Baseball to host Southland Tourney


Gerard Borne

The Lions will opened their 2021 season at home against Mississippi Valley State University on Feb. 19.

The 2021 Southland Conference Tournament will be held at Southeastern’s Pat Kenelly Diamond at Alumni Field from May 26-29. 

This will be the second time that the university will host the end of the season tournament, its first dating back to 2004. 

Head Baseball Coach Matt Riser said having the tournament at home will benefit the Lions. 

“You always play better when you sleep in your own bed. Not having to worry about travel and where you are going to sleep for the night is a big relief to these guys,” Riser said. 

The tournament was previously held in Sugar Land, Texas before transitioning to Hammond. Director of Athletics Jay Artigues had to place a bid to host the tournament.

Riser shared how the tournament will be good for the Hammond area after having a rocky year last year. 

“There’s going to be hotels that are rented out, more people will go to surrounding restaurants and people will be coming to our ballpark. It’s something the area needs after having a rough 2020,” Riser said. 

The eighth-year head coach detailed how if the Lions make the tournament, it will be a huge home field advantage for the team. 

“The fans will be out and be big. We have a great home field advantage during the regular season so I know if we are here at home during the postseason, they will show up,” Riser said. 

Artigues agreed with Riser in that the tournament being at home will be an advantage for the team. 

“It’s also huge for our teams to have a home field advantage, which will hopefully give us a competitive advantage,” Artigues said. 

The Lions have ranked No. 1 in attendance since the start of the 2015 season, averaging over 1,000 fans for each home game. Southeastern will wrap up their 2021 regular season on May 22 against Houston Baptist University at home.