pair of singles from Marley Eller and Brintzenhoff had the Maroon and Gold in business in the seventh. Knox laid down a sacrifice bunt to move both runners into scoring position. Junior infielder Misty Muniz gave the Mustangs the lead with a base-knock through the left-side of the infield before Griffin plated her third run of the day on a sacrifice fly.
Things got hairy in the bottom of the seventh. A one out walk followed by a double put the tying run in scoring position. An error allowed WNMU to move the tying run up to third.
With the tying and go-ahead runs in scoring position, Knox induced an infield popup for the second out. Despite falling behind 3-1 to Tycee Coplan, the MSU right-hander caught her looking at two-straight strikes to strand both runners in scoring position.

Midwestern State is back on the diamond on Friday, April 6, against #4 Angelo State at Mustangs Park. First pitch in the series is slated for 7 p.m.

#16 Men's tennis sweeps UA-Ft. Smith

The 16th-ranked MSU Texas men's tennis team won its fifth-straight match, sweeping Arkansas-Fort Smith, 9-0, on the road at the Fort Smith Athletic Club on Friday. The Mustangs improve to 13-4 on the season with the win.

The Mustangs made quick work of the Lions in doubles to grab a decisive 3-0 lead in doubles. MSU's tandem of Vasudev Vijayaraman and Denney Norrie swept Brady Kenyon and Luke Anderson, 8-0 at the No. 2 line. The 23rd-ranked duo of Alex Martinez Roca and Angel Palacios followed with a dominant 8-1 victory against Zach Delmonico and Nick Variames at No. 3 for their seventh-straight win, improving to 13-1 on the season. The Maroon and Gold's 30th-ranked pair of Dillon Pineda and Nolan McCaig completed the sweep, earning an 8-4 win against Daniel Borrero and Wian Van Dyk at No. 1.

MSU never looked back, winning in straight-sets on all six singles courts to complete the sweep. Vijayaraman picked up his fourth win over a nationally ranked opponent, downing 59th-ranked Borrero, 6-2, 6-0 at No. 1 before McCaig clinched the win by knocking off Kenyon 6-2, 6-1 at No. 3 for his fifth-straight victory. Palacios, the 44th-ranked singles player, won his 15th-straight match to climb to 16-1 on the season, besting Van Dyk, 6-4, 6-2, at No. 2. The sophomore is one win away from matching the school-record of 16-straight set by Michael Turner in 1999.

Freshman Yaswanth Mylavarapu earned his first win of the spring, rolling Andrew Anderson, 6-0, 6-1, at No. 6. Roca handled Delmonico, 6-2, 6-2, at No. 5 before freshman Jean Muniz closed out the sweep, picking up a 6-2, 6-3 decision over Anderson at No. 4.

#24 Women's tennis routs UAFS, 8-1

The 24th-ranked MSU Texas women's tennis team posted its sixth-straight win with an 8-1 victory over Arkansas-Fort Smith at the Fort Smith Athletic Club on Friday. Midwestern State improves to 10-5 on the season after the win.

For the seventh-straight match, the Mustangs swept all three courts in doubles to grab a 3-0 lead. The duo of Bianca Duff and Greta Lazzarotto bounced Lea Cizeron and Shaun Williams, 8-1, at No. 2 to get the match started for the Maroon and Gold, winning their 13th-straight match. The tandem of Daria Panferova and Maddie Rowe picked up their 10th-straight win, downing Tristen Brunson and Andrea Stapper, 8-5, at No. 3. Coming in at No. 17 in this week's Oracle/ITA doubles rankings, Maddy Coffman and Ashley Ramirez fought off 44th-ranked Lindsey Pearce and Samantha Wong, 9-7, at No. 1 to complete the sweep.

Riding the momentum, Midwestern State got first set wins on five-of-six singles courts and straight-set wins in three matches to clinch the victory. Panferova made quick work of Williams, 6-1, 6-1, at No. 3 for her eighth-consecutive win, improving to 8-1 on the year. 66th-ranked Duff clinched the match, besting Pearce, 6-4, 6-3, at No. 2. Ramirez cruised to an easy 6-1, 6-1 decision against Wong at No. 4 to push the lead to 6-0 before Coffman rattled off a three-set thriller over Cizeron, 6-4, 5-7, 10-8. Lazzarotto closed out the Mustangs' victories with a 6-4, 4-6, 11-9 win against Brunson at No. 5.

Midwestern State returns to the courts on Saturday, March 31, for a matchup with Southeastern Oklahoma State in Durant, Okla. First serve for both the women and men is set for 1 p.m.

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