Lions ranked third in South Central Region, 12th nationally.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The Texas A&M University-Commerce softball team fell three spots in this week’s national rankings. The Lions are ranked No. 12 in the National Coaches Poll released by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association on Wednesday. The Lions are also ranked third in the South Central Region.
It marks the 46th consecutive poll that they have ranked A&M-Commerce in the nation’s top 25. The Lions are 26-15 on the season after losing two to UT-Tyler and splitting with Cameron.
A&M-Commerce has six teams in this top 25 on this year’s schedule, including No. 1 Augustana, No. 2 UT Tyler, No. 6 Oklahoma Christian, No. 9 West Texas A&M 21 Angelo State, and No. 22 Southern Arkansas.
The Lions are also ranked third in the South Central Region rankings behind Oklahoma Christian and Angelo State. The top six teams in the region make this year’s regional tournament, which A&M-Commerce will host on May 19-21 after the Lions won the right to host after a competitive bid process.
|SOUTH CENTRAL REGIONAL RANKINGS|
|4||West Texas A&M||30-10||27-10|
|7||Texas A&M International||24-17||24-17|
The Lions are scheduled for two more games in the regular season, hosting St. Edward’s at 3 p.m. Sunday for a doubleheader. Oklahoma Christian will host the Lone Star Conference Championship tournament on May 13-15.
2021 NFCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll – May 5
|Rank||School||Points||2021 Record||Last Poll|
|9||West Texas A&M||275||32-10||10|
|13||Grand Valley State||203||35-7||14|
New to Poll: No. 24 Georgian Court
Dropped Out: t–No. 25 Northwest Nazarene, t-No. 25 Texas A&M University-Kingsville
Receiving Votes: Northwest Nazarene (14), Kutztown (11), Texas A&M University-Kingsville (7), Central Missouri (4), Shepherd (1).
Dramatic comeback effort narrowly pushes Lions to first-ever berth at Division II National Championships.
DENTON – The Texas A&M University-Commerce women’s golf team qualified for the NCAA Division II National Championships for the first time in program history on Wednesday. They used a tremendous comeback effort to finish in third place at the West Regional Championships at Wildhorse GC at Robson Ranch.
The Lions finished the three-round tournament with a score of 896 (300-307-289, +32), one stroke ahead of West Texas A&M’s 897 for the third and final qualifying position. St. Mary’s won the event at 874, with DBU in second at 890.
A&M-Commerce leaped two spots in the team standings in the final round, closing the tournament on a spectacular tear, going six under par for the last two holes. The turning point for the Lions came in the final moments, as all five players carded a birdie on the 17th hole. No other school had more than three birdies on the hole Wednesday.
Following that, the Lions’ final two players on the course provided the vital finishing touches on the 18th hole. Sophie-Charlott Hempel (Pirmasens, Germany) chipped in for birdie from just off the green, and Inma Ortiz Prieto (Huelva, Spain) made a 10-foot birdie putt to close out the round of 289 – tied for the second-best round of the tournament.
The Lions and their supporters sit on pins and needles as the final three teams completed the round. West Texas A&M was one-over-par on the last three holes, and as the final golfer’s birdie attempt went long on No. 18 for the Lady Buffs, A&M-Commerce clinched its first-ever berth at the national tournament.
Hempel finished the tournament in ninth place at 222 (76-76-70, +6), notching five birdies Wednesday, including three of the final five holes – and most importantly – the 17th and 18th holes. It was Hempel’s eighth top 10 finish in 10 tournaments this season.
Sarah Wongsinth (Udon Thani, Thailand) placed 11th at 223 (76-77-70, +7). She had three birdies and one bogey on the day and was two-under-par in the last four holes of the event.
Ortiz Prieto placed 15th at 10-over par 226 (72-79-75), overcoming a shaky front nine with a 2-under par back nine, including the two crucial birdies on Nos. 17 and 18.
The Lions now head to Detroit and the Jack Nicklaus Signature Course at TPC Michigan for the Division II Women’s Golf Championships. Stroke play will be on Tuesday, May 11, through Thursday, May 13, and that will be followed by medal match play for the top eight teams, with the finals on Saturday, May 15.
|4.||West Texas A&M||294||305||298||897||+33|
|Inma Ortiz Prieto||72||79||75||226||+10||15th|