Tech tennis, softball host neighborhood rivals NSU, ULM today

LA Tech’s Bailey Wright takes a swing at brand-new Dr. Billy Bundrick Field. (Photo by TIM SMITH)

Staff writer

Louisiana Tech’s tennis and softball teams are hosting neighbors today, with the tennis team honoring its lone senior before a 1 p.m. match against Northwestern State and the softball squad showing off Dr. Billy Bundrick Field to ULM in a 6 p.m. contest. In Huntsville, Texas, the Bulldog golf team wraps up a tournament today.

SOFTBALL: When Louisiana Tech lost its home field in April of 2019 following the EF3 tornado, Louisiana-Monroe AD Scott McDonald and head softball coach Molly Fichtner offered the use of the Warhawks home field to the Lady Techsters for senior weekend against Western Kentucky.

Now, almost two full years later, Fichtner and Co. will make their first trip back to Ruston to compete in the Lady Techsters’ new home.

Tech (13-18) and ULM (10-20) play the rubber match of the three-game series this year. The Lady Techsters won the season opener over ULM 3-2 at the Ouachita Sports Complex on Feb. 11 while the Warhawks took the second game 8-5 at ULM’s Geo Surfaces Field on Feb. 23.

Single game tickets are available for tonight’s game and can be purchased by calling the Tech Ticket Office at 318-257-3631 during business hours or at the gate. Gates open at 5 p.m.

The Lady Techsters have dropped four straight against stiff competition, including No. 1 Oklahoma, after opening C-USA play 10 days ago with 3-1 series win over UTSA.

Brooke Diaz (.283, 2 HR, 8 RBI), KB Briley (.278, 10 runs), Trsitin Court (.277, 11 RBI), Madie Green (.270, 2 HR, 12 RBI) and Amanda Gonzalez (.265, 4-4 SB) are Tech’s top offensive threats through the first 31 games.

Local product Lauren Menzina (Cedar Creek HS) will get the start in the circle for the Lady Techsters, making only her third start of her freshman campaign. Menzina is 1-0 with a 4.20 earned run average.

TENNIS: Playing its final home match of the spring season at the LA Tech Tennis Complex, the Techsters will conduct a Senior Day ceremony, honoring Claudia Oravcova, that will take place before the 1 p.m. competition.

The fourth-year senior has totaled 33 singles wins (25 in duals) and a whopping 53 doubles wins (43). The Slovakia native’s 43 dual victories in doubles currently ranks as the fourth most in program history.

Northwestern State (6-7) is coming off a 4-3 win over Abilene Christian Sunday. The Lady Demons have won the last three matches in the 49-match series.

GOLF: Louisiana Tech senior golfer Mac Murphy led Louisiana Tech with a two-under 142 after the first two rounds of the Huntsville Toyota Bearkat Invitational, heading into the final round today.

Murphy finished each round with a one-under 71 and carded a team-best eight birdies, and is in contention for individual medalist honors, tied for third in the field.

Sam Murphy at +7 (76-75=151, t-34th), junior James Swash at +10 (77-77=154, T-49th), sophomore Lake Juban at +11 (79-76=155, t-52nd) and Battles at +14 (83-75=158, t-64th) rounded Tech’s team scoring on Monday. Freshman Will Patrick competed individually and finished the day with a +14 (78-80=158, t-64th).

Tech finished the day seventh with a +24 (303-297=600). UT Arlington leads with 573, followed by host Sam Houston (578) and Louisiana-Lafayette (585).

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