Cobber Football |
Oct. 29, 1999 Concordian | Cobber Sports |
| Football | Volleyball | Men's Soccer | Women's Soccer | Men's Cross Country | Women's Cross Country | Women's Hockey Preview | Top |
Cobbers dismantle Gustavus
Concordia's offense came out of it's shell against Gustavus on Saturday. The Cobbers dominated against Gustavus’ strong defense, racking up 596 total yards of offense. The Cobbers dominated the Gusties 44-10. The Cobbers retain a share of first place along with St. Thomas and St. John's at 5-1.
“We thought we could win the game, but who would of dreamed 44-10,” head coach Jim Christopherson said. “It was a great team effort all the way.”
The team finished with 370 yards on the ground. Junior Len Crouse came back into the line-up for the first time since his injury early this season. Crouse gained 52 yards on six carries. Senior Nathan Reiff continued to pound the ball for Concordia rushing for 95 yards on 17 carries.
The big story of the day was the vastly improved Cobber passing game. “We are still emerging as a good offensive team,” Christopherson said. “We see areas we can get better in.”
Junior quarterback Jeff Hertel had his strongest showing this year completing 15 of 2 passes for 213 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. Sophomore wide out Raleigh Schmidt led the Cobber receivers with 125 yards on six catches.
“As a team we came together,” Hertel said. “The receivers are getting to the open areas, and now we are on the same page offensively. I think our timing is much better. I have more of a sense of where the receiver will be and can throw it when they are open.”
While the offense was busy putting points on the board the defense continued to grind up their opponents.
“We put in a new defensive strategy," Sophomore free safety Travis Olson said. "It was for are Defensive backs, we were man up on their receivers. The linebackers and free safety were free to read the ball. It was sort of like playing center field."
The Cobber defense held Gustie star running back Travis Prunty to 43 yards rushing, Prunty came into the game averaging 136 yards a game. “A lot of shutting down there running back had to do with the play of the defensive line. We call them 'The Dogs'," Olson said. "They filled the holes and as a defense we played a complete game. We knew if we played like we played at St. Johns with the intensity and fire it would help us during the long run."
Concordia's offensive line received honors as MIAC offensive player(s) of the week.
"95 percent of the credit for our offense has to go to the offense line," Hertel said. "They gave me time to pass the ball. I didn't really have to hurry. The offensive line is maturing in a way as they are getting better and better each week."
While the Cobbers feel good about the win the team knows that the road to a conference title is long.
"We control our own destiny," Christopherson said. "We win the next three games and we share the title. We made a commitment as a team not to look past anybody and approach every game as if it was the championship game."
| 1999 Cobber
Volleyball snaps MIAC slump
After a slow start in the MIAC conference, the Concordia College volleyball team won over four MIAC teams to improve their record to 10-16 overall. The Cobbers won out over St Catherine's, Gustavus, Carleton, and Hamline to give them momentum for the remainder of their season. The wins gave the Cobbers a huge boost of confidence for the rest of the season.
"The wins have really built up our self esteem," Sam Scariano noted on behalf of the Cobbers. "We definitely feel more confident now the we have become more consistent."
The four wins gives Concordia an advantage going into ending tournament play. They have a chance at the playoffs, by either winning the MIAC conference at the tournament, or being chosen as one of the top four teams.
"I think the most fun is that we can surprise the teams at the tournament," Scariano said. "We've improved so much since the beginning of the season."
On Wednesday, October 13, the netters shot past St Catherine's with three uncontested matches. Concordia jumped out ahead in the first match and kept their momentum to win all three games 15-6, 15-4, and 15-5. "We have worked good to gel as a team," noted Scariano. "When you can do that, then you can worry about getting points and winning matches." On Friday, October 16, the Cobbers topped Gustavus Adolphus College in four matches. Concordia won the first two matches 15-10 and 15-5. Gustavus jumped back in winning the third match 15-11. Concordia took the last match in a hard fought battle 16-14. Sam Scariano and Stacy Davis led the Cobber offense with 17 kills each.
"We have been working on quickness and getting the ball in," said Scariano. "Also, about being relaxed on the court and knowing we can do it."
On Saturday, October 16, Concordia won their game against Carleton College in three short matches. The Cobbers brushed past Carleton with their recent hit hard and fast style of winning 15-6, 15-3, and 15-4. Leah Sanden contributed 26 set assists for the game. "We really want to keep playing consistent, so we have a good shot at the playoffs," Scariano said.
The Cobbers extended their winning streak to four games Thursday, October 21, with a win over Hamline. Concordia opened the game with Hamline with two quick matches 15-10 and 15-6. Hamline rallied in the third match but could not overcome the Cobbers and lost 16-14. Anne Larson showcased 14 digs, 1 solo block, and 3 block assists.
| 1999 Cobber
Men's Soccer |
No Men's soccer story this week. See links to last week's and this week's action. |
| 1999 Cobber
Women's Soccer |
Women's soccer fights for respect
The Cobber women’s soccer team came into the year after a 7-11 season. They were not expected to be successful. This season has posed a major challenge to the team: earning back respect. Despite the women’s closely contested 2-1 loss to St. Ben’s on Wednesday, newfound respect has certainly been realized with this year’s play.
In the last week, the Cobber women celebrated three consecutive victories. The first win was over conference rival Augsburg and the last two came over break versus Methodist and Meredith of North Carolina. These three triumphs have moved the Cobbers to 11-5 overall and 3-5 in the MIAC, seventh in the conference.
“One of our goals this year was to gain respect within our conference, something weve lost in the last couple of years,” said Senior Kristen Hetland. “ I think weve done that so far. We may not win every game, but the other teams know that we come to play. Nothing is easy anymore.”
Indeed, nothing has been easy this year, for opponents or the Cobbers. First was the unexpected departure of the Cobbers regular goalie. Then their was the job of finding and training a new one. The team has also battled injuries all year. But nothing has kept them down.
“We’ve got a great team that always steps up,” said Hetland. “Kathy Braun has saved us at goalie, learning and playing the position as a newcomer, and everyone has improved as the season has progressed, coming through when others were either injured or just couldnt. We’ve had our ups and downs, but have also had the right attitude to fight through it all.”
Respect is what their fighting for and what they’ve gained to a certain extent. On Wednesday the Cobbers led at halftime before St. Ben’s rallied to win. No doubt such efforts, though respectable, will turn into wins if the team improves as much next year as it has this year. The Cobbers play thier final game tomorrow at Bethel.
| 1999 Cobber
Men's Cross Country |
Personal bests highlight men's cross country meet
Sometimes things aren't as bad as they seem.
Although the men's cross country team finished in a less-than-desirable 23rd place out of 33 teams at the University of Lacrosse, Wisconsin Invite, many team members ran their best 8k times all season.
"We all ran good, but the other teams really stepped it up, too," said sophomore Jason Karls.
Coach Garrick Larson said he was hoping the team would finish higher, but he knew how tough the competition was; the top eleven Division Three nationally ranked teams also ran at the meet along with two nationally ranked Division One teams.
With 640 runners, the meet at LaCrosse was by far the biggest meet the team has ran this year. So. Brian Klug said running with so many people was a big change for him.
"For the first half of the race, I felt really good, but then I went into a mental lapse. I got passed by a pack and instead of thinking, 'wow- they're running well', I thought I was slowing down. It took me a good majority of the meet to get back on track."
Junior Steve Edlund was the first Concordia finisher with a time of 26:55.5. It was his first time running an 8k in under 27 minutes. Edlund was followed by scorers senior Gabe Arntson and junior Chris Goebel, with times of just over 27 minutes, Junior Brian Stotts, Klug, Karls, and freshman Nathan Stoa.
Stotts broke his personal record by almost a full minute. He has had a rather unsatisfactory season up until this meet- he's struggled with anemia since this summer and was ill at the team's last meet in Wartburg. Now on iron pills and finally getting healthy, Stotts is hitting his potential.
"I felt unbelievable," Stotts said. "I was ready for Wartburg, but I got the stomach flu. I finally got it all together at LaCrosse and ran a good race."
The men's team times were impressive considering some bad spots on the course due to a previous night's rainfall.
"After the second mile, there were some really mushy parts," Karls said. "It was kind of like running in pudding. There was also a big hill slick with mud we had to run on." The weather cooperated, though; Klug said the wind died down by race time and the temperature was "just right".
The team is now setting its sights on its next two meets- MIAC and Regionals. Coach Larson says the MIAC should be "ultra-competitive". He says there isn't a lot of difference between the teams ranked third and ninth in the conference right now.
"If we run our standard race, I anticipate we'll finish sixth or seventh," he said. "Hopefully everybody has the right kind of race on the same day- then we could possibly finish fourth or third or higher."
Women's Cross Country |
Women's Cross Country takes 12th
Senior Barb Breidenbach describes the course the team ran on at the Neubauer Invite at the University of Wisconsin, LaCrosse favorably. “We ran on a golf course with really pretty greens and little hills,” she said. “It was so awesome, and the weather was nice.”
Her optimistic description of the course doesn't match up with her race, however. Breidenbach ran the meet in pain caused by Costonchondritis, or inflammation of the cartilage between the ribs. “My first mile was pretty good,” said Breidenbach. “But then it felt like there was a knife going through my side.”
Senior Cindy Carstens was also hindered by health problems; she was slowed by exercise-induced asthma.
“I didn't breathe very well,"”she said. “[Barb and I] didn't have our best times, but the rest of the team did really good.”
Even with Breidenbach and Carstens' health problems, the team finished 12th out of 31 teams at the meet.
“Last year we got 14th, so we improved,” she said. “Six of the teams that beat us are ranked in nationals.”
Juniors Heidi and Heather Brenden led the team with 31st and 39th place finishes out of 317 runners. Both set personal records in the 5k for the season. Freshman Katie Martin followed close behind and Breidenbach, freshman Heather Schulstad, Carstens, and junior. Carly Heupel rounded out Concordia scorers.
Martin broke her personal record by 20 seconds, despite a tough point in the middle of her race.
“I kind of lost it mentally when I got whacked in the face with a flag,” she said.
A runner in front of her had accidentally stepped on a bendable flagpole that marked the course. She lifted her foot off of it just as Martin ran by, sending the flag careening into Martin's cheek and leaving a bruise.
“I felt pretty good about my race,” said Martin. “I had a good time with it.”
“St. Olaf, St. Thomas, and Macalaster are very tough,” said Breidenbach. “But we have potential to beat them.”
Head coach Marv Roeske is training the team so they will peak at Regionals and have a stab at nationals by placing in the top four rather than peeking at MIAC. Right now, the team is sitting at fourth in the MIAC, and they finished third out of all the MIAC teams at LaCrosse. "We're looking better than ever," said Carstens. "Since my freshman year, we've gotten better every year. We've got some excellent rookies and the upperclassmen are doing well again."
| 1999 Women's
Women's hockey prepares for inaugural season
As the world enters its first year of the millennium, Concordia Women's Hockey team is entering its first year as a varsity sport.
The decision for Concordia to sponsor the team as a varsity sport was helped in part by the US Olympic Committee. In 1997, the MIAC received a $440,000 grant to encourage the formation of intercollegiate hockey teams, according to head coach Deb Lien. The decision was also made easier due in part to the increased participation in high school hockey and the girls advancing from these programs.
Deb Lien will be the teams first Concordia Women's Hockey coach. Lien was the Cobbers club coach during the 1998-1999 season. The program is seeing advances in many areas now that it is a varsity sport. Lien said, "(I am seeing) Bigger commitment from the players and from the university as well."
The women now have the proper facilities and equipment including ice-time at the Moorhead Sports center. Lien said that the most important jump they have is the much-needed athletic training services. Although the Cobbers are mainly a freshman/sophomore team, they are not lacking depth or leadership. According to Lien, She's brought in three strong goaltenders and has strong defensemen, five of six that are returning from last year. In the last few years, Minnesota has made major advances in the high school girls hockey programs, which will account for the growth of college programs.
"Several of the younger players on our team have played for many years," said Lien.
According to Lien, many of the girls grew up playing on a boys or co-ed team.
"They're aggressive," said Lien, "That's the style the girls have played."
With eight other MIAC schools receiving funding from the Olympic Committee, the competition should be growing this year. Lien said that all over the conference the skill level should be better.
The Cobbers first home game will be against Iowa
State, a comparable team at the club hockey level, on November 13th.
An authentic Concordia Women's Hockey jersey will be given away at this