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Going Out with a Bang

Submitted by: Christy Cain - May 13th, 2015
IMG_0356

By Christy Cain

(MOBILE, Ala.) “Before the match began this afternoon, we talked about a quote from the movie Miracle that says ‘All great moments are born from great opportunity,’” opened head women’s tennis coach Kendyll McManigal. “We had the opportunity to play a talented team today. It was our goal to stay focused and inspired towards greatness the entire match.”

Going up against a defending National Championship team is no easy feat, but this afternoon the Westmont women’s tennis team gave #1 Georgia Gwinnett a run for their money in the second round of the NAIA Women’s Tennis National Championship. The Warriors opened with a burst of energy in doubles play to take a 2-1 lead going into singles play, but eventually fell 5-2 to the reigning NAIA National Champions.

This season, doubles play has proved to be a strong point for the Warrior women and this afternoon they did not disappoint. While Grace Davis and Emily Keach lost 0-8 on court number three, the other two Warriors duos made up some ground to put Westmont up 2-1.

Warriors Defeat Spring Arbor to Advance

Submitted by: Ron Smith - May 13th, 2015
Rudy Leon slides into third in the third inning.

Westmont Baseball (40-16) stayed alive in the Lawrenceville Bracket of the NAIA Championship Opening Round by defeating Spring Arbor 13-10. The four hour and two minute roller coaster ride saw four lead changes, 26 men left on base and nine pitchers take the mound.

With the win, the Warriors advance to play St. Catharine of Kentucky (38-16) later tonight in another elimination game. Spring Arbor was the first team eliminated from the tournament.

This marks the first time in program history that the Warriors have reached the 40-win mark, breaking last year’s record-setting performance of 39 wins.

After a scoreless first two innings, Spring Arbor lit up the scoreboard in the top of the third with a three-RBI double to left-center field by JP Maracani.

The Warriors responded in the bottom half of the inning by sending 11 men to the plate and scoring seven runs. Rudy Leon started off the inning with a single to center field and then advanced to second when catcher Ryan Crowe walked.

[box score] [photos]

Warrior Men Eliminated in First Round

Submitted by: Christy Cain - May 12th, 2015
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By Christy Cain

(MOBILE, Ala.) This morning, the Westmont men’s tennis 2015 season came to an abrupt end after being defeated by Reinhardt University in the First Round of the NAIA Men’s Tennis National Championship. #13 Westmont seemingly had the odds stacked in their favor as they went up against #20 Reinhardt. While the injury plagued Warriors battled the entire time, Reinhardt eventually walked away with a 5-4 heartbreaking win over Westmont.

The Warrior men started off the day trailing 1-2 after doubles play. On court number one, Josh Barnard and Carl Lindqvist tried their very best to upend Maksim Yorsh and Nikita Hrynov. But long rallies and extremely well placed shots led to an 8-3 victory for the Eagles. On court number two, Christian Mathis and Travis Kimsey started off a little slow, but were able to rally back multiple times to put themselves back in a position to win. Unfortunately, Emory Deloach and Nicolas Duarte capitalized on their opportunities and closed out the match with an 8-5 win, putting their team up two matches to zero.

Court number three, featuring Jan Sibbel and Tommy Nightingale was the only doubles win for the Warriors this afternoon, but they snuck away with a 9-7 victory over Reinhardt.

Women Light Up NAIA First Round

Submitted by: Christy Cain - May 12th, 2015
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By Christy Cain

(MOBILE, Ala.) The Westmont women’s tennis team had an impressive performance in the Frist Round of the Women’s Tennis NAIA National Championship this afternoon in Mobile, Alabama. Despite the 85 degree weather and 90 percent humidity, the women worked their way to a 6-1 lead over Evangel University before the match was suspended due to stormy conditions. Thankfully the Warriors held enough points to solidify a team win before thunder and lightning rolled in.

They started the eventful afternoon with doubles play. On court number one, Lauren Stratman and Ines Costamagna were locked and loaded against top ranked Amy Fritz and Jenna Elliot. While it was one of their more difficult doubles matches of the season, the Warrior duo pulled out an 8-4 victory and the first win of the day. Court number three, featuring Emily Keach and Grace Davis, was the second duo to finish. The seniors came out with a very strong start, but slowly dropped points to the Crusaders who eventually won 8-6.

With the team doubles score split down the middle, the deciding match fell upon court number two. Haley Strandness and Alyson Meyer put on quite a performance against Breanna Feemster and Morgan Reilly. The teams went back and forth the entire time, and eventually worked their way to a score of 9-8 that led to a tiebreaker. Thankfully the Warriors had the right mindset and determination for the challenge and won the tiebreaker 7-4, putting Westmont up 2-1 going into singles play.

Warriors Fall in First Game at Nationals

Submitted by: Ron Smith - May 12th, 2015
Sam Sheehan

It wasn’t the start that head coach Robert Ruiz had hoped for as his team started play in the NAIA Championship Opening Round Tournament. Playing in the second game of the Lawrenceville Bracket, #20 Westmont (39-16) fell to #20 St. Thomas (Fla.) by a score of 5-0 in the double-elimination tournament.

As a result, Westmont will take on Spring Arbor of Michigan (30-17) in an elimination game tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. EDT / 8:00 a.m. PDT. Spring Arbor lost to St. Catharine of Kentucky (38-16) in the tournament’s first game by a score of 9-3.

Golden State Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year Russell Harmening (10-3) took the loss for the Warriors. He gave up five runs (four earned) in four innings of play. Harmening allowed seven hits, struck out six and walked one.

The Bobcats of St. Thomas took an early lead, scoring two runs on a home run over the left-center field fence by designated hitter Paul Chacin.

[box score] [photos]

Men’s Tennis is Headed to Mobile

Submitted by: Christy Cain - May 8th, 2015
NAIA-Tennis-2015

By Christy Cain
(SANTA BARBARA, Calif.) The #13 Westmont men’s tennis team (10-14) will be taking on #20 Reinhardt (Ga.) (11-3) in the First Round of the NAIA Men’s Tennis National Championship this week in Mobile, Ala. The Warrior men have officially received an at large bid to the 24 team single elimination tournament that runs May 12-16.

This will be the Eagles first NAIA National Tournament appearance in program history. They worked their way to an automatic bid this season by winning the Appalachian Athletic Conference Championship. Ten consecutive match victories have led them to a record of 11-3 heading into their time in Mobile.

The Eagles are expected to be led by junior Maksim Yorsh and freshman Nikita Hrynov who have both recently received post season conference honors.

The Warriors are making their sixth straight National Tournament appearance, but this is the first year that they have not received a first round bye.

Westmont Women’s Tennis to Take on Evangel in NAIA First Round

Submitted by: Christy Cain - May 8th, 2015
NAIA-Tennis-2015

By Christy Cain

(SANTA BARBARA, Calif.) Westmont women’s tennis team will officially be making a trip to Mobile, Ala. this week for the 2015 NAIA Women’s Tennis National Championship. The Warriors received an at large bid that will send them into the tournament ranked 17 out of the 24 total teams competing for the crown.

The Warrior women (13-9) will open the first round with a matchup against #16 Evangel University on Tuesday May 12 at 1:30 PM (CST) at the Mobile Tennis Center. The Crusaders currently hold a record of 10-3 and earned an automatic bid to the tournament after winning an unaffiliated conference tournament that included teams from the Heart of America, American Midwest and Midwest Collegiate conferences.

This will be Evangels fourth tournament appearance in school history. In 2013, the Crusaders lost in the opening round to fellow Golden State Athletic Conference team Vanguard (Calif.) and have not been back since. While they have a deep roster of twelve players, Evangel currently has seven underclassmen and five veteran upperclassmen, meaning only a handful of their players have seen national tournament court time.

The Crusaders are expected to be led by recent NAIA Player of the Week Amy Grossklag-Fritz. The senior has consistently held the number one singles position and a place on their number one doubles duo.

Warriors to Play NAIA Baseball in Georgia

Submitted by: Ron Smith - May 8th, 2015
NAIA Baseball Opening Round

Westmont Baseball (39-15) will make a return trip to Lawrenceville, Georgia to participate in the NAIA Baseball Championship Opening Round Tournament. The 15th-ranked Warriors will enter the five-team double-elimination tournament as the number two seed. Georgia Gwinnett (47-12), the tournament host, is the number one seed. The Grizzlies are the fourth-ranked team in the NAIA.

Westmont’s first game will be against third-seeded and 20th-ranked St. Thomas of Florida (41-15) on Tuesday, May 12. The Warriors’ game will be preceded by a match-up between fourth-seeded St. Catharine of Kentucky (37-15) and fifth-seeded Spring Arbor of Michigan (30-16).

The Bobcats of St. Thomas tied #16 Embry-Riddle (Fla.) for second place in the Sun Conference, but fell to the Eagles 2-1 in the conference tournament championship game. St. Thomas posted a record of 8-7 against teams in the National Championship field and a record of 4-6 against teams ranked in the top 25.

The Bobcats have posted a team ERA of 4.40 this season. Marcos Barrios leads the team in pitching with a 7-2 record. He has started 12 games for St. Thomas and has an ERA of 4.04.

At the plate, the Bobcats boast a .334 team batting average. Eric Santamaria leads the team in hitting with a batting average of .371. Fourteen players have a batting average over .300. St. Thomas has outscored their opponents 493 to 280.

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