Winter 95-96 Sports Seasons Wrap-Up

Winter Athletes Earn Two NCAA Basketball Tourney Bids & an Individual Div. III Title in Track and Field

The 1995-96 Cobber winter sports season was highlighted by men's basketball's first MIAC playoff championship and NCAA tournament bid, a 14th consecutive NCAA tournament appearance by the women's basketball team, and another NCAA Indoor Shot Put title by Aaron Banks.

Men's Basketball Goes 21-6, Wins MIAC Playoff Title and NCAA Bid.

Concordia's winningest men's basketball season came to an end Feb. 29 with a 72-61 loss at Gustavus in the first round of the Cobbers' first-ever NCAA Tournament. The 21-6 Cobbers finished second in the MIAC with a 16-4 league record. The Cobbers then captured their first 4-team MIAC playoff championship with wins at home over Carleton and at Gustavus.

Milestones and Records:

- This year's Cobber basketball team recorded the most wins in school history (21), their first ever NCAA tournament appearance, their first MIAC playoff championship and a school record 10 consecutive wins. The Cobbers are 42-13 in MIAC play over the past 2 1/2 years.

- All-MIAC junior Daimen Crump ('97, Seattle, Wash.) led the MIAC in scoring with a 21.2 average. His 529 points were the 5th most by a Cobber in a single season. His 39 points at Bethel in the regular season finale helped secure 2nd place in the MIAC and a home playoff game.

- All-MIAC senior post Kenny Nelson ('96 Seattle, Wash.) averaged 10.4 points and 8.3 rebounds. He led the Cobbers in the championship game of the MIAC Playoffs with 13 rebounds and 11 points.

- Senior guard Jason Sorenson ('96, Appleton) averaged 14 points and set the MIAC record for 3's in a season (78), the Cobber single season trey record (94) and the school career percentage record for three pointers (43.5%, 108-248).

- Junior guard Greg Dean ('97, Rapid City) was named to the MIAC All-Defensive Team and set the Cobber record for steals in a game (11), season (108) and career (181). He was 2nd in the MIAC in assists per game with 7.45, ranked 12th nationally in assists, and 5th in steals. His 309 career assists gives him a shot at the school record of 478.

- Senior Bryan Christianson ('96, Waseca) led the Cobbers with 18 points in his final game and the school's first NCAA game. He was also named Academic All-MIAC for his excellent play and 3.78 GPA in Health Care Administration..

- Sophomore post Brett Klabo ('98, Mayville, N.D.) set the school record for field goal accuracy, hitting 47-70 shots for 67.1%.

Wall leads Women's Basketball to 20-6 Record, 14th NCAA Tourney

Kathy Wall ('93) was hired last spring to assist with the women's basketball program. But some health problems caused head coach Bob Kohler to step aside and Wall became the head coach during Thanksgiving break. Kohler was able to serve as one of Kathy's assistant coaches and the Cobber women, with just one senior, put together a 20-6 season. They also earned Concordia's 14th consecutive invitation to the NCAA tournament.

After finishing third in the MIAC with a 16-4 record the Cobbers opened the NCAA tournament at Bethel, the MIAC runner-up. Losing 64-60 they saw another great season come to an end.

The 1995-96 Cobbers were led by All-MIAC junior forwards Holly Zollar ('97, Barnesville) and Ann Mehrkens ('97, Goodhue). Zollar, who averaged 12 points and 6 rebounds, was also named to the MIAC's All-Defensive team. In addition, Zollar arned Academic All-MIAC honors with her 3.36 GPA in Elementary Education.

Mehrkens earned her second All-MIAC award on the strength of her 12 points and 8.3 rebounds per game.

Jodi Tulibaski ('96, Pennock), The Cobbers' lone senior, finished her career having played in all 106 of the Cobber games the past four years. Jodi's teams had a combined record of 78-28. Her career numbers include 894 points, 531 rebounds, and All-MIAC honors in her sophomore and junior year. She was also a three-time all-MIAC performer in volleyball.

Aaron Banks Sets NCAA Div. III Record, Defends National Shot Put Title

Aaron Banks ('96, Lynd) defended his NCAA Division III Indoor Shot Put Title at Smith College in Massachusetts on March 9th. He won the competition by over four feet and his 59'9" toss was a NCAA Division III indoor record. Banks also took second in the 35 pound weight competition on March 8th, losing by two inches despite breaking the NCAA record with a toss of 63'6 1/4". Aaron's NCAA shot put title was his third NCAA championship. His first and second place finishes brings his total number of All-American performances to eight.

Earlier Banks helped lead the Cobbers to a 7th place finish at the MIAC Indoor meet in Minneapolis March 1-2. There he set a MIAC record in the shot put with a toss of 57'9" and won the 35 pound weight with a toss of 58'8 3/4".

Also claiming an MIAC title on March 2 in Minneapolis was Concordia's Ryan Williams ('97, St. Cloud) in the pentathlon.

Both Banks and Williams also earned Academic All-MIAC honors. Banks has a 3.24 GPA in Biology and Williams a 3.99 GPA in Chemistry.

Women's Track 5th at MIAC Behind Ludtke, Frey and Severson.

Concordia's women's track team, under first year head coach Marv Roeske, placed 5th at the MIAC Championship Meet at the University of Minnesota March 1-2. Sophomore Mollee Ludtke ('98, Albert Lea) was the lone Cobber titleist, winning the 600 meter run. She finished fourth in the 800 meter run and was a provisional national qualifier on a 4x400 relay team that took 3rd at the MIAC.

Shannon Frey ('96, Harvey, N.D.) placed 2nd in the 20 pound weight throw and qualified for the National Indoor Meet with a throw of 45'2 1/2". Frey placed 9th at Div. III Nationals March 8-9 in Massachusetts with a throw of 46'6 1/2".

Ludtke and teammate Sarah Severson ('98, Ellsworth, Wisc.) each earned Academic All-MIAC honors. Ludtke maintains a 3.40 GPA in biology. Severson, who placed second in the pentathlon, fourth in the long jump and 4th in the 55 meter hurdles at the MIAC, has a 3.72 GPA in Chemistry.

Wrestlers 3rd at MIAC Duals

A young and improved Cobber wrestling team placed 3rd at the MIAC Duals competition by winning three of five matches. They later finished 5th at the MIAC Tournament, led by All-MIAC second place finishers Nathan Reiff at 177 ('99, Whitehall, Mont.) and Shawn Nicholas at 134 ('98, Billings, Mont.). Reiff advanced to the NCAA National Meet where he won 1 of 3 matches.

Cobber Hockey 8th in MIAC

A young Cobber hockey team struggled through a 3-21-1 season, finishing 8th in the MIAC. The Cobbers were led by junior wings Greg Salvevold ('97, Moorhead) and Jeff Corkish ('97, Wawota, Sask.). Salvevold scored 31 points on 16 goals and 15 assists. Corkish has 27 points on 13 goals and 14 assists. Seven freshmen made significant contributions to this year's team.

Staff Notes

Connie Kirchoffner has been hired as Concordia's women's swimming coach. The Cobbers will begin their inaugural season in November of 1996. Connie was hired in December and has been actively recruiting since. She received her B.S. degree from Moorhead State in 1975. At Moorhead High, Kirchoffner coached four state qualifiers to the first Minnesota State Swimming Championships in 1976. She spent 17 years, 1976-1993, at Mandan High as a Physical Education/Health teacher and Head Girl's Swimming Coach. Her teams were the North Dakota Champions for four consecutive years (1989-1992). As the Head Girls Swimming Coach at Smoky Hill's High in Aurora, Colorado from 1993-1995, her teams won the 1994 State Championship and placed third in '95.

Jim Christopherson, Concordia's head football coach for the past 27 years, will be inducted into the Minnesota High School Football Coaches Association's Hall of Fame at their 32nd annual Hall of Fame Banquet at the Radisson Hotel Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minn. April 12, 1996. Jim Christopherson's Cobbers won another MIAC title and posted an 8-2-1 record in 1995. He has compiled a 190-78-1 record, placing him 5th in career wins among active Division III coaches.

Brad Pole, who served for the past five years as an assistant football coach and faculty member in the Concordia physical education department, has taken a job as the head football coach at Luther College in Iowa.

Marion Strand, who has served as our women's cross country and women's track coach for the past 5 years will be taking a leave of absence from the staff at the end of the school year to pursue a doctorate program at the University of North Dakota.

Marv Roeske, who served as an assistant track coach for men and women in 1995, has assumed the head coaching duties of the women's team this year. Roeske had previously coached boys and girls high school track at Tolna, N.D.

Cobber Sports in the Internet

Concordia's Sports Information Office has been working hard to put Cobber sports history and up-to-date Cobber sports news on the internet. Our homepages have been up and running since Christmas. We think it's a great way for alumni, fans and prospective students to keep up with Cobber teams. You can get there easily from the Concordia homepage on the world wide web at

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