767 students recognized at ceremony

McNeese State University awarded 796 diplomas to 767 students at the university’s spring commencement ceremony Saturday, May 13, at Burton Coliseum. The graduates:

Master of Fine Arts

GOP focus on lowering health premiums may undermine benefits

WASHINGTON -- Republicans trying to dismantle former President Barack Obama's health care law have run into the same problem that bedeviled him: Quality health insurance doesn't come cheap, especially if it protects people in poor health, older adults not yet eligible for Medicare, and the poor.

Something has to give.

Pence pitches Trump's budget during Baton Rouge visit

BATON ROUGE — Vice President Mike Pence visited Louisiana on Wednesday for the third time since August, meeting privately with a group of small-business owners before delivering a brief speech in front of about 200 people at an industrial warehouse.

The trip came on the heels of the release of President Donald Trump’s 2018 budget proposal, which aims to balance the federal budget and reduce the deficit over the next decade by doing away with the Affordable Care Act and slashing dozens of programs, many of which are dedicated to research, arts and social welfare.

McNeese spring 2017 honor graduates

Thirty-six McNeese State University students received the summa cum laude (3.9-4) designation during recent spring commencement ceremonies at Burton Coliseum.

Eight students were recognized for earning a 4 grade-point average throughout their college careers: Katja Woelfl, Ellhofen, Germany, general business administration; Tiffany Hope Bohannon, Kinder, general business administration; Melissa L. Snider, psychology, Lake Charles; Kristen R. Smith, Sulphur, foreign languages; Bettina Brulhart, Zurich, Switzerland, mass communication; Brandon W. Soileau, Ville Platte, health and human performance; Amy Lien Nguyen, engineering, Vinton; and Alexandra E. Widcamp, Westlake, health and human performance.

Whoa, Nelly: Nelson HR helps Cowboys advance

SUGAR LAND, Texas — No. 1 McNeese State led most of its first-round Southland Conference Tournament baseball game against No. 8 Lamar, but the Cowboys found themselves in a bit of a scare as the Cardinals put the tying run on first base with one out in the top of the ninth.

Then closing pitcher Collin Kober came in, and all of McNeese’s fears disappeared.

Unbearable: Central Arkansas sends Cowboys into losers' bracket

SUGAR LAND, Texas — The top-seeded McNeese State baseball team took a step back in its quest for a Southland Conference baseball tournament championship Thursday night after No. 5 Central Arkansas beat the Cowboys 5-3.

As a result, the Cowboys (36-19) will return to Constellation field at noon today take on Houston Baptist (26-21) in an elimination game. The teams did not meet in the regular season.

“I was really proud of our guys and what we did with Rhett (Deaton) not being available,” said McNeese head coach Justin Hill. “In an emergency start, his first collegiate start, I think (Peyton McLemore) played really well. That game was a game of inches.”

LSU rains down runs on Missouri

From staff reports

HOOVER, Ala. — Cole Freeman went 4-for-4, including a three-run home run through the rain in the eighth inning that sealed the deal on LSU’s 10-3 victory over Missouri in the Tigers’ opening game of the Southeastern Conference Tournament.

The game was delayed for an hour and half by rain in the bottom of the fifth inning, and the showers had returned by the time Freeman removed all doubt with his second home run of the season for a 10-2 LSU lead.

Whoa, Nelly: Nelson HR helps Cowboys advance

SUGAR LAND, Texas — No. 1 McNeese State led most of its first-round Southland Conference Tournament baseball game against No. 8 Lamar, but the Cowboys found themselves in a bit of a scare as the Cardinals put the tying run on first base with one out in the top of the ninth.

Then closing pitcher Collin Kober came in, and all of McNeese’s fears disappeared.

“We can take a big breath when (Kober) comes in,” said Cowboys catcher Dustin Duhon. “He takes a lot of pressure off of everybody.”

Winning Game 1 at all costs

The top-seeded McNeese State baseball team will begin its postseason against a team it should be familiar with in No. 8 Lamar at 4 p.m. today in the Southland Conference Tournament at Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Texas.

The Cowboys (36-18) and Cardinals (33-23) met last weekend in the regular-season finale at Cowboy Diamond/Joe Miller Ballpark. The Cowboys clinched the series with a 16-6 victory in seven innings on Saturday.

“We feel just fine about (the rematch),” said McNeese head coach Justin Hill. “Our kids knew that the outcome of that game (Saturday) was going to determine who our opponent was. … I have all the respect in the world for our guys. They knew what was coming, and they didn’t care. They just wanted to play.”

Week of ease for LSU at tournament

Paul Mainieri and LSU have the luxury of treating the Southeastern Conference Tournament like a vacation before the real bullets start flying next week.

Not that Mainieri will take it.

Or, at the least, call it a working vacation.