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College Round-Up for Oct. 10

SOFTBALL

Tech to host high school exposure camp

RUSSELLVILLE — The Arkansas Tech Golden Suns softball program will be hosting a high school exposure camp on Saturday, November 9th located on the Arkansas Tech campus at Chartwells Women’s Sports Complex.

The camp will feature all high school players interested in playing at Arkansas Tech and will cost $65 to participate. There will be a basic skills session from 9 a.m. to noon, and competitive games from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

This will be Coach Kristina McSweeney’s second year at Tech after leading Tech to a 26-23 (19-15 GAC) record her first year as coach of the Golden Suns.

For more information, contact Kristina McSweeney via email at kmcsweeney@atu.edu. For more information on Arkansas Tech softball, visit athletics.atu.edu.

GOLF

Magnusson leads Weevils at invitational

WARRESNBURG, Mo. – Sophomore Ari Magnusson finished 12th out of 100 participants at Central Missouri’s Heart of America Men’s Golf Invitational this past Monday and Tuesday at the Keth Memorial Golf Course.

Magnusson finished in a four-way tie for 12th place after turning in a 74 in the first round, an even par of 71 in the second round and another 74 in the final round for a three-round total of 219, just five strokes behind in individual winner, Max Lazzo of Washburn, who defeated two others on the first playoff hole.

As a team, UAM finished in 18th place out of 20 teams.

Host Central Missouri finished at the top of the team leaderboard with three top 10 finishers and a team total of 865, 14 strokes ahead of second place finisher Arkansas Tech. Washburn finished third.

VOLLEYBALL

Lady Lions take unbeaten league record on road

FORT SMITH — Fresh off a three-game homestand, the UAFS volleyball team will resume Heartland Conference play this weekend with a two-match, three-day swing through the Lone Star State.

UAFS will play St. Mary’s at 7 p.m. on Thursday at Bill Greehey Arena in San Antonio, Texas, and will play Texas A&M International at noon on Saturday at the Kinesiology and Convocation Center in Laredo, Texas.

It will be the Lady Lions’ first meetings of the season with the Lady Rattlers and the Dustdevils.

UAFS (10-6) sits atop the conference standings and is the only undefeated team remaining in conference play. The Lady Lions, who are 7-0 in league play, enjoy a two-match lead over provisional NCAA Division II member Lubbock Christian and St. Mary’s.

The Lady Lions have won four matches in a row and are coming off three consecutive sweeps. UAFS swept Southeastern Oklahoma State, McMurry and St. Edward’s during last week’s homestand.

For her performance during that three-match stretch, freshman Emily Tripp was named Conference Libero of the Week.

St. Mary’s (8-8, 5-2) is coming off a four-set win against the University of Texas of the Permian Basin. Its conference losses are to McMurry and Newman. Texas A&M International (2-13, 1-6) snapped a five-match losing streak with a win against Oklahoma Panhandle State on Friday in Goodwell, Okla.

FOOTBALL

Heard rejoins Bears after suspension

CONWAY — University of Central Arkansas linebacker Justin Heard has been reinstated to the football program after serving a three-game suspension for an NCAA violation concerning his book scholarship.

Heard can return to practice this week and will be eligible to play again on Oct. 19 when the Bears travel to Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas. Heard did not participate against Missouri State on Sept. 21 or McNeese State on Oct. 5.

“At the beginning of the semester, Justin made a serious error in judgment with regard to his book scholarship,’ said UCA head coach Clint Conque. “Upon learning of this situation, he was immediately suspended from the football team pending an investigation of this matter by our institution.

“This university takes violations of any kind extremely seriously. And upon completing the investigation, we made a recommendation to the Southland Conference and the NCAA. Both governing bodies agreed with our assessment of the situation and our penalty of a three-game suspension for the student-athlete.”

Heard, a 6-foot-1, 230-pound middle linebacker from Woodland, Ala., was the Bears top returning tackler for the 2013 season and was leading the team again through three games this season. Heard has already graduated with a degree in sociology.

“Justin was very forthright throughout this situation, he has made complete restitution and has handled the entire matter in a very mature manner,’ said Conque. “No one feels worse about the situation than he does.

“We welcome Justin back to practice this week and competition next week. He’s an all-conference performer and a leader for our defense who will give us a positive lift the remainder of the season.

“We now consider this a closed matter. We are putting this behind us and moving forward.’

The 20th-ranked Bears, with seven regular-season games remaining, host Nebraska-Kearney at 3 p.m. Saturday at First Security Field at Estes Stadium.

CROSS COUNTRY

Koehn earns SBC weekly runner honor

LITTLE ROCK – After placing 44th overall in a highly competitive field of more than 300 at the Chile Pepper Festival on Saturday, UALR senior Shaun Koehn was named the Sun Belt Conference’s Runner of the Week on Wednesday.

Koehn was UALR’s top finisher in Fayetteville, scoring 26 points to help the team to a seventh-place finish in the 14-team field. Koehn beat out top runners from Central Arkansas, Louisiana Tech, LSU, TCU and Oral Roberts as well as fellow Sun Belt school ULM.

Koehn finished the 8K race in 25:41.1, 15 seconds faster than ULM’s Dusan Makevic.

Wednesday marks the first time in Koehn’s career that he was named the conference’s Runner of the Week. Koehn is the second UALR men’s runner to take the award back to Little Rock in as many races. Sophomore George Gathuru claimed the honor after the team’s season opener in Arlington, Texas, on Sept. 14. Also winning the award that day was women’s runner Emma Dahl.

The Trojans have this weekend off before returning to action with the UALR Invite on Oct. 19. The Sun Belt Conference championship is two weeks after that on Nov. 2.

Aubert earns third SBC award

NEW ORLEANS – Junior Kristina Aubert of the Arkansas State University women’s cross country team has been recognized for the third time this season as the Sun Belt Conference (SBC) Women’s Cross Country Runner of the Week in an announcement made this Wednesday by the league office.

Earlier this fall, Aubert was bestowed with the SBC weekly award on two occasions — Sept. 4 and Oct. 2.

Aubert paced the regionally-ranked Arkansas State squad at last Saturday’s (Oct. 5) 12th annual Greater Louisville (Ky.) Cross Country Classic with a third-place time of 17:09.33 among the 288 runners. The Red Wolves placed eighth with 228 points in the 20-team NCAA Division I Gold Division 5K race.

This season, Aubert has placed among the top three individuals in each of her last three meets to date. She claimed top medalist honors at the Saint Louis (Mo.) Big River Forest Park Festival meet (Sept. 13) and the Rhodes College Invitational (Sept. 28).

Aubert holds the distinction of being A-State’s first-ever women’s national qualifier. She also garnered both SBC’s Freshman of the Year and all-conference laurels in the 2010 season.

The Arkansas State women’s team is idle this weekend before resuming action Saturday, Oct. 19, at two separate meets. The Red Wolves will have selected runners competing in the Indiana State Pre-Nationals Invitational in Terre Haute, Ind., while the rest of the team participates in the UALR Invitational at Little Rock.

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