Trojan unable to overcome halftime deficit
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Middle Tennessee (4-0) extended the nation’s longest active home winning streak to 32 games with a 76-59 victory over UALR (0-3) on Monday at the Murphy Center. After trailing by 15 at the half, UALR pulled as close as six points with 6:33 remaining before the Blue Raiders closed the game on a 17-6 run.
UALR could not overcome a first half that saw it connect on just 5 of 21 shots from the floor (23.8 percent) and was outscored 40-25 by Middle Tennessee.
Senior Will Neighbour had his second straight 21-point outing. Neighbour set new career highs for free throws made (11) and attempted (16) while grabbing eight rebounds in 38 minutes. Sophomore James White matched Neighbour with eight boards and scored five points.
Junior J.T. Thomas scored a season-high 11 points thanks to a 4-of-8 effort from the floor. Senior Leroy Isler scored 10 points, eight of which came off free throws in the second half.
UALR returns to action on Friday when it travels to Baton Rouge, La., to play Southern.
Golden Suns run past Eccleisa
RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. — Freshman Anna Lea Little led all players with 22 points after shooting four 3-pointers, freshman Anissa Pounds gathered 17 points, and freshman Mary Crow finished with 11 points as the Arkansas Tech Golden Suns (3-0) defeated the Ecclesia College Lady Royals (1-6) 107-41 Monday night in Tucker Coliseum.
The Golden Suns finished with 22 steals, while Ecclesia had zero. Junior Jae Tucker went 6-6 on free throws to add eight points to the game. Junior Jacinda Myers-Sanders went 3-6 on field goals and from the free-throw line adding nine points and six rebounds.
The Golden Suns will travel to Bethany, Okla. on Thursday Nov. 21 to play their first conference match of the season against Southern Nazarene.
A-State’s Davis earns SBC weekly honor
JONESBORO — Arkansas State senior kicker Brian Davis was named the Sun Belt Conference Special Teams Player of the Week on Monday, marking the fourth consecutive week an A-State player has earned one of the league’s weekly honors.
Davis became the Sun Belt Conference’s all-time career scoring leader during the Red Wolves’ 38-21 victory over Texas State, finishing the game with eight points to push his career total to 303. He became the first Sun Belt Conference player to ever score 300 career points, passing Middle Tennessee’s Alan Gendreau (295 points, 2008-11) for the record.
Davis was 5-for-5 on his extra point attempts and made his only field goal attempt, which covered 23 yards. A Lou Groza Award semifinalist, Davis improved to 11-of-11 on field goal attempts this season and has now made his last 13 consecutive attempts.
The Brentwood, Tenn., native claimed the Sun Belt Conference Special Teams Award for the first time this season, but for the fourth time of his career.
Tripp earns conference honor
FORT SMITH — After missing almost a month because of injury, UAFS freshman libero Emily Tripp finally returned to the lineup last week, and she quickly returned to her old form.
Tripp averaged 7.43 digs per set during the Lady Lions’ two wins last week, earning Heartland Conference Libero of the Week honors. It was the second time this season Tripp, who is from Shawnee, Kan., to earn the honor.
She helped lead UAFS to a four-set win against Texas A&M International and a sweep of St. Mary’s in the regular-season finale.
UAFS won the outright regular-season conference title and will be the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament, which it will host beginning Friday at the Stubblefield Center. UAFS will play No. 4 seed St. Mary’s.
A-State duo grab honors
JONESBORO — Arkansas State senior libero Megan Baska won her 12th career Sun Belt Conference Defensive Player of the Week award, while freshman setter Mallory Warrington won her second straight SBC weekly award by being named Freshman of the Week the league office announced Monday.
Baska, a senior from Overland Park, Kan., earned her second SBC Defensive Player of the Week award this season and she will end her career with a Sun Belt Conference record 12 DPOW awards.
Playing in the last two regular season matches of her career, Baska was stellar against ULM and Texas State by recording a total of 55 digs for a 6.88 digs per set average. She registered 22 digs for a 7.33 digs per set average against the Warhawks on Friday before recording a season-high 33 digs on Senior Day against the Bobcats.
Warrington, a freshman from St. Louis, Mo., won her second straight weekly award after being named the SBC Setter of the Week Nov. 11.
Since being moved into the starting setter role Warrington has excelled. She dished out 91 assists for an 11.30 assists per set average, recorded 24 digs, and also registered 13 kills against ULM and Texas State. She had 38 assists on a 12.67 assists per set average against ULM and fell one kill shy of A-State’s first triple-double this season by handing out a season-high 53 assists with 18 digs and nine kills against Texas State. For the season, she has 463 assists for a 7.12 assists per set average and is the team leader in double-doubles with six. She’s fifth on the team in digs with 132 and also has 45 kills.
A-State begins play in the Sun Belt Conference volleyball tournament Thursday against in-state rival UALR.
Koller, Pochron take all-region honors
CONWAY — Hendrix College senior Jennifer Koller and freshman Gabryele Pochron were named to the Longstreth/National Field Hockey Coaches Association All-Great Lakes Region Second Team on Monday.
Koller, a defender from Woodbury, Conn., ranked fourth in the nation and led the Southern Athletic Association with a school record 18 defensive saves. She also scored on goal on the year. Koller ended her career as the all-time leader in defensive saves in program history. She was an All-SAA First Team selection this year as well.
Pochron, a goalkeeper from Reading, Pa., ranked second in the nation with 18.07 saves per game. She was also second in the SAA with 253 saves and recorded a .738 save percentage. Pochron broke the Warrior program records for saves this season. She was the SAA Newcomer of the Year and selected to the all-conference first team.