Bulldog Athletic Association Athletes of the Week
Male: Michael Duffy, Wrestling
Duffy, who hails from Kennesaw, Neb., helped the Bulldogs eke out a 21-16 dual win over Northwestern last week. Despite trailing in the final seconds of his heavyweight match, Duffy rallied for a 9-5 win thanks to a late takedown and four near fall points. Duffy improved his overall record to 8-8.
Female: Colby Duvel, Basketball
Duvel, a native of Max, Neb., continued a recent rebounding tear last week by pulling down 22 combined rebounds in contests against Midland and No. 10 Northwestern. Duvel just missed a double-double (13 points, nine rebounds) while making her first career start versus Northwestern. She is averaging 5.9 points and 6.5 rebounds this season.
Previous athletes of the week
Jan. 30 – Kyle Pierce (basketball) / Anna Baack (track & field)
Jan. 23 – Jacob Cornelio (track & field) / Dani Hoppes (basketball)
Jan. 16 – Josiah McAllister (track & field) / Brenleigh Daum (basketball)
Jan. 9 – Jared Woods (wrestling) / Philly Lammers (basketball)
December Athletes of the Month: Cordell Gillingham (basketball) / Philly Lammers (basketball)
Dec. 12 – Cordell Gillingham (basketball) / Taylor Cockerill (basketball)
Dec. 5 – Brevin Sloup (basketball) / Sydney Feller (basketball)
November Athletes of the Month: Tarence Roby (football) / Quinn Wragge (basketball)
Nov. 28 – Jake Hornick (basketball) / Quinn Wragge (basketball)
Nov. 14 – Cameron Devers (wrestling) / Jeannelle Condame (soccer)
Nov. 7 – Tarence Roby (football) / Emily Deschaine (cross country)
October Athletes of the Month: Ryan Durdon (football) / Lindsey Carley (soccer)
Oct. 31 – Ryan Durdon (football) / Kaitlyn Radebaugh (soccer)
Oct. 24 – Marcelo Hernandez (soccer) / Lindsey Carley (soccer)
Oct. 17 – Carlos Ferrer (soccer) and Grady Koch (football) / Sami Birmingham (soccer)
Oct. 10 – Micah Lehenbauer (soccer) / Kaitlyn Radebaugh (soccer)
Oct. 3 – Micah Lehenbauer (soccer) / Maria Deeter (soccer)
September Athletes of the Month: Tarence Roby (football) / Lindsey Carley (soccer)
Sept. 26 – Kordell Glause (football) / Emily Deschaine (cross country)
Sept. 19 – Lewis Rathbone (soccer) / Victoria Cera (soccer)
Sept. 12 – Tarence Roby (football) / Murphy Sears (golf)
Sept. 5 – Jack Bennett (soccer) / Lindsey Carley (soccer)
News and notes:
CUNE alum Garrett selected for coaching honor by NFL: In conjunction with the Pro Bowl on Jan. 28, Crenshaw High School head football coach Robert Garrett was named the 2017 Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year. A three-year starter at offensive guard for the Bulldogs (1978-80), Garrett was nominated for the award by the Los Angeles Chargers. Garrett has served as head coach at Crenshaw since 1988. His 2017 team went 12-3 and won the CIF Division 4-AA state championship. For more details on the honor, click HERE.
Tennis opens spring seasons this weekend: Head coach Joel Reckewey’s tennis teams will open up their 2018 spring seasons this weekend. The men will host Baker University inside the Fieldhouse on Friday with first serve set for 4 p.m. CT. Both teams will then play Grand View University at Genesis Health Club in Lincoln on Saturday. Those matches are slated to begin at 12 p.m. For a complete run down on both squads, check out our season previews: men’s season preview | women’s season preview.
Dance and cheer earn wins over Northwestern: Head coach Mandi Maser’s cheer and dance squads hosted Northwestern during home basketball games on Feb. 3. The Concordia cheer team defeated the Red Raiders, 72.75-66, while the dance squad picked up a victory over Northwestern by a score of 77-72.5. Bulldog dance has won each of its three duals while also placing fourth at the Concordia Invitational. Meanwhile, CUNE cheer was coming off a second-place finish at CIT.
Bulldog Coaches Show airs every Thursday at 5:30 p.m. CT: The Bulldog Coaches Show is underway in its third year of existence. The show airs live for a half hour every Thursday beginning at 5:30 p.m. CT on KTMX-FM 104.9 Max Country. The weekly feature can also be heard live via 104.9 Max Country’s website or by downloading the Max Country app. Throughout the 2017-18 season, Bulldog football, men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball contests will be aired live on Max Country. Tyler Cavalli serves as the host of the coaches’ show as well as the play-by-play voice for football and basketball. Frank Greene is again calling volleyball action.
Concordia Sports Network: Live webcasts for most home varsity contests can be accessed by visiting http://www.cune.edu/csn at game time. Check team schedules/results pages for webcast dates. Scrimmages, exhibitions and junior varsity events are not broadcasted.
Track & Field
- Week four of the indoor season came and went with most Bulldog athletes competing at the Fred Beile Invitational hosted by Doane on Feb. 3. Four male athletes also took part in the Frank Sevigne Husker Invitational (Feb. 2-3) at the Bob Devaney Sports Center in Lincoln. Among the highlights, McKenzie Gravo (pole vault) and Samantha Liermann (shot put) claimed event titles at the Beile Invite and Ben Hulett put together the best series of 60-meter hurdle performances in his career. For more information on Concordia track and field, click HERE.
- The Bulldogs gained traction in last week’s men’s and women’s NAIA national rankings computed by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). The men made a particularly large leap, going from 27th on Jan. 24 to 13th last week. Meanwhile, the women advanced four spots to No. 9. Head coach Matt Beisel’s squads began last week having totaled 10 automatic national qualifying marks and six ‘B’ standard marks. The USTFCCCA bases its computer ratings on the individual national lists in each of the event areas.
- The program’s count for total number of automatic national qualifying marks remains at 10 (see list below). Concordia athletes have also put eight ‘B’ standard marks on the board. Liermann (shot put and weight throw) and Adrianna Shaw (shot put and weight throw) are the lone Bulldogs to be qualified in multiple events. Already a qualifier in the high jump, Cody Williams (Imperial, Neb.), ranks seventh nationally in the heptathlon.
- Men’s distance medley – B (10:25.56)
- Anna Baack – A; pole vault (11’ 6 ½”)
- Blake Becher – ranked 22nd in the heptathlon (4,314)
- Simon Brummond – B; pole vault (15’ 1”)
- Jacob Cornelio – A; weight throw (56’ 6 ½”)
- Jessica Deterding – ranked 15th in the pentathlon (3,020)
- Jazzy Eickhoff – A; shot put (44’ 7 ½”)
- Jodi Fry – B; shot put (44’ 7 ½”)
- McKenzie Gravo – A; pole vault (12’ 4 ½”)
- Ben Hulett – B; 60 hurdles (8.32)
- Leah Larson – B; triple jump (36’ 11”)
- Samantha Liermann – A; shot put (46’ 11 ½”); A; weight throw (54’ 9 ½”)
- Josiah McAllister – B; 1,000 meters (2:33.58)
- Johanna Ragland – A; shot put (45’ 1 ½”)
- Tyrell Reichert – B; pole vault (15’ 1”)
- Adrianna Shaw – A; shot put (46’ 11”); A; weight throw (53’ 1 ¾”)
- Kara Stark – B; high jump (5’ 5”)
- Cody Williams – A; high jump (6’ 7”); ranked seventh in the heptathlon (4,723)
- Ranked 11th nationally in the 60-meter hurdles, Hulett’s personal best time of 8.32 that he turned in at the Beile Invite is likely to earn him a spot at nationals (automatic time is 8.27). Hulett enjoyed a solid weekend in the event. He placed 15th at the Husker Invite with a time of 8.41. He shaved that down to 8.35 in the prelims at the Beile Invite before checking in at 8.32 in the finals. Hulett placed second out of the field of 30 hurdlers at Doane.
- Liermann pushed closer to her all-time best of 47’ 10 ½” in the shot put. Her season best of 46’ 11 ½” at the Beile Invite represented a season best and moved her to fourth on the NAIA national list (No. 1 in the GPAC). Liermann continues to headline a strong stable of Concordia throwers in the women’s shot put. In that event, Bulldog individuals are currently ranked fourth, fifth (Adrianna Shaw), ninth (Johanna Ragland), 13th (Jazzy Eickhoff) and 18th (Jodi Fry) on the national leaderboard. Liermann is the reigning NAIA outdoor shot put national champ while Shaw placed as the indoor national runner up in 2017.
- Junior Josiah McAllister made a strong push for a ‘B’ standard time in the mile while competing at the Husker Invite. He was clocked at 4:21.58, a time that would eclipse the NAIA’s ‘B’ standard. However, the banked track at the Devaney Center requires the time to be converted. McAllister has already gotten on the board with a ‘B’ standard time of 2:33.58 in the 1,000 meters.
- On the men’s side, throws coach Ed McLaughlin is going to work on building the group back up after saying goodbye to national champions Cody Boellstorff and Zach Lurz. The ringleader is now sophomore Jacob Cornelio. He again surpassed the automatic mark in the weight throw with a toss of 56’ 5 ¾” at the Beile Invite (fourth place). Cornelio ranks 15th nationally in the event. In the shot put, freshman Jacob Dack has paced the squad. He placed ninth at the Beile Invite with a throw of 46’ 4 ¼.” Dack needs to add about one more meter to that throw in order to qualify for nationals.
- Among other notables from the weekend, Seward High School product Mika Brees placed third in the 200-meter dash (26.48) and fifth in the 60 meter dash (8.02). Jessica Deterding PR’d in the long jump (17 6 ¼”) and placed fourth. Rebekah Hinrichs turned in a season best in the mile (5:40.80) and was the runner up. Ragland tossed a personal best in the weight throw (51’ 3”) and placed sixth. She was 18 centimeters off a ‘B’ mark. Miranda Rathjen just missed a ‘B’ standard in the 600 meters (1:41.55) while finishing fourth.
- The Bulldogs will be back at home this week to host for the third time this indoor season. The Concordia Indoor Invitational will be staged inside the Fieldhouse on Saturday. It will be the final tune up prior to the GPAC championships at Doane next week (Feb. 16-17).
- Something strange happened last week. The top-rated Bulldogs lost. The unbeaten run ended with an 86-77 upset loss at Midland on Jan. 31. It was the first time Concordia tasted defeat since its national tournament semifinal loss to Saint Xavier University last March. The Bulldogs regrouped impressively by toppling 10th-ranked Northwestern, 80-67, on Feb. 3 in a battle between the top two teams in the GPAC standings. Twelfth-year head coach Drew Olson’s squad stands at 25-1 overall and at 15-1 in conference play, two games in front of second place Northwestern (13-3) and Dakota Wesleyan (13-3). For more information on Concordia women’s basketball, click HERE.
- The surprising loss to Midland put a stop to what had been the second longest winning streak during Olson’s head coaching tenure, which began with the 2006-07 season. The 24-game streak to begin this season came up just short of the 26-game run produced by the 2016-17 Bulldogs, owners of the longest win streak under Olson’s direction. Additionally, the 2014-15 team won 23 in a row and the 2011-12 squad put together a win streak of 21. The school record continues to be held by the 2002-03 group that opened up that campaign at 33-0 before finally suffering a loss in the GPAC tournament.
- Though Concordia now has a blemish on its résumé, it still has a strong case for keeping the No. 1 ranking. With the win over Northwestern, the Bulldogs have now racked up 11 triumphs over teams that appeared in the Jan. 23 top 25 poll: No. 3 College of the Ozarks, No. 4 Saint Xavier, No. 6 Jamestown, No. 10 Northwestern (twice), No. 11 Hastings (twice), No. 12 Dakota Wesleyan, No. 13 Morningside No. 17 St. Francis (Ill.) and No. 25 Mayville State. No other team in the nation can make the same claim.
- Consider Colby Duvel the Dennis Rodman of this team. The sophomore from Max, Neb., has been on a rebounding tear. Over the past four games, Duvel has totaled 47 rebounds, boosting her season average to 6.5 boards per contest. She posted a double-double (10 points, 13 rebounds) in the championship game of the Concordia Invitational Tournament and just missed another one (13 points, nine rebounds) against Northwestern. With Philly Lammers still battling sickness, Duvel made her first career start over the weekend.
- Senior Dani Hoppes is in the midst of the best stretch of play in her career. A lockdown defender, Hoppes possesses the ability to carry an offense with her outside shooting. During a critical third-quarter stretch in the win over Northwestern, the Lincoln Christian High School product rattled off eight points in a one-minute span to help turn a two-point deficit into an eight-point lead. Hoppes went 5-for-9 from beyond the arc while extending her streak of consecutive games with a 3-pointer to 27. Hoppes was honored prior to the Northwestern game for reaching 1,000 career points. Her total now sits at 1,070.
- Named the GPAC defensive player of the year last season, senior Mary Janovich is on the verge of cracking the program’s top 10 list for most career steals. Janovich added three thefts last week, pushing her career figure to 229. That number places her 13th, just shy of No. 10 Allison Nyland and co-No. 11s Melissa Tinkham (230) and Elizabeth Rhoden (230). A Gretna, Neb., native, Janovich also sports all-time school rankings of 20th in scoring (1,086) and 20th in assists (254).
- Two wins this week would allow Concordia to clinch at least a share of the GPAC regular-season title. A perfect week along with a loss for both Dakota Wesleyan and Northwestern would lock up the outright title. Coming into this season, the Bulldogs had won or shared three of the past six conference regular-season titles while also capturing GPAC tournament titles in 2012, 2015 and 2017. Prior to Olson’s tenure, Todd Voss led the program to a regular-season championship in 2002-03 and a GPAC postseason title in 2005.
- Olson hopes to soon have Lammers and Quinn Wragge back to 100 percent. Both have been dealing with bouts of sickness. During last week’s action, Lammers played a total of only 35 minutes. She bounced back from a 2-for-7 shooting performance at Midland with 15 points on 6-for-10 shooting against Northwestern. On the other hand, Wragge played 47 minutes last week and produced a combined 21 points and 12 rebounds. Like Janovich, Wragge is rising on the program’s all-time charts. She has moved to 17th in rebounding (581) and to 18th in scoring (1,237).
- Concordia will get cozy in Sioux City, Iowa, this week. The Bulldogs will head to Briar Cliff (9-17, 6-10 GPAC) for a 6 p.m. tipoff on Wednesday. They will be back in the neighborhood on Saturday for a 2 p.m. contest at No. 13 Morningside (18-8, 11-5 GPAC). Concordia is seeking season sweeps of both opponents having already defeated them inside Walz Arena, where the Bulldogs have won 31 in a row.
- A return to conference play last week did not go quite as planned for Concordia, which remains in the hunt for a top-four conference finish, which would secure a GPAC tournament quarterfinal home game. The Bulldogs fell at Midland, 67-61, on Jan. 31 before coming back home where they dropped an 83-73 contest at the hands of No. 11 Northwestern. Concordia slipped back into a fifth-place tie with Hastings (7-7 GPAC), one-and-a-half games behind fourth-place Dakota Wesleyan (9-6 GPAC). Fifth-year head coach Ben Limback’s squad is now 16-9 overall and 7-7 in conference play. For more information on Concordia men’s basketball, click HERE.
- The loss to Northwestern dropped the Bulldogs to 0-6 this season in games against teams that were nationally ranked at the time of tipoff. If Concordia is to earn a home conference tournament game, it will likely have to knock off at least one top 25 foe. Three of its final four contests will be played against ranked GPAC rivals. In each of the previous three campaigns, the Bulldogs have picked up at least one victory over a top 25 team. The 2016-17 Concordia team went 21-10 overall with five wins coming against nationally-ranked foes.
- The Bulldogs wasted a career high 20 points from Cordell Gillingham in the loss to Northwestern. The sophomore from Greeley, Colo., went 8-for-10 from the field, including 3-for-3 from beyond the arc. After reaching double figures in scoring in only four of the season’s first 20 games, Gillingham has produced double digit outputs in three of the past five outings. He posted 16 points apiece in back-to-back games played against Hastings and Concordia-Ann Arbor. Gillingham has started all 25 contests this season after playing a grand total of 82 minutes as a freshman in 2016-17.
- Concordia walked away from both of last week’s defeats feeling like it had done enough defensively to pull out wins. Though the Bulldogs have less offensive firepower than a season ago, they have improved significantly in the area of perimeter defense. They limited Midland to 41.1 percent shooting and held explosive Northwestern to a 45.8 percent clip. Concordia and Northwestern enter this week tied atop the GPAC in field goal percentage defense (.434). However, the Bulldogs will be happy if they never have to see Red Raider star Colton Kooima again. He burned them for a combined 88 points in this season’s two meetings.
- Opponents have struggled mightily from the 3-point line. Concordia currently ranks fourth nationally in 3-point field goal percentage defense (.310). The Bulldogs have owned a significant advantage over their foes in that department. Through 25 games, Concordia has gone 248-for-665 (.373) from beyond the arc while the opposition has made only 167 treys. Even in defeat last week, the Bulldogs managed to hold Midland/Northwestern to 13-for-50 (.260) shooting from 3-point range.
- Concordia will have to make a big push down the stretch in order to continue the trend of increased win totals each season under Limback’s direction. Now 79-67 during his tenure in Seward, Limback steadily bumped the program from six wins the season before his arrival all the way up to 21 victories in 2016-17. Counting the 115 wins over nine seasons at Concordia-Ann Arbor, Limback has amassed 194 career coaching victories.
- With an average of 8.7 rebounds per game, sophomore Clay Reimers continues to pace the conference on the glass. Last week the Lincoln East High School product produced a double-double in both outings, going for 14 points and 12 rebounds at Midland and then 16 points and 10 rebounds versus Northwestern. Reimers’ nine double-doubles also rank No. 1 among GPAC players. A starter this season after coming off the bench as a freshman, Reimers is averaging a team high 15.8 points while shooting 60.7 percent from the floor.
- For this team, the magic number is 75. Concordia is 15-2 when scoring 75 or more points this season. Offensive ineptitude has been a culprit in many of its recent defeats. In their last six losses, the Bulldogs have averaged only 62.2 points per game. Their 54 points in the CIT loss to CU-Ann Arbor were a season low.
- This week will be a challenging one. Concordia will play at fourth-ranked Briar Cliff (22-5, 11-4 GPAC) at 8 p.m. CT on Wednesday before heading back to Sioux City, Iowa, on Saturday to take on No. 9 Morningside (19-6, 11-4 GPAC) at 4 p.m. Both opponents enter the week tied for first in the GPAC standings. The Bulldogs lost to both teams in Seward this season.
- The final week of the regular season has arrived for Concordia, which put on its final home dual of the 2017-18 campaign on Feb. 1. Nine seniors were honored prior to the dual that resulted in a 21-16 Bulldog win over Northwestern. The Bulldogs won six of 10 bouts to edge out the Red Raiders by a razor thin margin. Two days later, three grapplers represented Concordia at the Dave Edmonds Open in Sioux City, Iowa. With one dual left, second-year head coach Andrew Nicola’s squad sits at 8-7 overall and at 5-2 in conference action. For more information on Bulldog wrestling, click HERE.
- The seniors went out in style in their final home appearances. All four seniors that were included in the lineup came through with victories. The dual got started at 157 pounds, where senior Jared Woods took a major decision from Dan Zeleny. His fellow classmates followed suit with Michael Duffy (285), Jerry Stepps III (125) and Giovanni Castillo (133) piggybacking by claiming wins of their own. Duffy produced perhaps the loudest roar of the night when he came back from a deficit to defeat Isaac Ruiz in the final seconds. After trailing 4-3, Duffy emerged with a takedown and then four near fall points just before the third period buzzer sounded.
- Stepps III has been a great story this season. The St. Louis, Mo., native had a career collegiate record of 13-28 entering the 2017-18 season. He’s taken a giant leap forward. Stepps III has cut right through his GPAC competition, going a perfect 7-0 in conference duals. Ranked sixth in the GPAC at 125, Stepps III is due for a rise in the rankings on the heels of a five-match win streak that has pushed his overall record to 16-15. At the GPAC Duals on Jan. 27, Stepps III upset two GPAC opponents that were rated above him.
- The race for the team wins lead carries on. Entering the week, 12 Bulldogs owned 10 or more victories: Cam Devers (23-7), Josh Nelsen (22-12), Deandre Chery (21-13), Walker Fisher (20-8), Darrin Miller (20-15), Cody Lambert (16-16), Woods (16-14), Stepps III (16-15), Tyler Jorgensen (15-13), Chris Kimball (13-15), Blake Castillo (12-11) and Jon Lado (10-5). A sophomore from Miami Gardens, Fla., Chery pushed his team high pin count to 12 with one at the GPAC Duals.
- Jorgensen has yet to get an opportunity in a dual meet, but he could be a name to watch in years to come. The freshman from Temecula, Calif., put together a nice run at the Edmonds Open, placing fourth in the 174-pound weight class. The highlight of Jorgensen’s 4-2 day was an upset of Jamestown’s 14th-ranked Mike Zupan. Jorgensen made his way to the third-place bout, which resulted in a loss at the hands of Briar Cliff’s James Buckhanan.
- For the first time since the 2013-14 season, the program will not celebrate a GPAC dual championship. After going 5-2 and tying for second in the GPAC in 2013-14, Concordia rose to the top spot and held that perch for three seasons in a row. Former head coach Dana Vote led the Bulldogs to back-to-back GPAC titles (2014-15 and 2015-16) and then Nicola kept things rolling with another championship in 2016-17. Concordia strung together 22 GPAC dual wins in a row before finally enduring a setback this season. Over the past four years, the Bulldogs own a GPAC record of 26-2.
- Others to claim wins in the dual versus Northwestern were Devers (141) and Nelsen (184). Like Duffy, Nelsen needed a late comeback in order to come out on top. Nelsen got a takedown just before the buzzer to turn a potential 4-3 loss into a 5-4 win. Devers’ win came with much less drama. Devers jumped out to an 8-2 lead in the opening period on his way to a 13-4 major decision over Elijah Dahl. The victory helped Devers maintain his standing as the team’s winningest wrestler this season.
- Concordia can pull even for second place in the final GPAC standings by winning at Morningside (5-5, 5-2 GPAC) on Thursday. The dual is set to get started at 7 p.m. CT from Sioux City. The Mustangs missed out on a chance for at least a share of the GPAC title last week when they were defeated, 20-15, by Briar Cliff. By way of their victory, the Chargers (7-1 GPAC) are the outright conference dual champions. Another GPAC title will be on the line on Feb. 17 when the conference tournament is held at Hastings.