The University of Central Arkansas won both the softball and the dramatics Sunday afternoon.

Senior Day had a perfect ending, one worthy of Hollywood.

UCA trailed Lamar, 5-3, in the bottom of the seventh. Senior Melissa Bryant drew a walk to load the bases.

Up stepped her twin sister, Melanie, UCA’s career home run leader. Melanie Bryant sent the ball over the wall in left center for a walkoff grand slam, giving the Bears a 7-5 victory and a sweep of the three-game series.

With the victory in their final home game at Farris Field, the Bears upped their record to 35-16, 14-8. in the Southland Conference.

The Lady Cardinals fell to 21-33, 11-13.

Kelsie Armstrong (27-11) earned the win for the Bears, throwing all seven innings and allowing two earned runs on nine hits and two walks. She struck out four batters.

Central Arkansas returns to the field next weekend, traveling to Corpus Christi, Texas for a three-game set.


JACKSON, Miss. — The Hendrix College baseball team’s 2013 campaign came to a close on Sunday with a pair of losses to No. 25 Millsaps College in the Southern Athletic Association Tournament semifinals at Twenty Field.

The fourth-seeded Warriors (21-22) needed to win one game to advance to next weekend’s championship series against Birmingham-Southern, but the top seed and host Majors (32-11) took the first game 2-1, forcing a second contest. They closed out the day with an 8-4 win.

The Warriors end the season one victory shy of the school record of 22. The pitching staff did set a new program with a 4.20 earned run average on the year.

In the opener, the Warriors only had six hits, with sophomore Ryan Ritz responsible for two of them. Simmons had the RBI single and a school-record seventh sacrifice bunt of the season. Four different Majors had two hits each.

Will Elmore (2-1) earned the win for Millsaps, going 5.2 innings and allowing five hits, one run, one walk and striking out four. West Hammond picked up the save by fanning two in 1.1 perfect innings.

In game two, the Warriors took a 4-1 lead after four. Millsaps broke the game ope with five runs on five hits in the sixth.

The Hendrix offense was limited to just five hits. John Pounds had the only extra base hit with a double. Samuel Doucet had three hits for the Majors. Five others had two hits apiece.

Sunday’s contests were the final games for Hendrix senior pitchers Ted Smoyer and Tyler Keever.


The University of Central Arkansas women’s track and field team set two school records at the Drake Relays last weekend at Des Moines, Iowa.

The combined men’s and women’s squads also turned in 20 Top 5 performances at the 2013 Red Wolves Open in Jonesboro on Saturday.

At the prestigious Drake Relays, which featured many United States and international Olympic qualifiers, freshman Brooke Cassar set a school record in the 5K with a time of 16:48.24, finishing ninth overall. Junior Erika Setzler of Conway broke her own record in the 3,000 meter steeplechase in a time of 10:44.21, finishing 10th. Senior Jasmine Ellis was eighth in the heptathlon with 4,831 points, just 50 points short of the school mark, while senior Megan Snow was 16th with 4,393 points. Junior Tanesha Maxwell was 14th in the 100 meters (12.37).

In Jonesboro, the UCA women had 12 Top 5 finishes, led by third-place finishes from sophomore Tyaniah Cash in the 200 meters (26.64), junior Kayla Nehus in the 1,500 meters (4:46.61) sophomore Jean Black in the 400-meter hurdles (1:03.67) and sophomore Nicole Okeke in the high jump (5-0.25). Senior April Martin was fourth in the triple jump (37-02.5), while Cash was fourth in the 100 meters (12.69) and Leah Johnson was fourth in the 200 (26.88). Freshman Khadijah Smith finished fourth in the 400 meters (57.68) and senior Courtney Efurd was fifth in the 800 (2:22.22) as well as the 1,500 (4:54.39).

Junior Anilah Bashir finished fifth in the 100 meter hurdles (14.90) and senior Mallory Muckensturm was fifth in the javelin (99-08).

On the men’s side, sophomore Chance Tanner finished second in the 400 meters (47.81), with Dustie Smith taking fourth (49.74) and Powell Bryant fifth (50.49). Senior Daniel Reese was second in the javelin (173-05). Sophomore Connor Ryan finished third in the 1,500 meters (4:05.13), with Jacob Sanders fourth (4:09.08) and James Leonard fifth (4:10.17).

UCA’s 4x100 relay team of Tanner, Trey Carter, Kelton Ray and Roy Lowery was third (42.73).

(Sports Information Departments from UCA and Hendrix contributed to this report)