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TAMUC – Sports

Lions earn the fifth seed in Regional Playoffs, tie a program record with third straight NCAA appearance.

INDIANAPOLIS– The Texas A&M University-Commerce volleyball team earned its third consecutive berth into the NCAA Division II Tournament on Monday. The Lions are the fifth seed in the South Central Region and will draw forth seed Arkansas-Fort Smith in the first round, a matchup of co-Divisional Champions in the Lone Star Conference. The teams split their season series, with the road team taking each contest.

The South Central Regional Tournament will take place in Denver, Colo. on the campus of Regis University, the No. 1 seed in the region. The tournament will begin on Dec. 5 and will conclude Dec. 7. A single-elimination tournament, the regional winner, must win three matches in three consecutive days to advance to the Elite Eight, held in Denver, Colo. at Metro State. In the coming days, they will release match times and other details. 

It is A&M-Commerce’s sixth NCAA Tournament appearance and its third in a row, which ties a program record. The Lions also made three consecutive appearances from 1986-88, and in that 1986 season, the Lions advanced to the Elite Eight round. In 1987 and 1988, A&M-Commerce advanced to the second round. A&M-Commerce advanced to the Regional Final during the 2018 season, while falling in the Regional Quarterfinal in 2017, which was at Regis. 

A&M-Commerce enters the tournament with a 24-6 record and a 16-2 record in the Lone Star Conference.

Alexis Bryant named LSC Defensive Player of the Week.

RICHARDSON – Texas A&M University-Commerce forward Alexis Bryant has been named the Lone Star Conference Defensive Player of the Week. The superlative was announced by the conference office on Monday. It is the first Player of the Week award of her career and the second Defensive Player of the Week award for the team this season. 

Bryant– a senior from Pflugerville– was a disruptive force on both sides of the ball for the Lions as they opened conference play with two wins. Against St. Mary’s, Bryant had a pair of blocks and had 11 rebounds, recording a double-double to go with her 16 points. To go with her two blocks, Bryant also altered several shot attempts, helping to hold the Rattlers to under 33 percent shooting in the game. She then had a career-high four blocks and a pair of steals against St. Edward’s, leading the Lions to another 20-plus point win. Bryant also pulled in eight rebounds and had 14 points, helping cement the paint for A&M-Commerce on both ends. Bryant and the Lions held SEU to under 32 percent from the field. 

So far this season, the Lions rank ninth in Division II in scoring defense, 16th in scoring margin, 16th in blocks per game, and 25th in field goal defense. A&M-Commerce is allowing fewer than 50 points a game so far in the year. 

Bryant and the Lions return to action on Tuesday as they host Southeastern Oklahoma State. The game will be at 6:00 pm at the Field House. Tickets to all Lion Basketball home games are at WeAreLionsTix.com, by calling (903) 468-8756, or by visiting the Lion Sales & Service Box Office inside the Field House during business hours. 

2019-20 LSC Women’s Basketball Players of the Week


N-11 Mackenzie Hailey, Tarleton

N-18 Maddi Chitsey, Lubbock Christian

N-25 Ashton Duncan, Lubbock Christian 


N-11    Maddison Glass, Texas A&M-Commerce

N-18 Juliana Robertson, Lubbock Christian

N-25    Alexis Bryant, Texas A&M-Commerce


Hotshot second half pushes Lions to 86-78 win over No. 12 St. Edward’s

COMMERCE – The Texas A&M University-Commerce men’s basketball team notched its highest scoring output so far this season, earning an 86-78 win over No. 12 St. Edward’s University in the Field House on Saturday night. 

The win brings the Lions back to an even record at 3-3 overall and 1-1 in the Lone Star Conference entering an extended break from the action. St. Edward’s takes its first loss at 6-1 overall and 1-1 in league action. 

The Lions are away from competition for the next 13 days, next playing the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma at home on Friday, December 6. 


– The Lions shot 50 percent from the field (27-of-54) in the game, with exceptional conversion rates in the second half.

– A&M-Commerce made 8-of-12 three-pointers (66.7 percent) in the second half and 13-of-23 (56.5 percent) overall in the period.

– Five Lions scored in double figures, led by 24 points from Deon Barrett (Lancaster) off the bench. The guard also had seven rebounds, and seven assists with four made three-pointers.

– Austin Grandstaff (Rockwall) also excelled off the bench, making 6-of-8 three-pointers on the way to 19 points and five rebounds.

– Deonta Terrell (Chicago, Ill.) was extremely active in the game, picking up seven steals for a school-record and tying the LSC high this season. He also had 12 points and four assists.

– Wayne Stewart (Philadelphia, Pa.) added 11 points, and Darnell Wright (Chicago, Ill.) had 10 points.

– For St. Edward’s, LSC Preseason Player of the Year Ashton Spears scored 42 points on nine made three-pointers and 15 total made shots, but no other Hilltopper scored more than 12. 


On the aggressive defense: “You have to give a lot of credit to St. Ed’s. They are tough to guard. We wanted to make this game ugly. We didn’t want to let them run all of their stuff. You talk about coming off of a Thursday night game in Dallas, and a quick turnaround to try and get ready for a team that tries to run a lot of stuff offensively and really executes at a high level. All of the mistakes that we were going to make were going to be aggressive. And that led to some steals and some opportunities for us.” 

On playing well down the stretch: “It all started with some stops. It all started with some subs, and they got us some stops to get us to the four-minute media timeout. We got our guys some valuable rest. And we made some mistakes tonight, but we made mistakes playing aggressive. You don’t want passive mistakes, which is what I think we have had in some of those close games. When you are the aggressor, you usually get the benefit of the whistle, and we were able to get to the foul line at the end. I credit Deon and Wayne, who made like six or eight free throws in a row. It’s hard for a team to come back from down when you are hitting your foul shots.”

On overcoming shooting woes early to finish hot: “I thought we got some good shots. We got a couple of good looks at three early. But you can’t worry about makes and misses. You just have to keep running the good offense and get the shots we want to get. And for the most part, we did that. We haven’t shot the ball well all year. We shoot well in practice, but this is the first time all year we shot the way we think we are capable of. It was great to get multiple guys involved. I think that everyone that played made a big-time contribution. Not necessarily on the stat sheet, but everyone did something that was important to this win.” 

On the break that’s coming up: “We have had six different lineups in six games. You put guys on the floor that you trust, and I trust all 10 of those guys. I trust the guys on our bench. We are a deep team, and I love the guys that we have. Our assistant coaches have done an unbelievable job on the recruiting trail bringing in guys that can play at a high level. WE are still working out the kinks, but this is a good win for us for a lot of reasons. Now we have a 13-day break. We have a lot of games we can go back and look at stuff. We will have about eight practices before we play again. And that is not common in the middle of the year. We have to take advantage of practice and get a little bit better every time we step out on the floor, and we have a chance to be good down the stretch.” 


St. Edward’s started the game on fire, as the visitors rushed out to a 14-3 lead in the first four and a half minutes with Spears making three three-pointers in the early going. That lead would extend to 13 points with 10 minutes to play in the period when Spears scored his 15th point of the night. 

The Lions responded with a 13-0 run over the next three minutes to tie the game. Grandstaff canned triples on consecutive possessions to knot the game up at 23-all with 7:06 left in the first half. Another eight-point run facilitated by three-pointers from Alex Peavy (Smithson Valley) and Barrett gave the Lions their first lead of more than one possession at 33-27 with just under three minutes left in the period. A&M-Commerce took a 36-34 lead into the halftime break. 

With the narrow margin against the high-scoring Hilltoppers, the Lions needed to hit shots at a high clip to stay in front. 

Simply put – they did exactly that. 

Leo Lara (Santa Rosa) and Wright hit three-pointers on the Lions’ opening two possessions of the second half, and a pair of field goals by Terrell in succession gave the Lions made baskets on their first four attempts of the period. SEU went on a five-point run to narrow the margin to one point at 49-48 with 15:23 to play, but Grandstff hit consecutive three-pointers off of Barrett assists to push the lead back to seven points at 55-48 with 13:29 to go. 

St. Ed’s tied the game up with 12:05 to go, but this seemed only to spur the Lions. Isaiah Wiggins (Harlem, N.Y.) and Terrell each converted steals into points to kickstart a 15-3 rally. Barrett and Grandstaff closed the run with three-pointers on consecutive possessions, and A&M-Commerce went ahead 70-58 with five minutes to play. 

Not done were the Hilltoppers despite the momentum shifting to TAMUC’s favor. A five-point run by the guests cut the lead to four points at 74-70 with three minutes to go. The Lions ensured the victory by making key shots at the charity stripe. A Wright breakaway dunk after a press break was the Lions’ only field goal attempt in the final 2:45 of action, and A&M-Commerce made 10-of-12 free throws in the final stages to earn the big win.

Lions move to 5-0 with 69-46 win over St. Edward’s

COMMERCE – The Texas A&M University-Commerce women’s basketball team extended its program-record season-opening win streak to five games, rolling to a 69-46 win over previously undefeated St. Edward’s University in the Field House on Saturday evening. 

The Lions are now 5-0 overall for the first time and have a 2-0 Lone Star Conference record, while the Hilltoppers fall to 5-1 overall and 1-1 in LSC play. 

A&M-Commerce will play two games on Thanksgiving week, starting with Southeastern Oklahoma State on Tuesday at 6 p.m. in the Field House. 


– The Lions made 11 more shots than SEU and shot 41.3 percent (26-of-63) from the field.

– The interior play of A&M-Commerce was dominant, as the Lions held a 45-27 rebounding advantage with 17 offensive boards. The Lions scored 36 points in the paint and had 21-second chance points.

– Alexis Bryant (Pflugerville) scored 14 points and had eight rebounds to lead the Lions.

– Alexus Jones (Aledo) and Mykiel Burleson (Pflugerville) each scored nine points, with Burleson adding eight rebounds.


– On the defensive performance: “Our defense has to be good enough to allow for some offensive mistakes, and we’re doing that right now. We’re guarding at a high level and held a really good team to 46 points. On the year, we’re holding the opposition to under 50 points, and that’s really special.” 

– On interior play and adjustments at halftime: “I thought we settled for threes early, shooting 13 in the first half. Then we only shot six in the second half. Our mentality was to go into the paint, let’s go inside and see if we can get to the free-throw line, and establish ourselves in the paint. I thought we did a better job in the second half, and it really showed in the fourth quarter.” 


Neither team shot the ball particularly well in the first quarter, as it took over two minutes for a field goal attempt to find its target. St. Edward’s led by two points with four and a half minutes to go when the Lions went on a seven-point run. Burleson scored the last five of those points, and her three-pointer with two minutes left in the quarter gave the Lions a 12-7 lead. A&M-Commerce maintained that five-point lead into the first intermission at 14-9. 

The Lions opened the second quarter on an 11-2 run to take their first double-digit lead of the night in the first portion of the second quarter. Chania Wright (DeSoto), DesiRay Kernal (Newton, Kan.), Jones, and Jocelyn Pierce (Argyle) scored interior baskets and a three-pointer by Dyani Robinson (Cypress – Langham Creek) made it a 25-11 game at the 5:19 mark of the second quarter. SEU used a 10-0 surge to cut the lead back to four points, but a Jones three-point play and baskets in the paint by Burleson and Pierce allowed the Lions to close the half on a seven-point rally and take a 32-21 advantage into the locker room at the half. 

The lead was not substantially extended by the Lions in the third quarter, as their largest lead was 14 points late in the period, but A&M-Commerce hit clutch baskets to quash Hilltopper attempted rallies. SEU cut the lead to eight, but a six-point surge capped by Juliana Louis’ (Long Beach, Calif.) putback had the Lions ahead 46-32. 

St. Ed’s cut the lead to single digits in the opening minute of the fourth quarter, but eight straight Lion points put the game out of reach. Wright canned a three-pointer, followed by a pair of free throws and a triple from Jones to make it a 55-38 lead with 7:25 to play. Another six-point run ending on a Robinson fastbreak layup after a Louis steal pushed the lead to 21 points with five minutes to play, and the home team was able to maintain the sizeable advantage to the final buzzer.

Lions knock off second-seeded Tarleton, 23-16, to advance to fourth straight Regional Semifinal.

STEPHENVILLE – The Texas A&M University-Commerce football team used excellent all-around play to earn a hard-fought 23-16 win over second-seeded Tarleton State University in the regional quarterfinal round of the NCAA Division II Football Championship at TSU’s Memorial Stadium on Saturday afternoon. 

The Lions move to 10-2 overall on the season. They advance to the regional semifinal round for the fourth consecutive year with the win. Tarleton’s final season in Division II ends at 11-1, as the Lions snapped Tarleton’s 13-game home winning streak. 

A&M-Commerce moves on to take on Colorado School of Mines, who is the third seed in Super Region Four. The Orediggers are 12-0 after defeating Sioux Falls, 24-21, on a late field goal on Saturday. Kickoff in Golden, Colo., is set for Noon MST (1:00 pm CST) on Saturday, November 30. 

A&M-Commerce is the only unseeded team remaining in Super Region Four. The other regional semifinal will feature fourth-seeded Colorado State-Pueblo at top-seeded Minnesota State. 


– The Lions had the superior offense, defense, and special teams in the game, outgaining the Texans 421 yards to 330.

– Quarterback Miklo Smalls (Plano – East Senior) was outstanding with both his arm and legs, carrying the ball 16 times for 126 yards and completing 12-of-23 passes for 197 yards with one interception.

– Jemal Williams (Inglewood, Calif.) had 14 carries for 67 yards and a touchdown, and Antonio Leali’ie’e (Copperas Cove) had a rushing touchdown.

– Chance Cooper (Leander – Rouse) had three receptions for 103 yards.

– Kader Kohou (Euless – Trinity) averaged 18.25 yards on four punt returns.

– Jake Viquez (Rockwall) made field goals of 46, 32, and 41 yards and also made both PAT attempts.

– Terrell Collins (St. Louis, Mo.) led the Lions with 11 tackles, including two of the Lions’ five sacks.

– Elijah Earls (San Antonio – Stevens) had 2.5 sacks, three tackles for loss, two quarterback hurries, and a forced fumble.

– The Lions have now won seven of their last eight NCAA Division II Championship games.

– A&M-Commerce’s senior class now has a playoff record of 8-2 in the previous four years (2016-19), and ties the Lone Star Conference record for the most playoff wins in four years.


The Lions took the opening kickoff, and they intercepted Smalls on third down in Tarleton territory. The Lion defense held steady on the ensuing drive, allowing only one yard, but the Texans’ converted on a 44-yard field goal to go ahead 3-0 with 12:17 left in the opening period. 

On the ensuing drive, Smalls used his arm and legs to keep the drive alive. He completed a 26-yard pass to Cooper on a first-and-15, then rushed for 18 yards on a third-and-2. Leali’ie’e used a great cutback move to burst free for an 11-yard touchdown and give the Lions the lead at 7-3 with 8:08 left in the first quarter. The score made it the first time this season Tarleton had trailed at home. 

The Texans responded with an 11-play, 75-yard drive that featured a pair of third-down conversions and a fourth-down conversion. A 23-yard touchdown pass from Ben Holmes to Camron Lewis at the 4:59 mark of the first quarter put the home team back ahead at 10-7. 

A&M-Commerce tied the game up on the first play of the second quarter with Viquez’ 46-yard field goal capping an 11-play drive. The highlight play of the drive came on Smalls’ 29-yard completion to Cooper on a third-and 24 play. 

The Lion defense forced the Texans to punt on their next three drives, including a pair of three-and-outs. Viquez hit a 32-yard field goal with 8:10 to play in half to put the Lions ahead 13-10. 

Tarleton had a chance to tie the game before the break thanks to a long completion, but the 39-yard field goal attempt was pushed wide left to send the Lions to the dressing room with a halftime lead. 

The start of the second half saw another important Lion defensive stop, as A&M-Commerce stopped Tarleton just short of the red zone and limited the Texans to a field goal attempt, which was also pushed wide left. The next Lion drive saw Smalls complete passes to Kelan Smith (Dallas – First Baptist) and Christion Brewington (Chandler, Ariz.) to get into the red zone. A penalty pushed the Lions backward, but Viquez’ 41-yard field goal attempt was true, and the Lions led 16-10 with 7:14 left in the third quarter. 

The home team narrowed the deficit back to three points on its next drive, but a fantastic individual effort allowed the Lions to extend the lead. On second-and-10 from the Lion 25, Smalls ran right for 60 yards and was finally pushed out at the Texan 15. Two plays later, Williams powered for a 9-yard touchdown run, making it a 23-13 Lion lead at the 3:12 mark of the third quarter. 

The fourth quarter featured multiple long drives, but the Lions’ defensive efforts were the highlight. Tarleton received the ball on a punt with 6:58 to play, still trailing by 10. With their season on the line, Tarleton’s offense converted on extended plays on third and fourth down and made it down to the Lion 1-yard line. On first-and-goal, Earls and Alex Shillow (Pflugerville) teamed up for a tackle for loss. The second down pass to the end zone was incomplete, and a third-down scramble by the quarterback was stopped at the line of scrimmage. Tarleton kicked a short field goal to cut the lead to 23-16, but the drive had taken over five minutes off the clock, and there was only 1:45 remaining. 

Tarleton attempted the onside kick, and a TSU penalty gave the ball to the Lions, who were able to pick up a pair of first downs and run out the clock on another playoff victory. 


Simon and Shillow’s superlatives lead 23 Lions with All-LSC honors.

RICHARDSON – The playoff-bound Texas A&M University-Commerce football team earned 23 honors Friday when the Lone Star Conference announced its superlative awards, all-conference, and all-academic honors. Offensive Lineman of the Year Amon Simon and Academic Player of the Year Alex Shillow led these honorees. 

In addition to the two excellent award winners, the Lions had six first-team All-LSC selections, seven second-team All-LSC picks, six players who earned All-LSC Honorable Mention, and two All-Academic honorees. 

Simon (Humble – Atascocita) earned Offensive Lineman of the Year and First Team All-LSC honors at offensive tackle. It is the second consecutive year the redshirt junior has earned First Team All-LSC honors. He blocked for an offense that averaged 407.9 yards and 36.1 points per game. He is the seventh Lion to earn LSC Offensive Lineman of the Year honors since the inauguration of the award in 1984. He joins Jared Machorro (2017), R.J. Brisbon (2008 and 2009), Darron Sheppard (2007), Ryan Graves (2005), and Trent Dagen (1997) as Lions who have won the award. 

Shillow (Pflugerville) adds to a lengthy list of accolades with his Academic Player of the Year honor. He also earned Second Team All-LSC honors at safety. Last week, he was named CoSIDA Academic All-District and was the only LSC student-athlete to receive that award this year. He is the national chair of the NCAA Division II Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and president of the A&M-Commerce SAAC, which has won last the last three Lone Star Conference SAAC Cups. He was a 2019 nominee for the American Football Coaches’ Association’s Good Works Team and recipient of the NACDA John McLendon Minority Postgraduate Scholarship. 

He has been named to the President’s List four times, Dean’s List two times, and LSC Commissioner’s Honor Roll six times, and was the D2ADA Academic Achievement Award winner twice. He earned his bachelor’s degree in sports management in August. 

On the field, the 2017 National Champion has 151 career tackles with four interceptions, 13 pass breakups, three fumble recoveries, a forced fumble, a blocked kick returned for a two-point conversion, and 4.5 tackles for loss. He has 35 tackles, two fumble recoveries, and three pass breakups in the 2019 season. He is the second consecutive Lion to win Academic Player of the Year and the third overall, joining Kristov Martinez (2018) and Taylor Fore (2011). 

Dominique Ramsey (Converse – Judson) picked up a trio of awards, earning All-Academic honors, First Team All-LSC at return specialist, and First Team All-LSC at safety. The redshirt junior carries excellent scholastic credentials while double majoring in mathematics and electrical engineering, earning Dean’s List and LSC Commissioner’s Honor Roll distinction four times. He earned LSC Special Teams Player of the Week honors twice in 2019, ranking second in the nation in kickoff return average at 37.5 yards per return, and second in the LSC and ninth in the nation in punt return average at 14.7 yards per return. His return prowess has seen teams kick away from him insomuch as he has not returned a kickoff in the last three games. He also has 39 tackles, three interceptions, two pass breakups, and two tackles for loss on defense. 

Joining Simon as a First Team All-LSC offensive lineman is guard Deion Malone (Batesville, Miss.). The graduate transfer from Arkansas has established himself as a dominant force, paving the way for the Lion attack. Also along the Lion offensive front, center Christian Hernandez (Frisco – Lone Star) and tight end Tyler Guice (Atlanta, Ga.) earned All-LSC Honorable Mention. 

Running back Antonio Leali’ie’e (Copperas Cove) earned First Team All-LSC honors. The redshirt junior ranks were fifth in the LSC in rushing at 73.6 yards per game and ranks third in the league in yards per carrying at 6.8 yards per tote. He has three games in conference play with over 100 yards and scored at least one touchdown in six of his last seven games. This is his first career all-conference honor. 

Defensively, Ramsey is joined on the All-LSC First Team by cornerback Kader Kohou (Euless – Trinity). The redshirt junior earned his second All-LSC honor after being named to the second team in 2018. In eight games, Kohou has three interceptions, 22 tackles, and two fumble recoveries as one of the top turnover creators in the league. 

Quarterback Miklo Smalls (Plano – East Senior) led the ll-LSC Second Team offense. Four LSC Offensive Player of the Week honors highlighted the redshirt sophomore’s impressive Lion debut season. His 69.2 percent (193-of-279) completion percentage for the season ranks sixth in Division II, and he ranks 14th in the nation in passing efficiency at 161.7. Smalls also ranks in the top 25 nationally in completions per game and passing touchdowns, and the top 30 in passing yards per game, and yards per pass attempt. Overall, he’s passed for 2,329 yards with 22 touchdowns and only five interceptions. 

Ryan Stokes (St. Louis, Mo.) earned Second Team All-LSC honors at wide receiver. He had made an Honorable Mention in 2018. He has 36 receptions for 500 yards and four touchdowns this year, averaging 50.0 yards per game and 13.9 yards per reception. 

Kicker Jake Viquez (Rockwall) picked up Second Team All-LSC honors in his first season as the Lions’ full-time kicker. He ranks second in the LSC with 7.7 kicking points per game, making 44-of-46 PATs and 11-of-15 field goals. His 48-yard field goal against UT Permian Basin was the longest established kick in the LSC this season, and he has also been fantastic on kickoffs, as the Lions rank 10th in the nation in kickoff return defense. 

The Lions’ defensive line earned a pair of Second Team All-LSC honors, as defensive tackle Chris Williams (Atlanta, Ga.) and defensive end Jaylon Hodge (Houston – FB Travis) picked up conference accolades. Williams had 27 tackles with 7.5 tackles for loss, three sacks, and eight quarterback hurries in his only season as a Lion. Hodge had 23 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, two forced fumbles, six quarterback hurries, and a team-high six sacks. 

Arkansas transfer Terrell Collins (St. Louis, Mo.) earned Second Team All-LSC honors at inside linebacker. He was the Lions’ leading tackler with 66 tackles, 7.5 tackles for a loss, four quarterback hurries, and 1.5 sacks. He ranks 11th in the LSC in tackles per game. 

The other Lions who earned All-LSC Honorable Mention are wide receiver Chance Cooper (Leander – Rouse), cornerback L.A. Dawson (Austin – LBJ), punter Andrew Gomez (Richardson), and deep snapper Wyatt Leath (Rockwall – Heath). 

The LSC runner-up Lions open their fifth consecutive trip to the NCAA Division II Championships tomorrow with a rematch against LSC Champion Tarleton. Kickoff in Stephenville is 1:00 pm. 



Offensive Player of the Year (J.W. Rollins award): Ben Holmes, Tarleton State

Offensive Back of the Year: Daniel McCants, Tarleton State

The receiver of the Year: Zimari Manning, Tarleton State

Offensive Lineman of the Year: Amon Simon, Texas A&M-Commerce

Freshman of the Year: Josh Powell, Western New Mexico

Defensive Player of the Year (J.V. Sikes award): BJ Jefferson, Tarleton State

Defensive Lineman of the Year: Jordan Wells, Tarleton State

Linebacker of the Year: Chris Hoad, UT Permian Basin

Defensive Back of the Year: Prince Robinson, Tarleton State

Coaches of the Year: Jeff Girsch, Angelo State, and Todd Whitten, Tarleton State

Academic Player of the Year: Alex Shillow, Texas A&M-Commerce

Junior Pierre Tarleton State OG Sr. Palm Beach, Fla.
Deion Malone Texas A&M-Commerce OG Sr. Batesville, Miss.
Amon Simon Texas A&M-Commerce OT Jr. Humble, Texas
Cody Hayes Tarleton State OT Sr. Fort Worth, Texas
Noah Perez Tarleton State C Sr. Stephenville, Texas
Jordan Johnson West Texas A&M TE Jr. Eagle Lake, Texas
Zimari Manning Tarleton State WR Sr. Long Beach, Calif.
Keke Chism Angelo State WR Jr. Dangerfield, Texas
Reginald Colson III Western New Mexico WR Jr. Hollywood, Fla.
JF Thomas Tarleton State WR Jr. Dallas, Texas
Ben Holmes Tarleton State QB Sr. Orchard Park, N.Y.
Daniel McCants Tarleton State RB Sr. Killeen, Texas
Antonio Leali’ie’e Texas A&M-Commerce RB Jr. Copperas Cove, Texas
Paul Terry Eastern New Mexico FB Sr. Canyon, Texas
Tyler Vargus Eastern New Mexico PK Sr. San Diego, Calif.
Dominique Ramsey Texas A&M-Commerce RS Jr. Converse, Texas


Jordan Wells Tarleton State DT Jr. Navasota, Texas
G’Karri McCoy Angelo State DT So. Dallas, Texas
BJ Jefferson Tarleton State DE Sr. Houston, Texas
Gerred Johnson West Texas A&M DE Sr. Mansfield, Texas
Ronell Wilson Tarleton State ILB Jr. Abilene, Texas
Chris Hoad UT Permian Basin ILB Sr. Leander, Texas
Frank Honang West Texas A&M OLB Sr. Saginaw, Texas
Eric Collins West Texas A&M OLB Jr. Cedar Hill, Texas
Prince Robinson Tarleton State CB Sr. Houston, Texas
Kader Kohou Texas A&M-Commerce CB Jr. Euless, Texas
Jai Edwards Tarleton State S Sr. Atascocita, Texas
Dominique Ramsey Texas A&M-Commerce S Jr. Converse, Texas
Leddy French Angelo State S Jr. Brock, Texas
Sergio Landeros UT Permian Basin P So. Seminole, Texas
Brock Gerlich West Texas A&M DS Sr. New Braunfels, Texas


Vili Fisiiahi Eastern New Mexico OG Jr. Honolulu, Hawaii
Kendall Dearth Tarleton State OG So. Atascocita, Texas
Caleb Brown Midwestern State OT Jr. Rowlett, Texas
Parker Hanna West Texas A&M OT So. Stratford, Texas
Tytus Timoteo Western New Mexico C Jr. Honolulu, Hawaii
Isaac Crichton Western New Mexico TE Jr. Honolulu, Hawaii
Lawson Ayo Angelo State WR Sr. Sunnyvale, Texas
Darian Hambrick Texas A&M-Kingsville WR Jr. Nashville, Tenn.
Josh Powell Western New Mexico WR Fr. St. Louis, Mo.
Ryan Stokes Texas A&M-Commerce WR Sr. St. Louis, Mo.
Miklo Smalls Texas A&M-Commerce QB So. Plano, Texas
Quinton Childs Midwestern State RB Sr. El Paso, Texas
Wyatt Strand Eastern New Mexico RB Sr. Logan, N.M.
Kyle Williams Texas A&M-Kingsville FB Sr. Katy, Texas
Jake Viquez Texas A&M-Commerce PK Jr. Rockwall, Texas
Tobias Harris West Texas A&M RS So. Austin, Texas


Chris Williams Texas A&M-Commerce DT Sr. Atlanta, Ga.
Jordan Phillips Tarleton State DT Sr. Fullerton, Calif.
Jaylon Hodge Texas A&M-Commerce DE Jr. Houston, Texas
Mazin Richards Eastern New Mexico DE Fr. Burleson, Texas
Terrell Collins Texas A&M-Commerce ILB Sr. St. Louis, Mo.
Hunter Kyle Angelo State ILB Jr. Wichita Falls, Texas
Tank Morgan Tarleton State OLB Jr. Daytona Beach, Fla.
Dwayne Tate Midwestern State OLB Jr. Arlington, Texas
Tobias Harris West Texas A&M CB So. Austin, Texas
Devin Washington Angelo State CB Jr. Jacksonville, Fla.
Darrick Dickerson Angelo State S Jr. Missouri City, Texas
Alex Shillow Texas A&M-Commerce S Jr. Pflugerville, Texas
Benjie Franklin Tarleton State S Jr. Houston, Texas
Tyler Vargas Eastern New Mexico P Sr. San Diego, Calif.
Dane McElrath Angelo State DS Jr. Needville, Texas


Pablo Gutierrez UT Permian Basin OG Sr. Odessa, Texas
Bailey Adair Eastern New Mexico OG So. Gatesville, Texas
Blake Harrison Angelo State OT Sr. Fort Worth, Texas
Zach Perry Tarleton State OT So. Fort Worth, Texas
Aseli Finau Eastern New Mexico OT So. Anchorage, Alaska
Chris Ulufale Western New Mexico OT Sr. Honolulu, Hawaii
Hunter Bowers UT Permian Basin OT Sr. Corpus Christi
Isaiah Callahan Eastern New Mexico OT Sr. Clovis, N.M.
Christian Hernandez Texas A&M-Commerce C Jr. Frisco, Texas
Braeden Fox Eastern New Mexico C Sr. West Jordan, Utah
AJ Wozniak Angelo State C Jr. Flower Mound, Texas
Tyler Guice Texas A&M-Commerce TE Sr. Atlanta, Ga.
Brant Bailey Tarleton State TE Sr. Eastland, Texas
Tyler Lynch Eastern New Mexico TE Sr. Gilbert, Ariz.
Xavier Land Midwestern State WR Sr. Dallas, Texas
Devin Milburn Texas A&M-Kingsville WR Sr. Galveston, Texas
Kyle McBride UT Permian Basin WR Sr. Dayton, Texas
Chance Cooper Texas A&M-Commerce WR Jr. Leander, Texas
CJ Fowler Western New Mexico QB Jr. Mesa, Ariz.
Payne Sullins Angelo State QB Sr. Gatesville, Texas
DeAndre Williams Western New Mexico RB Sr. Tucson, Ariz.
Duke Carter IV West Texas A&M RB Sr. Grand Prairie, Texas
Johnny Smith Eastern New Mexico RB Sr. El Paso, Texas
Khalil Banks Tarleton State RB Jr. The Colony, Texas
Lazarus Fisher Midwestern State RB R-So. Clinton, Okla.
Luis Lopez Texas A&M-Kingsville RB Sr. San Diego, Texas
Oly Ta’ase Western New Mexico FB Jr. Pago Pago, American Samoa
Connor Flanigan Angelo State PK Sr. Austin, Texas
Donte Ross Texas A&M-Kingsville RS Jr. Palmdale, Calif.
Justin Mannyweather Eastern New Mexico RS Jr. Fullerton, Calif.
Jamar Claibourn Eastern New Mexico DT Sr. Sacramento, Calif.
Tavaris Owens Tarleton State DT Sr. Whitley, Texas
Sesi Salt Texas A&M-Kingsville DT So. Salt Lake City, Utah
Cody Gardner Texas A&M-Kingsville DT So. Spring, Texas
Melik Owens Midwestern State DE So. Houston, Texas
James Lee Western New Mexico DE Sr. Bayard, N.M.
Diego Assad UT Permian Basin DE Sr. El Paso, Texas
Dagen Dunham Angelo State DE So. Muleshoe, Texas
Jacob Clarkson Texas A&M-Kingsville DE Jr. Houston, Texas
Keegan Gray UT Permian Basin ILB Sr. Andrews, Texas
Tre’Michael Tutt Texas A&M-Kingsville ILB Jr. Channelview, Texas
Noah Sweitzer Eastern New Mexico ILB Jr. Albuquerque, N.M.
Roosevelt Calhoun Jr. Western New Mexico ILB Sr. Reno, Nev.
Hayden Dennis West Texas A&M ILB Jr. San Antonio, Texas
Colby Russ Eastern New Mexico OLB So. Canyon, Texas
Deshaun Douglas Angelo State CB So. Carrollton, Texas
L.A. Dawson Texas A&M-Commerce CB Sr. Austin, Texas
Tre Johnson Tarleton State CB Jr. Fort Worth, Texas
Charles Countee Eastern New Mexico CB Sr. Albuquerque, N.M.
Izell Price Western New Mexico CB Jr. Atlanta, Ga.
Jaydon Cunigan Midwestern State CB Sr. Beaumont, Texas
Josh Wilson Texas A&M-Kingsville S Sr. Corpus Christi, Texas
Marcus Wilkerson Midwestern State S Sr. Houston, Texas
Donta Stuart UT Permian Basin S Fr. Waco, Texas
Vicente Walker Eastern New Mexico S Jr. Augusta, Ga.
Andrew Gomez Texas A&M-Commerce P Jr. Richardson, Texas
Karch Kaspar Texas A&M-Kingsville P Fr. Brazoria, Texas
Roope Henry Eastern New Mexico DS Jr. Rio Rancho, N.M.
Wyatt Leath Texas A&M-Commerce DS Jr. Rockwall, Texas
Clay Endelhardt Texas A&M-Kingsville DS Fr. San Antonio, Texas


Player Team Pos. Yr. Major Hometown
Josh Jacks Angelo State Grad OL Business Administration Round Rock, Texas
Lawson Ayo Angelo State Sr. WR Marketing Sunnyvale, Texas
Payne Sullins Angelo State Grad QB Business Administration Gatesville, Texas
Blake Harrison Angelo State Grad OL Business Administration Fort Worth, Texas
Wyatt Strand Eastern New Mexico Grad QB Math & Agri. Sciences Logan, N.M.
Charles Countee Eastern New Mexico Grad DB Business Administration Albuquerque, N.M.
Brant Bailey Tarleton State Sr. TE Kinesiology Eastland, Texas.
Alex Shillow Texas A&M-Commerce Grad S Sports Management/MBA Pflugerville, Texas
Dominique Ramsey Texas A&M-Commerce Jr. DB/RS Math & Elec. Engineering Converse, Texas
Chris Hoad UT Permian Basin Sr. LB Criminology Leander, Texas
Anthony Harper Western New Mexico Sr. OL History Stockton, Calif.

Home court not enough as slow start hampers Lions in a five-set loss to TWU in LSC Quarterfinal

COMMERCE— The Texas A&M University-Commerce volleyball team lost a heartbreaking five-set match to Texas Woman University on Thursday night. After falling behind 2-0, the Lions caught fire late but could not get enough push in the final set to pull out the comeback. The set scores were 21-25, 15-25, 25-18, 25-19, and 8-15. 

The loss brings the Lions to 24-6 on the season and elimination from the LSC Tournament. TWU improves to 17-14 on the year, and they advance to the semifinal round. 

The Lions now await their fate in the NCAA South Central Regional Tournament. The NCAA Division II Volleyball Selection Show will air on Monday at 7:30 pm. 


– Thoughts on the match: “Both offensively and defensively, TWU outplayed us in those first two sets. We just could never get anything going. We started to play better defense in the third and fourth sets. We didn’t have enough fight and urgency in those first two sets. You have to give TWU all the credit in the world. They had it, and they took that match from us. I tip my hat to TWU. They outplayed us and earned the win tonight.”

– On the thunderous home crowd: “It was incredible. It is my 10th season, and this is the last match of the decade at the Field House for me. When I took this job ten years ago, that was the type of crowd support that I envisioned we could accomplish. It was really good to see that. It felt like every match throughout the year, and the home crowd got better and better. It was great to see everyone out here. We had incredible support from a lot of the other teams on campus and had great community support. That’s why you fight so hard to host so that you can have that type of crowd in your corner in a tough conference tournament. When we used it in the third and fourth sets, it was great. But we didn’t do enough to get the crowd involved early. And TWU played well enough to keep our crowd out of it.” 


Sydney Andersen (Placentia, Calif.) had a career night, recording a career-high 24 kills in the match, hitting .321.

– Keziah Williams (Branson, Mo.) and Nicki Gonelli (Round Rock – Stony Point) both provided sparks off the bench, recording eight kills apiece.

– Shelley Chapron (Houston – St. Pius X) had seven kills and a pair of blocks.

– Celeste Vela (Guadalajara, Mexico) recorded a career-high 44 assists in the match, while also recording a double-double with a team-high 17 digs.

– Riley Davidson (Commerce) had 16 digs while Savannah Rutledge (The Woodlands – College Park) had 14.

– The Lions were held to a .169 hitting percentage while TWU hit .262 in the match. TWU had 11 blocks in the match.

– A&M-Commerce had 16 kills in the third set and 17 in the fourth set but could not find a rhythm early or down the stretch. 


It was back-and-forth to start the match as there were ten ties and four lead changes in the first set. The teams traded mini runs and tied at 14 midway through the set. With the match tied at 18, TWU began to pull away, going on a 4-0 run, which the Lions could not match. A&M-Commerce fell 25-21 in the first set. 

TWU got off to a hot start in the second set, recording two different 4-0 runs to establish a lead early. The Lions could not find their counterpunch, trailing by as many as 10 in the set, falling 25-15. 

The third set again was back and forth to begin, before the Lions began to find their rhythm. Andersen had multiple kills, and Williams and Gonelli provided a spark off the bench to get the Lion offense off the ground. It was close until a late Lion 5-0 run gave A&M-Commerce the 25-18 set win. 

The Lions exploded out of the gate in the fourth set, winning the first four points, including a pair of aces from Vela. A&M-Commerce eventually pushed their lead to seven points in the early part of the set. TWU pushed back, cutting the Lion lead to three points before a 6-0 run, including three consecutive kills from Andersen, put the set out of reach. The Lions won the set 25-19. 

A&M-Commerce scored the first three points of the final set and with the crowd support, looked like they would pile on. However, TWU then scored seven points in a row to take control of the final set. The Lions cut the TWU lead to 10-8 but gave up the final five points to lose the match.

Lions’ last gasp is just short in 79-78 loss to St. Mary’s

DALLAS – The Texas A&M University-Commerce men’s basketball team saw a last-chance shot go missing in the final seconds in a 79-78 loss to St. Mary’s University in Moody Coliseum on Thursday night. 

The Lions fall to 2-3 overall and 0-1 in the Lone Star Conference with the loss, while the Rattlers are now 3-2 overall and 1-0 in the league. 

A&M-Commerce will now host St. Edward’s on Saturday at 8:00 pm in the Field House in Commerce. 


– The Lions shot 50.8 percent from the floor in the game, making 30-of-59 shots in the contest. They made 17-of-28 shots in the second half, good for a 60.7 percent rate.

– Deon Barrett (Lancaster) led the Lions with 19 points and five assists, also grabbing four rebounds.

– Darnell Wright (Chicago, Ill.) notched his first double-double as a Lion with 14 points and 12 rebounds, including six offensive rebounds.

– Wayne Stewart (Philadelphia, Pa.) scored 15 points with four rebounds and four steals off the bench.

– There were eight lead changes and five ties in the game, with neither team ever gaining a double-digit lead.

– A&M-Commerce had a 40-28 advantage in points in the paint. 


The opening minutes of the game was fast and furious, and the Lions used a 10-2 run to take a six-point lead inside the first four minutes. Wright made a basket in the paint, Barrett and Alex Peavy (Smithson Valley) drained three-pointers, and Terrell made a layup to put the Lions ahead 12-6. 

St. Mary takes the lead at 15-14 on a fastbreak three-pointer with 13:35 to play, but a Wright layup immediately took the lead back. With 11 minutes to play in the half, the Rattlers went on an eight-point rally to go-ahead 26-19, but the Lions fought back to within one possession less than four minutes later. Josh Winbush (Lake Charles, La.) cut the lead to one point at the 4:44 mark, but St. Mary’s closed the half on a 5-1 rally. The Rattlers led 36-31 at the break. 

After the Rattlers scored the second half’s first field goal, the Lions went on a 12-0 rally to swing the lead. A fastbreak alley-oop by Terrell was a highlight of the run, and Stewart’s basket in the paint put the Lions ahead 45-40 at the 15:46 mark. 

Leo Lara (Santa Rosa) hit a fastbreak three-pointer at the 11:54 mark to give the Lions a 53-45 lead. That eight-point margin was the largest lead by either team at any point in the contest. 

The Rattlers scored the next six points to close to within two points and set up a great showdown down the stretch. Back-to-back triples by StMU stole away a Lion lead near the midpoint of the period, but they could not push that advantage ahead to any more than five points. 

Winbush hammered home a dunk and Barrett hit an outside jumper to cut the lead to one with five minutes left at 66-65, but the Lions couldn’t equalize. In the final minutes, the deficit was narrowed to one point on three separate occasions, including the last possession of the game. 

After the Rattlers missed a pair of free throws with six seconds on the clock, Barrett quickly drove down the floor for the chance at a game-winner, but a contested shot was missed, allowing St. Mary’s to escape with a win.

Massive first-quarter run pushes Lions to 73-49 win over St. Mary’s

DALLAS – The Texas A&M University-Commerce women’s basketball team jumped out to a gigantic first-quarter lead. They cruised to a 73-49 win over St. Mary’s University in the Lone Star Conference opener at Moody Coliseum on Thursday night. 

With the win, the Lions move to 4-0 overall to start the season and 1-0 in the LSC. St. Mary falls to 1-2 overall and 0-1 in league play. The Lions have now won their first four games of a season for the first time in program history. 

A&M-Commerce will now host St. Edward’s on Saturday at 6 p.m. in the Field House in Commerce. 


– The Lions outscored the Rattlers, 34-4, in the first quarter, shooting 84.6 percent (11-of-13) from the field, 4-of-4 from three-point range, and 8-of-8 from the free-throw line.

– For the game, A&M-Commerce shot 38.1 percent (24-of-63) from the field, 6-of-19 (31.6 percent) from behind the arc, and 19-of-26 (73.1 percent) at the charity stripe.

– Alexis Bryant (Pflugerville) notched a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds, and also blocked two shots.

– Chania Wright (DeSoto) led all scorers with 19 points on 7-of-12 shooting with five made three-pointers. She also had four assists, three rebounds, and two steals.

– Dyani Robinson (Cypress – Langham Creek) scored 11 points off the bench.

– The Lions forced 24 StMU turnovers and converted them into 26 points. 


Maddison Glass opened the scoring with a steal and fastbreak layup to start a massive Lion run to open the contest. A&M-Commerce scored the first 11 points of the game and did not allow a Rattler field goal until the 5:49 mark of the quarter. After StMU’s first made a shot of the game, A&M-Commerce roared on a 14-0 rally and led 25-2 with two minutes to go after a pair of Bryant baskets. 

The Lions closed the quarter by making the last eight field goals they attempted while limiting St. Mary’s to 2-of-11 shooting in the period. A&M-Commerce was up 34-4 after the first 10 minutes. 

The Rattlers calmed down and attempted to come back in the game, and even though the Lions went through a pair of cold streaks, the early lead was far too much to overcome. A&M-Commerce made three field goals in the second quarter to St. Mary’s seven, and still led 44-21 at the half. The Lions shot 50 percent (14-of-28) in the first half, and Bryant’s 11 points led all scorers at the break. 

Wright opened the second half with a three-pointer to push the lead to 26, but the Rattlers went on a nine-point run to drop the edge to 17 points at 47-30. The Lions responded with a 10-point rally on a Bryant three-point play, a Wright layup, a layup by Agang Tac (Sachse), and three free throws. The Lions were up 57-33 after 30 minutes of action. 

The Lions jumped on the Rattlers at the beginning of the fourth quarter to close the game in style. A&M-Commerce scored the first nine points of the quarter, and Wright’s layup at the 6:35 mark of the quarter doubled the score up at 66-33. The Rattlers managed to cut the lead to 24 points in the final moments, but the constant pressure by A&M-Commerce throughout the night allowed the blue and gold to earn.



Josh Manck

Associate Athletics Director for Marketing and Communications | Texas A&M University-Commerce

Committed to a “Best in Class” student-athlete experience

Office: 903.886.5131 Mobile: 817.487.5136

Mailing Address: P.O. Box 3011 | Commerce, TX 75429

Physical Address: 2600 Neal Street, Commerce, TX 75429

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Marcus Jensen

Director of Athletic Communications | Texas A&M University-Commerce

Office: 903.468.3027 | Mobile: 801.624.8529

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