Spring Teams Ready for Weekend of SAA Competition

Spring Teams Ready for Weekend of SAA Competition

MOUNT BERRY, Ga. - Nine programs will compete in their respective Southern Athletic Association (SAA) Conference Championship events this weekend with three to take place on Berry's campus.

Brief previews of each event can be found below:

Men's and Women's Track and Field (Valhalla Stadium, Apr. 21-22)

The Berry College Track and Field Teams will host the SAA Conference Championships at Valhalla Friday and Saturday. All eight conference schools will be present. Last year, the Rhodes women and the Birmingham Southern men won the team titles. The Viking women were fourth, and the men were fifth. Last year's individual conference champions for the Vikings are all returning: Danielle Patterson in the 3,000m Steeplechase, Will Knowlton in the 800m, and Alexa Bilsky in the Javelin. 

"It is a big opportunity to host conference championships in only our second year and a testament to the quality of our facilities here are Berry," Head Coach Luke Syverson said. "Our goal is to score in the top three on each side this time. We have an opportunity to score in a lot of events. We are still coming into the meet with some injuries, and we might be losing points because of it, but I am hoping we can make up for them in other areas."

More information can be found at the official conference championship page here

Men's and Women's Tennis (Little Rock, Ark., Apr. 21-23)

The Berry men's and women's tennis teams will open SAA play tomorrow morning in Little Rock, Ark., seeking their first league title. The men open play against Rhodes on Friday at 10:00 a.m. ET in the opening round while the women will face Oglethorpe at 1:00 p.m.

The men's team was edged by Rhodes earlier in the season when they fell 7-2 in Memphis. The guys will look to bounce back behind the strong play of Matt Blakely and Griffin Davis who earned the win at the No. 1 doubles position last time the teams played. 

On the women's side, the Vikings fell to Oglethorpe back in March with a 6-3 final. The singles trio of Mary Cerny, Lauren Byrket and Sage Havrilla all earned wins during the match and will look to lead the women past the Stormy Petrels this weekend. 

More information can be found here

Men's Lacrosse vs. Centre (Valhalla Stadium, Apr. 22, 7:00 p.m.)

The No. 3-seeded Vikings draw the Colonels of Centre College in the opening round of the conference tournament, a squad that Berry defeated 16-8 in Danville earlier in the year. After falling to the No. 1 and No. 2 seeded Rhodes and Sewanee, the Vikings downed Birmingham-Southern last weekend to secure the No. 3 seed and a match against the Colonels. 

Berry will look to ride the hot offensive play of Chris Berchock and Quentin Johnson on Saturday as each scored three goals during the last contest to give Berry the win. Behind Berchock and Johnson, the Vikings finished the regular season leading the league in goals scored (200) and assists (133). 

Live stats and video can be viewed here

Women's Lacrosse vs. TBD (Valhalla Stadium, Apr. 23, 2:00 p.m.)

After securing a program-record five wins in SAA play, the Vikings secured the opening round bye and will face the winner of Sewanee and Oglethorpe on Sunday afternoon. The Vikings defeated both the Tigers and the Stormy Petrels during the regular season with 10-5 and 14-10 scores, respectively. 

Berry closed the regular season in the top half of the league in defense, allowing 156 goals on the year. Shadae Williams and Ella Makin anchor the Berry defensive field with Williams ranking No. 4 in the SAA for caused turnovers and Makin sitting in the top five for every goalie category. 

Live stats and video can be viewed here

Softball vs. TBD (Warner Park, Chattanooga, Tenn., Apr. 21, 12:00 p.m.)

Eyeing their third straight SAA tournament title, the nationally ranked Vikigns will await the winner of Birmingham-Southern and Hendrix on Friday afternoon. It would be the third time in as many years that the Vikings punched their ticket to the NCAA postseason. Berry earned their fifth consecutive regular season title this year by going 17-0 against league opponents this year. 

Currently the No. 3 team in the nation, Berry has not lost a game against an SAA-rival since March 26, 2016. 

More information on the tournament can be found here

Men's and Women's Golf (Maumelle, Ark., Apr. 21-23)

With each team seeking their first SAA title, the Berry men's and women's golf teams will tee off at the Maumelle Country Club on Friday at the SAA Championships. 

The men will enter the tournament currently ranked No. 17 with only Rhodes and Oglethorpe above them among SAA foes. The women are ranked No. 12 behind Rhodes who is No. 4. 

Berry boasts some of the top golfers in the field in Ryan Elmore and Sydney Weaver. Ryan is currently the No. 3 individual golfer according to Golfstat, the highest individual golfer in the SAA. Weaver is ranked No. 5, also the top SAA golfer. 

Live scoring will be available here