NASHVILLE, Tenn. - After 17 years of championships, friendships, teamwork, and playing for the love of the game, the TranSouth Athletic Conference is going silent.
The end comes after nearly two decades of great athletic competition, friendly rivalries, life-long friendships created, and memories that will forever be remembered by student-athletes, coaches, fans, alumni, and administrators. In the TranSouth, competition truly expressed a love of sport. The effort always focused on teamwork, representing the name on your jersey, and seeking championships.
The TranSouth Athletic Conference (TSAC) was founded in 1996 and began play as an official NAIA conference during the 1996-1997. The conference lived out its name with member schools comprised from six different southern States; Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Arkansas.
The conference berthed with a number of schools coming from the Tennessee Collegiate Athletic Conference (TCAC).The original 11 members were Bethel (College) University, Berry College, Birmingham Southern College, Blue Mountain College, (David) Lipscomb University, Freed-Hardeman University, Lee (College) University, Martin Methodist College, Trevecca Nazarene University, Union University, and Williams Baptist College
During its history, the TSAC would add an additional six member schools: Lyon College, Cumberland University, Crichton College, Mid-Continent University, Lambuth University, and Life University
The conference offered regular season and/or tournament championships in men's and women's soccer, men's and women's cross country, women's volleyball, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's golf, and baseball, and women's fast-pitch softball.
The TranSouth was an integral part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and perennially flexed its collective muscle to win numerous NAIA national championships. Conference members have fielded NAIA national champions in women's basketball, men's basketball, baseball, cycling, women's soccer, and wrestling.
The TranSouth Conference boasted twelve NAIA National Champions: Bethel University - Men's Soccer (2008); Birmingham-Southern - Baseball (2000); Cumberland - Baseball (2004, 2010); Lambuth - Women's Basketball (2007); Martin Methodist - Women's Soccer (2005, 2007); and Union University - Women's Basketball (1998, 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010). Individual sport championships were won by Freed-Hardeman (men's tennis doubles) and Cumberland (cycling, wrestling).
The TranSouth found success in many sports at the NAIA national level, but the most notable success was found in women's basketball. The conference won six national titles and had multiple teams reach the final four and championship game. Though Union University led the way under Mark Campbell (14 regular season and 12 tournament titles), it often found other conference teams flexing at the national tournament with it.
Union won five NAIA Championships (1998, 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010) and was the runner-up three other seasons (1997, 2011, 2012). Lambuth University won the title in 2007 and finished as the runner-up in 2009, losing to Union. In 2008 Trevecca made the championship game. Cumberland reached the championship game in 2007, falling to Lambuth. The conference had seven other teams reach the women's basketball semifinals.
The 2012-2013 active members of the TranSouth will move to other conferences in 2013-2014. The following is a list of the schools and their destinations..
Bethel University - Southern States
Blue Mountain College - Southern States
Freed-Hardeman University - American Midwest
Life University - Independent
Martin Methodist College - Southern States
Mid-Continent University - American Midwest
The roots of the TranSouth Athletic Conference reach back to the Volunteer State Athletic Conference (VSAC). After the VSAC, Tennessee Collegiate Athletic Conference (TCAC) was formed. Some teams changed, but the quality of the universities and the caliber of athletic competition remained as high as ever.
The name of the conference is credited to Wil Thorthwaite. During a trip with the Lipscomb basketball team in 1995, the name came to him while driving with Jonathan Seamon, Andy Lane, and Benjamin Seamon.
A number of persons were integral in the creation of the TranSouth Athletic Conference. An adequate and proper mention of all those persons is impossible; however, the following is a short list of persons who played significant roles.
E.L. Hutton, the founding conference commissioner, served in that role until his 2011 retirement. Charlie Smith, a former coach and athletic director at Freed-Hardeman, served as the commissioner for the last two years. Jonathan Seamon, the former conference president and athletic director at Lipscomb, was a key leadership partner in the conference founding. Another Lipscomb figure, Ken Dugan, was heavily involved in forming the league.
David Blackstock, a coach and athletic director at Union, was a fundamental part of the forming and continued life of the conference. Nancy Bennett (Freed-Hardeman University) and Toby Williams (Trevecca Nazarene University) were both long-time contributors to the TranSouth Executive Committee. Bennett serve additionally as the secretary of conference, and Williams served as the eligibility chair. Williams was recently inducted into the NAIA Hall of Fame as a result of his work with the conference and at Trevecca. In recent years Jeff Bain, the athletic director at Martin Methodist, took on a significant leadership role. Bain was the treasurer for the conference and was recognized as the AD of the year on several occassions.
CHRONOLOGICAL HISTORY OF TRANSOUTH
VSAC - Volunteer State Athletic Conference
Carson Newman University
Christian Brothers University
Tennessee Wesleyan College
Trevecca Nazarene University
TCAC - Tennessee Collegiate Athletic Conference Formed in 1985
Blue Mountain College
Christian Brothers University
Martin Methodist College
Trevecca Nazarene University
TSAC - TranSouth Athletic Conference
Formed in 1996-97
Birmingham Southern College
Blue Mountain College
David Lipscomb University
Martin Methodist College
Trevecca Nazarene University
Williams Baptist College
Lyon College joins the TranSouth Athletic Conference.
Bethel College leaves for Kentucky Intercollegiate Conference.
Birmingham Southern leaves for NCAA D-1.
Lipscomb University leaves for NCAA D-1.
Williams Baptist leaves for American Midwest Conference.
Cumberland University joins TranSouth.
Berry College Leaves for Southern States Conference Lee University leaves for Southern States Conference.
Crichton College joins TranSouth.
Bethel College rejoins TranSouth.
Mid-Continent University joins TranSouth Lambuth University joins TranSouth (former TCAC member).
Crichton College (disbanded athletics) and Lambuth University (NCAA Division ll) leave the conference.
Cumberland University (MidSouth Conference), Union University (NCAA Division II), and Trevecca Nazarene (NCAA Division II) announce their plans to leave the conference in 2012-2013.
Lyon College Leaves for American Midwest Conference.
Life University joins the conference.
ORLANDO, Fla. - The National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) recently announced the 28 winners of the Under Armour AD of the Year Award (ADOY). Freed-Hardeman Athletic Director Mike McCutchen was among those honored with the award.
The award spans seven divisions (NCAA FBS, FCS; Division I-AAA, II, III, NAIA/Other Four-Year Institutions and Junior College/Community Colleges). Winners received their awards during the James J. Corbett Awards Luncheon on Saturday, June 15 at NACDA's 48th Annual Convention at the World Center Marriott Resort in Orlando, Florida.
McCutchen was one of four winners in the NAIA/Other 4-Year Institutions division along with Greg Faris of Wayland Baptist (Texas), Meg Schebler of Ashford (Iowa), and Bob Wilson of Vanguard (Calif.).
McCutchen, a 1977 graduate of Freed-Hardeman, has been the athletic director for seven years. He was previously the men's basketball coach from 1988-2005, leading FHU to its first NAIA national tournament appearance.
NACDA Executive Director Bob Vecchione explains the ADOY Award is essential because it highlights the efforts of athletics directors at all levels for their commitment and positive contributions to student-athletes, campuses and their surrounding communities.
"Since 1998, NACDA has been highlighting significant contributions made by athletics directors across all divisions of our membership," said NACDA Executive Director Bob Vecchione. "This award allows athletics directors to be recognized not only nationally, but also in their respective communities which heightens the awareness of their leadership position in the athletics enterprise."
"We are proud of Mike for earning this prestigious honor. Mike's leadership has been instrumental in the growth of our athletic programs and in the transition to a new conference next year," said FHU President Joe Wiley. "The athletic department is an integral part of our university and it is exciting to see it recognized on a national level."
All NACDA-member directors of athletics in the United States, Canada and Mexico who met the criteria were eligible for the award. Among the criteria were service as an AD for a minimum of five academic years; demonstration of commitment to higher education and student-athletes; continuous teamwork, loyalty and excellence; and the ability to inspire individuals or groups to high levels of accomplishments. Additionally, each AD's institution must have passed a compliance check through its appropriate governing body (i.e., NCAA, NAIA, etc.), in which the institution could not have been on probation or cited for a lack of institutional control within the last five years during the tenure of the current athletics director.
Nominators were NACDA-member directors of athletics, institutional presidents and conference commissioners. Special Selection Committees composed of current and former directors of athletics, present and past NCAA and NAIA presidents, current and former commissioners and other key athletics administrators voted on nominees for the award.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Martin Methodist Athletic Director Jeff Bain has been named the 2013 TranSouth Athletic Conference Athletic Director of the Year by the TranSouth Athletic Conference, the league announced this morning.
The award, which is selected and voted on by the conference athletic directors, marks the fifth time that Bain has received the honor. After winning the league's inaugural award in 2000, Bain was also chosen for the honor in 2001, 2007, and in 2009.
Additionally, Bain was the NAIA Region XI Athletic Director of the Year in 2001, and was named NACDA Southeast Regional Athletic Director of the Year in 2002 and again in 2008.
TranSouth Commissioner Charlie Smith congratulated Bain in a statement released with the announcement.
"One of the strong points of working with the TranSouth Athletic Conference the past couple of years has been working with quality people from the presidents, sports information directors, coaches and the athletic directors. The athletic directors are second to none in the NAIA. Jeff Bain has served Martin Methodist College, the TranSouth Athletic Conference and the NAIA with excellence. He has been a leader and has always gone the extra mile in whatever task he has been asked to undertake. We are indebted to Jeff for his many hours of service as Treasurer of the TranSouth."
Bain arrived at Martin Methodist College in 1993 as the Special Assistant to the President with responsibilities of overseeing the MMC athletic department transition from a two-year institution to a four-year institution before taking over as Athletic Director.
"Jeff Bain is the perfect pick for the TranSouth's final Athletic Director of the Year," Martin Methodist President Dr. Ted Brown said. "Not only has he built a powerhouse athletic program at Martin Methodist College, but he has provided important leadership for the NAIA, NACMA, as well as the TranSouth Athletic Conference. At Martin Methodist, athletics has played a key role in the college's growth due largely to Jeff's influence during his 20 years in the Athletic Director's role."
"Anytime you are recognized by your peers it is an honor," Bain said in a statement. "It is truly special when you consider the caliber of Athletic Directors that work together within the TranSouth Athletic Conference. More than anything this award is a reflection of the work, performance, and successes that our players, coaches, and staff throughout this year and years past. We are very proud of support and effort that our entire institution places in the student-athlete experience."
"Our faculty, staff, and students are huge assets to our community," Bain said. "And I'm very proud to be part of the Martin Methodist family. In addition, I'm very appreciative of the TranSouth Athletic Conference for all the great relationships and competitive experiences we have forged. As a result, this award holds a very special meaning to me. I am both honored and thankful."
During his time at MMC, Bain has provided leadership in an array of firsts, including: MMC's Sports Hall of Fame; MMC's Governor Ned McWherter Award of Excellence; MMC's Intercollegiate Athletic Policy and Procedure Manual; MMC's Acquisition of land and the building of athletic venues at the school's East Campus; MMC's Student Athlete Advisory Committee; MMC's Champions of Character Program; MMC's Sport Management academic program; the development of creative marketing and funding opportunities for MMC sports; and the addition of eight new intercollegiate programs.
This past year, under Bain's guidance, the RedHawks opened one of the most unique athletic facilities in region in the school's East Campus. The $4 million, 46-acre facility is highlighted by a 14,000 square foot indoor practice facility. The East Campus is also home to newly constructed and renovated lighted soccer, baseball, and softball game fields, as well as an intramural/practice field.
Also, over the course of Bain's 20-year career, his athletic programs have captured 28 TranSouth Athletic Conference and two NAIA National Championships.
The accolades and championships continued into 2013, where the RedHawks had nine (9) NAIA All-Americans, five (5) TranSouth Conference Players of the Year, and four (4) TranSouth Conference Championships. Collectively, these achievements led to the RedHawks winning the 2013 TranSouth All-Sports Trophy.
Bain currently serves on MMC's Senior Executive Council, the TranSouth's Executive Committee, and as President of the NAIA Athletic Director Association. In addition, he serves on the NAIA National Administrative Council and as an Advisor for the National Association of Collegiate Marketing Administrators (NACMA). Bain completed a six-year term with the NAIA Region XI Management Committee, where he served as Chair and sat on two NAIA national councils. He also recently served a six-year term on the NACMA Board of Directors, where he also served as President.
Prior to joining MMC's administration team, Bain served the State of Tennessee for 15 years as a classroom educator and football and track coach at Tullahoma High School, Farragut High School and Giles County High School.
He earned both his BS in Secondary Education, Science, Health and Physical Education in 1978, followed by a M.ED in Educational Administration and Supervision in 1983 from the University of Memphis. He was a four-year letter winner with the Memphis football team serving as equipment manager, and also served as the Student President of the HPER Department, receiving the Ralph Hatley Award (Outstanding Male Physical Education Award) in 1997.
A native of Jackson, Tenn., Bain and his wife, Donna, a teacher at Southside Elementary School, reside in Pulaski and have two children; Nathan a graduate of the University of Oregon and current grad assistant at the University of Tennessee and Rachel a junior at the University of Tennessee.
Year: AD, School
2013: Jeff Bain, Martin Methodist College
2012: Mike McCutchen, Freed-Hardeman University
2011: Mike McCutchen, Freed-Hardeman University
2010: Tommy Sadler, Union University
2009: Jeff Bain, Martin Methodist College
2008: David Blackstock, Union University
2007: Jeff Bain, Martin Methodist College
2006: Alan Smith, Trevecca Nazarene University
2005: Terry Garner, Lyon College
2004: David Blackstock, Union University
2003: Larry Carpenter, Lee University
2002: Larry Carpenter, Lee University
2001: Jeff Bain, Martin Methodist College
2000: Jeff Bain, Martin Methodist College
NASHVILLE - Mid-Continent University sports information director Tim Shay has been voted the 2013 TranSouth Athletic Conference SID of the Year.
Over the last year Tim has worked as the SID at Mid-Continent University while also contributing to the TSAC, the NAIA, the NCCAA Mid-East Region, CoSIDA, and the NCCAA.
Trevecca Nazarene University and TranSouth Sports Information Director Gregory Ruff said, "Tim was invaluable to the conference this year. He did so many things that are not listed, but he just did them because they had to be done. I am proud of him and for him receiving recognition from his peers."
Shay has served as the broadcaster for all six of the Cougar sports as well as several games at the NCCAA Baseball Mid-East Regional. With the TranSouth he has served as the conference SID for men's soccer and baseball. He assisted with the baseball and softball NAIA Unaffiliated Group Tournaments. He began the year by coordinating the annual TranSouth SID Meetings. For the NAIA he served as the conference voter for the National Player of the Week in all sports. With CoSIDA he was the coordinator for the District 4 Capital One Academic All-District Awards in women's soccer and softball in D-lll and College Divisions. With the NCCAA and the Mid-East regional, he served as the baseball chairperson and tournament coordinator.
Shay said, "It is truly humbling to know that the hard work that has gone into a season has not gone unnoticed. I am grateful to the TranSouth and to everyone from whom I have had the chance to learn over the past several years in the Conference. I have been truly blessed to work with such a tremendous group of men and women in my time in the TranSouth, both at Trevecca and at Mid-Continent."
"We are proud of Tim Shay and his selection as the 2013 TranSouth SID of the Year," said Mid-Continent athletic director Kevin Imhoff. "Tim has a tremendous work ethic and incredible knowledge and love for all sports. You may not know this but he is certified to ref/umpire basketball, volleyball, baseball and softball. We are privileged and honored to have Tim in our athletic program here. If there was a Sports Fan Hall of Fame we would submit his nomination."
Tim began his career as a four-year student assistant in the sports information office at Trevecca. He also assisted in a number of broadcasts over his time at Trevecca. He later served as Trevecca Nazarene University first graduate assistant in the sports information office. Following Trevecca he worked at Lee University as the assistant sports information director. At the NAIA level he has assisted in broadcasting and sports information at a number of championships including the softball and women's basketball championships.
Charlie Smith, the commissioner of the TranSouth added, "All of the Sports Information Directors in the TranSouth do an outstanding job. It is with honor to announce that Tim Shay as the SID of the Year. Tim does an excellent job in covering the sports at Mid-Continent and the TranSouth Athletic Conference. He is always willing to go the extra mile in whatever task he is undertaking."
Shay just completed his second season at MCU where he launched live streaming of games and a social media presence.
In 2003 he enrolled at Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville, Tenn. where he quickly joined the student assistants program in the office of sports information. In 2005, he became the first undergraduate student in TranSouth Athletic Conference history to hold the position of a conference sport SID, holding the volleyball SID position during his junior and senior years. After graduating as an undergrad in 2007 with a BS in Mass Communications, he returned to Trevecca as the first graduate assistant in sports information in May of 2008. In the summer of 2009, Shay left Trevecca to join the staff at Lee University in Cleveland, Tenn., spending one season with the Flames.
He spent his first two seasons as the official scorer for Trevecca's baseball team, earning the role of official scorer during the 2005 TranSouth and NAIA Region XI baseball tournaments. He later became the official scorer for the 2008 TranSouth Baseball tournament - which was held at USA Stadium in Millington, Tenn. He was a part of the team of statisticians for the 2008-09 TSSAA Division II basketball tournament, as well as the 2007-08 and 2008-09 Atlantic Sun Conference basketball tournaments at Lipscomb University. Shay served as one of a team of statisticians during the 2009 NAIA Women's Soccer and 2010 NAIA Softball National Tournaments.
As a broadcaster, Shay has over 550 games of experience in eight sports at the high school, collegiate, and semi-professional levels. He began his career behind the mic as the color commentator for the Trevecca women's basketball team during the 2004-05 season, transitioning into the play-by-play role for the 2005-06 year. In the fall of 2005, Shay also picked up play-by-play duties for the Lawrence County (Tenn.) High School football and basketball teams, where he called four seasons on the gridiron and three on the hardwood. Upon returning to Trevecca in 2008, Shay launched internet broadcasts of the Trojans' soccer and baseball teams for the 2008-09 season, and he also handled play-by-play duties for the semi-professional Franklin Knights of the World Basketball Association during the summer of 2010.
In addition to all of his duties in the last year at Mid-Continent Tim and his wife, Kaylynn, welcomed a newborn child, Alan, into their lives. Shay is a graduate of Trevecca Nazarene University and attended high school in Columbia, Tenn. at Christian Heritage Academy
TranSouth SID of the Year History
2013 Tim Shay, Mid-Continent University
2012 Jo Jo Freeman, Cumberland University
2011 Steven Aldridge, Union University
2010 Steven Aldridge, Union University
2009 Steven Aldridge, Union University
2008 Gregory Ruff, Trevecca Nazarene
2007 Steven Aldridge, Union University
2006 Steven Aldridge, Union University
The TranSouth Athletic Conference (TSAC) is an NAIA conference of six colleges and universities throughout Tennessee, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Georgia. Since 1996, the mission of the TSAC is to promote the education and development of well-rounded students and productive citizens through intercollegiate athletics. The conference offers equitable access and opportunities for participation in its 13 championships held annually.
Today, the TranSouth strengthens its commitment to student-athletes and strives to enrich their college experience by supporting academic achievement and character development through the NAIA's Champions of Character program. The NAIA's innovative flagship program is designed to instill character values in student-athletes, coaches and youth in the communities it serves.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. Martin Methodist College has earned the TranSouth Athletic Conference All-Sports Trophy for the 2012-13 season. It is the 13th trophy presented by the conference and the first time for the RedHawks to take home the conference prize.
Martin Methodist claimed or shared two conference titles that counted in the trophy contest in the 2012-13 season - Men's Soccer and Men's Basketball. The RedHawks also won the women's tennis and women's soccer titles, but those sports didn't meet the required participants to be included.
RedHawk Athletic Director Jeff Bain commented, "Martin Methodist College acknowledges that the annual recipient of the TranSouth All-Sport Trophy holds great honor, reward, and recognition. Our conference has a long history of championships within both the venues and the classrooms. Over the years the competition to earn the points to secure the All-Sports Trophy has be very close and competitive, this year was no exception. It is truly a great reflection of each institutions successes from the early days of September to the season ending days of May."
2012-13 All-Sports Final Standings
Bethel University (Tenn.) 4.929
Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.) 4.286
Mid-Continent (Ky.) 3.200
Blue Mountain (Miss.) 2.583
Life University (Ga.) 5.000*
*Not eligible due to only participating
in one sport
History of TranSouth All-Sports Trophy
2012-2013 Martin Methodist College
2011-2012 Union University - Press Release
2010-11: Union University - Press Release
2009-10: Union University - Press Release
2008-09: Union University - Press Release
2007-08: Union University - Press Release
2006-07: Union University - Press Release
2005-06: Union University - Press Release
2004-05: Union University - Press Release
2003-04: Union University
2002-03: Lee University
2001-02: Union University
2000-01: Lee University *
* first year trophy awarded
"We are very proud to be acknowledged for the 2013 award, in a season where we produced five conference sport players of the year and four conference championship teams. To be considered one of the elite teams of the TranSouth is a great reflection our teamwork campus wide throughout all of our departments and the efforts and leadership of our players and coaches."
Bethel University finished a close second while winning or sharing the championships in men's soccer, volleyball, baseball, and men's golf. The Wildcats also won the men's tennis, women's golf, and men's cross country titles that didn't meet the participation requirements for inclusion in the trophy chase.
Freed-Hardeman University was stayed in the hunt for the title, eventually finishing third, by winning the women's basketball and softball championships.
The All-Sports Trophy is awarded to the program that produces the most success during regular season. Points are awarded for how each team finishes in the regular season standings in each sport. Then, the point total for each school is divided by the number of sports the school participated to reach the average. The TranSouth sponsors 13 sports, but only sports with at least four teams participating in each sport qualify.
The 2012-2013 qualifying sports were: Men's Soccer, Volleyball, Women's Basketball, Men's Basketball, Baseball, Softball, Men's Golf.
"We have long dreamed of winning the TranSouth Athletic Conference All-Sports Trophy," Martin Methodist President Dr. Ted Brown said. "This has been a highly competitive group of institutions and our athletes have had to work incredibly hard to reach this level of success. But to achieve this victory in the closing year of the TranSouth Conference is truly bitter-sweet. We will miss our association with our TranSouth Athletic Conference colleagues."
Bethel University and Blue Mountain College each placed two players on the 2013 All-TranSouth Athletic Conference men's golf all-conference team.
Bethel's Shane Peden, a sophmore from Humbolt, Tenn., and teammate Reece Miller, a sophomore from Jackson, Tenn., were selected to the squad.
They were joined by Blue Mountain College's Adam Hall, a junior from Saltillo, Miss.; and Tanner Sparks, a senior from Belmont, Miss.; and by Austin Smith of Martin Methodist College, a junior from Rogersville, Tenn.
Peden was named the 2013 TSAC Men's Golfer of the Year and Matt Shin, a freshman at Martin Methodist from Madison, Ala., was named the 2013 Men's Golf Freshman of the Year.
PULASKI, Tenn. – Playing in its final TranSouth Athletic Conference competition, the Martin Methodist Baseball Team ensured it went out on top as it rallied for two wild, thrilling victories to upset Bethel (Tenn.) University and win the 2013 TranSouth/Gulf Coast Unaffiliated Group Tournament at the East Campus Friday afternoon.
Needing a pair of victories to knock off their conference rivals, the RedHawks rallied ahead in for a 6-5 win in the opener before completing the upset with a five-run comeback to claim an 11-10 victory that sent the East Campus ballpark crowd into a frenzy.
The wins lifted the RedHawks (38-17) to their first-ever TranSouth Baseball title in the league's final campus-hosted tournament.
"I'm not sure you could write a better script for our team," RedHawks head coach Kelly Bratton said. "We put ourselves in a bit of a hole but our guys just simply would not give up. I am so proud of their performance and the way they battled – not only today, but all tournament long."
After storming from five runs down in the sixth to tie the game, the RedHawks found themselves trailing the Wildcats (29-15) by a pair of runs with just nine outs remaining.
That's when the RedHawks turned to the longball, cranking back-to-back homers to stun the Wildcats and re-take the lead.
After the RedHawks recorded two quick outs, Erick Bonifacio slapped a single through the right side of the infield to get aboard. On the ensuing at-bat, Evan Fergerson took advantage of gusty winds and laced an 0-1 fastball over the fence in left-center to tie the ballgame.
The RedHawks would not have long to enjoy the tie as Charles Hill sent a mammoth shot over the left-field scoreboard on the very next pitch to give the RedHawks a one-run lead they would never relinquish. The solo shot was the second of the day for Hill, who launched a left-field dinger in the RedHawks first win of the afternoon.
The 5-6-7 lineup combination of Bonifacio, Fergerson and Hill proved to be fatal all afternoon for the Wildcats, as the trio combined for 8 of the RedHawks 13 hits. Matt Thomas, who played the entire tournament with a lower-body injury, finished the game 2-for-6 and was the only other RedHawk to record more than two hits. As a team, the RedHawks drove in 10 of their 12 runs, highlighted by Fergerson (3) and Clint Gobbell (2) and Ryan Jett (2).
After Hill's home run put the RedHawks ahead by one, the RedHawks turned to an unlikely hero out of the bullpen to help secure the victory.
"The middle of our lineup was huge for us in these ballgames today," Bratton said. "Charles Hill had a rough outing yesterday but was absolutely huge for us this afternoon. Erick Bonifacio had clutch hits all tournament long, not just today. And Evan Fergerson came up with some big hits when we needed them as well, especially that homer. Ryan Jett had some pop for us towards the bottom of the lineup as well. Those guys were vital for us."
Clay Brown, who tossed a complete game on Thursday to lift the RedHawks to the title game, nailed down the final six outs of the ballgame out of the bullpen, allowing just one baserunner to earn his first career save. The freshman struck out two of the six batters he faced and allowed just one walk as the lone blemish.
Brown came on in relief of RedHawks starter Josh Brown, who tossed 2.1 innings of clutch relief work after throwing over 90 pitches while starting Friday's first ballgame. Ironically, Josh Brown (7-4) picked up his lone victory on the day in his relief appearance, not his start.
Blake Beavers (9-3), who picked up the victory in the first game out of the bullpen, pitched 2.2 innings of middle relief to help bridge the ballgame into the late innings in the second contest.
Jake Shadix pitched three innings in a starting role for the RedHawks, before giving way to Ross Potere. In all, the RedHawks used five pitchers to record the 27 outs that lifted them to their first-ever conference championship.
"Our guys knew what was at stake," Bratton said. "We told everyone that they might be needed and we wound up needing quite a few of them. It was just one of those things that makes tournament baseball so unique. I was proud of the way that staff gutted out some big performances."
With the wins, the RedHawks advance to next week's NAIA National Tournament, which kicks off at nine (9) regional sites nationwide next Thursday.
The RedHawks will learn their opponents and destination during a selection ceremony on Monday.
JACKSON, Tenn. - Top-seeded Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.) University played its way out of the losers bracket, winning five straight games to claim the 2013 TranSouth/Gulf Coast Unaffiliated Group Tournament championship and earn an automatic bid to the NAIA National Softball Championships Opening Round.
FHU defeated Bethel (Tenn.) University, 8-4 and 2-1, to claim the championship. The finish of the tournament was delayed until Saturday due to heavy rain on Friday, suspending the first game in the second inning with Freed-Hardeman leading 6-0.
This is the second year for the West Tennessee Healthcare Sportsplex to host the TranSouth Conference postseason tournament. This year's tournament will take place in Complex D, which has four fields. Wednesday and Thursday's games will see two fields in use before going down to one field on Friday.
Directions to Sportplex | Jackson Weather | City of Jackson
Bracket (edited for 7 teams) | Live Stats | Live Audio (MCU | FHU)
TranSouth History | Past TranSouth Tournaments 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009 - 2008 - 2007 - 2006 - 2005 - 2004 - 2003 - 2002 - 2001 - 2000 - 1999 - 1998 - 1997
2013 TRANSOUTH CONFERENCE AWARDS
TranSouth All-Conference Team (photo)
Sarah Elizabeth Cousar, Freed-Hardeman
Veronika Fukunishi, Martin Methodist
Brooklyn Jenkins, Bethel
Alley Benefield, Martin Methodist
Mercedes Norfork, Freed-Hardeman
Shelby Cummings, Freed-Hardeman
Chae Ellis, Martin Methodist
Summer Winters, Bethel
Brooke Denton, Blue Mountain
Kimmy Nicholson, Blue Mountain
Whitney Hardwick, Blue Mountain
Katlin White, Martin Methodist
Rachel Brueggerman, Mid-Continent
Colby Smith, Mid-Continent
Shelby Evans, Bethel
Halley Beckham, Blue Mountain
Courtney Grooms, Martin Methodist
Amber Vansandt, Freed-Hardeman
Gulf Coast All-Conference Team (photo)
Briatah Dorsey, Edward Waters
Shanise Dozier, Edward Waters
Aubrey Boren, Edward Waters
Heather Porter, Edward Waters
Lindsey Sims, Talladega
Tami Johnson, Talladega
Jan Thomas, Talladega
Jamara Thomas, Talladega
Charlie Keenum, Talladega
Mirrissa Brimm, Fisk
Amber Victory, Fisk
Scholar Athlete Teams
1. Freed-Hardeman (26-6, 14-0 TSAC)
2. Martin Methodist (26-20, 9-5 TSAC)
3. Blue Mountain (23-18-1, 8-8 TSAC)
4. Bethel (13-23, 4-12 TSAC)
5. Mid-Continent (13-27, 3-13 TSAC)
6. Talladega (21-33, 8-0 GCAC)
7. Edward Waters (7-13-3, 2-5 GCAC)
8. Fisk (13-11, 1-6 GCAC) - dropped out of tournament
Bethel University, the 2013 TranSouth Athletic Conference women's golf champion, placed three players on the all-conference team.
Erica Yarbro, a junior from Clarksburg, Tenn.; Amelia Ray, a junior from Humbolt, Tenn.; and Jessica Maness, a senior from Lexington, Tenn.; paced the Lady Wildcats to the championship.
Also on the all-conference team are Freed-Hardeman's Hannah Griffin, a freshman from Portland, Tenn., and Martin Methodist's Teri-Beth Thompson, a senior from Waynsborom, Tenn.
Bethel's Yarbro was named the 2013 TSAC Women's Golfer of the Year, and Freed-Hardeman's Griffin was named the 2013 Freshman of the Year.
PULASKI, Tenn. – For the final time in the league's 17-year history, the TranSouth Athletic Conference has announced its All-TranSouth baseball awards. Each of the Conference's five teams are represented with a total of 29 student-athletes honored. The TranSouth baseball coaches selected the All-Conference Team, as well as recognizing the nine best defenders in the league on the TranSouth's Gold Glove team, by a vote in the coaches' meeting prior to the postseason tournament for the Unaffiliated Group tournament at Martin Methodist Conference in Pulaski.
The coaches voted Matt Thomas of Martin Methodist as the Conference's Player of the Year, after Thomas put up an unbelievable season for the RedHawks. Thomas finished the regular season as the NAIA's batting champion, hitting a sizzling .450 and finishing 13 points clear of the rest of the field. Thomas accounted for 93 runs on the season for the RedHawks, hitting three homers, driving in 52 runs, and scoring 44 times. He also finished fifth in the NAIA in triples with six, and he ranked in the top-25 individually in 10 different statistical categories.
Bethel University head coach Rusty Thompson was also honored, as he was named the TranSouth's Coach of the Year. Thompson guided the Wildcats to their first ever TranSouth Regular Season Crown, leading the team to an 11-1 mark in Conference play despite losing his team's top three pitchers to injury during the season. The Wildcats started 9-0 in the TranSouth, after playing a tough non-conference schedule that saw Bethel post a 15-12 record in non-league play.
Freed-Hardeman University led the way with seven selections on the All-TranSouth team, followed closely by Bethel (6), Martin Methodist (5), and Blue Mountain College (4). Mid-Continent University rounded out the All-TranSouth team with two selections. Bethel and Martin Methodist each placed three on the Gold Glove team, with Freed-Hardeman (2) and Mid-Continent also having players recognized for their defensive prowess.
P - Chris Hatfield Freed-Hardeman
P - Dan Creighton Freed-Hardeman
P - Blake Chandler Bethel University
P - Blake Beavers Martin Methodist
P - Luke Deaton Mid-Continent
P - Justin Daniels Blue Mountain
RP - Ryne Fisher Bethel University
RP - Zack Brewer Martin Methodist
RP - Drew Suttles Freed-Hardeman
C - Nick Flanagan Martin Methodist
C - Will Wallis Blue Mountain
1B - Tyler Roberson Bethel University
2B - Matt Thomas Martin Methodist
SS - Kyle Dearing Freed-Hardeman
3B - Ryan Huber Freed-Hardeman
UTL - Joe Mike Freed-Hardeman
UTL - Brandon Berry Blue Mountain
OF - Justin Mackey Freed-Hardeman
OF - Brian Ferrell Bethel University
OF - Lance Jerrald Bethel University
OF - Hunter Bolden Mid-Continent
OF - Clint Gobbell Martin Methodist
OF - Gardner Richey Blue Mountain
DH - Tyler Murphy Bethel University
TranSouth Gold Glove Team
P - Josh Brown Martin Methodist
C - Taylor Follis Bethel University
1B - Joe Mike Freed-Hardeman
2B - Brett Adams Bethel University
SS - Charles Hill Martin Methodist
3B - Ryan Huber Freed-Hardeman
OF - Lance Jerrald Bethel University
OF - Hunter Bolden Mid-Continent
OF - Rob Holley Martin Methodist
Springfield, Mo. –The No. 8 Bethel Wildcats captured the AMCW/HAAC/TSAC Unaffiliated Conference Championship Saturday in Springfield Missouri, defeating Graceland University 5-3. The title match followed an earlier 5-2 win Friday over Missouri Valley. The championship was made up from teams from the American Midwest Conference, Heart of America Conference, and the TranSouth Conference.
Bethel's Peter Bacca was named conference player of the year. He and Robin Demasse were named first team all-conference in singles and doubles play. Nikola Salvik, Paolo Vecchi, and Eduardo Espinar were named second team all-conference.
With the win the Wildcats improved to 20-1 on the year and automatically qualified for the NAIA Men's National Championships in Mobile, Alabama May 14-18.
ATHENS, Ala. -- Bethel University cruised to its second women's golf championship in two weeks with its victory here Tuesday in the NAIA Qualifying Tournament that included six teams from the TranSouth Athletic Conference and the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
Erica Yarbro fired a second-round 75 to lead the Lady Wildcats to their 26-shot win with team rounds of 335-334--669. The Lady Hawks came in with a 345-350--695.
Freed-Hardeman's Hannah Griffin shot a 78-81--159 to capture medalist honors by one shot over Yarbro, who posted an 85 in Monday's first round.
Teri-Beth Thompson of Martin Methodist was third after her 82-79--161, Bethel's Amelia Ray was rourth with an 81-82--163; Olivia Fowler of Freed-Hardeman (82-82--164) was fifth, and Jessica Maness of Bethel (82-85--167) was sixth and rounded out the all-tournament team.
Freed-Hardeman finished third in the team standings with rounds of 347-369--716; Brescia University had a 372-347--719 for fourth place; Point Park University had a 401-369--770 for fifth place; and Asbury University was sixth with a 388-407--795.
The Lady Wildcats and FHU's Griffin will travel to Lincoln, Nebraska, for the NAIA National Championship, set May 21-24 at Wilderness Ridge Golf Club.
ATHENS, Ala. -- Blue Mountain College played steady golf here Tuesday to capture a four-shot win and the men's championship in the NAIA Qualifying Tournament at Canebrake Golf Club.
BMC fired a final-round 305 to go with their opening rounds of 304 and 304 and its 913 total clipped Bethel University, which had a 307-306-204--917 total in the six-team field of golfers from the TranSouth Athletic Conference and the Gulf South Conference.
Bethel's Shane Peden won medalist honors with his 72-73-74--219, three over par and one shot better than Kevin Parker of Edward Waters College (73-73-74--220).
Jonathan Oritz of Talladega College (72-74-76--222) was third; Adam Hall of Blue Mountain (77-73-73--223) and Travis Ross of Freed-Hardeman (74-72-77--223) tied for fourth, and Austin Holt of BMC (74-77-75--226) rounded out the all-tournament team with his sixth-place finish.
Talladega finished third with a 304-206-313--923, Freed-Hardeman finished fourth after its 315 to go with its opening 319 and tournament low round of 292. Martin Methodist had a 320-296-314--930 for a fifth-place finish, and Edward Waters finished sixth with a 332-313-326--971.
Blue Mountain's team and Bethel's Peden qualified for the NAIA National Championships, set for May 14-17 at Creekside Golf Club in Salem, Oregon.
MAYFIELD, Ky. – The TranSouth Athletic Conference has announced its final spring Scholar-Athlete honorees, and once again, the baseball teams in the TranSouth have excelled both on the field and in the classroom. Among the five TranSouth teams, 49 individuals have earned recognition as TranSouth Scholar-Athletes, with 14 of the athletes also qualifying as NAIA Scholar-Athletes. To earn TranSouth Scholar-Athlete status, a player must be a varsity player who possesses a 3.0 or higher grade-point average and has attained sophomore status or higher academically. To qualify as a Daktronics NAIA Scholar-Athlete, a varsity athlete must have a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher, be at least a junior academically, and must have been at the nominating institution for a full calendar year. Below is a breakdown of all 49 TranSouth Scholar-Athletes, listed by school. Those marked with an asterisk (*) also achieved Daktronics NAIA Scholar-Athlete status.
Bethel University (11): Brett Adams, Ryne Bivens, Cade Chambers, Caleb Crocker*, Will Erwin, Brian Ferrell*, David Gardner, JD Newsom, Jason Overton, Jordan Stack*, Joey Wilder
Blue Mountain College (7): Brandon Berry, Justin Daniel, Gardner Richey, Matt Roberts, Brent Townsend, Ben Wallis, Will Wallis
Freed-Hardeman University (15): Tyler Anderson*, Joe Creasy*, Kyle Dearing*, Ryan Fares, Connor Kohlscheen, Jackson Lockhart, Mark Malone, Casey Overturf, Drew Suttles, Jake Todd, Eric Thompkins*, Pete Trollinger, Zack White*, Ryan Wood, Greg Young*
Martin Methodist College (8): Zach Bailey, Evan Fergerson, Nick Flanagan, Rob Holley*, Jerry Jeter, Justin Lumpkins, Jacob Ray*, Dillon Sands*
Mid-Continent University (8): Cory Ames, Hunter Bolden, Austin Clark, Luke Deaton, Michael Edwards, Caleb Luttrell, Jordan Manney*, Bill Schroeder*
AHTENS, Ala. -- Blue Mountain College holds a slim two-shot lead over Talladega College after Monday's first two rounds of an NAIA Qualifying Tournament with six teams from the TranSouth Athletic Conference and the Gulf Coast Conference.
BMC shot a 304-304--608 over the 6,774-yard, par-72 Canebrake Club course while Talladega shot a 304-306--610. Another shot back is Freed-Hardeman University after its 319 and school-record 292 for a 611 total.
Bethel University is in fourth place with a 307-306--613; Martin Methodist is at 320-296--616 and Edward Waters College is at 339-313--645.
The winning team earns a spot in the NAIA National Championships, set for May 14-17 at Creekside Golf Club in Salem, Ore.
Shane Peden of Bethel, who won last week's TSAC Championship, fired rounds of 72 and 73 for a one-shot lead over Kevin Parker of Edward Waters (73-73--146) and Jonathan Ortiz of Talladega (72-74--146).
Travis Ross of Freed-Hardeman (74-72--146) is in fourth place, and Bryant Cashion of Freed-Hardeman (78-72--150), D.J. Adcock of Martin Methodist (79-71--150) and Adam Hall of Blue Mountain (77-73--150) are tied for fifth.
Another shot back are Austin Smith of MMC (80-71--151), Chris Yeater of Bethel (78-73--151), Austin Holt of BMC (74-77--151), and Daniel Pachon-Vargas of Talladega (75-76--151).
The 18-hole final round of the tournament begins at 8 a.m. Tuesday.
ATHENS, Ala. -- Bethel University jumped out to a 10-shot lead after the first round here Monday and leads the six-team field in an NAIA Qualifying Tournament that includes schools from the TranSouth Athletic Conference and the Kentucky Intercollegiate Conference.
Bethel, which won the TSAC a week ago, shot a 335 over the 5,807-yard, par-72 Canebrake Club, 10 ahead of Martin Methodist College. Freed-Hardeman is another two shots back at 347, followed by Brescia University at 372, Asbury University at 388 and Point Park University at 401.
The winning team earns a bid to the national tournament, May 21-24 at Wilderness Ridge Golf Club in Lincoln, Nebraska.
Hannah Griffin of Freed-Hardeman fired a 6-over-par 78 for a three-shot lead over Amelia Ray of Bethel in the individual competition.
Jessica Maness of Bethel, Olivia Fowler of Freed-Hardeman and Teri-Beth Thompson are all tied for third after shooting 82s.
Madison Combs of Asbury is in sixth place after opening with an 84, followed by Chelsea Lancaster of Martin Methodist and Erica Yarbro of Bethel, tied with 85s.
The final round begins at 8 a.m. Tuesday.
2013 POST SEASON AWARDS
|P||Chris Hatfield||Freed-Hardeman||Chris Hatfield||Freed-Hardeman|
|P||Dan Creighton||Freed-Hardeman||Dan Creighton||Freed-Hardeman|
|P||Blake Chandler||Bethel University||Blake Chandler||Bethel University|
|P||Blake Beavers||Martin Methodist||Blake Beavers||Martin Methodist|
|P||Justin Daniels||Blue Mountain|
|RP||Rye Fisher||Bethel University||Ryne Fisher||Bethel University|
|RP||Zack Brewer||Martin Methodist|
|C||Nick Flanagan||Martin Methodist||Nick Flanagan||Martin Methodist|
|C||Will Wallis||Blue Mountain||Will Wallis||Blue Mountain|
|1B||Tyler Roberson||Bethel University||Tyler Roberson||Bethel University|
|2B||Matt Thomas||Martin Methodist||Matt Thomas||Martin Methodist|
|SS||Kyle Dearing||Freed-Hardeman||Kyle Dearing||Freed-Hardeman|
|3B||Ryan Huber||Freed-Hardeman||Ryan Huber||Freed Hardeman|
|UTL||Joe Mike||Freed-Hardeman||Steven Brock||Edward Waters|
|UTL||Brandon Berry||Blue Mountain|
|OF||Justin Mackey||Freed-Hardeman||Justin Mackey||Freed-Hardeman|
|OF||Brian Ferrell||Bethel University||Brian Ferrell||Bethel University|
|OF||Clint Gobbell||Martin Methodist||Clint Gobbell||Martin Methodist|
|OF||Lance Jerrald||Bethel University||Nerio Baretto||Talladega College|
|OF||Gardner Richey||Blue Mountain|
|DH||Tyler Murphy||Bethel University||Travonne Fuller||Edward Waters|
Gold Glove Teams
|P||Josh Brown||Martin Methodist||Josh Brown||Martin Methodist|
|C||Taylor Follis||Bethel University||Rey Otero||Edward Waters|
|1B||Joe Mike||Freed-Hardeman||Joe Mike||Freed-Hardeman|
|2B||Brett Adams||Bethel University||Brett Adams||Bethel University|
|SS||Charles Hill||Martin Methodist||Chase Benefield||Talladega College|
|3B||Ryan Huber||Freed-Hardeman||Ryan Huber||Freed-Hardeman|
|OF||Lance Jerrald||Bethel University||Lance Jerrald||Bethel University|
|OF||Hunter Bolden||Mid-Continent||Hunter Bolden||Mid-Continent|
|OF||Rob Holley||Martin Methodist||Rob Holley||Martin Methodist|
* - Group Teams Will be Considered for NAIA National Awards
CHAPEL HILL, Tenn. -- Erica Yarbro fired a three-over-par 75 at Henry Horton State Park here Tuesday to lead Bethel University to a run-away win in the final TranSouth Athletic Conference women's golf championship.
The Lady Wildcats posted a final-round 318 for a two-day total of 641 to capture the title over Martin Methodist College (345-335--680) and Freed-Hardeman University (367-344--711).
Yarbro's 36-hole score of 80-75 gave her the medalist honors by one shot over Bethel teammates Amelia Ray (75-81--156) and Jessica Maness (80-76--156). The Lady Wildcats also got an 88-86--174 from Leah Watson to round out their team total.
Hannah Griffin of Freed-Hardeman shot an 84-75--159 to finish fourth, and MMC's Teri-Beth Thompson shot an 83-81--164 to join the Bethel trio on the All-Tournament Team.
The three teams travel to Canebrake Golf Club in Athens, Ala., on Monday and Tuesday for three-conference qualifying match for the NAIA National Championships. The TranSouth teams will join with teams from the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Association and the Gulf Coast Conference for the bid to the national tournament, May 21-24 at Wilderness Ridge Golf Club in Lincoln, Nebraska.
CHAPEL HILL, Tenn. -- Shane Peden shot a final-round 74 over the Henry Horton State Park Golf Course here Tuesday to lead Bethel University to the final TranSouth Athletic Conference men's golf championship.
The Wildcats posted a third-round 306 for a two-day total of 915, to hold off Martin Methodist College who had the final day's best round of 301 and a 921 total. Blue Mountain College shot a 312 for a 928 total, and Freed-Hardeman University came in at 320 and 930.
Peden's closing 74 gave him a two-shot win over BMC's Adam Hall for the medalist honors. Peden shot 73-75-74--222 to edge Hall, who had a 74-74-76--224. Reece Miller of Bethel (73-75-80--228), Austin Smith of MMC (74-80-74--228), and Tanner Sparks of BMC (74-73-81--228) all tied for third and comprised the TSAC All-Tournament Team.
The Wildccats got strong finishes from Chris Yeater (74) and P.J. Platt (78) to clinch the title. Teammate Grant Frazier posted an 80.
Martin Methodist, in fourth place after the 36-hole opening day, blew past Blue Mountain and Freed-Hardeman for the second-place finish. Smith and Chris Fletcher each had a 74, Matt Shin posted a 75, D.J. Adcock had a third consecutive 78, and Austin Perrin had an 80.
The four teams travel to Canebrake Golf Club in Athens, Ala., on Monday and Tuesday for three-conference qualifying match for the NAIA National Championships. The TranSouth teams will join with teams from the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Association and the Gulf Coast Conference for the bid to the national tournament, May 14-17 at Creekside Golf Club in Salem, Oregon.
CHAPEL HILL, Tenn. -- Bethel University clung to a one-shot lead over Freed-Hardeman University after the 36-hole opening day of the TranSouth Athletic Conference Championships at Henry Horton State Park here Monday.
The Wildcats shot a 300-309--609 for a one-stroke lead over the Lions, who posted a 304-306--610.
Blue Mountain College fired a 308-308--616 and Martin Methodist College had a 310-310--620.
Tanner Sparks of Blue Mountain shot a 74-73--147 for a one-shot lead over Bethel's Reece Miller (73-75) and Shane Peden (73-75), and BMC teammate Adam Hall (74-74--148).
FHU grabbed the next three slots with Bryant Cashion in fifth place with a 75-77--152, and Travis Ross (77-76) and Grant James (78-75) tied for sixth at 153.
The Lions' Zach Morton is tied for eigth place with Martin Methodist's Austin Smith at 154. Morton and Smith had identical scores of 74-80--154.
The final round of the TSAC Championships begins at 8 a.m. Tuesday.