Lady Bisons win GAC title
SEARCY – The Harding volleyball team won the Great American Conference regular season for the second straight year on Saturday with a 3-2 win over Northwestern Oklahoma. The Lady Bisons improved to 24-7 overall and 13-0 in the GAC.
It was the seventh straight win for Harding as they extended their conference winning streak to 30 matches and their home winning streak to 24, as both streaks date back to the 2011 season.
The Lady Bisons were led by junior setter Taryn Eubank who had a triple-double with 11 kills, 32 assists and 12 digs. Mollie Arnold led HU in hitting with 15 kills. She also had 18 digs. Senior defensive specialist Lisa Copeland had 14 digs.
Northwestern Oklahoma (5-22, 2-10 GAC) was led by freshman outside hitter Asia Pipkin who had 17 kills and eight digs.
The Lady Bisons will play their final regular season match on Thursday as they travel to Arkansas-Monticello in GAC action.
Golden Suns sweep Southwestern Oklahoma
RUSSELLVILLE — Junior Emily Todd led all players with a double-double of 12 kills and 16 digs, while senior Amber Cerrillos dished out 39 assists as the Arkansas Tech Golden Suns (21-10, 8-4 GAC) defeated the Southwestern Oklahoma Bulldogs (11-19, 7-6 GAC) 3-0 Saturday morning at Tucker Coliseum.
Freshman Morgan Hatwig added nine kills, with senior Sara Motsinger and Huff each having seven kills, respectively.
Sophomore Morgan McKellar had 11 digs, Nighswonger had seven, and sophomore Courtney Sanders had six digs. Nighswonger added four service aces.
Arkansas Tech will play Henderson State on Tuesday.
WarHawks upset Lady Lions
FORT SMITH — McMurry took advantage of 10 uncharacteristic reception errors by the UAFS Lady Lions to post a five-set upset on Saturday in Heartland Conference volleyball action in Abilene, Texas.
McMurry won the match 25-19, 25-20, 16-25, 21-25, 15-7 to force a split in the regular-season series. UAFS won the first match in three sets on Oct. 3 at the Stubblefield Center.
After starting the conference season 14-0, UAFS (19-8, 14-2) has now lost two conference matches in a row.
UAFS, however, has already clinched the outright conference title and will be the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament, which it will host on Nov. 22-23 at the Stubblefield Center. UAFS is the defending regular-season and conference tournament champion.
Junior outside hitter Michelle Walker led UAFS with 19 kills, while senior middle hitter Jordan Erz and freshman outside hitter Payton Hamilton had 15 and 11 kills, respectively.
Senior setter Stephanie Brock led UAFS with 50 assists, while freshman libero Olivia Navato served two of UAFS’ four aces.
Navato led UAFS with 27 digs and was one of three Lady Lions with double-digit digs.
Warriors advance to SAA finals
MOUNT BERRY, Ga. — The Hendrix College volleyball team advanced to the finals of the Southern Athletic Association Championship Tournament with a 25-16, 26-24, 25-20 over Sewanee - The Unviersity of the South on Saturday.
The third-seeded Warriors (20-11) will face the top seed and host Berry College on Sunday at 2 p.m.
Freshman outside hitter MC Rogers led the Warrior offense with 15 kills. Freshman middle blocker Grace Griffin recorded eight kills, hit .429 and had five blocks. Senior Katie Burchfield had seven kills, four aces and 14 digs. Sophomore libero Felicia Beeman came up with 24 digs and freshman right side Natalie Masten had a season-best four blocks. Freshman Allison Gaia assisted 24 kills.
A-State defeats GSU
ATLANTA, Ga. — The Arkansas State volleyball team defeated the Georgia State Panthers by a score of 3-1 (22-25, 25-23, 25-14, 25-16) at the GSU Sports Arena in Atlanta, Ga. Saturday night.
Leading 2-1 in the match, A-State (12-19, 7-9 SBC) came out in the fourth set looking like a team wanting to break a six-game losing streak by jumping out to a 6-1 lead, capped by a Jackie Gerig service ace. Georgia State (9-20, 4-11 SBC) got within four points at 9-5, but wouldn’t get any closer the rest of the set. The Red Wolves went ahead by as many as seven points at 18-11 after a Kendal Davis kill, but the Panthers got within five points at 20-15 before Arkansas State closed the set out on a 5-1 run, capped by a Kesley Sullivan kill to take a 25-16 game four victory and 3-1 match victory.
Davis led the Red Wolves with 18 kills during the match, while Sullivan (12) and Shelby Holmes (10) also registered double-digit kills. Mallory Warrington led the Red Wolves with 46 assists and also recorded her fifth double-double of the season by adding 10 digs. Kelsey Reis, Gerig, and Davis led the way with two service aces each. Defensively, Megan Baska recorded 28 digs, while Sullivan led the way with seven blocks.
The Red Wolves return to action against ULM Nov. 15 in Monroe, La.
Harding men place 8th, women 10th
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — The Harding men’s cross country team placed eighth among 23 teams, while the women’s team was 10th among 30 teams at the NCAA Division II Central Region Meet on Saturday at Yankton Trail Park.
Both teams finished highest among the three Great American Conference schools that made the trip north but did not qualify for the NCAA National Meet.
The top three individual finishers not on a qualifying team also advance to nationals, and Harding senior Andrew Evans, the GAC Runner of the Year, just missed out. Evans placed 17th overall. He was the fourth finisher among the runners that were not on one of the top four teams.
Harding junior Ewa Zaborowska, the GAC Runner of the Year, just missed out. Zaborowska placed eighth overall. She was the fourth finisher among the runners that were not on one of the top four teams.
Golden Suns finish season
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Laura O’Dowd ran a time of 23:25 and finished 94th as the Arkansas Tech Golden Suns cross country team concluded their season at the NCAA Division II Central Region Championships with a 27th place finish on Saturday.
Tech ran a team time of 2:06:10 for a total of 778 points at the 6K Yankton Trail Park course. This marks just the second time the Golden Suns ran a 6K course this season.
This marked Tech’s final race of the 2013 season. Tech finished the season fifth in the Great American Conference while placing one runner, Laura O’Dowd, on the All-GAC team.
Lady Buffs rally past Lady Lions
FORT SMITH — West Texas A&M shot a sizzling 52 percent in the second half to rally from a four-point halftime deficit and beat the UAFS Lady Lions 85-70 on Saturday in the finale of the UAFS Lady Lions Classic at Stubblefield Center.
The Lady Buffs trailed 43-39 at halftime after the Lady Lions held them to just 34-percent shooting (11 for 32), but West Texas A&M scorched the nets in the second half, sinking 13 of 25 shots to cap its rally.
Devin Griffin led the Lady Buffs (2-0) with 27 points, while Lacee Logan and Chontiquah White had 19 and 10 points, respectively. Griffin also led West Texas A&M with eight rebounds.
Freshman forward Justyne Huber led UAFS with 17 points and seven rebounds, while freshman guard Maya Perry had 14 points, freshman guard and former Mountainburg standout Maddy Backus had 12 points and sophomore guard Brittany Holbert had 10 points.
UAM wins opener
CLEVELAND, Miss. — Senior Dayton Mickens scored 20 points to lead the University of Arkansas at Monticello men’s basketball team to a 70-63 season-opening win over Eckerd College on Saturday at the Down in the Delta Challenge.
Mickens finished the night 9-for-11 from the field, including making 2-of-3three-pointers. He also added four rebounds and two blocked shots in the win.
The Weevils (1-0) hovered around the 45 percent mark for the majority of the contest, making 46 percent of their shots in the first half and 44 percent in the second half to end the night at 44.6 percent (25-for-56).
In addition to Mickens’ game-high 20 points, Jared Harrison and senior Brandon Wilson also reached double digits in scoring with 11 points each. Juniors Brandon Sims and Kenric McCants added eight points each.
Eckerd finished the game with a 35-34 edge in rebounding, while UAM finished plus two in the turnover margin at 9-11.
The Weevils conclude play in the Down in the Delta Challenge on Sunday against Florida Southern.
Second half surge lifts Blossoms
MONTICELLO – The University of Arkansas at Monticello women’s basketball team shot 87 percent from the field in the second half to capture an 84-74 come-from-behind win over Lindenwood on Saturday in the 2013-14 season opener
After shooting 36 percent from the field in the first half, the Blossoms missed only three shots on 23 attempts in the final 20 minutes, including no missed shots from sophomore Jordan Goforth. After going 2-for-4 in the first half, Goforth responded with a 10-for-10 performance in the final period to give her a game-high 28 points. She also tied teammates Monique Biggins and Nikki Mullen for the team-high in rebounds with six.
Sophomore Tamia Grady trailed closely with 26 points on a 9-for-15 shooting performance, including a 5-for-6 outing from behind the arc. Mullen also reached double-digits with 13 points.
The Blossoms are back in action next Nov. 13 at home against LeMoyne Owen College. This is a change to the schedule, which originally had the Blossoms making the trip to Memphis, Tenn. to face the Lady Magicians.