Local sports events
Juniors Willie McCray and Ciara Fields were each named to the Lone Star Conference All-Conference awards Wednesday. Both were named to the honorable mention squads.
The start to last week was a strong one for the Western New Mexico University women’s tennis team as they defeated Mesa CC. They came close in other matches against Arizona Christian and Holy Names as well. They also went against Sonoma State, Colorado Mesa and St. Edward’s.
To open the week, the Lady Mustangs rolled to an 8-1 win against Mesa CC. In doubles, WNMU only lost three games. Jeanne Kolb/Klara Smolikova rolled to an 8-0 win at No. 2. Nadia Justiniano/Karina Diaz added an 8-1 win at the top flight, while Christine Roerick/Kaycie Cormier collected an 8-2 win at No. 3.
It was a busy week for the Western New Mexico University men’s tennis team as they played six matches in Phoenix, picking up wins against Mesa CC and Colorado Mesa. They also faced Sonoma State, Arizona Christian, Holy Names and St. Edward’s.
The Mustangs opened the week with a 5-4 victory against Mesa Community College. WNMU took two of the three doubles matches as David Valles/Liam Fraboulet posted an 8-4 win at No. 2. Zachary Grabovic/Niko Barr added an 8-5 win at No. 3. Vladimir Gnilozubov/Pablo Santibanez came close to making it a clean sweep at the top flight, but fell just short 8-9 (4).
The final game of the four-game series was the best for the Western New Mexico University softball team. Following a tough opening game in which they fell 12-0 in five innings, the final game had the Lady Mustangs one out away from victory. Then No. 5 Angelo State showed why they were the national runner-up a year ago when they rallied to tie the game and eventually walk-off with the 4-3 win in the ninth inning during a doubleheader Sunday. The first game counted as a Lone Star Conference contest.
In the first game, Brandy Marlett was again back at it in the circle for Angelo State (17-1, 6-0 LSC) as she piled up another five innings of shutout work, tallying seven strikeouts and allowing just a walk for her sixth (6-0) win of the year.
It was a tough way to end the season for the Western New Mexico University women’s basketball team, as Angelo State, currently tied for the top mark in the Lone Star Conference, scored almost 20 points in every quarter on their way to claiming the 86-31 conference victory on Saturday afternoon.
It was the final game as Lady Mustangs (1-27, 1-19 LSC) for Jade Botelho, Lucy Benning and Myla Woods-Brown. Woods-Brown tallied three points and four rebounds, while Botelho and Benning each had a rebound. Junior Ciara Fields again paced the offense with 13 points and she led the team in rebounding for the second straight game with eight. Freshman Jenika Padilla added six points and six rebounds. Fifteen times this season Fields either led the team or tied for the team lead in scoring.
It had been awhile, but the Western New Mexico University men’s basketball team finally picked up a conference road win Saturday as they erased an early 15-point deficit to defeat Angelo State 77-72 in Lone Star Conference action.
“I am so proud of how our guys finished the year. They persevered through a lot of adversity this year,” Head Coach Matt Enriquez said. “I believe finishing off the year winning three out of the last five is a huge stepping stone for our program moving forward. Coming off a difficult game Thursday, the guys showed how we can be resilient on the road against a very talented team like Angelo State. They came out and hit us early and put us in a big hole, but we chipped away. That run right before halftime was big, as it gave us some momentum. Knowing that we are returning everyone next year but Latrell Spivey is a big boost, as all of the players on this team saw significant time that can only help us for next year.”
Finding a baserunner, whether via a hit, walk, hit-by-pitch or otherwise was a difficult task for the Western New Mexico University softball team against No. 5 Angelo State on Saturday. The Belles got a pair of dominant pitching performances, first by Brandy Marlett as she tossed a no-hitter in six innings and allowed just two walks. While in the second game, Morgan Hill allowed just a hit and one hit-by-pitch in five innings that led to the Belles taking both games by the same scores of 8-0 in run-rule Lone Star Conference victories.
Marlett, the LSC Preseason Pitcher of the Year, struckout 10 and allowed just two walks in no-hitting the Lady Mustangs (1-14, 0-5 LSC) and picking up her fifth (5-0) win of the year. Both walks allowed by Marlett came in the fourth inning. Junior Ariana Maldonado opened the inning working a full-count walk and then after an out, senior Mariangela Garcia added a five-pitch walk. After a sacrifice bunt moved both runners up, a strikeout ended the threat.
While Marlett kept the Lady Mustangs off the base paths, the Angelo State (15-1, 5-0 LSC) offense posted all the runs they would need in the first inning. The Belles scored five runs on five hits to take a 5-0 lead after one. They added two more in the second and then Rocha hit a walk-off solo home run to begin the sixth inning to give Angelo State the 8-0 run-rule victory.
Wallace, Rocha and Kirk all had two hits to lead Angelo State, with Rocha and Kirk driving in three runs apiece.
Junior Ciara Fields posted her fifth 20-point game of the season Thursday as she went for 22 as the Western New Mexico University women’s basketball team used a strong second half, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the big first half by Texas A&M-Kingsville as the Javelinas posted the 70-42 Lone Star Conference victory.
Fields went 7-17 from the field, 2-6 from three and 6-7 from the free throw line. She also pulled down a team-high seven rebounds. Senior Jade Botelho added seven points, senior Melody McLaughlin with six and freshman Rachel Francisco rounded out the four that scored at least five points as she went for five.
The Grant County Beat continues to bring you new columnists. New this past week are the Christian Corner, for those who are already Christians or are exploring the beliefs.
The second is a business-centered column—Your Business Connection by the New Mexico Business Coalition. The group works to make policy in the state of New Mexico better for all businesses, large and small.
The Beat has a new column for you gardeners out there. The Grant County Extension Service will bring you monthly columns on gardening issues. The first one posted is on Winterizing your houseplants and patio plants.
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