Maroon & Gold Weekly Wrap-Up:
Track & Field, Softball, and Baseball
Bobcats Eliminated from Sun Belt Championship
CONWAY, S.C. – The Texas State baseball team (36-20) most likely saw its season come to an end with a 13-4 loss against Coastal Carolina (31-24-1) Thursday afternoon at Springs Brooks Stadium to be eliminated from the Sun Belt Conference Championship.
Connor Reich (8-2) suffered the loss after surrendering seven runs and eight hits and three walks. The senior right-hander did strikeout four to give him 90 on the season and becoming the first Bobcat hurler to reach the mark since Austen Williams in 2014. Jay Causey (1-1) picked up the win after working 1.1 innings of relief and Nick Parker recorded his first save of the season as he tossed the final 2.2 innings.
Seeing action out of the pen for TXST were Zachary Leigh (2.0 IP), Hunter McMahon (0.2 IP) and Brayden Theriot (1.0 IP).
Both Jaylen Hubbard and John Wuthrich finished the contest with two hits each. Hubbard concluded his Texas State career as only the second player with over 800 at-bats (803) while finishing third in hits (250) and tied for third in total bases (361) and doubles (46).
The most productive day at the plate for the Bobcats was by Jaxon Williams. The Rosenberg, Texas native reached base all five times he came to the plate via two walks, a hit by pitch, a single and fielding error.
The Chanticleers struck first in the second inning with a solo home run and then a three-run homer.
It took until the fourth inning for the Bobcats to record their first hit of the game, a single by Wuthrich to left field. Dalton Shuffield was issued a free pass to load the bases with two outs. Travon Benton battles and was able to draw a walk to bring in TXST’s first run of the game and tournament.
CCU made its second pitching change of the inning but it made no difference to Ryan Newman. The senior first baseman was walked on four pitches to bring in the Bobcats second run of the game to cut the deficit in half.
Back-to-back singles by Hubbard and Williams led off the top of the fifth. The Chants’ pitcher attempted to pick Hubbard off second but his throw went into center field to put runners on the corners. That error was key as Will Hollis grounded into a double play that scored Hubbard and cut the deficit to 4-3.
In the bottom of the frame, the Chanticleers struck back with three runs after loading the bases with 1 out to retake a four-run lead.
Texas State loaded the basses in the next half inning after lead off singles by Hubbard and Rodriguez and a CCU fielding error. Only one run was able to be scored which came on a deep fly down the left field line off the bat of John Wuthrich, as he just missed hitting his third grand slam of the season.
A four-run advantage was retaken by the Chants on a solo home run in the bottom of the seventh. They added two more on singles in the frame to go up 10-4. They would add three more in the eighth with their fourth home run of the game.
The Bobcats attempted rally in the ninth as they were able to load the bases on a Hollis single and walks by Skyler Valentine and Wuthrich. Any chance at scoring came to an end with a double play that wrapped up the contest.
With the elimination, TXST’s season has most likely come to an end barring a surprise selection for the NCAA Tournament on Monday.
Big Inning Too Much for Bobcats to Overcome
CONWAY, S.C. – A 6-run second inning by ULM was too much for the Texas State baseball team to overcome late Wednesday night at Brooks Springs Stadium in the Sun Belt Conference Championship Tournament. The Bobcats fell 8-0 to the Warhawks and fall into the losers’ bracket.
Suffering the loss was Nicholas Fraze (6-4) after giving up six runs on six hits and five walks in three innings. Trey Jeans (5-8) earned the win after tossing 7.2 scoreless innings while allowing only three hits and striking out four.
The Bobcats’ bullpen held ULM to just two runs, both in the eighth, over the final six frames. Brandon Lewis recorded a career-high nine strikeouts in 4.2 innings. Kyle Bradford got the final four outs, all by strikeout.
The Warhawks struck first with six runs in the second. Their rally began as Masen Prosoki showed but bunt and never pulled his bat back as he was plunked on what should have been a strike call but was given first base by the third and home plate umpires.
ULM added two runs in the eighth when back-to-back batters were hit by a pitch to extend its lead to eight runs.
TXST managed just three hits coming off the bats of Will Hollis, Jaylen Hubbard and Felipe Rodriguez. Hollis’ hit was a double, the 20 of the season for the junior and moved him into fourth on the program’s single-season list with Paul Goldschmidt (2008), Kyle Kubitza (2010) and David Wood (2007).
Drawing two walks was Travon Benton while Dalton Shuffield was issued one free pass.
Next up for the Bobcats is a meeting with Coastal Carolina, the host of the tournament, at 11:30 a.m. CT later today.
Bobcats heading back to Cali for NCAA West Prelims
SAN MARCOS, Texas – Eleven Texas State track and field student-athletes are scheduled to participate in the 2019 NCAA Outdoor West Track and Field Preliminaries hosted by Sacramento State on March 23-25 at Hornet Stadium in Sacramento, Calif.
The top 48 individuals of each event and top 24 relay teams in the region earned an invitation to California in hopes of finishing in the top 12 in order to punch a ticket to the NCAA Championships held June 5-8 in Austin, Texas.
Making the trip for the Bobcats will be seniors Kyle Denomme, Tramesha Hardy, T’Mond Johnson and Kylah Smith, junior Naomi Ferdinand, sophomores Jaylen Allen, Ronnie Briscoe, Brandon Busby, and Noah Herring, and freshmen Sadi Giles and Live Hilton.
Hardy will be the only Bobcat competing in two events at the three-day track meet. Hardy, a five-time Sun Belt Conference champion, will compete in both the women’s 100 and 200-meter dash. She is seeded 13th in the 100 with a time of 11:35 and 17th in the 200 with a time of 23.14. Ferdinand, the 2019 Sun Belt Champion in the women’s long jump, is seeded No. 38 in the long jump with a 6.14m (20-1.75) mark.
Johnson, a three-time Sun Belt Conference Champion in the men’s shot put, enters the meet as the No. 8 seed in the shot put behind a 19.70m (64-7.75) hurl in the conference championships and Busby gets the nod to head west after claiming gold in the men’s discus (No. 42 seed) with a 54.66m (179-4) throw. Allen rounds out the list of 2019 Sun Belt Champions as the No. 25 seed in the men’s 400-meter dash, timing out at 46.50 at the league championships.
Briscoe, the 2018 Sun Belt Champion in the men’s long jump is seeded 22nd in the event with a 7.60m (24-11.25) mark, and Hilton will compete in the women’s long jump as the 29th seed with her 6.20m (20-4.25) mark jumped on March 28. Herring will be the final jumper for Texas State after his 15.23m (49-11.75) leap in the triple jump at the conference championships that placed third. Herring is the No. 31 seed.
Denomme will compete as the No. 42 seed in the men’s 800-meter run with a time of 1:50.20, while both Smith and Giles make the cut as the 47th seed in the women’s 100-meter hurdles and 100-meter dash, respectively. Smith gets in with a 13.66 time ran at the conference championships, while Giles’ 11.68 time at the Bobcat Classic (April 26) holds tough.
Schedule of Events for Bobcat Competitors (Central Time Zone)
5:30 p.m. – Men’s Long Jump First Round (Briscoe)
8:30 p.m. – Women’s 100-meter Dash First Round (Giles, Hardy)
8:45 p.m. – Women’s Long Jump First Round (Ferdinand, Hilton)
9: 45 p.m. – Men’s 400-meter Dash First Round (Allen)
10:35 p.m. – Men’s 800-meter Run First Round (Denomme)
6 p.m. – Men’s Discus Throw First Round (Busby)
6:30 p.m. – Women’s 100-meter hurdles First Round (Smith)
9:30 p.m. – Women’s 200-meter Dash First Round (Hardy)
4:45 p.m. – Men’s Shot Put First Round (Johnson)
8:30 p.m. – Men’s Triple Jump First Round (Herring)
Bobcats Start Sun Belt Championship Play Wednesday Night
CONWAY, S.C. – The top seeded Texas State baseball team plays its first game of the Sun Belt Conference Championship Tournament at 6:30 p.m. inside Springs Brooks Stadium on the campus of Coastal Carolina. The opponent is still to be decided with the lowest seeded winner of Appalachian State, Louisiana or ULM.
Entering the tournament, the Bobcats are 36-18 and completed conference play with a 20-10 mark to claim their first regular season championship in eight years.
All games of the championship will be streamed on ESPN+ with Matt Stewart providing the play-by-play and John Gregory as the color analyst. Both Bill Culhane and Brant Freeman will have the radio call for the TXST games on KTSW 89.9 FM. Live stats will also be available for the entire championship.
Scouting Texas State
Texas State ended the regular season by sweeping a doubleheader last Friday against rival UT Arlington after dropping the series opener to the Mavericks. The Bobcats are 3-2 this season in neutral site games that includes a 2-1 mark at the 2019 Shriners College Classic that was held at Minute Maid Park.
Pacing TXST with a .340 batting average is Dalton Shuffield. The sophomore infielder has scored 37 times, plated 26 runs, hit 12 doubles and stolen a team-high 10 bases. Will Hollis enters pacing the team with 47 RBIs, 42 walks and 19 doubles, tied for the seventh most in a season ever by a Bobcat batter.
All-Sun Belt First Team performer Jaxon Williams has scored 54 runs and driven in 29. He is hitting .322 with 67 hits, five of which have been homers. While drawing 37 walks for a .432 on-base percentage.
Also hitting .322 and a second team all-conference honoree is Jaylen Hubbard. The senior third baseman is tied for the Sun Belt lead with 58 runs scored. He has smacked 17 doubles and shares the team lead with eight home runs with John Wuthrich. The sophomore outfielder comes in batting .314 with 41 runs scored and 39 RBIs.
Texas State will bring a rotation of Nicholas Fraze, Hunter McMahon and Connor Reich. Fraze, an all-conference second team pick, went 6-3 with a 4.38 ERA and 79 strikeouts in 86.1 innings. McMahon has thrown a team-high 87 innings while posting a 5-5 mark, 4.76 ERA and 71 strikeouts. Reich, the Sun Belt Pitcher of the Year and an All-Sun Belt First Team pick, led the conference with eight wins. The senior right-hander also struck out 86, walked just 18 and posted a 3.96 ERA.
Scouting Possible Opponent
Louisiana enters the tournament as the eight seed after going 15-15 in conference play and finishing 27-29 overall. The Ragin’ Cajuns had three all-conference selections with both Hayden Cantrelle and Todd Lott named to the first team.
Cantrelle started all 56 games at shortstop and leads the squad with 52 runs scored and 27 stolen bases. He batted .304 with 12 doubles, nine home runs and 29 RBIs. Lott hit .340 in 54 games and totaled 64 hits. He drove in a team-high 44 runs while recording nine doubles and seven homers.
Orynn Villon was a second team pick after he finished second on the team with 11 home runs and 42 RBIs. The outfielder hit .303 with 40 runs scored and 14 stolen bases.
Appalachian State concluded the regular season 22-30 overall, 13-16 in conference play and will be the ninth seed in the championship. The Mountaineers are led at the plate by Luke Drumheller, who sported team-highs in batting average (.337), hits (66), doubles (15) and hit by pitches (10). The freshman second baseman also drove in 36 runs and scored 28 times.
Hitting over .300 as well for APP is Tyler Leek (.325) and Kendall McGowan (.304). The duo has combined to hit 13 homers and 58 RBIs.
The Mountaineers have two top relievers in Kaleb Bowman and Andrew Papp. Bowman enters with a 6-1 record, four saves, 2.98 ERA and 48 strikeouts in 57.1 innings spanning 26 relief appearances. Papp has earned six saves in 27 appearances while also striking out 44 and sporting a 3.35 ERA in 40.1 innings.
ULM wrapped up the regular season 24-29 overall and 12-17 against Sun Belt opponents to enter as the 10th seed in the tournament. Chad Bell was selected as an all-conference first team honoree at third base after leading the league with 18 home runs and slashing .333/.408/.676. The senior has 50 RBIs, 39 runs scored and 14 doubles as well.
Andrew Beesley was picked to the All-Sun Belt Second Team as a utility player. The junior hit .337 with 69 hits, 10 doubles and three homes. He scored 33 times, plated 32 runs and swiped 14 bases.
Trey Jeans made 14 starts on the year and produced a 4-8 record with a 4.16 ERA and 65 strikeouts in 71.1 innings.
Series vs. Opponents
Louisiana leads the all-time series over Texas State 22-16. The Bobcats swept the regular season series on the road and have won six straight overall. When playing the Ragin’ Cajuns in the Sun Belt Tournament, TXST is 1-4 with the lone win coming last season.
Texas State leads the all-time series 14-1 over Appalachian State. This season saw the Bobcats take two of three in Boone. TXST has never met the Mountaineers in the Sun Belt Tournament as they are making their tournament debut since joining the league.
Texas State enters the tournament with a 46-34 series lead over ULM. In the regular season, the Bobcats swept the series at Bobcat Ballpark with the series finale ending on a run-rule walk-off grand slam by Ryan Newman. TXST is 3-0 all-time in conference tournament meetings versus ULM. The lone meeting in the Sun Belt Championship came on May 23, 2014 in Mobile, Alabama by the score of 4-2.
Reich and Harrington Earn Specialty Awards;
Four Named to All-Conference Teams
NEW ORLEANS – The Sun Belt Conference announced its postseason baseball all-conference teams and specialty awards Monday afternoon. Four Texas State players were named to one of the two all-conference squads while Connor Reich and head coach Ty Harrington picked up specialty honors.
Selected to the All-Sun Belt First Team was Jaxon Williams and Reich while Nicholas Fraze and Jaylen Hubbard were both second team all-conference honorees. Reich was also named the Community Coffee Pitcher of the Year and Harrington was recognized as the Community Coffee Ron Maestri Coach of the Year.
Reich concluded the regular season with an 8-1 record and leading the conference in victories. His win total is also the most by a Bobcat pitcher since 2014. The senior right-hander struck out 86 and posted a 3.96 ERA that rank fourth and ninth in the Sun Belt, respectively, in 86.1 inning of work. He is the first Bobcat to bring home a conference’s pitcher of the year award since Travis Ballew in 2012.
The Hallsville, Texas native earned the first Sun Belt Pitcher of the Week accolade this season after throwing 6.1 scoreless innings, allowing a lone hit and striking out seven with no walks in a 10-0 win over Missouri State. He would go on to strikeout 10 against Arkansas State for his third career game with double-digit strikeouts.
Williams hit .322 with 67 hits, eight doubles and five home runs in his first season in a TXST uniform. The junior second baseman has scored 54 runs, tied for the fifth most in the league, and plated 29. He has also drawn 37 walks to post a .432 on-base percentage that ranks 10th in the Sun Belt. The Rosenberg, Texas native was also selected to the 2019 Shriners College Classic All-Tournament in helping the team finish second.
Fraze wrapped up the regular season with a 6-3 record and 4.38 ERA in 86.1 innings. The junior right-hander recorded 79 strikeouts, the seventh most in the conference. Against Sun Belt opponents, he went 4-1 with a 4.09 ERA and 50 strikeouts in 61.2 innings spanning 10 starts.
His best performance of the season came in the opener of the 2019 Shriners College Classic when he threw seven shutout innings, allowed just one hit and struck out a career-high 12 in a 1-0 victory over Rice. That game earned him the tournament’s Most Out Standing Player award along with being selected to the Collegiate Baseball National Team of the Week and Sun Belt Community Coffee Pitcher of the Week.
For Hubbard, it is the second time he has been named to the all-conference second team as he also picked up the honor in 2017. This season saw him hit .322 with 67 hits, 17 doubles and a team leading four triples and eight homers. The senior third baseman has scored 58 runs to share the Sun Belt lead while recording 30 RBIs. He ranks seventh in on-base percentage (.442) and 11 in slugging percentage (.558) in the conference for a 1.000 OPS. Earlier this season, Hubbard was selected to the Shriners College Classic All-Tournament team.
Harrington was named the Sun Belt’s Coach of the Year after leading Texas State to its first regular season championship since joining the conference. The team’s 36 total victories and 20 conference wins are both the highest total since the 2011 campaign. It is the third time in his career he has received a league’s coach of the year award. The previous two came in 2011 and 2009 when a member of the Southland Conference.
The Bobcats open the Sun Belt Championship on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. CT. They will take on the lowest remaining seed between Appalachian State (#9), Louisiana (#8) and ULM (#10) from the single-elimination games.
All-Sun Belt Baseball First Team
- Chandler Fidel, Little Rock, SP
- Seth Shuman, Georgia Southern, SP
- Connor Reich, Texas State, SP
- Zach Greene, South Alabama, RP
- Chase Smartt, Troy, C
- Zach Biermann, Coastal Carolina, 1B
- Jaxon Williams, Texas State, 2B
- Hayden Cantrelle, Louisiana, SS
- Chad Bell, ULM, 3B
- Parker Chavers, Coastal Carolina, OF
- Mason McWhorter, Georgia Southern, OF
- Ethan Wilson, South Alabama, OF
- Todd Lott, Louisiana, Utility
- Riley Pittman, Little Rock, DH
All-Sun Belt Baseball Second Team
- Hunter Gaddis, Georgia State, SP
- Nicholas Fraze, Texas State, SP
- Cory Gill, Troy, SP
- Andrew Gross, UT Arlington, RP
- Kyle Skeels, Coastal Carolina, C
- Sadler Goodwin, Troy, 1B
- Steven Curry, Georgia Southern, 2B
- Drew Frederic, Troy, SS
- Jaylen Hubbard, Texas State, 3B
- Kieton Rivers, Coastal Carolina, OF
- Orynn Veillon, Louisiana, OF
- Rigsby Mosley, Troy, OF
- Andrew Beesley, ULM, Utility
- Jake Wright, Coastal Carolina, DH
- Community Coffee Player of the Year
Ethan Wilson, South Alabama (Freshman, OF)
- Community Coffee Pitcher of the Year
Connor Reich, Texas State (Senior, RHP)
- Community Coffee Freshman of the Year
Ethan Wilson, South Alabama (Freshman, OF)
- Community Coffee Newcomer of the Year
Jake Wright, Coastal Carolina (Sophomore, OF)
- Community Coffee Ron Maestri Coach of the Year
Ty Harrington, Texas State