Angelina College Athletics Weekly Update May 21, 2023

Date:

Greetings from Oxford, Ala-Danged-Bama. (Whose idea was it to put this state so far away from Texas? It’s been a long danged drive.)

I’m here with the Lady Roadrunner softball team and the NJCAA Division I Softball World Series. AC’s ladies earned their berth after roaring through the regional tournament with three straight wins.

They also experienced an impromptu graduation ceremony (since they missed AC’s Commencement exercises last Saturday because of the tournament), and on Sunday morning, the ladies received a special sendoff from family, friends, and fans on the AC campus.

Whew. It’s been busy up in here.

Here’s a quick recap of the week, along with upcoming events (camps) in the near future.

AC Softball Graduates

Lady Roadrunner Softball:

Theirs will be a story of overcoming adversity. From a less-than-stellar start to the season (a record of 12-19 in early April) to a depleted roster to a first-year head coach (Brette Kohring’s first job as a head coach at ANY level), the 2023 Lady Roadrunner softball team exceeded all expectations except for their own – and Kohring’s. AC capped their season on Monday at the Region XIV Conference Tournament with a thrilling 6-5 win over host team Bossier Parish Community College, sending the Lady ‘Runners to their third national tournament in the program’s history.

Because the ladies were busy with tournament play on the day of Angelina College’s regular Commencement exercises, the college held a ceremony on Wednesday for the seven graduation Lady Roadrunner sophomores – a ceremony held right on the Lady Roadrunners’ softball field. AC president Dr. Michael Simon and others addressed the graduates, and each player received her diploma right in the pitching circle.

The seven graduates are Madi Baker, Alyssa Collazo, Bailey Frenzel, Haley Primrose, Mia Gilmore, Morgan Louviere, and Lace Tangianau.

On Friday morning, the Lady ‘Runner softball team learned it would enter the national tournament as the No. 13 seed. AC will face No. 4 Walters State at 2 p.m. (CST) on Tuesday. The winner advances to the winner’s bracket against the winner of No. 5 Northwest Florida and No. 12 Eastern Arizona; the loser will face the loser of the same contest.

To cap the huge week, the team received a big sendoff on Sunday morning. Family, friends, and other fans gathered to cheer the team’s departure for Alabama, and the morning included a large crowd, a police escort, and a genuine, traditional “Haka” dance straight from New Zealand.

For the full bracket, click this link: https://d2o2figo6ddd0g.cloudfront.net/i/i/b44wxcbfdf10o0/2023_NJCAA_DI_Softball_Champ_Bracket_v3.pdf?fbclid=IwAR0TUek210d3koYkG1X535R5TTtHBJMC-rOpUGFjbCM0SL6N-X3M–LGz40

Finally, all the NJCAA National Tournament games will be live-streamed ONLY on the NJCAA Network. It’s a subscription service, so fans have the option of paying per game or for the entire tournament. Here’s the link: https://www.njcaa.org/network/championships/sb-di

I’ll be updating scores on both Twitter (@ACAthletics) and on the AC Athletics Facebook page. I have fat thumbs, so the updates may not come as quickly as everyone would like, but they’ll get there.

Summer Camps for Athletics:

Any youngster looking for something fun and productive to do this summer (and any parent looking to get the kids out of the house for a few hours) can look to Camp Roadrunner to come to the rescue. Camp Roadrunner and the athletics camps offer kids a full day of fun and instruction in numerous areas, guaranteeing no one is going to feel bored. (And parents, they’re going to come home tired. You win!)

The Athletics youth camps dates are as follows:

Baseball: June 5-7, Poland Field on the AC Campus

Softball: June 12-15, Lady Roadrunner Softball Field on the AC Campus

Basketball: June 12-15 and July 10-13, Shands Gymnasium on the AC Campus

Soccer: June 12-15 and July 24-27, the Angelina College Soccer Complex

Full registration and other information are located at https://www.angelina.edu/camproadrunner/.

Gary Stallard
Sports Information Director Gary Stallard, who also serves as a Liberal Arts Instructor, begins his eleventh season with Angelina College. Following a career as a U.S. Marine, Stallard completed his bachelor’s degree at Stephen F. Austin University, where he majored in English and Journalism. For more than 16 years, he has worked as a sports writer/columnist/photographer for the Lufkin Daily News; he continues to contribute free-lance articles on occasion. Stallard has won several awards for writing, including the Golden Hoops Award for basketball writing in 2003, Regional Sports Writer of the Year in 2004, and the Texas Press Association’s first-place award for column writing in 2007 and in 2014. He has also done basketball, football and baseball radio and live streaming play-by- play and color commentary for an ESPN affiliate. Currently Stallard serves as play-by-play broadcaster for AC basketball, baseball and softball games. Prior to arriving at Angelina College, Stallard taught English at Lufkin High School for four years. He currently teaches Developmental Writing classes at AC. He and his wife Susan live in Lufkin.

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