Photo GallerySUGAR LAND, Texas – For the second-straight year, the Southland Conference Home Run Derby came down to a swing-off with Central Arkansas infielder Hunter Hicks besting Stephen F. Austin’s Manny Vasquez and Sam Houston State’s Hunter Hearn for the personalized championship belt. The trio each tallied 13 dingers in the first round with Hicks and Hearn earning spots in the bonus round in the final two slots after Vasquez sat alone atop the leaderboard for three-straight batters. Southeastern Louisiana’s Scottie Sanders finished in fourth with 10 over the fence.Round one of @SouthlandSports HR Derby:Manny Vasquez | 13Hunter Hearn (SHSU) | 13Hunter Hicks (UCA) | 13Round 2:Vasquez | 7Hicks | 7Hearn | 5Manny finishes as the HR Derby runner-up as he hit his first second-round homer later than Hicks from UCA. #AxeEm pic.twitter.com/dWxHmwG2KA— Lumberjack Baseball (@SFA_Baseball) May 22, 2019 Hicks and Vasquez each hit seven long-balls in the bonus round, but Hicks was crowned the winner by virtue the tiebreaker of earliest home run. The freshman from Sheridan, Ark., blasted his first just six seconds into his two-minute session while Vasquez registered his first bomb at the 1:26 mark. Hearn finished the bonus round with four home runs.BSB: @UCABearBaseball freshman Hunter Hicks had just 13 at-bats to his name before homering 13 times on his way to a swing-off victory in the 2019 Southland Conference Home Run Derby. #SouthlandStrong #BearClawsUp ? https://t.co/qvN5UifJPz pic.twitter.com/oj2ACenChr— Southland Conference (@SouthlandSports) May 22, 2019 The event served as the opening ceremonies of the 2019 Southland Conference Tournament, which begins with a 9 a.m. CT matchup between No. 3 seed Southeastern Louisiana and No. 6 seed Stephen F. Austin. Reigning champion J.P. Lagreco of Northwestern State recorded nine home runs in the opening round. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi’s Nick Anderson overcame a slow start and finished with five long balls, followed by McNeese’s Jacob Stracner with four. UIW lefty Lee Thomas failed to hit a single one over the wall, battling double-digit winds blowing in from right field.
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