Milligan’s men finished second in the team competition while the women finished third during a meet chocked full of standout performances by the Buffs.
“I can’t tell you how proud I am of that group this past weekend,” Layne said. “We had 12 conference titles, 20 personal bests and 31 all-conference honors.”
Milligan’s women qualified a relay team for the upcoming NAIA National Outdoor Championships as Katlyn Haas, Hannah Segrave, Erica Stone and Joey Webb posted a time of 9:27.16 in the 4x800 on Friday. Aside from running a leg of the relay, Segrave sat out the rest of the meet with a sore hamstring, which prevented the women from scoring a runner-up finish.
“You put (Hannah’s) 20 points into the equation and were second on the women’s side,” Layne said.
With so many young athletes stepping up in key situations, Layne was particularly satisfied with his team’s effort.
“We had no business being second on the men’s side and almost second on the women’s side,” he said. “I think that’s a testimony to our coaches having our kids ready to go and they just stepped up all weekend.
“I love to win, but that was a massive victory without finishing first.”
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The softball team received plenty of accolades when the AAC awards were handed out on Tuesday night.
Milligan’s Kirstan Beaver was named the AAC Freshman of the Year while Kimberly Robinson, Ashley Arnold and Madison Grindstaff received all-conference honors. Additionally, Beaver earned a spot on the all-freshman team and Skeen joined Robinson on the all-defensive team.
Beaver batted .444 this season with five doubles, four RBIs and 14 runs scored. Her .527 on-base percentage was a team best, and she only struck out eight times.
Robinson, a senior, earned first-team honors. With an ERA of 2.61, Robinson finished the regular season with a 12-5 record with 95 strikeouts against just 26 walks.
Arnold and Grindstaff earned second-team all-AAC honors while Kaitlin Campbell was named to the AAC Champions of Character team and Grindstaff, Kelsey Linn and Cayley Shoemaker earned spots on the AAC All-Academic team.
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The baseball team is gearing up for its final AAC series of the season before next week’s conference tournament.
The Buffs will hit the road on Friday for a three-game set against Union in Barbourville, Kentucky. After dropping two out of three to St. Andrews last weekend, Milligan is 22-25 overall and 10-14 in conference play.
The AAC tournament will once again be held in Kingsport starting next Wednesday. The event will run through next Saturday.