UE News and Notes for May 16, 2013

—The Missouri Valley Conference on Thursday announced that the 2013 women’s soccer tournament will take place at UE’s Arad McCutchan Stadium from Nov. 8-10. UE last served as host in 2007 and last hosted an MVC championship in 2010, when the league played its women’s golf tournament at Rolling Hills. The MVC also used McCutchan Stadium for its men’s soccer tournament in 2008. UE’s women’s soccer team shocked the MVC in 2012 when, after being picked last in the preseason poll, it won the regular-season title.

All other MVC championship sites for the 2013-2014 year were announced as well Thursday morning. There were no major surprises, though Indiana State’s selection to host the baseball tournament drew some ire. Missouri State’s Hammons Field will be unavailable, and Omaha is no longer an option with Creighton off to the Big East Conference. But Wichita State, which hasn’t hosted since 2010, would have made a better option. “Decisions like that help Creighton look back on the MVC with no regret,” tweeted Shockers beat writer Paul Suellentrop. “From TD Ameritrade Park (in Omaha) in 2011 to Indiana State 3 years later.”

—UE’s baseball team closed its regular season with its widest margin of victory all season, routing SIU Edwardsville 16-0 in a road game Wednesday night. The Aces scored runs in seven innings, led by two homers and six RBIs by sophomore Kyle Pollock. On the mound, starting pitcher Josh Biggs allowed just one hit over six innings. The Aces finished 22-32.

—UE will start play at the MVC tournament in Normal, Ill., on Tuesday as the No. 5 seed against an opponent that’s yet to be determined. While the Aces are done with MVC play having gone 10-10, there are still series left this weekend that will determine the bracket in the double-elimination tournament.

—Expect UE to announce The Rock (Fla.) School guard Christian Benzon’s signing today, meaning coach Marty Simmons will speak for the first time on his new commitment. I spoke with Benzon earlier this week and posted his comments here. The Aces’ other signee, Padua Franciscan (Ohio) High School guard Tyler Ptacek, is still having paperwork processed (he originally signed with UNC Wilmington) and will be announced separately.

—Welcome to big-time college hoops, Wichita State. Off a Final Four run, the Shockers are now hosting guarantee games — they pay opponents to play at Koch Arena with no return game — to fill out the schedule. Next year’s guarantee games include contests against Western Kentucky and Oral Roberts. At least for the WKU game, Wichita State will dole out a reported $100,000 and get the game on an ESPN network.

—UE men’s golfer Quinn Vilneff, a junior from Ontario, made the MVC’s scholar-athlete team to extend quite a streak: the Aces have had representation on the team in each of the last nine years. Vilneff has a 3.941 grade-point average as a sports management major — the highest GPA of the nine MVC honorees — and he made all-conference as well after finishing sixth at the MVC championship earlier this month.

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