Softball wins 2 of 5, tennis open with conference wins

Along with baseball, SEU still has a handful of NCAA teams competing as students enter the final month of the semester.

Both men’s and women’s tennis opened conference play at Arlington, Texas this weekend on a high note, with women continuing their historic season by notching their 20th win.

According to SEU Athletics, No. 20 SEU women (20-3, 2-0 Heartland Conference), bested their previous season win total of 18 with a win over University of Arkansas – Fort Smith (8-5, 2-1 HC) on a 6-3 decision in Friday’s matchup. After falling behind in doubles matches 1-2, SEU finished 5-1 in singles matches to take the victory.

The following day, SEU continued conference play against Newman (13-7, 1-3 HC) by taking a 2-1 lead after doubles play, taking four of five completed singles matches to top Newman by a 6-2 decision. Among those singles victories was junior Elisa Guillen, who’s 6-1, 6-4 win over Emily Young marked her 20th straight singles victory.

After taking only one of three doubles matches to open play, the men’s team (16-9, 2-0 HC) also found success to open conference play, topping UAFS (6-8, 1-2 HC) by a decision of 7-2 after sweeping all the singles matches on the day.

Like women’s tennis, the men’s team took on Newman (9-10, 2-2 HC) the following day, starting off strong with a 3-0 lead in doubles play. Because of the strong start, freshman No. 48 Luis Diaz’s 6-4, 7-6 (3-0) victory over Lucas Norbiato cut the need for the final two match results and led to SEU’s 5-2 decision over Newman.

This week marks the third time that SEU has brought home both men’s and women’s Heartland Conference Player of the Week awards. Diaz won the men’s award after a 4-0 combined record over the weekend. Junior No. 73 Beth Hayward won the women’s award after posting a 2-0 singles record, along with a 1-1 record in doubles play over the weekend.

Both teams will close out their seasons this weekend. Men’s will take on No. 18 St. Mary’s in San Antonio on Thursday and return to Austin to face Dallas Baptist on Friday. Women’s will host No. 9 St. Mary’s and DBU on Friday and Saturday.

SEU softball (5-34, 4-17 HC) played host to Lubbock Christian University (24-11, 13-8 HC) in a three-game series with a doubleheader on Friday. While SEU fell in game one 8-1, they were able to break an 11-game losing streak in the second game of the day with a 6-2 victory.

Sophomore first baseman Kari Rodriguez hit her sixth homerun of the season, four of which came in the five-game stretch leading up to Friday’s final game. However, Saturday didn’t fare well for SEU, falling 16-1 in game three with Rodriguez scoring the lone run on a fielding error.

On Monday, SEU softball continued a busy four-day stretch with a doubleheader against Texas A&M – Kingsville (22-20). TAMK jumped to 4-0 lead in the second inning and the score remained the same throughout.

The second game was locked in a 0-0 tie until Rodriguez launched another homerun to put SEU ahead in the bottom of the sixth inning. TAMK responded with an RBI single from infielder Ileana Alemán at the top of the seventh to bring the score back to a tie. To SEU’s credit, they refused to let the game go beyond seven innings. Sophomore right fielder Sara Machado’s solid at-bat forced a full count and the sophomore celebrated her 20th birthday with a walk-off homerun to secure SEU’s fifth win of the season.