Coach Jim Christopherson '60 called his Cobber football team a dark horse in the race for the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championship this year. Fans were ecstatic that the Cobber team was, instead, a horse of a different color.
With a 9-1 record Concordia became the MIAC co-champion and one of 16 teams competing for the na tional title. The team was eliminated by Central College of Pella, Iowa, in the first playoff game, with a final score of 7-0.
"When you get to the playoffs it's all gravy, a bonus," Christopherson said following the game. "I have no complaints at all. These players gave it everything they could."
Six Concordia seniors were named to the all-MIAC team by league coaches. They are: Brian Bruns and Terry Storm, both from Walker, Minn.; Tom Diekman, Alexandria, Minn.; Jon Florence, Velva, N.D.; Terry Horan, Willmar, Minn.; and Doug Toivonen, Starbuck, Minn.
This year Christopherson became Concordia's "winningest" football coach with a career record of 146-55-4, surpassing the record previously held by football coach Jake Christiansen.
Coached by Kathy James, the volleyball team returned all the starters from last year's team, which tied for fifth place in the MIAC in 1987.
A slow start cost the team a few non-conference wins, but, according to James, an increase in "mental toughness" turned everything around.
The team was 11-0 going into the MIAC tournament, where they lost their semifinal match. Concordia came back to win again, capturing third place in the tournament. The Cobbers finished second in the MIAC, the best Cobber performance ever, but did not qualify for an NCAA tournament bid.
Three Cobbers were named to the all-MIAC team. juniors Kelly Schroeder and Sara Burros, both from Marshall, Minn., and sophomore Amy Walstad, Fargo, N.D.
Men's cross country
The men's cross country team, coached by Tom Dahien, placed seventh at the MIAC Championship meet with what Dahlen called some of their best performances this year.
The team also placed fifth at the MSU Invitational and 15th in a field of 21 teams at the St. Olaf Invitational at Northfield, Minn.
Women's cross country
The women's cross country team placed fourth out of 11 teams competing at the MIAC Championship meet.
Leading the women runners were sophomores Sharon Espeland, Bismarck, N.D., and Chris Fredrick, Foley, Minn., who placed seventh and eighth, respectively, at the St. Cloud meet.
Espeland also qualified to run in the Division III national championship meet, where she placed 51st.
Coach Duane Siverson said the women's golf team was Concordia's best in the last four years, playing consistently throughout the season.
The team was sixth at the National Small College Division III Tournament in Des Moines, Iowa, and first at the University of Minnesota Morris Invitational. The team also placed second at four tournaments.
At the end of the season, the three golfers who led the team in low scoring were seniors Kelly Frank, Sidney, Mont., and Jodie Wange, Luverne, Minn.; and junior Kelly Spangrud, Mankato, Minn.
The men's golf team placed third in the MIAC for the second year in a row and finished in the top half of all the major tournaments they attended.
The two players who averaged fewer than 80 strokes per round were senior Tim Carlin, Fosston, Minn., who also received medalist honors for low scoring at one tournament, and junior Wayne Severud, St. Louis Park, Minn., who received medalist honors at two tournaments. Severud will also have an opportunity to qualify for the national tournament this spring.
Seniors named to the academic all-conference list were Terry Storm in
football; Greg Defor, Bloomington, Mion., and Dan Lamken, Park Pidge, Ill.,
in cross country and Beth Tollefson, Kasson, Minn.,in volleyball. Juniors
named were Beth Berg, Willmar, Minn., in cross country; Troy Butner, Sidney,
Mont., in golf and Leah Hardy, Fairview, Mont., in volleyball.