Spring sports wrap-up: Coach swaps and sunbelt championships

DJ Cadden, Sports Correspondent

Since virtually all Spring sports were cut short in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 season was special for a lot of reasons.

For many GS athletes, it represented the last time they would represent the Eagles on the playing field. In total, six GS athletic teams concluded the 2021 season during the Spring.

The GS women’s golf team concluded their season with a strong performance at the Sun Belt Conference Championship, finishing third out of 11 teams. It was just the team’s second top-three performance of the season.

However, head coach Emily Kuhfeld stepped down after the conclusion of the 2021 season. Just over a month later, Mimi Burke was named as the new head coach of the women’s golf program.

Individually, Alberte Thuesen was named to the All-Sun Belt first team after posting a scoring average of 74.18 on the season, good enough for ninth place in the conference.

The men’s tennis program finished the 2021 campaign in disappointing fashion after posting a record of 12-10 (0-4 SBC). Head coach Sander Konnig stepped down from his role after the subpar season.

The women’s tennis team finished the 2021 season with a record of 19-9 (7-3 SBC) and topped off the season with a Sun Belt Championship. However, the women fell to Georgia Tech in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

Head coach Sean McCaffrey was named the Sun Belt Coach of the Year, Nadja Meier earned a first-team All-Sun Belt selection for her singles performance. In addition, the doubles team of Charlotte van Diemen and Sophie Wagemaker earned a first-team All-Sun Belt selection for their doubles performance.

The Georgia Southern softball program put together a record of 17-26 (9-14 SBC) on the season, before falling to Georgia State in the first round of the Sun Belt Conference tournament.

Head coach Kim Dean stepped down from her role following the disappointing season and was quickly replaced by Sharon Perkins.

The Eagle men’s golf program put together an excellent 2021 season, which culminated in a Sun Belt Conference Championship and an NCAA Tournament appearance.

Head coach Carter Collins was named the Sun Belt Coach of the Year, while four Eagles garnered All-Sun Belt selections. Ben Carr was named to the All-Sun Belt first team, Brett Barron and Mason Williams were named to the All-Sun Belt second team and Jake Maples earned a third-team selection.

The GS outdoor track and field season concluded after just five regular season events. The Eagles won the annual G.A.T.A. Classic and put up strong performances in a handful of other competitions.

The foursome of Zykeria Williams, Scovia Ayikoru, Aris Hubbard and Camryn Mahis earned a bid to the NCAA East Regional for the 4×100 meter relay, where they finished 21st. Zykeria Williams also garnered a 41st place finish in the 100 meter hurdles.

The Eagle baseball team finished with a record of 34-23 (14-10 SBC) and advanced to the Sun Belt Championship game. GS ultimately fell to South Alabama by a score of 10-4 in the championship game.

Mason McWhorter garnered Sun Belt Player of the Year honors, selected to the first-team All-Sun Belt and was named a Collegiate Baseball All-American. Nick Jones earned first-team All-Sun Belt honors and was also named a Collegiate Baseball All-American. To round out the honors for GS, Noah Ledford was named to the All-Sun Belt third team as a designated hitter.