WSCC ATHLETICS: Tennis teams begin ACCC Tournament Friday; softball & baseball teams play series v. Shelton State

Wallace State sophomore pitcher Josie Thompson is 13-0 this season with seven complete games and a 0.86 ERA. (WSCC Athletics)

HANCEVILLE, ALA. – Wallace State’s tennis teams were undefeated during regular-season conference matches.

They’ll look to remain perfect against ACCC foes, beginning Friday in the ACCC Tournament at the Mobile Tennis Center.

Wallace State’s men’s team breezed past its conference opponents behind a steady lineup of Ryan Wang, Sebastian Gamez, Massimo Caliendo, Tristian Du Plessis, Muntingh Hamman and Marco Kalbermatten. Hudson Harden and Alex Rainer have been among the top doubles teams for the Lions.

“Our men’s team is very confident and has many interchangeable parts. I’m probably proud of Marco Kalbermatten more than anyone right now. He’s our No. 6 singles player and has been one of the steadiest players for us all season. He’s been a bright spot, for sure,” said Wallace State tennis coach Tim Garner, last season’s ACCC Coach of the Year.

Wallace State’s men’s program is seeking a second straight ACCC Tournament title and fourth in five seasons.

Leonardo Dos Santos, Ethan Howard and Vinnie Aragao round out the men’s roster. The men finished seventh nationally last season.

Wallace State’s women’s team is also playing for a second straight conference title after beating Marion Military Institute last year in a playoff.

Italia Jones, Erianna Irvin, Martina Paillet, Halle McCrory, Natalia Barron and Micah Oldacre have made up the majority of the singles lineup in matches. Breanna Vann has made significant contributions in doubles.

Anna Knepper and Kaitlyn Daniel round out the roster.

“Even with our women, Micah Oldacre is No. 6 in singles, and she’s been an anchor of our team. We’ve relied on her during every match. The strange thing about tennis is you can be as good or bad as your No. 6 player,” Garner said.

Wallace State softball and baseball

Wallace State’s softball and baseball teams each have conference series with Shelton State, beginning today.

Wallace State’s third-ranked softball team hosts the Bucs today and travels to Tuscaloosa on Saturday. The Lions are 42-2 overall and 19-1 in ACCC action, outscoring their opponents this season, 373-65.

Sophomore outfielder Harper Niblett leads the conference with a .504 average heading into Thursday’s play. She’s scored 44 runs and swiped 30 bags.

Sophomore Felicity Frame is second in the league in batting with a .496 average. She’s also second in the conference in runs scored with 55 and stolen bases with 48.

Maddie Carton’s 18 home runs lead the ACCC. Lillyanna Cartee has added 10 homers for the Lions.

On the mound, Leigh Kirby (0.71), Josie Thompson (0.86) and Bailee Hall (1.26) are the conference leaders in ERA respectively. Thompson and Hall have won 13 games and apiece and Kirby has won 10.

After playing Shelton State, Wallace State has a four-game series with Calhoun remaining.

WSCC baseball

Wallace State baseball (26-14, 12-8 ACCC) is currently in third place in the ACCC North as the important series against Shelton State begins. The Lions are five games behind the Bucs for first place with 12 games remaining in the regular season.

Wallace State’s Mitchell Heer is carving out a memorable freshman campaign. The Georgia native leads the conference with 11 home runs and is second with 46 RBIs. He’s also sixth with a .405 average. On the mound, Heer is 4-1 with six saves and a 0.64 ERA in 11 appearances.

Ben Arnett is among the top hitters, batting at a .397 clip with 14 RBIs and 12 doubles.

Catcher Dan Stewart is hitting .350 with 35 RBIs, while Colson Lawrence is hitting .345 with seven homers and 36 RBIs.

Among the pitchers, Cade Henry is 3-1 with a save and a 3.72 ERA in 11 games and Brayden Rowe is 3-2 with a 2.45 ERA.

Saturday’s doubleheader begins at 2 p.m. at home.

After this weekend, the Lions have conference series remaining against Calhoun and Central Alabama.

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