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Nov. 13, 1998 Concordian | Cobber Sports |
| Football | Volleyball | Men's Hockey | Swimming | Wrestling | Women's Hockey | Women's Cross Country | Men's Cross Country |
Football team loses to St. Thomas
The Cobber football team is well out of the playoff chase, but the stakes are still high for their final game of the season against Augsburg at the Metrodome in Minneapolis at 2 p.m.
Concordia and Augsburg are tied for fifth place in the MIAC. With a win this afternoon, the Cobbers will finish the season in the top half of the division with a .500 overall record and a winning conference record. Although this may not fit with their ultimate goal, it is a promising way to cap off what Christopherson calls "a transition year." "Whether we finish fourth or sixth, our goal is to win a championship," Christopherson said. "A win on Friday will be a good jumping off point for the 1999 season for the young players and would be good for the seniors, too. The seniors have made a big impact on Concordia football, especially last year when we were a playoff team. It would be nice to go out with a win."
The team should also be receiving national media attention. If Augsburg senior wide receiver Scott Hvistendahl tallies over 227 yards in receptions he will pass NFL star Jerry Rice for the all-time NCAA career reception record with 4,693. This should prove to be a difficult task for Concordia's defense. Hvistendahl is already the Division III record holder for career receiving yardage.
"Our passing defense will have a gigantic job on Friday," Christopherson said. "We don't want to ignore the running game, but we don't want to be the team that Hvistendahl sets the record against. That's been our Achilles' Heel- we've given up a lot of passing yards."
In previous action, the Cobbers visited a red-hot St. Thomas team on Saturday and got burned 48 to 21. With the loss, Concordia drops to 4-4 in the MIAC and 4-5 overall. The Tommies improved their conference record to 6-2, and moved to 6-3 overall.
The win was the fifth consecutive for St. Thomas. The Cobbers had a strong running game, matched with a strong run defense. The Cobbers ended the game with more net rushing yards than St. Thomas with 151 yards compared to 142 yards for St. Thomas. Sophomore halfback Len Crouse led all players with 103 yards on the ground including a 32-yard run and a touchdown. However, Concordia yielded over 300 passing yards, while tallying only 201.
"We didn't play good pass defense," Christopherson said. "We knew we had to stop their running game, but we allowed some easy scoring plays. Stopping the run left us vulnerable to the pass."
The first quarter ended with the score tied at seven, Concordia's touchdown coming on a one-yard run by Crouse. In the second quarter, senior quarterback Ethan Pole completed a 38-yard touchdown pass to sophomore Adam Strainer for Concordia's only score. However, at halftime, St. Thomas had doubled the Cobbers' score, 28 to 14.
That was all that St. Thomas needed; they had capitalized on Concordia's mistakes, threatening to put the game out of reach. "Our two turnovers and their punt return for a touchdown really hurt us," Christopherson said. "That put them up at the half and put us at an up-hill climb."
St. Thomas didn't let up in the second half, scoring 20 consecutive
points and holding the Cobbers scoreless for most of the half. Concordia
scored once more in the fourth quarter on a one-yard run by sophomore Rob
Szymanski, to make the score 48-21.
Volleyball finishes tied for 7th at MIAC tournament
The Cobber volleyball team first won and then lost two matches at the MIAC tournament Friday and Saturday held at St. Ben's. Concordia was seeded eighth going into the tournament and finished tied with Hamline for seventh place at the MIAC tournament, winning against Gustavus and losing to St. Ben's and Bethel.
The first match against Gustavus was back and forth with a neck-and-neck win in the fifth game. The games were scored 15-6, 8-15, 15-11, 8-15 and 15-13.
"We passed and served really aggressively," senior Meredith Hegg. "We played really well and the fifth game was right down to the wire." Senior Laura Reitmeier led the team in kills against Gustavus with 12, followed by junior Anne Larson with 11. Hegg had 28 assists and also led digs with 11, followed by sophomore Stacy Davis with 13 and Larson with 12.
Number one ranked St. Ben's proved to be the Cobbers' big challenge at the tournament. St. Ben's swept the tournament and, in its course, beat Concordia 15-9, 15-1 and 15-3.
"We made our own mistakes and played tentative," Davis said. "St. Ben's deserves credit, they are really good."
Kills were low against St. Ben's, Reitmeier led them with 11, followed by Hegg with 3 and sophomore Sam Scariano with 3. Hegg led assists with 15.
The third match the Cobbers played was against Bethel. "We played better than we had against St. Ben's, but it took us a while to get into it," Davis said. Concordia lost the match in four games, scored 16-14, 11-15, 3-15 and 11-15. Larson and Reitmeier each had 15 kills, followed by Davis with six. Hegg had 38 assists and sophomore Missy Giese had 12.
"We were struggling throughout the whole match," Hegg said. "We just couldn't get a flow going. We played in spurts and couldn't stay consistent."
Two Cobbers were given honors as All-MIAC players after the tournament. Reitmeier was named to the first team All-MIAC, and Larson was named to the second All-MIAC team.
Concordia finished the season with a record of 5-6 in the MIAC conference and 16-18 overall.
"We had a lot of fun," Hegg said. "It was a learning year. Everyone
[on the team] is pretty satisfied with our performance."
Cobber Women's Swimming |
Swim team wins duel meet Saturday
The Concordia swimming and diving team competed in their first duel meet of the season on Saturday at the Moorhead High School pool. "They really swam well," head coach Connie Kirchoffner said. "They really showed some good strength. We had some good fly races, breast stroke and IM."
Concordia out swam Macalester by two points, 122-120. The Cobbers had a much easier time with Hamline defeating them 174-43.
"It was a really close meet," Kirchoffner said. "We never lost a duel meet to Macalester, and this is our third year as a team. It is kind of a nice record to keep track of. We are pretty proud of that record."
Concordia scored first in several categorizes against Macalester, including the 200 IM where sophomore Shana Letnes had a time of 2:25.32. In the one-meter diving, freshman Angie Storts scored 132.0. Sophomore Lacy Wallace did well in the 200 fly with a time of 2:32.83. In the 200 back, junior Jill Eddy came in with a time of 2:34.21.
"It was good to see some duel meet swims where they have races against other girls and for them to see the other competition. It was really good that it was kind of a close meet. It really made them step up to the challenge."
Cobber Men's Hockey |
Men's hockey hopes to improve
The men's hockey team is hoping to improve on last year's overall finish of 11-14-1. "I think we have more depth than we ever had before," head coach Steve Baumgartner said. "We have five lines that can compete up front, we return everyone on defense."
Baumgartner also added that he felt that the goaltending was as solid as it's been since he has been at Concordia. "I hope to give my team the opportunity to win night in and night out," sophomore goalie Bryan Howard said. "I also hope to keep us in every game and give them a chance to win."
Baumgartner addressed some of last year's weaknesses. "Last year one of our biggest problems was that we didn't score goals," Baumgartner said. "We played as good as anybody. Shots on goal is where we wanted them to be, but we were just unlucky around the net and in turning on the red light."
The Cobber hockey team will have to try to score without two of their leading scorers this year. "I really think we have the potential to put up higher numbers than those individuals did," Baumgartner said. "I think we will have more balance and that is what we are looking for. I think we have more potential to score more goals per game than we did last year."
Howard agrees. "The ability is there," Howard said. " We need to play well night in and night out. Last year we would sometimes play hot and then we would grow cold."
The men's hockey team has several goals as a team this year that they would like to accomplish. "We want to finish in the top four, get into a playoff race, win our MIAC, and get to the national birth," Baumgartner said.
Concordia's men's hockey team faces St. Thomas in their conference opener
Friday. "Hopefully being disciplined on defense will open up our transition
game so we can get into their zone," Baumgartner said.
Young wrestling team looks ahead
The wrestling team is hoping to come back from last year's disappointing season which was plagued with injuries.
"I think we will be surprised at first," freshman Ryan Smith said. "I don't think any of us are ready for what we have gotten ourselves into. However, later we will be more experienced."
The Cobbers this year are young, but the team has a large recruiting class. "They are talented," head coach Doug Perry said. "We will have to wait and see how things turn out in terms of their growth through the year as far as in picking up their interest levels and wrestling at the college level."
Perry points out that one of the challenges facing the freshmen is making the transition from high school. This includes throwing out half the moves they did in high school as far as tactical stuff like holds and maneuvers. According to Perry, at the collegiate level their opponents will block most of those tactics. Instead the team focuses on body positioning, stamina, strength, and getting in the weight room.
"One thing with freshmen is that some have lifted and others have not and this is where the strength factor is going to come," Perry said.
Along with lifting more weights, another difference for freshmen is thelonger matches. "The first period is three minutes long while high school is only two minutes," Perry said.
A plus to these young wrestlers is the veteran experience of senior
"We have a lot of [young] players from the state tournaments," Smith said. "We have a lot of talented athletes that could of gone to Division II schools."
While most teams are working on fundamentals the Cobbers are just trying to find themselves as a team. "We haven't had the time to bond as a team like other teams in the MIAC," Smith said. Even though the team hasn't had time to bond together, they will face many tough opponents at the Bison Open Saturday.
"Our intensity level has to go up a notch," Perry said. "We will wrestle the University of Minnesota who is ranked number two in the nation in Division I. We will probably be the only Division III in the tournament."
Perry said that he will not look at wins and losses for this first match,but
at how hard the team wrestled.
| 1998 Cobber
Men's Cross Country |
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Women's Cross Country |
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Cobber Women's Hockey |
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