By Michael Haag | Sports Editor
While students may have been searching for those highly-coveted golden eggs over the Easter holiday, Baylor athletics kept its focus on finding victories. From an Easter expedition in Hawaii to a pair of top-five wins in Tennessee, here is everything you may have missed over the break.
The then-No. 21 Baylor softball team knocked off former-No. 5 University of Tennessee for the second-straight time, thanks to an 8-5 success Friday afternoon at Sherri Parker Lee Stadium in Knoxville, Tennessee.
“This team expects to win every time they take the field and it doesn’t matter where,” head coach Glenn Moore said. “Coach [Britni] Newman had our arms ready for Tennessee’s strong offense. Our defense played at a high level and we did some great things offensively as well. We have to continue to get better, but we made a big statement today.”
Baylor track and field wrapped up the North Texas Classic with limited numbers at the University of North Texas Soccer and Track & Field Stadium on Saturday in Denton.
Senior sprinter Hasani Barr shined with two wins in his first meet since the NCAA Indoor National Championships in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Up next, the Bears will compete at the Tom Jones Invitational from Friday through Saturday at James G. Pressly Stadium in Gainesville, Florida.
Baylor baseball won its series against the University of Oklahoma with a 5-3 victory on Saturday at Baylor Ballpark.
“[The series win] was huge,” junior outfielder Hunter Simmons said. “Starting off with SFA [Stephen F. Austin State University], we take that one … coming in here today to win the series after losing to Kansas; I think it was huge. Obviously a lot of confidence going into next week, we just have to keep it up. Pass the torch.”
Baylor men’s tennis couldn’t find a win on Senior Day as it fell to No. 1 University of Texas, 4-0, Saturday evening at the Hurd Tennis Center.
“Today was really for our seniors more than anything,” head coach Michael Woodson said. “We’re playing a schedule with already three No. 1 teams and that’s a lot. We did a great job at battling back and giving ourselves chances at most positions. It was special to do it all again with Finn [Bass] and Juampi [Grassi Mazzuchi] on the home court.
“They’ve made such a positive impact on our program and brought so many championships here. I am incredibly proud of them and glad we still have several matches and the postseason still to go with them. We’re going to be a dangerous team once we have Teddy [Paroulek] and Finn both back healthy and I am really looking forward to that.”
The Bears (16-13, 1-2 Big 12) will finish their regular season at Oklahoma on Friday before one more road contest at Oklahoma State University on Sunday. First serve is set for 6 p.m. and 1 p.m., respectively.
No. 12 Baylor women’s golf dropped its consolation match to Texas Christian University, 3-2, in the Big 12 Match Play Tournament on Sunday at Kierland Golf Club in Phoenix.
“Obviously not the result we wanted, but I saw some good things,” head coach Jay Goble said. “Sera [Hasegawa] was incredible, winning six matches and having only one match that needed to go all 18 holes. Silje [Ohma] showed what she can do in this format with six wins. She continues to impress in her freshman season. These reps can only help us as we prepare for the postseason and hopefully put ourselves in a position to be back out there.”
The Bears will see the same eight teams it saw this past weekend when it takes part in the Big 12 Championship. The tournament is scheduled for April 21-23 at the Dallas Athletic Club in Dallas.
No. 1 Baylor acrobatics & tumbling sank No. 8 Hawai’i Pacific University with a 287.775 to 270.310 victory on Easter Sunday in the Shark Tank in Honolulu, Hawaii.
The Bears now wait for their seeding in the 2023 NCATA Championships, which will be hosted by West Liberty University in Wheeling, West Virginia, starting April 27.
Fifth-year senior Paula Barañano was the final domino to fall in Baylor women’s tennis’ 4-1 Senior Night win over Southern Methodist University on Monday at the Hurd Tennis Center.
The Bears (15-11, 3-5 Big 12) get back on the court against the University of Texas on Saturday in Austin before preparing for the Big 12 Championships in Lawrence, Kansas.
No. 24 Baylor men’s golf shot a collective 1-over 865 and finished in fifth-place at the Aggie Invitational on Tuesday in Bryan.
“We became a little better each round, which is nice,” head coach Mike McGraw said. “We just never put together the really low round that allows you to win or at least contend. I still feel this was a good step in the right direction. We have a quick turnaround for the Thunderbird, so we need to take what we’ve learned and put it into action right away.”
The Bears will step back on to the course on Friday when they take part in the Thunderbird Collegiate at the Papago Golf Club in Phoenix.
No. 18 Baylor softball secured a 2-1 midweek win over the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, thanks to a home run from junior utility Emily Hott on Tuesday at Getterman Stadium.
“I had hoped it would be a close game because they’re ranked higher than us [in RPI] and it’s somewhat of an upset,” head coach Glenn Moore said. “I knew if we were going to have a chance against a team of this caliber, then we’d need to keep it close, which is exactly what Dariana [Orme] and our defense did. I am really proud that we had some good situational hitting tonight and of course the home run by Emily [Hott] was big to answer their home run.”
The Bears (31-9, 2-4 Big 12) will head out west for four-straight games, starting with Abilene Christian University at 3 p.m. Thursday and then a three-game series at Texas Tech University, April 14-16.
Baylor baseball fell short to No. 21 Dallas Baptist University, 6-5, Tuesday night at Horner Ballpark in Dallas.
“[It was] just a really good college baseball game,” head coach Mitch Thompson said. “Two teams really competing hard. We had a great environment on a great night, great weather and a packed house. Disappointed that last swing didn’t get another foot over his head and turn in to three runs, it was that close. It’s never over until it’s over. Our guys understand that and were competing until the last pitch. I hate that we lost, but we couldn’t have competed any harder.”
The Bears (12-21, 4-8 Big 12) will host No. 12 University of Texas for a three-game set at Baylor Ballpark. First pitch for Friday’s contest will be at 6:30 p.m.