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MSSU softball hosts “Little Lions” camp

JOPLIN, Mo. – (WATCH) Missouri Southern softball hosts it’s annual “Little Lions” youth camp.

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Gorillas, Lions prepare for DII outdoor national championships

The Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships begin on Thursday in Allendale, Michigan.

Pitt State has 30 athletes qualified to compete at nationals, while Missouri Southern is taking 20.

Click HERE for the full meet schedule.

PITT STATE PREVIEW, VIA PITT STATE ATHLETICS:

The Pittsburg State University men’s and women’s outdoor track & field teams will open competition in the 2022 NCAA Division II Outdoor Track & Field Championships Thursday (May 26). The meet, which is being hosted by Grand Valley State University, runs Thursday through Saturday (May 28).

The Pitt State men enter the meet ranked No. 4 in NCAA Division II in the most recent USTFCCCA national poll, while the Pitt State women are ranked No. 10.

Thirty Pitt State athletes – 15 men and 15 women – qualified for the national championships.

Several Gorillas will be in action on day one Thursday at the GVSU Track & Field Stadium.

Redshirt junior Trey Mooney will compete in the men’s decathlon at 9:30 a.m. (CDT). Mooney qualified 4th in the multi events with 7,195 points.

Freshman Blakelee Winn, senior Trace Mosby and freshman Mattie Flanagan will compete in the women’s heptathlon at 10 a.m. Winn enters the national meet ranked No. 2 (5518 pts).

Junior Konner Swenson will compete in the men’s hammer throw (13th, 61.31m) at 11:30 a.m.

On the track, both the men’s and women’s 400m relays will race in prelims Thursday with the men’s relay beginning at 3:50 p.m. and the women’s relay to follow at 4 p.m. The men’s relay of L.J. Kiner, Louis Rollins, Tevin Wright-Rose and Braylen Brewer is seed fifth (39.97).

Junior Mason Strader (8th, 3:42.55) and senior Connar Southard (16th, 3:44.57) will race in the prelims of the men’s 1,500 meters at 4:25 p.m., while Brewer will race in the prelims of the men’s 400 meters (3rd, 46.48) at 4:40 p.m. and Wright-Rose will race in the prelims of the men’s 100 meters (15th, 10.35) at 5:10 p.m.

Senior Bryce Grahn will run in the prelims of the men’s 3,000 meter steeplechase (11th, 8:54.57) at 5:40 p.m. and senior Madison Burt will race in the prelims of the women’s 400 meter hurdles (11th, 1:00.00) at 6:55 p.m. to close out the Gorillas’ day one action.

Links to Live Results and Live Web Stream are available.

Day Two Action • Friday, May 27
8:30 a.m. – Mooney, men’s decathlon
9:30 a.m. – Winn, Mosby (7th, 5114 pts), Flanagan (11th, 5006 pts), women’s heptathlon
1 p.m. – Swenson (19th, 53.03m), men’s discus
3:45 p.m. – Auna Childress (17th, 12.43m), women’s triple jump
4:45 p.m. – Christine Williams (2nd 23.33), women’s 200m, prelims
5:35 p.m. – Louis Rollins (2nd, 13.43), T.J. Caldwell (3rd, 13.84), men’s 110m hurdles, prelims
6:15 p.m. – Men’s Steeplechase, Finals
6:50 p.m. – Men’s 4x400m Relay, Prelims (Sam Tudor, Bailey Stone, Nizar Alarahshun, Brewer, 3rd, 3:09.48)
7:10 p.m. – Women’s 4x400m Relay, Prelims (Matti Price, Olivia Lowery, Burt, Williams, 14th, 3:45.09)

Day Three Action • Saturday, May 28
9:30 a.m. – Caleb Calvin (6th, 66.94m), men’s javelin
11:30 a.m. – Isabelle Peters (7th, 4.13m), Kyla Davis (9th, 4.10m), Kinsey Laird 919th, 4.03m), women’s pole vault
11:45 a.m. – L.J. Kiner (1st, 16.36m), men’s triple jump
12:30 p.m. – Madison Reese (12th, 46.32m), women’s javelin
1 p.m. – Men’s 4x100m Relay, Finals
1:05 p.m. – Erica Schamel (6th, 1.73m), women’s high jump
1:10 p.m. – Women’s 4x100m Relay, Finals
1:25 p.m. – Men’s 1,500 Meters, Finals
1:45 p.m. – Men’s 110m Hurdles, Finals
2 p.m. – Swenson (15th, 17.95m), men’s shot put
2:05 p.m. – Men’s 400 Meters, Finals
2:25 p.m. – Men’s 100 Meters, Finals
3:20 p.m. – Women’s 400m Hurdles, Finals
3:50 p.m. – Women’s 200 Meters, Finals
4:50 p.m. – Men’s 4x400m Relay, Finals
5 p.m. – Women’s 4x400m Relay, Finals
5:15 p.m. – Team Awards

MISSOURI SOUTHERN PREVIEW, VIA MSSU ATHLETICS:

The nationally-ranked Missouri Southern men’s and women’s track and field programs will open upt he 2022 NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships tomorrow afternoon as the meet gets underway at the Grand Valley State Track and Field Stadium.

The Lions have qualified 16 individuals for the championships. The 10th-ranked men have qualified 11 individuals, while the 21st ranked women have sent five.

Starting the meet off for the Green and Gold will be Peyton Barton and Josh Fulmer at 12:30 pm (ET) in the men’s hammer throw. Barton is seeded fifth in the hammer, while Fulmer is seeded eighth in the event.

Jonathan Watts will then compete in the men’s long jump at 2:30 pm (ET). Watts is seeded 19th in the event. Claire Luallen will then compete in the finals of the women’s long jump as she is seeded 12th. That event will start at 5:30 pm (ET). Chardae Overstreet runs in the prelims for the women’s 400m at 5:55 pm (ET). Overstreet is seeded 20th in the event. JP Rutledge then finishes off the opening day for the Lions as he competes in the men’s 10k at 8:10 pm (ET). Rutledge is seeded 19th in the event.

Day two starts with Barton and Fulmer again as the pair competes in the men’s discus at 2 pm (ET). Barton is seeded fourth in the event, while Fulmer is seeded 20th. Brendan Jewell will compete in the men’s high jump at 3:30 pm (ET) as he is seeded tenth in the event. Luallen, Kiara Smith and Precious Olatunji will finish off the day for the Lions as the trio competes in the prelims of the women’s 100m hurdles. Smith is seeded fourth in the event, while Luallen is 15th and Olatunji is 19th.

Day three starts bright and early for Southern as Rajheim CarbyNathan Kovis and Brendan Rozier open the day’s action in the men’s javelin at 10:30 am (ET). Carby is seeded third in that event, while Rozier is 14th and Kovis is 15th. Adrain Broadus and Taris Jackson compete in the men’s triple jump at 12:45 pm (ET). Broadus is eighth and Jackson is 13th. Elizabeth Pomatto will compete in the finals of the women’s javelin at 1:30 pm (ET). Pomatto is seeded second in the event.

The finals of the women’s 100m will be run at 2:55 pm (ET), while the finals for the women’s 400m will be run at 3:15 pm (ET). Ryan Riddle concludes the action for the Lions as he runs in the men’s 5k at 5 pm (ET). Riddle comes into the event seeded eighth.

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VanWey shines, Lions shut out Gorillas in MIAA tournament opener

PITTSBURG, Kan. – (WATCH) Missouri Southern tops Pitt State 6-0 in game one of their MIAA tournament opener Friday night.

Pitcher Logan VanWey throws 8 shutout innings for the Lions, racking up 10 strikeouts on 131 pitches.

The Lions and Gorillas will meet for game two of the series at 3 PM Saturday in Pittsburg.

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Nine Lions named All-MIAA; VanWey unanimous 1st team selection

JOPLIN, Mo. – The MIAA released its all-conference awards on Thursday afternoon. Nine Missouri Southern Lions have earned All-MIAA recognition this spring, including starting pitcher Logan VanWey – who is a 1st team All-MIAA pick.

VanWey led the MIAA in strikeouts this season, racking up 113 in 75 innings pitched.

1st team All-MIAA

P Logan VanWey (Unanimous)

2nd team All-MIAA

C Tommy Stevenson

UT Matt Miller

3rd team All-MIAA

DH Ryan Doran

Honorable Mention All-MIAA

SP Cole Woods

2B Treghan Parker

SS Nate Mieszkowski

3B Henry Kusiak

OF Jordan Fitzpatrick

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Seven Lions, Six Gorillas earn All-MIAA softball honors

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The MIAA released its All-Conference softball awards on Wednesday afternoon. Seven Missouri Southern players and six Pittsburg State players made the list.

1st team All-MIAA

1B Paxtyn Hayes (Pitt State)

2B Taylor Lambert (Pitt State)

OF Yazmin Vargas (MSSU)

UT Leighton Withers (MSSU)

2nd team All-MIAA

C Madison Szymanski (Pitt State)

SS Josie Tofpi (MSSU)

OF Kianna Pellegrino (Pitt State)

UT/P Kara Amos (MSSU) All-MIAA Gold Glove team

Honorable Mention

P Bailey Lacy (MSSU)

C Ashlynn Williams (MSSU)

OF Adrianna Young (MSSU)

SS Gabby Schultz (Pitt State)

OF Keelah Griffith (Pitt State)

FULL RELEASE FROM THE MIAA

The MIAA announced its Softball Postseason Awards and All-MIAA Teams for the 2022 season.

Headlining the 2022 group is Washburn’s Jaycee Ginter, the MIAA Player of the Year, and Rogers State’s Andrea Morales, named the MIAA Pitcher of the Year for the second consecutive season. Central Oklahoma’s Brighton Gilbert was voted the MIAA Defensive Player of the Year. Rogers State’s Abbey Rogers was selected as the MIAA Freshman of the Year. Washburn’s Head Coach Brenda Holaday was named the MIAA Coach of the Year by her peers.

Jaycee Ginter helped lead the Ichabods to the 2022 MIAA Regular Season Title and the No. 1 seed in the 2022 Championship Tournament with a league record of 24-2 and 42-11 overall. Ginter, a sophomore form Berryton, Kan., lead Washburn in the circle with a 1.61 ERA in a league-high 195.1 innings pitched. Her ERA ranks second in the MIAA while her 28 wins on the season leads the group. Ginter also posted the second-most strikes in the league with 256 total – 77 looking. Not only is Ginter one of the Association’s best pitchers but she also dominated at the plate. She ranked in the MIAA’s top-10 in seven offensive categories: batting average (.386), slugging percentage (.683), on-base percentage (.461), OPS (1.144), RBI (53), doubles (13) and triples (3). Her 53 runs batted in led the Ichabods and ranked second in the league. Ginter also earned First Team All-MIAA at utility/pitcher for the second consecutive season.

Andrea Morales earned back-to-back honors as the Association’s Pitcher of the Year. Morales, a senior from El Paso, Texas, led the Hillcats to their second consecutive MIAA tournament after finished 20-6 in the league and 43-9 overall. In 179.2 inning, Morales dominated the competition with a league-best 1.01 ERA, a .144 opposing batting average and 265 strikeouts – 79 looking. She also earned unanimous First Team All-MIAA pitcher honors for the second consecutive season.

Central Oklahoma’s Brighton Gilbert helped lead a league-best .983 fielding percentage. The senior shortstop from Chickasha, Okla. was responsible for 120 assists and 59 putouts while owning an impressive .978 fielding percentage. Offensively, she totaled 54 hits and 44 UCO runs scored with a .321 batting average. Gilbert was also a First Team All-MIAA shortstop selection.

Rogers State’s Abbey Rogers played a key role to the Hillcats offense and defense. The first year from Midwest City, Okla. was RSU’s starting catcher. Offensively, Rogers posted a .336 batting average in 113 at bats and drove in a team-high 45 runs to rank sixth in the MIAA in the discipline. Behind the plate, she was involved in 202 putouts and five assists with a flawless 1.000 fielding percentage. Rogers also earned First Team All-MIAA catcher honors for her performance this season.

In her sixth season leading the Ichabods, Head Coach Brenda Holaday led her team to the 2022 MIAA Regular Season Championship and the No. 1 seed in the tournament. It was Washburn’s second MIAA regular season title under her realm. Overall, the Ichabods posted a league-best 485 hits, ranked second with 339 total runs score and third with a .334 team batting average and .977 team fielding percentage. This is Coach Holaday’s second MIAA Coach of the Year honor.

Below is a complete list of the 2022 MIAA Softball Postseason Awards, All-MIAA teams and Gold Glove selections.

The 2022 MIAA Softball Championship begins Thursday, May 5 with four first round matchups at Central Oklahoma’s Gerry Pinkston Stadium in Edmond, Okla. For more information about the 2022 Tournament, visit the championship central page, found here.

2022 MIAA Softball Awards
Player of the Year: Jaycee Ginter, Utility/Pitcher – Washburn
Defensive Player of the Year: Brighton Gilbert, Shortstop – Central Oklahoma
Pitcher of the Year: Andrea Morales – Rogers State*
Freshman of the Year: Abbey Rogers, Catcher – Rogers State
Coach of the Year: Brenda Holaday – Washburn*

2022 All-MIAA Softball Teams
First-Team
Pitcher: Kylee Lynch – Central Oklahoma
Pitcher: Andrea Morales – Rogers State*
Catcher: Amelya Huggins – Central Oklahoma
First Base: Paxtyn Hayes – Pittsburg State
Second Base: Taylor Lambert – Pittsburg State
Shortstop: Brighton Gilbert – Central Oklahoma
Third Base: Marrit Mead – Washburn
Outfield: Jacee Minter – Central Oklahoma
Outfield: Yazmin Vargas – Missouri Southern
Outfield: Carlee Liesch – Nebraska Kearney
Designated Player: Ashton Friend – Washburn
Utility/Pitcher: Jaycee Ginter – Washburn*
Utility/Non-Pitcher: Leighton Withers – Missouri Southern

Second-Team
Pitcher: Sydney Rader – Missouri Western
Pitcher: M’Kayla Hillman – Rogers State
Catcher: Madison Szymanski – Pittsburg State
Catcher: Abbey Rogers – Rogers State
First Base: Elexis Watson – Rogers State
Second Base: Sydni Hawkins – Missouri Western
Shortstop: Josie Tofpi – Missouri Southern
Third Base: Shayla Harper – Central Oklahoma
Outfield: Lexy Dobson – Central Oklahoma
Outfield: Brittanie Shepherd – Emporia State
Outfield: Kianna Pellegrino – Pittsburg State
Outfield: Paige Robbins – Washburn
Designated Player: Maddy Broxterman – Emporia State
Designated Player: Bridgett Morales – Rogers State
Utility/Pitcher: Kara Amos – Missouri Southern
Utility/Non-Pitcher: Shayleigh Odom – Central Oklahoma

Gold Glove Team
Pitcher: Kara Amos – Missouri Southern
Catcher: Amelya Huggins – Central Oklahoma
First Base: Elexis Watson – Rogers State
Second Base: Tarin Dubler – Central Oklahoma
Shortstop: Brighton Gilbert – Central Oklahoma
Third Base: Marrit Mead – Washburn
Outfield: Peyton Corrigan – Central Missouri
Outfield: Jacee Minter – Central Oklahoma
Outfield: Lexy Dobson – Central Oklahoma

Honorable Mentions
Central Missouri: Kyleigh Lay – Pitcher, Makenzie McAtee – First Base; Aubrie McRoberts – Outfield; Peyton Corrigan – Outfield

Central Oklahoma: Mikayla Rutland – First Base, Tarin Dubler – Second Base; Korbyn Skipworth – Outfield

Emporia State: Sydney Righi – Pitcher, Lexi Williams – Outfield; Alexis Dial – Outfield; Josie Harrison – Utility/Pitcher

Fort Hays State: Sarah Tiffany – Outfield

Missouri Southern: Bailey Lacy – Pitcher, Ashlynn Williams – Catcher; Adrianna Young – Outfield

Missouri Western: Emma Hoffart – Catcher

Nebraska Kearney: Bri Healy – Outfield, Sydney Thomason – Utility/Pitcher

Newman: Lindsay Mayo – First Base, Gianna Navarro – Second Base; Laurie Cooke – Shortstop; Anissa Ramos – Third Base

Northeastern State: Savannah Evans – Pitcher, Gail Young – Pitcher; Addy Wolfe – Third Base; Rhomie Bradshaw – Outfield; Sydney Balderrama – Outfield; Chloe Bohuslavicky – Designated Player; Jaeden Rosenquist – Utility/Non-Pitcher

Northwest Missouri: Skylar Pieper – First Base, Abby Nolte – Second Base; Jacee Winn – Outfield; Olivia Daugherty – Designated Player

Pittsburg State: Gabby Schultz – Shortstop, Keelah Griffith – Outfield

Rogers State: Lana Gass – Outfield, Makayla Bowman – Outfield

Washburn: Hadley Kerschen – Second Base, Autymn Schreiner – Shortstop

*Indicates unanimous selection
^Includes ties in voting

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Lions prepare to face #6 Rogers State in MIAA tournament opener

JOPLIN, Mo. – The Missouri Southern softball team is back in the MIAA tournament.

“It’s exciting. A brand new season starts now,” says head coach Hallie Blackney, “I’m proud of our kids for making it to the post-season. We’ve had a lot of adversity, but we’ve stuck together and we’ve taken it on together. We’re excited to play in Oklahoma City, because there’s nothing better.”

The Lions are the #6 seed in the tournament, and will face Rogers State in the first round on Thursday in OKC.

The Hillcats are the #3 seed in the tournament and are currently ranked 6th in the national rankings.

Missouri Southern is heading to Oklahoma City with an underdog mindset.

“I always view us as the underdogs. I like it,” Blackney says, “We could be the 8 seed going into play the 1 seed and I don’t care. I always view us as the underdog. Having last year as experience going to Oklahoma City and playing there and getting that under our belt, I’m really hoping that pays off this week.”

Rogers State went 20-6 against MIAA competition this spring, including two wins over Missouri Southern in Joplin – beating the Lions 1-0 and 6-3.

“We got a good chance to see their pitcher and see what we need to do better at the plate to have a better approach against her,” says senior outfielder Tori Frazier, “We threw really well against them and had a great defense. We just need to pick it up on the offensive side and we’ll be good.”

“They have the best pitcher in the country. Pitching is name of their game,” Blackney says of Rogers State, “If we can hit their pitchers Andrea Morales and M’Kayla Hillman, we’ll be OK. We’re going to have to find a way to score some runs.”

First pitch for Thursday’s game will be at 4:00 PM.

 

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MSSU’s Miller named MIAA Hitter of the Week

WATCH: Missouri Southern’s Matt Miller is named MIAA Hitter of the Week after driving in 12 runs in four games last week for the Lions.

RELEASE FROM MISSOURI SOUTHERN ATHLETICS:

Kansas City, Mo. — Missouri Southern junior Matt Miller has been named the MIAA Hitter of the Week as announced by the league office today.

Miller helped the Lions to a 3-1 record this week, including a win at No. 30 Drury and a series win at home over Missouri Western.

Miller had an outstanding week for the Lions as he finished the week hitting .647 with 11 hits, seven runs scored, four doubles, two home runs and 12 RBIs, slugging 1.235 with a .700 on base percentage. Miller started his week with a 2-for-5 performance at No. 30 Drury where he hit a go-ahead 3-run home run to lift the Lions over the Panthers on the road.

Miller then went 2-for-3 in game one against MWSU with a double, two RBIs and two runs scored and game two saw Miller go 4-for-5 with a double, a homer, five RBIs and two runs scored. He finished the week with a 2-for-4 performance including two doubles, two RBIs, an intentional walk and a run scored. Miller also moved into second-place on the MSSU career home run list with 35.

The Lions will be in action this weekend as Southern travels to Pittsburg State for a best-of-three series to open up the MIAA Baseball Tournament.

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Kusiak, Parker go deep; Southern takes series opener over Missouri Western

JOPLIN, Mo. – (WATCH) Missouri Southern tops Missouri Western 10-3 in their series opener Friday night.

Treghan Parker and Henry Kusiak each hit home runs for Missouri Southern.

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MSSU introduces McMahon as men’s basketball head coach

JOPLIN, Mo. – Missouri Southern introduced Sam McMahon as the school’s next men’s basketball head coach on Wednesday afternoon.

“It was surreal, to be honest with you,” McMahon says of the press conference, “It was such a blessing and I’m so thankful for Rob Mallory and Dr. Van Galen for giving me the opportunity to lead one of the best Division II programs in the country. I can’t wait to get started.”

“I just felt like I was talking to somebody that I had known for years, and it was the first time I had met Sam,” says MSSU Athletic Director Rob Mallory on the interview process with McMahon, “We talked about our philosophy and vision for the program. There was so much in common in what we wanted for Missouri Southern’s men’s basketball. That resonated with me. I came home and I thought to myself this guy might be a rock star.”

McMahon spent the past two season as an assistant coach at Southeast Missouri State.

Prior to that, he was at Missouri Southern from 2014-2020, serving as both an assistant coach and Associate Head Coach.

“Everybody talks about the facilities. The facilities good and the gym…but it’s about the people,” McMahon says of what drew him back to MSSU, “We have really great people here and I’m excited to get to work with them. I have a lot of friends in the area. My wife is from an hour away in Springfield. I feel like I went to school here. I always wanted to get back.”

“When you’re choosing between a lot of good candidates, you don’t want somebody that’s just looking for a job or a head coaching job in the MIAA, you want somebody that wants this job,” Mallory adds, “That obviously resonated with Sam and it’s something that’s shown through in every conversation that we’ve had.”

 

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MSSU tabs McMahon as next men’s basketball head coach

JOPLIN, Mo. – Missouri Southern has announced Sam McMahon will be the school’s next men’s basketball head coach.

McMahon served on the Missouri Southern coaching staff for six seasons (2014-2020) under former Lions’ head coach Jeff Boschee. He spent the last two seasons as an assistant coach at Division I Southeast Missouri State.

In the six seasons he was on the coaching staff at Missouri Southern, the Lions averaged 20 wins per season, going 124-60 overall. Southern finished in the top four in the MIAA conference standings every season McMahon was on the staff and made the NCAA Division II Sweet Sixteen in 2019.

McMahon replaces Jeff Boschee, who accepted the head coaching position at Pittsburg State University in March.