LSU women’s golfer Ali Lucas wins Santa Maria event

LSU women’s golfer Ali Lucas of Crowley won the Collegiate Players Tour Santa Maria Collegiate Open earlier this week at the Santa Maria Golf Course.

Lucas, who will be a senor this coming season, posted a 54-hole total of 221 on the par 72 layout (70-72-79) to win by four shots over Sydney Martin.

LSU sophomore Elise Bradley of Mandeville finished third with a 10-over 226 (74-76-76).

SLU honors Alford, Donald

HAMMOND — Southeastern Louisiana senior defensive back Robert Alford and senior middle blocker Courtney Donald were named the 2012-13 Southeastern Athletes of the Year on Thursday.

Each season since 1990-91, the Southeastern athletics department has named the top male and female student-athletes in voting by department members.

Alford, a Hammond native was the 60th pick overall in the NFL draft and became Southeastern’s first draft selection since the school resumed football in 2003 after an 18-year hiatus.

Alford was selected as the College Sports Journal FCS National Defensive Player of the Year, a Buck Buchanan Award finalist and Associated Press and Sports Network All-American.

Alford totaled 39 tackles and recorded four interceptions (which tied for the Southland Conference lead), five tackles for loss and eight pass breakups. He averaged 14.1 yards on punt returns and scored one touchdown

Donald, a senior middle blocker on the volleyball team, powered home 3.65 kills per set on a .330 hitting percentage en route to Louisiana Player of the Year, first team All-Southland Conference and first team All-Louisiana honors.

SLU women’s team signs 4

HAMMOND — The Southeastern Louisiana University women’s basketball program added four student-athletes for 2013-14 coach Lori Davis Jones announced Thursday.

The newest Lady Lions were junior college players. Bolstering the backcourt will be Palm Beach State (Fla.) Community College player Annessa De La Cruz (Miami) and Brandi Riddle (St. Louis) of Kaskaskia College.

Riddle’s junior college teammate Adrina LaVern (Anchorage, Alaska) and Olney Central College forward Hannah Ware (Fort Smith, Ark.) will give Southeastern two new post options.

Auburn dismisses Johnson

AUBURN, Ala. — Auburn has dismissed guard Shaq Johnson from the basketball team for violating unspecified team rules.

Coach Tony Barbee announced the sophomore’s dismissal Thursday.

Barbee said he is “very disappointed in Shaq’s choices and actions, and they won’t be tolerated.”

He said the dismissal “is in the best interest of both the program and the student-athlete.”

Johnson played in all 32 games as a freshman and started 21. He averaged 6.2 points in Southeastern Conference games. Fellow freshmen Brian Greene Jr. and Jordan Price have already left the team since last season, when the Tigers went 9-23.

La. Tech hires assistant

RUSTON — Louisiana Tech coach Michael White announced Thursday the hiring of Kyle Church as the director of basketball operations.

This past year Church was an assistant at Chipola College in Marianna, Fla., the hometown of former Bulldog Brandon Gibson, where he helped guide the Indians to a 26-5 record and a top 15 national ranking in the National Junior College Athletic Association.

Before being on the coaching staff with the Indians, Church was the head graduate assistant manager at Tech during the 2011-12 season.

ULM gets academic honor

MONROE — The University of Louisiana-Monroe men’s basketball team was recognized when the Warhawks earned Team Academic Excellence Awards from the National Association of Basketball Coaches.

UL-Monroe was one of 21 Division I men’s basketball programs honored.

Sophomore Kyle Koszuta led the team with a 3.9 grade-point average, while Colton Ponder tallied a 3.5 mark.

Created by the NABC Committee on Academics, the Team Academic Excellence Award recognizes superior academic achievement by a team with a cumulative gpa of 3.0 or better for the 2012-13 season.