Category Archives: Sports

Men’s soccer advances to RRAC semifinals

The men’s soccer team defeated Texas A&M University-Texarkana (TAMUT) 2-0 in the opening round of the Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) Tournament. The No. 3-seeded Saints will face No. 2-seed LSU-Shreveport (LSUS) in the semifinals on Thursday.

History

The Saints are undefeated against the Eagles at 6-0.

Basics

The Saints controlled the pace of play from the start. Norberto Lira (JR/Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico) gave the Saints the lead early in the 17th minute. He scored on a deflection off the goalkeeper assisted by Connor Bagley (SO/Norwich, Norfolk, U.K.)’s kick. OLLU tallied 13 shots in the first half and took the one-goal advantage to halftime.

Bernard Cutini Alvarenga (SR/Vitoria, Espirito Santo, Brazil) added to the Saints lead in the second half with a goal at the 64th minute. Starting goalkeeper Joseph Baker (SO/Llantwit Major, Wales, U.K.) made three saves in a shutout performance. Both teams combined for 18 fouls and the Saints won 2-0 to advance to the RRAC semifinals. The Saints defense limited the Eagles to four shots.

Scoring overview

17′ – OLLU – Norberto LiraConnor Bagley – Assist

64′ – OLLU – Bernard Cutini Alvarenga

Inside the box score

Leading the way for the Saints’ offense was Carlos Beltran (JR/San Antonio, Texas) with six shots. Dylan Beck led the Eagles with two shots.

Overall, the Saints tallied 18 shots, with 10 on goal. TAMUT recorded four shots, three being on goal.

What’s next

The Saints will play in the RRAC semifinals against LSUS on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. in Texarkana, Texas.

Baseball makes history with first NAIA Top 25 ranking

For the first time in OLLU baseball history, the Saints have been ranked in the NAIA Baseball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll. In the first poll, the Saints received votes, but this time around, they cracked the Top 25 to land at No. 21.

Tennessee Wesleyan grabbed 17 of the 19 first-place votes in the second edition of the Top 25. Southeastern stayed put at No. 2 with two first-place votes, while Cumberlands also remained in the same spot at No. 3. Central Methodist and Faulkner both moved-up one spot and rounded out the top five. Both No. 15 Science & Arts and No. 16 Reinhardt jumped seven spots this week.

The Saints have won 14 of their last 16 games for a record of 20-10 and are undefeated in the Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) at 8-0. The Saints also jumped to the top of the conference rankings after defeated previous league leader LSU-Shreveport in a four-game sweep last week. As a result, the previous No. 13 ranked Pilots dropped out of the Top 25 to receive 15 votes.

The Saints are under the helm of third-year Head Coach Bryan Aughney, who just marked his 215 career win and is nine wins short of his 100th win at OLLU.

Poll Methodology

  • The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and the Association of Independent Institutions.
  • The Top 25 is determined by a points system based on how each voter ranks the best teams. A team receives 30 points for each first-place vote, 29 for second-place and so on through the list.
  • The highest and lowest ranking for each team (a non-rating is considered a low rating) is removed, and the team’s ranking will be recalculated with an additional point added to each team for every ballot (including discounted ballots) that the teams appear on.
  • Teams that receive only one point on the ballot are not considered “receiving votes.”
  • The frequency of the polls is bi-weekly. This policy was approved by the National Administrative Council (NAC) prior to the 2016-17 academic season. This change allows raters the opportunity to consider a larger body of work between rating periods.
  • For the complete Top 25 calendar, click here.

2021 NAIA Baseball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll 2 (March 31, 2021)

RANKLAST WEEKSCHOOL [1st Place Votes]RECORDFINAL POINTS
11Tennessee Wesleyan [17]26-2528
22Southeastern (Fla.) [2]29-3513
33Cumberlands (Ky.)26-5486
45Central Methodist (Mo.)23-3478
56Faulkner (Ala.)15-2450
64Vanguard (Calif.)27-7424
79Lewis-Clark State (Idaho)22-2422
88Keiser (Fla.)28-6413
97Georgia Gwinnett21-7410
1016Oklahoma Wesleyan22-3389
1111Middle Georgia State21-9350
1210Hope International (Calif.)18-10339
1315Bryan (Tenn.)21-8319
1412St. Thomas (Fla.)21-12288
1522Science & Arts (Okla.)16-7275
1623Reinhardt (Ga.)20-9247
1718Benedictine Mesa (Ariz.)14-7244
1820Taylor (Ind.)24-7226
1917McPherson (Kan.)21-5207
2024Concordia (Neb.)20-3184
21NROur Lady of the Lake (Texas)20-9157
22NRLoyola (La.)20-8156
23RVIndiana Wesleyan25-9150
24RVBenedictine (Kan.)21-4146
2519Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.)15-14132

Dropped from the Top 25: Webber International (Fla.), Oklahoma City, LSU Shreveport (La.), William Carey (Miss.)

Others Receiving Votes: Webber International (Fla.) 100, Indiana Southeast (Ind.) 96, Oklahoma City 80, Westmont (Calif.) 51, Columbia (Mo.) 25, Southwestern Christian (Okla.) 22, Mobile (Ala.) 21, Point (Ga.) 20, Bellevue (Neb.) 20, LSU Shreveport (La.) 15, Asbury (Ky.) 10, Clarke (Iowa) 9, Huntington (Ind.) 8, Concordia (Mich.) 7, William Carey (Miss.) 3.

Men’s tennis defeats NCAA D3 Schreiner University

The men’s tennis team defeated Schreiner University (SU) 7-2 on Saturday. The women’s team also faced the Mountaineers in exhibition matches. Full results are listed below.

Head Coach Sal Castillo said, “Artur Etzberger and doubles partner Michael Canales played great this week. Both players suffered set backs this semester due to COVID-19 in which they were quarantined due to exposure. I have been very happy that they bounced back so quickly considering they both had no practice time for two weeks earlier this month. With an important conference match next weekend it’s always a good confidence booster for the players.”

OLLUSUScoreResult
Caio Ravagnani /Murilo SalviatoC. Kirk/D. Miller3-8Loss
Vinicius Silva /Malachi FarleyA. Cervantes/L. Cabreja8-7Win
Michael Canales /Artur EtzbergerQ. Robertson/M. Gallinar8-1Win
Artur EtzbergerL. Cabreja6-2, 6-2Win
Caio RavagnaniC. Kirk3-6, 4-6Loss
Murilo SalviatoA. Cervantes6-1, 6-1Win
Vinicius SilvaD. Miller6-4, 6-0Win
Malachi FarleyM. Schechler2-6, 6-2, 10-8Win
Michael CanalesM. Gallinar6-4, 6-4Win
Aaron ArrezolaQ. Robertson1-6, 1-6Loss
OLLUSUScoreResult
Brisa Gonzales/Delfina RodriguezBlair/Tory1-8Loss
Delfina RodriguezTory0-6, 4-6Loss
Brisa GonzalesBlair1-6, 0-6Loss

Up next

The Saints face Texas Wesleyan University at 1 p.m. on April 2 at the Georgetown Tennis Center in Georgetown, Texas.

Women’s soccer completes first undefeated regular season in Saints history

The women’s soccer team achieved the first undefeated regular season in Saints history with a 4-2 victory over the University of Houston-Victoria (UHV). The Saints finish the regular season with a 10-0 overall record and a 7-0 mark in Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) play.   

Head Coach Arthur Salazar commented, “The team has had an unbelievable run so far. I’m extremely proud of how they have handled the challenges and adversity the season has presented. Finishing the conference regular season undefeated is certainly a testament to the commitment and sacrifices the players have made.”

History

The Saints lead the series against UHV 13-1.

Basics

The Jaguars tallied the first goal of the game at the 32nd minute on an own goal from the Saints. OLLU gathered their composure five minutes later with a goal from Baye Polansky (SR/Helotes, Texas) assisted by Jaylin Seto (JR/Houston, Texas). Polansky recorded another goal with two seconds left in the first half to give the Saints a 2-1 advantage.

Ambree Rheinberger (SO/San Antonio, Texas) and Brianna Yanez (SO/Portland, Texas) both scored in the second half for the Saints to increase the lead to 4-1. The Jaguars tallied a late goal and the Saints held on for a 4-2 win. The Saints recorded 10 shots on goal. OLLU will be the No. 1 seed in the upcoming RRAC Tournament.

Scoring overview

32′ – UHV – Saints own goal

37′ – OLLU – Baye Polansky – Assist by Jaylin Seto

44′ – OLLU – Baye Polansky

50′ – OLLU – Ambree Rheinberger

65′ – OLLU – Brianna Yanez

88′ – UHV – Meghan Matcek

Inside the box score

Leading the way for the Saints’ offense was Polansky with four shots. Consuelo Luna led the Jaguars with two shots.

The Saints tallied 15 shots, 10 on goal. UHV recorded four shots with three on goal.

What’s next

The Saints compete in the RRAC Tournament from April 2-9.

Volleyball crowned RRAC Champions with victory against Southwest

The volleyball team defeated the University of the Southwest (USW) in the Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) Championship match 3-1 to earn a bid for the NAIA National Tournament. The Saints are 11-1 overall and finish the regular season with a 6-0 RRAC mark. OLLU has won 10 straight matches.  

Head Coach Scott Mattera said, “We certainly did have our ‘A’ game today, but credit to Southwest. They had a good game plan and played so hard. They really gave us a scare. In the end, though, we are taking pride in how much our investment in each other carried us through.”

Mattera continued, “It would have been easy to let this one slip away when everything was going their way, but our players were saying all the right things, and we never lost faith in each other. This was a win for all of the efforts we put into our team culture.”

History

The Saints are 18-4 against USW all-time.

Basics

The Saints were tested throughout the entire match. The Mustangs grabbed the third set 25-23 but the Saints held on to win in four sets. OLLU totaled a .316 hitting percentage and 55 kills. The Saints are RRAC regular-season champions, tournament champions and will compete in the NAIA National Tournament. The achievement marks Head Coach Mattera’s first trip to nationals with the team after taking the helm in 2019. Kalani Ketchens (SR/San Antonio, Texas) led the Saints with 15 kills and 37 total attacks.

Scoring overview against USW

Set One – OLLU 25 – USW 17
Set Two – OLLU 25 – USW 20
Set Three – USW 25 – OLLU 23
Set Four – OLLU 25 – USW 20


Set review

In the first set, OLLU recorded 10 kills and two errors on 31 total attacks for a hitting percentage of .258.

The Saints had 20 kills in the second set and three errors on 35 total attacks for a hitting percentage of .486.

In the third set, OLLU had nine kills and three errors on 34 total attacks for a hitting percentage of .176.

The Saints had 16 kills in the fourth set and four errors on 36 total attacks for a hitting percentage of .333.

On the offense

Overall, the Saints had 55 kills for a hitting percentage of .316. USW had 43 kills for a hitting percentage of .151.

Leading the way for the Saints was Ketchens with 15 kills. Tijana Kruta (JR/Bar, Montenegro) followed with 13 kills.

USW’s Glenys Maldonado led the Mustangs with 13 kills.

Serving it up

The Saints tallied 11 service aces while the Mustangs recorded seven.

What’s next

The Saints participate in the NAIA National Tournament starting on April 17.

Baseball shocks No. 13-ranked LSU-Shreveport with four-game sweep

The baseball team swept the four-game series against the NAIA’s No. 13-ranked LSU-Shreveport (LSUS) to improve to 20-9 overall and 8-0 in Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) play. The Saints are 16-2 this month and set a new record for the longest winning streak in Saints history with eight victories.

Head Coach Bryan Aughney said, “This was a great weekend for OLLU baseball. Shreveport is a good team and we matched their play this weekend. It all started with our pitching. We attacked the strike zone and had more walks than we would like, but Alec Martinez (JR/Corpus Christi, Texas) pitched lights out game one and set the tone. I could not be prouder of these players and how they played this weekend. We continue to compete in every situation, and it seemed like every time a run was scored against us, we bounced back and scored on our own.”

Aughney continued, “We put ourselves in a good position in the conference, and there is still a lot of baseball to play. We must continue to work hard and take care of the little things. I’m proud of how we played this weekend, and it was a great effort all around. We are looking forward to next weekend.”

History

The Saints trail the all-time series against Shreveport 4-16. The wins mark the first Saints victory over the Pilots since 2018.

Game one

Martinez and Jose Diaz (SR/Pinar del Rio, Cuba) combined for a no-hitter in the first game against Shreveport. The no-hitter marks the second time in Saints history the feat has been achieved. The Saints scored the lone run in the second inning. Connor Dayton (SO/San Antonio, Texas) singled to left field to score Andrew Ogletree (JR/Mission, Texas). The Saints held on to win 1-0. Martinez struck out four batters, and Diaz earned the save in the seventh inning.

Martinez commented, “I wanted to give our team a chance to win against a good opponent. Everything seemed to be working on the mound for me and the defense behind me helped. I knew I hadn’t allowed a hit and wanted to keep dominating. Diaz came in for the save and sealed the deal. There is no man better for the job than Diaz.”

Game two

The bats for both teams came alive in the second game of the series. LSUS struck first with three runs in the top of the second inning. The Saints responded with five in the following inning. OLLU tacked on another run in the fourth inning to lead 6-3.

The Pilots tied the game in the seventh inning with three runs. OLLU gained the momentum back in the bottom of the inning. Robert Arredondo (JR/Corpus Christi, Texas) scored on a wild throw, and Matthew Klar (SO/San Antonio, Texas) scored after a double by Dayton. The Saints won 8-6 to take a 2-0 series lead heading into Saturday.

Game three

Game three was just as exciting as the second game. The Saints led 4-0 after three innings. OLLU eventually led 7-4 and ended up winning 8-5. Jacob Mitchell (JR/Harker Heights, Texas ) batted 2-for-3 and drove in four runs. Boedy Flores (SO/Harlingen, Texas) tallied two RBIs, and Ryan Chapa (JR/Corpus Christi, Texas) went 2-for-3 at the plate.

Game four

The Saints won 7-5 to close the series and earn the sweep. OLLU scored at least one run in the first, third, fourth, fifth, sixth and eighth inning. The Saints tallied 11 hits and seven pitchers combined for 10 strikeouts. Four different Saints players had a multi-hit game. OLLU is first in the RRAC with an 8-0 conference record.

Up next

The Saints play one game against St. Mary’s University on the road on March 30 at 6 p.m.

Volleyball honored with several conference awards

OLLU, the Red River Athletic Conference regular-season champions, hosted a social event Friday evening to announce the 2020 Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) All-Conference Team.

Capturing the Champions of Character award was freshman Megan Montalvo. Named to the All-Conference Honorable Mention Team were Amanda Esparza and Montalvo. The Second-Team honorees included Cassidy Haller, Tijana Kruta and Lauren Woitena.

The All-Conference First-Team selections included Sadie Ballesteros, Kalani Ketchens, Alyssa Marquez and Anissa Tamez – all repeat all-conference winners.

The Saints claimed five of the seven Players of the Year awards. Coach of the Year was Scott Mattera. Freshman of the Year was Haller, Tamez was Setter of the Year and Ketchens was the Front-Row Player of the Year. Four-year senior Tamez received the Player of the Year for the conference.

This season, second-year senior Ketchens tallied 119 kills in 283 total attacks for a hitting percentage of .258. Third-year senior Marquez added 136 digs for 4.12 digs per set. Freshman Haller had 50 kills on 121 attacks, 11 digs and seven total blocks. Four-year senior Tamez has 305 assists for 9.53 assists per game, 90 digs and eight assists.

Mattera is in his second season with the Saints. Last year, his team finished third in the conference and was a tournament finalist. He tallied a 19-7 overall record and 8-4 conference record. This year, his team had a perfect 6-0 conference record, and currently, the team is 11-1 overall.

Cross-country teams win their sixth Red River Athletic Conference Championships

The men’s cross-country team succeeded in winning their sixth consecutive Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) Friday morning after capturing 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 titles. The women won their sixth title in seven years.

Head Coach Patrick Torres, who has been at the helm since November of 2020, secured RRAC Coach of the Year honors for both men and women. He said, “The women and men both followed the race plan exactly. We stayed cautious, keeping in control of the race, and we ended up winning both titles. Our women did fantastic, and our men had a perfect score. It was a nice cap to an unconventional cross-country season.”

Jose Zarate (JR/San Antonio, Texas) captured the individual medal against 12 other runners from OLLU and Jarvis Christian College, the host of this year’s event. Nadia Sifuentes (SO/Brownsville, Texas) placed second in a slate of 13 runners.

Zarate ran a 27:24 in the 8000m and is OLLU’s fourth consecutive RRAC Individual Men’s Champion. Nathanial Rodriguez won in 2019, Andrew Moczygemba won in 2017, and Nathaniel Aguilar won in 2018.

Isaac Martinez (SO/Weslaco, Texas) placed second with a time of 27:35, followed by Rodriguez at 28:06, John Davila at 28:40 and Antonio Bustamante (JR/San Antonio, Texas) at 29:07. Jarvis’s Mugisha Espoir, Jose Delgado, Obiajulu Onyeachonam, Ty-Irvin Walker, DeMarques Davis, Eribel Munoz and Jamarcus Epps rounded up the slate of runners.

The women won their sixth conference tournament after winning in 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2019.

The women’s team was led by Nadia Sifuentes, who ended as the runner-up with a time of 21:16 in the 5000m. The winner was Fabiola Gonzalez from Jarvis. Following Sifuentes were Robbie Sue Espericueta (SO/La Villa, Texas) with a time of 21:40, Lindsey Broussard (SO/Kingwood, Texas) at 21:53, Kimber Watson (JR/Kingwood, Texas) at 22:24, Peyton Lammons (JR/Prosper, Texas) at 22:56 and Viridiana at 23:09. They were followed by Jarvis’s Zarreah Tilley, Jia Foster, Garlanesha Hickman-Gilbert, Emalee Lopez, Vanessa Ramos and Justice Wilson.

The men will now prepare for the 65th Annual Men’s Cross-Country National Championship on April 9 at Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The women will go to the 41st Annual Women’s Cross-Country National Championship also on April 9 at Cedar Rapids.

Women’s soccer will host ID camp this May

The women’s soccer team will host an ID Camp on May 23. The camp will be held to inform potential student-athletes concerning collegiate requirements and the recruitment process, as well as to identify potential players for the OLLU Women’s Soccer Program.

The camp will cost $65. Registration, medical release forms and payment information are available online here using your desktop or laptop: OLLU Women’s ID Camp.

Track and field and cross-country welcome Brett Charleton as assistant coach

The track and field and cross-country teams are proud to welcome new Assistant Coach Brett Charlton. Charlton comes to OLLU from Eureka High School in Eureka, Ill.

Head Coach Patrick Torres commented “Coach Charlton is an excellent addition to our staff. He’s added a level of energy and expertise to practice in the short time he’s been here. Not many people can step in mid-semester and find the rhythm as fast as they could. He’s already made an impact, and I’m happy he’s here.”

Charlton will assist Torres with both cross-country and track and field but will concentrate on working with sprinters and jumpers for the track team.

At Eureka High School, Charlton was an assistant coach for the men’s track team from 2018-2020. His team was the state runner-up in the 4x400m relay with a time of 3:18m. He also coached the 2019 high jump state champion and New Balance National’s runner.

Charlton was a standout in high school. He won the 2014 Illinois High School Association 100m dash state championship.

He ran track and field and Illinois State University. He also played football and track and field at Eureka College from 2017-2019. He received the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference All-Conference awards in 100m, 200m and long jump.

Charleton has a bachelor’s degree in Special Education and an endorsement in coaching and kinesiology from Eureka College, and NCAA D3 school in Eureka, Ill.

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