Sports Information Director Gary Stallard, who also serves as a Liberal Arts Instructor, begins his eleventh season with Angelina College. Following a career as a U.S. Marine, Stallard completed his bachelor’s degree at Stephen F. Austin University, where he majored in English and Journalism. For more than 16 years, he has worked as a sports writer/columnist/photographer for the Lufkin Daily News; he continues to contribute free-lance articles on occasion. Stallard has won several awards for writing, including the Golden Hoops Award for basketball writing in 2003, Regional Sports Writer of the Year in 2004, and the Texas Press Association’s first-place award for column writing in 2007 and in 2014. He has also done basketball, football and baseball radio and live streaming play-by- play and color commentary for an ESPN affiliate. Currently Stallard serves as play-by-play broadcaster for AC basketball, baseball and softball games.
Prior to arriving at Angelina College, Stallard taught English at Lufkin High School for four years. He currently teaches Developmental Writing classes at AC. He and his wife Susan live in Lufkin.
HOUSTON – The No. 12 Angelina College Lady Roadrunners needed big bats to quash some early-inning butterflies in Thursday’s first-round Region XIV
Conference Tournament matchup against Lamar State College-Port Arthur.
Once the butterflies disappeared, the bats ruled the day.
Taylor Davis homered twice, with her second bomb tying the program’s individual season record for home runs. Bryli Lee added a three-run shot and the Lady ‘Runners handled the Lady Seahawks 9-1 in six innings Thursday at San Jacinto College in Houston.
AC also got a stellar pitching performance from Taylor Odom, who after allowing a single, unearned run in the first inning, settled in to shut down Lamar-PA the rest of the way.
Lady Roadrunner head coach Mark Mattson said his team’s youth showed early, but it didn’t take long for the AC ladies to regroup.
“With this group, I knew their first time taking the field in the tournament was going to deal with some jitters,” Mattson said. “We are deep with freshmen again who haven’t been here before. As far as they’re concerned, they’re going all the way, but sometimes that idea gets in the way of what we’ve got to do first.
“It was just a matter of trying to keep building them up throughout the game. This team thrives on positive feedback, so we just keep trying to pump them up. It takes one or two good hits, then the fire starts.”
While the offense waited for the big bang to arrive, the defense provide the highlights. Right fielder Miranda Wiggins and left fielder Jynelle Pangelinan each turned in diving catches to staunch Seahawk rallies. Those plays incited a reaction in the AC dugout, but not until Davis blasted a three-run shot in the third inning did the Lady Roadrunners begin picking up steam.
“We had the two layout catches, and those definitely got us going, but this team responds when someone gets a big hit,” Mattson said. “They thrive on the offense, and that’s just the personality of this team.”
Taylor would go deep again later to tie the program record with her 16th of the year. Later, Lee would rock a three-run shot just inside the foul pole in left field for an 8-1 AC lead. Pangelinan finished things off by driving in Shannon Stoker with the final run and ending the contest in six innings.
In the earlier games, Blinn edged Navarro 7-6 and San Jacinto upset the No. 1-ranked Tyler College Lady Apaches 6-2.
The Lady Roadrunners will play Friday at 5:30 p.m. against the winner of the Paris/Galveston game.
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