LONGVIEW, Texas – LeTourneau University’s spring 2018 graduation commencement at the Belcher Center on the Longview campus on Saturday, May 5, featured a total of 13 LeTourneau athletic teams.
Among the LeTourneau University Class of 2018 were 26 student-athletes, 10 of which graduated with honors. Baseball student-athlete Carson Dickey earned the highest graduating distinction of Summa Cum Laude
In addition to the student-athletes, assistant tennis coach Michael McLaughlin earned his Master of Education degree while assistant athletic trainers Micah Smith and Brady Tomlin both received their Master of Science in Health Care Administration. Athletics staff member Emily Ramsey earned a Master of Science Degree in Healthcare Administration giving the LETU athletic department a total of 30 graduates in the spring 2018 commencement ceremonies.
The LeTourneau University Class of 2018 and newest members of the YellowJacket alumni family:
Zach Nortch – Biology, Bachelor of Science
Carson Dickey – Engineering – Biomedical Concentration – Bachelor of Science (Summa Cum Laude)
Justin Eadeh – Biology, Bachelor of Science (Cum Laude)
Alec Colhoff – Bachelor of Business Administration
Cordele Jackson – Interdisciplinary Studies – Bachelor of Science
Sam Talbert – Interdisciplinary Studies – Bachelor of Science
Savannah Cummings – Criminal Justice, Homeland Security Concentration, Bachelor of Science
Men’s Cross Country
Austin Coblentz – Engineering Technology – Mechanical Concentration – Bachelor of Science (Magna Cum Laude)
Daniel Kay – Business Administration-Management Concentration – Bachelor of Science (Cum Laude)
Melanie Pedigo – Nursing – Bachelor of Science (Cum Laude)
Alan Flores – Mathematics – Applied Statistics Concentration – Bachelor of Science (Cum Laude)
Guillermo Torres – Interdisciplinary Studies – Bachelor of Science
Riley Scarborough – Bachelor of Business Management
JoLynn O’Kelley – Engineering Technology – Mechanical Concentration – Bachelor of Science
Ashley Burdine – Kinesiology, Exercise Science Concentration, Bachelor of Science (Magna Cum Laude)
Ashlin Roach – Business Administration – General Business Concentration – Bachelor of Science
Bailey Woodard – Business Administration – Marketing Concentration – Bachelor of Science
Kaitlyn Allen – Interdisciplinary Studies, Bachelor of Science (Magna Cum Laude)
Kelsi Coleman – Interdisciplinary Studies – Bachelor of Science (Magna Cum Laude)
Kevin Warren – Aviation Management – Professional Pilot Concentration – Bachelor of Science
Robby Bundy – Engineering Technology – Mechanical Concentration – Bachelor of Science
Men’s Track and Field
Derek Byler – Air Traffic Control – Associate of Science
Steven McDonell – Professional Flight – Military Concentration – Bachelor of Science
Michael Brooks – Engineering Technology – Mechanical Concentration – Bachelor of Science
Savanna Stutts – Interdisciplinary Studies – Bachelor of Science (Magna Cum Laude)
Elyse Wright – Engineering – Civil Concentration – Bachelor of Science
ALPINE, Texas – Trying to force a decisive winner-take-all game in the 2018 American Southwest Conference Tournament “Red Bracket,” the LeTourneau University baseball team could not overcome Texas-Dallas in a 10-2 defeat at Kokernot Field in Alpine, Texas on Sunday, May 6.
Senior Gonzalo Sosa along with juniors Noah Mahoney, Jacob Jones, and sophomore Will Bradshaw was named to the All-Tournament team for their performances throughout the weekend.
With the loss, LETU ends their season at 23-19 overall while the Comets finished a perfect 3-0 in the “Red Bracket” to improve to next week’s ASC Championship Series “Gold Bracket.”
The YellowJackets knew going in that they would need support heading into their fourth game in three days, but would be unable to muster any offense through three innings of play. LETU matched the defensive intensity of Texas-Dallas however, limiting the Comets to just two hits in three innings of action to keep things a scoreless deadlock.
Bradshaw didn’t wait very long in his second at-bat to start off the top of the fourth, taking a 1-1 pitch and depositing the ball over the left field wall to give LeTourneau a 1-0 lead. The lead would be short-lived however as the Comets would take advantage of four one-out hits along with an error and two walks to claim a 5-1 lead going to the fifth.
Another scoring drought would ensue for both teams with the score remaining a 5-1 deficit for the YellowJackets until the top of the seventh when a hit batter, single, error, and walk brought home LETU’s second run of the game to get back within three at 5-2. LeTourneau would be unable to capitalize with the bases remaining loaded, however, seeing a strikeout end the inning with the game-tying run on first.
UTD added another two runs in the bottom of the seventh to extend their lead to 7-2 and added another three runs in the bottom of the eighth after holding LETU to just a one-out single in the top of the inning. Trailing by eight, LeTourneau would put the leadoff batter aboard in the top of the ninth but see a double play erase the runner. A Mahoney double extended the game briefly before a groundout would end the 2018 campaign for LETU.
Playing in his final collegiate game, Sosa took the loss on the mound after throwing 3.1 innings and striking out two while giving up five runs on five hits. Ryder Lognion also pitched 3.1 innings and struck out three, while Kolton Eberlan (one inning) and Bubba Valdez (0.1 innings) also threw in relief.
LeTourneau’s two runs came on just six hits, with Bradshaw and Mahoney each recording two while Dickey and Sosa had one each. The YellowJackets stranded six runners in the game and were caught stealing once.
ALPINE, Texas – A four-run eighth-inning rally and 11th inning walk-off balk allowed for the LeTourneau University baseball team to win their second game of the day with a 9-8, extra-innings win. It was over Hardin-Simmons University in the American Southwest Conference Tournament “Red Bracket” at Kokernot Field in Alpine, Texas on Saturday, May 5.
LETU improves to 23-18 overall and 2-1 in postseason play and will play in tomorrow’s ASC Tournament “Red Bracket” Championship while the Cowboys see their season come to an end in a heartbreaker at 16-27 overall.
Runs proved to be hard to come by in the first two innings of play, with the YellowJackets scoring the only run before they recorded their first six outs with an RBI bases-loaded walk from Lee Hosie.
A fielding error and RBI triple allowed HSU to come back and tie the game at 1-1 in the top of the third before scoring the go-ahead run on a dropped third strike when LeTourneau elected to record the out at first. With the score still 2-1 in favor of Hardin-Simmons in the bottom of the fourth, Bubba Valdez would lead off the inning with double and come around to score on Noah Mahoney’s second home run of the day by going opposite field and over the right-field wall to put LETU back up 3-2.
The YellowJackets added a single run in the bottom of the fifth on a delayed steal of second that would allow for Jacob Jones to steal home but saw HSU score four runs on three hits and an error that allowed the Cowboys to take the lead. Hardin-Simmons managed to hold LETU scoreless in the sixth, and tack on two additional runs in the top of the seventh to double up LeTourneau by a score of 8-4.
Gonzalo Sosa would start a seventh-inning rally for LETU, drawing a leadoff walk and coming around to score with Jones on a Carson Dickey two-RBI double to left field which forced a Cowboy pitching change. Two wild pitches allowed Dickey to advance to third and then score to cut the deficit down to 8-7 before another wild pitch on a strikeout put the game-tying run (Valdez) on first. Following a single that would move Valdez from first to third, Mahoney would drive in his third run of the game with a sacrifice fly that tied the game and gave LeTourneau new life once again in the ASC Tournament.
Neither team would make any noise in the eighth but have a prime opportunity to take the lead in the ninth as both the Cowboys and YellowJackets left the bases loaded to send the game into extra-innings.
In the first-extra frame of the game, Hardin-Simmons would draw a two-out walk but do nothing more which would give LETU another chance to walk-off with a game winner. The walk-off would have to wait however as a two-out walk by Will Bradshaw would be erased on a batter’s interference call to end the inning and send things to the 11th.
Nothing would be had by the Cowboys in the top of the 11th to give LeTourneau yet another chance to end the game in their half of the inning, with the first two batters reaching base safely to put the game-winning run at second with no outs. A sacrifice bunt by Brandon Ramirez would move the runners to second and third before an intentional walk loaded the bases to bring up Eli Birriel. Birriel never would get a chance to become the hero as the ump called a balk before a pitch was thrown to advance all runners and end the game.
Clutch pitching once again came through when LeTourneau needed it most, with Valdez and Bradshaw combining to throw the final four innings and not allow a single run. In total, the LETU pitching staff struck out 12 Cowboy batters with Bryce Brueggemeyer (4), Sosa (3), Valdez (1), and Bradshaw (4) putting together the double-digit effort.
Nearly matching their morning output, the YellowJackets recorded 14 hits in the game which included five extra-base hits and a four-for-six performance from Dickey. Mahoney made the most of his opportunities, collecting two hits in three official at-bats to go along with two free passes.
LeTourneau will look to flip the script on Texas-Dallas tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. in a game that they must win to force a winner-take-all game immediately following. It will be the second meeting in three days for the YellowJackets and Comets, with both coming in Alpine. The two teams did not face each other in the regular-season this year.
MEN’S TRACK AND FIELD
LUBBOCK, Texas – A group of four freshman LeTourneau University men’s track and field athletes competed in the Texas Tech University Masked Rider Open at the Terry and Linda Fuller Track and Field Complex in Lubbock, Texas on Saturday, May 5.
Competing in the pole vault was Austin Parrish and Alex Hindman while Stanley Williams and Javaughn Dantzler competed in the long jump. Parrish finished third in the pole vault after clearing 4.89 meters (16 ft. – 0.5 in.) while Hindman was unable to record a mark. In the long jump, both Dantzler and Williams recorded scores of 6.46 meters (21 ft. – 2.5 in.) to finish ninth and 11th, respectively.
LeTourneau will close out their 2018 regular-season schedule with the last chance meet, to be determined, in hopes of improving marks enough to qualify for the 2018 NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
ALPINE, Texas – It would take seven runs over the final three innings of play for the LeTourneau University baseball team to claim an 11-6 win over host Sul Ross State University. It was in an elimination game of the 2018 American Southwest Conference Baseball Tournament “Red Bracket” at Kokernot Field in Alpine, Texas on Saturday, May 5.
The victory allows for the 22-18 YellowJackets to advance to another elimination game this evening while the second-seeded Lobos conclude their season at 23-19 overall.
Looking to break out of yesterday’s offensive struggles, LETU would be unable to get any production from their bats in the first three innings of play after three hitless innings. Sul Ross State jumped out to a 1-0 lead at the end of the first inning after putting together a pair of hits to open up their half of the inning and added three runs on three hits in the third to go up by a score of 4-0.
LeTourneau finally managed to break up the no-hitter with a Bubba Valdez two-out single in the top of the fourth and saw sophomore Brandon Ramirez hit by a pitch to put two runners on. Catcher Noah Mahoney would then work a full count before depositing a hit over the left field fence for a three-run home run to cut the Lobo lead down to 4-3 and put LETU right back in the game.
SRSU responded with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fourth, using two hits and a hit batter to go back up by a 6-3 margin. A Carson Dickey sacrifice fly in the top of the fifth closed the deficit for the YellowJackets to 6-4, which is where it would stay until the top of the seventh.
After collecting back-to-back one-out singles to start off the top of the seventh, a strikeout would threaten to end the LETU rally without any damage done. Ramirez would deliver with an RBI single to score Jacob Jones and bring LeTourneau to their closest deficit since the second inning.
Reliever Ryder Lognion would retire the Lobos in order in the bottom of the seventh to bring the YellowJacket offense back up when a Gonzalo Sosa RBI single tied the game at 6-6. Following a strikeout to put a runner on second with two outs, Jones would deliver with a go-ahead RBI double to score pinch-runner Jayden Banks and give LeTourneau their first lead of the weekend.
Holding a one-run lead, LETU turned the ball over to Valdez on the mound who would sit Sul Ross down in order with two strikeouts to end the inning which allowed LETU to come back to the plate. The YellowJackets added four insurance runs on four hits to take an 11-6 lead on a 17-hit performance at the plate.
Sul Ross would look to make things interesting in the last half-inning of the game, loading the bases with one out which would force LETU to make another pitching change. With the ball in the hands of reliever Will Bradshaw, LeTourneau picked up two quick outs to seal the victory and move on in the tournament.
Lognion picked up his second win of the year, giving the YellowJackets four complete innings and allowing just two runs on three hits while striking out three. Bradshaw earned his fifth save of the year, collecting the final two outs as part of a four-man pitching staff that threw for LeTourneau (Andrew Harlan, Valdez).
Leading the offensive charge for LETU was Jones and Eli Birriel who each had three hits while Mahoney drove in a game-high three runs. A total of eight different players for LeTourneau made in at least one run, despite stranding 12 runners on base.
They are still determining tonight’s opponent at the time of publication, with the loser of Hardin-Simmons and Texas-Dallas taking on the YellowJackets in an elimination game scheduled for 7:00 p.m. tonight. The winner of the elimination game will go on to play Sunday where they will have to defeat the winner of the HSU-UTD game twice to advance to next week’s Tournament Championship Series.
Sports Information Director