Bulldog Weekly Report (April 29)

Bulldog Weekly Report

Athletes of the Week

Female: Amy Ahlers, Golf

Ahlers, a Booster Club Athlete of the Week for the second-straight time, carded her second-consecutive 80 and won GPAC Qualifier No. 3 last week. That effort boosted Ahlers, a native of Albion, Neb., up to fourth on the GPAC leaderboard heading into Monday’s final qualifier.

Male: Andrew Yerrell, Baseball

Yerrell, who hails from Santa Fe, Texas, ended the 2014 season white hot. Last week at the plate he went 11-for-16 with three triples, two doubles, a home run, five RBIs and five stolen bases to close his junior campaign. He won the team batting title with an average of .363 in 46 games.


News and Notes
:

Spring GPAC championships play out this week: The final men’s golf GPAC qualifier was held on Monday and plenty more conference championship events are set to take place this week. Check out schedules below to see when Bulldog teams will be in action.
-Softball (Thursday – Saturday): schedule
-Tennis (Friday – Saturday): schedule
-Track and Field (Friday – Saturday): schedule

Volleyball hosts spring match: Head coach Scott Mattera and the Concordia University volleyball program will host an official spring match open to the public at 7 p.m. on Friday. National junior college powerhouse Iowa Western Community College will visit Walz Arena and serve as the opponent.

Concordia announces new head tennis coach: Last week Concordia University announced the hiring of Joel Reckewey as head men’s and women’s tennis coach. Reckewey, a Lincoln native and former four-year letter winner at the University of Nebraska, will begin his duties on Thursday. He will also serve a game management role for men’s and women’s soccer. View more details HERE.

Physical play characterizes open spring football practice: The Concordia football program hosted its annual open spring practice on April 25. A large crowd of supporters and recruits gathered for the two-hour scrimmage under the lights inside Bulldog Stadium. Find more details HERE.

Men’s soccer takes on veteran identity: Seventh-year head men’s soccer coach Jason Weides may not have all-time leading goal scorer Nathan Douglas this fall, but he will have plenty of standout veterans back such as senior-to-be Chris DeFeyter and junior-to-be Gideon Soenksen. Read more about the biggest spring storylines for men’s soccer HERE.

Ahlers collects second career GPAC weekly honor: Concordia freshman golfer Amy Ahlers had an outstanding day on April 23. On that day she was named the GPAC golfer of the week for the second time in her career. She also took medalist honors at GPAC Qualifier No. 3 by shooting an 80 for the second-straight meet. Read more about Ahlers HERE.

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.

Baseball

  • The 2014 campaign came to an end over the weekend as head coach Jeremy Geidel’s squad came up short of earning a berth in the eight-team GPAC tournament. Concordia’s 2-2 mark last week in GPAC action was not quite enough for a Bulldog team that finished 16-30 overall and 6-14 in conference play (tied for ninth). Concordia remained in contention for a trip to postseason until the final day of the regular season. For recaps of last week’s action, click HERE.
  • Junior Andrew Yerrell did his part over the final week of the season. The native of Santa Fe, Texas, went 11-for-16 (.668) with three triples, two doubles and one home run over last week’s five games. The impressive late-season surge bumped his average up from .323 to a team best .363 to close the season. That figure ranks 13th among all qualifying GPAC hitters. Yerrell’s three multi-hit games last week gave him his 11th, 12th and 13th such contests of the 2014 season.
  • Yerrell also binged on the base paths by going 5-for-5 on steal attempts last week. That made him 13-for-16 on the season, tying him with Alex Cargin for second most on the team. Junior Daniel Wilkerson led the Bulldogs with 16 steals. As a team Concordia went 95-for-119 (79.8 percent) on steal attempts. The 95 steals ranks as the third highest total in the GPAC.
  • Junior right-handed pitcher Will Holbrook also finished the season strong. The native of Tucson, Ariz., had his longest outing of the season as went eight innings to earn the win over Nebraska Wesleyan in the team’s final game of the season. Holbrook held the Prairie Wolves to three runs (two earned) on eight hits and two walks. On the season, Holbrook went 3-7 with a 4.28 ERA in 67.1 innings.
  • One of the most pleasant surprises this season was left fielder Taylor Dudley. Not part of the starting lineup to begin the year, Dudley took advantage of the playing time he got when center fielder Camaren Gause missed six games with an injury. The native of Longmont, Colo., kept on hitting and ended up batting .344 with 26 RBIs and an .848 OPS (on base plus slugging).
  • Dudley’s emergence helped Concordia’s offense improve immensely between 2013 and 2014. After batting .249 and scoring an average of 3.87 runs per game in 2013, the Bulldogs rebounded in 2014 with comparative figures of .281 and 5.83. Geidel’s squad moved from eighth in the GPAC last season in run scoring to fifth this time around.
  • The heart of the Bulldog lineup – Yerrell in the three hole and Wilkerson cleanup – came through with a stellar season. Yerrell ended up ranking in the top 15 among GPAC players in batting average, on-base percentage, slugging, runs, hits, RBIs, doubles, triples, total bases and stolen bases. Wilkerson placed in the top 15 in runs, RBIs, doubles, home runs, total bases and stolen bases.
  • With the likes of Cargin, Dudley, Wilkerson and Yerrell back in the fold in 2015, Concordia figures to again field a solid offensive lineup. The area of focus this offseason will be figuring out how to prevent the opposition from scoring. The Bulldogs gave up 329 runs in 2014 – more than any other GPAC team. The high run totals for GPAC opponents resulted from a pitching staff short on depth and a leaky defense that ranked 10th in the league with a .925 fielding percentage.
  • Concordia said goodbye to five seniors on April 26: Matt Chambers, Erik Ellison, Tim Fosmo, Gause and Jordan Stirtz. Gause started 40 games in center while Stirtz made 11 starts on the mound as the two biggest cogs in the class.

Softball

  • Concordia concluded the 2014 regular season by going 3-3 over six conference games last week. The Bulldogs began the week with a doubleheader sweep of Briar Cliff on April 21 before being swept at home the next day by Midland. On the Bulldogs’ senior day, head coach Todd LaVelle’s club split a twin bill with Dakota Wesleyan on April 26. Concordia went 12-8 in GPAC play, 5-5 at Plum Creek Park and enters the postseason with an overall mark of 27-12. To read recaps of last week’s action, click HERE.
  • The Bulldogs’ 27th win tied them for the sixth most in a season in program history. With the GPAC tournament yet to come, this year’s squad has a shot to become the fifth team in program history to reach the 30-win mark. The school record for wins in a season was set by the 2005 team that went 36-19 (.654) under then head coach Frank Greene. The 1998 team (33-10, .767) holds the school record for winning percentage.
  • Outfielder Regan Doiel remained hot last week and took over the team batting average lead with her current clip of .367. The native of Millard, Neb., went 8-for-15 (.533) with four runs and four stolen bases last week. Over the last eight games, she’s 12-for-20 (.600) and has raised her average from .315 to .367.
  • The Saturday doubleheader with Dakota Wesleyan brought positive developments in the hitting department as the Bulldogs piled up a combined 17 runs on 27 hits against Tiger pitchers Lori Loeppky, Kelsey Newman and Jill Dickson. Six different Bulldogs pounded out two or more hits in the eight-run rule victory in game 1. The outburst allowed Concordia to raise its GPAC batting average from .244 to .268.
  • Pitching for the final time at home, senior Amanda Beeson (14-7) got the decision in both ends of the twin bill with the Tigers. She got the win in game 1 by going all five innings and striking out seven. Beeson continues to lead the GPAC in strikeouts with her total now up to 147 in 153.1 innings. In her career, the Lincoln native is 34-35 with a 3.02 ERA and 428 strikeouts in 475.1 innings. She has career bests this season in wins (14), ERA (2.33), strikeouts (147) and innings (153.1).
  • Among the team’s five seniors, Beeson and catcher Amber Topil, a four-year starter, had the most impact on the field. Topil, who hails from Seward, is also having her best season statistically. She’s got career bests in batting average (.292), hits (31), doubles (9), total bases (40), runs (15), RBIs (23) and slugging percentage (.377). Over four seasons, Topil has played in 156 games and batted .258.
  • Sophomore Julia Tyree and junior Molly Madsen continue to be in a tight race for the team RBI title. Tyree finished the regular season with 29 runs driven in (ninth in the GPAC) compared to 28 for Madsen (10th in the GPAC). Tyree knocked in one run in both games of the doubleheader with Dakota Wesleyan to move one RBI in front of Madsen.
  • With 11 softball members, the GPAC is guaranteed to place two teams among the 40 qualifiers for the 2014 NAIA Softball National Championship Opening Round, a format that begin in 2013. The GPAC regular-season champion (Morningside) has earned already earned a bid. The additional berth will go to the GPAC tournament champion (or runner up if Morningside wins). To view all 10 of this year’s opening round sites (four teams travel to each site), click HERE. The 10 opening round winners advance to the 2014 NAIA Softball World Series.
  • The Concordia Sports Network will provide a live Internet audio broadcast of all Concordia games at the GPAC tournament. These broadcasts can be accessed by clicking HERE at game time. Mike Meyer will call the action. As the No. 3 seed, Concordia takes on No. 6 Midland at 2 p.m. on Thursday. The tournament follows a double-elimination format.

Track and Field

  • Bulldog athletes were involved in three different meets last week between Wednesday and Saturday as they finished up action leading into this week’s GPAC championships. With the weather cooperating for the annual Drake Relays, two Concordia relays put up fresh national qualifying marks in Des Moines, Iowa. Head coach Kregg Einspahr also had athletes compete at the University of Nebraska’s Pre-Drake Meet (April 23) and at the Nebraska Wesleyan Open (April 24). For recaps of recent action, click HERE.
  • Concordia’s relays emerged as the biggest story of the weekend at Drake. On April 25 the men’s 4x400 meter relay group of CJ Muller, Alex Heiden, Ben Hinckfoot and John Cartier finished in 3:14.09 to automatically qualify for the national championships. That time ranks first in the GPAC, fifth in the NAIA and third on the program’s all-time list. A school record fell in the men’s 4x200 meter relay where Garrett Golke, Tai Pleasant, Noah Smith and John Cartier finished in 1:27.30, about a second faster than the previous program top mark.
  • Sophomore Kim Wood had impressive performances in both events she competed in last week. She qualified for the national championships in the 800 meter run with her personal best time of 2:13.88 (missed the school record by .09) at the Nebraska Wesleyan Open. Two days later Wood ran the leadoff leg for Concordia’s 4x800 meter relay at the Drake Relays. Wood, Jenean Williams, Erika Schroeder and Jena Schwalenberg finished in 9:24.10 for another automatic qualifying time.
  • Freshman Kali Robb, an indoor national qualifier in the shot put and weight throw, put up her first national qualifying mark this outdoor season with her Nebraska Wesleyan Open winning hammer throw of 173’ 8”. A day earlier Robb bested a field of nine competitors at UNL’s Pre-Drake Meet with a ‘B’ mark of 162’ 5.”
  • Sophomore Ben Schulteis also had a breakthrough performance in the hammer at the NWU Open. Schulteis placed second with his personal best and automatic national qualifying mark of 176’ 4.” Schulteis (Greenfield, Iowa) was an indoor qualifier in the weight throw.
  • Perhaps the biggest highlight from a Concordia perspective at the UNL meet was the efforts of the Bulldog 200 meter runners. Cartier placed second in the 200 meter dash and just missed a ‘B’ standard national qualifying mark by finishing in 21.69. He was followed closely by Muller (21.73) and Pleasant (21.76). Golke placed sixth in a time of 21.86, giving the Bulldogs a stellar haul of four runners under 22 seconds. All four rank in the top eight of the GPAC in the event after running season best times last week. Muller, Pleasant and Golke all had personal bests along with senior Jonathon Becker (22.26).
  • The GPAC championships get underway on Friday at Doane College in Crete, Neb. View meet info HERE. The Bulldog men will be looking for another GPAC title after capturing the first men’s track conference championship in school history during this past indoor season. In the USTFCCCA’s most recent NAIA ratings, Concordia came in at No. 5 on the men’s side and No. 7 on the women’s side.  Other ranked men’s GPAC teams include Doane (11), Hastings (16), Northwestern (20) and Nebraska Wesleyan (23). On the women’s side, Doane (4) and Morningside (23) also appear in the national ratings.
  • On the season, Concordia has totaled 19 ‘A’ national qualifying marks and 15 ‘B’ national qualifying marks (see below).  Of the 22 individual Bulldogs with either A or B marks, Coley, Crouse, Trey Farmer, Lurz, Hinckfoot, King and Wood own more than one national qualifying figure. Of the 34 total A or B marks, 23 have come in field events (19 by throwers, three by pole vaulters and one in the triple jump).
    • Men’s 4x100 meter relay – B (41.67)
    • Men’s 4x400 meter relay – A (3:14.09)
    • Women’s 4x800 meter relay – A; 9:24.10
    • Jonathon Becker – B; 110 meter hurdles (14.83)
    • Cody Boellstorff – A; hammer throw (195’ 11”)
    • John Cartier – B; 400 meter dash (48.37)
    • Kattie Cleveland – A; discus (143’ 2”)
    • Stephanie Coley – A; shot put (47’ 3 ½”), B; hammer throw (160’ 3”), B; discus (139’ 11”)
    • Jamie Crouse – A; hammer throw (172’), B; shot put (43’ 3”)
    • Trey Farmer – A; hammer throw (174’ 9”), B; shot put (50’ 9 ¼”)
    • Carson Farr – A; pole vault (15’ 9”)
    • Ben Hinckfoot – A; 400 meter hurdles (53.70), B; 110 meter hurdles (14.83)
    • Liz King – A; javelin (155’ 10”), B; hammer throw (160’)
    • Jordan Larrington – B; hammer throw (172’ 8”)
    • Zach Lurz – A; shot put (57’ 3”), A; discus (177’ 9”), A; hammer throw (186’ 3”)
    • Sydney Meyer – B; hammer throw (154’ 11”)
    • Nicole Perry – B; hammer throw (154’ 3”)
    • Kali Robb – A; hammer throw (173’ 8”)
    • Ben Schulteis – A; hammer throw (176’ 4”)
    • Katelyn Shoup – A; triple jump (38’ 3 ¼”)
    • Sara Simmons – B; 100 meter hurdles (15.09)
    • Katricia Svoboda – A; discus (146’ 6”)
    • Lucas Wiechman – B; pole vault (15’ 5 ¾”)
    • Kim Wood – A; 800 meter run (2:13.88), B; 1,500 meter run (4:42)
    • Shelby Yelden – A; pole vault (12’ ½”)

Golf

  • The men completed their 2013-14 season on Monday while the women held their first qualifier of the spring last week. The Bulldog men finished the campaign in a tie for eighth in the GPAC with a four-round total of 317-345-326-325–1,313, four strokes and two placements better than the previous year. After the women’s April 23 GPAC qualifier, the Bulldogs sit in fifth place (366-374-383–1,123). To read recaps of last week’s action, click HERE.
  • Individually, Shawn Rodehorst (78-86-77-78–319) placed 21st in the GPAC to lead all Bulldogs. Having battled a hip injury throughout this season, the Kearney, Neb., native’s scored went up 17 strokes compared to his all-conference sophomore season. The top 10 finishers automatically receive all-conference recognition. There remains a possibility Rodehorst could be selected as an at-large choice for all-conference honors. He topped the team this season with a 78.81 average over 16 rounds.
  • Sophomore Garrett Suchanek tied for 12th at GPAC No. 4 by carding a 77 (first among Bulldogs). That score equaled the career low he put up on day two of the Doane Invite on April 12. Suchanek finished the season with a mean score of 84.77 in 13 rounds. In his only other qualifier action, Suchanek carded an 87 at GPAC No. 1 on Sept. 19.
  • Freshman Jared Knoepfel was the only Bulldog other than Rodehorst to compete at all four 2013-14 GPAC qualifiers. The native of Fremont, Neb., placed 28th with a total of 83-78-82-85–328 in GPAC action. On the season, Knoepfel averaged 82.44 while playing in all 16 rounds.
  • Freshman Amy Ahlers had a big Wednesday last week. On the same day the Albion, Neb., native was named conference golfer of the week and took medalist honors at GPAC Qualifier No. 3 by shooting a seven-over-par 80 for the second-straight meet. Ahlers moved up to No. 4 on the conference leaderboard with her three-round qualifier total of 89-80-80–249. She tops the team this season with an average of 84.40 through 10 rounds. She has an impressive 81.75 average over her past 72 holes.
  • The rest of Concordia’s varsity lineup shot 98 or higher at the third GPAC qualifier. Freshman Kayla Krueger, the team’s No. 2 golfer throughout the season, carded a 98 after having posted qualifier rounds of 92 and 84 in the fall. The native of Aberdeen, S.D., currently sits 19th on the conference leaderboard with her overall total of 274.
  • The rest of the lineup was filled by juniors Allison Schieffer (101) and Melissa McIntosh (104) and sophomore Kristen Remm (106). In qualifier action, McIntosh is tied for 32nd (87-110-104–301) and Schieffer is tied for 34th (98-106-101–305). Remm did not participate in the first qualifier and therefore is not eligible to rank amongst the leaders.
  • While the men’s season ended with Monday’s qualifier, the women have two meets remaining. They return to action on Thursday for the Mount Marty Invite at Fox Run Golf Course in Yankton, S.D. They will return to the same course four days later for GPAC Qualifier No. 4 – the final meet of the 2013-14 golf season. The Bulldogs are on track to complete a drastic turnaround after finishing 11th in the GPAC last season.

Tennis

  • Both the men and women were in action last week as GPAC regular-season play winds to a halt. The Bulldog men fell 9-0 to first-place Hastings on April 24 and concluded the regular season at 8-7 overall and 3-2 in conference play. They will enter the league tournament (Friday and Saturday) as the No. 3 seed. Meanwhile, the Concordia women lost twice last week – 5-2 at Hastings and 9-0 in a neutral match with Northwestern. After being credited with a forfeit win on Monday, the Bulldog women are 2-12 overall and 2-5 in GPAC play. Both squads will be in action in the GPAC tournament on Friday and Saturday. Read recaps of recent action HERE.
  • Senior Katelyn Koll has been the biggest bright spot throughout a tough season for Concordia women’s tennis. Koll prevailed at No. 1 singles for the 10th-straight GPAC match when she Liz Harlow, 8-6, of Hastings on April 23. The Bulldogs’ top player final had her string snapped over the weekend when Northwestern’s Frankie Eszes defeated Koll, 6-1, 6-3. Even with that loss, Koll is 5-1 this season against GPAC opponents and 16-4 versus conference opponents over the past three seasons.
  • The men’s 9-0 loss at Hastings came after eight days without a match. The Broncos dominated, dropping only a combined nine games in singles play and seven games in doubles action.
  • Through 15 matches, Concordia’s freshmen from Morelia, Mexico, hold the top singles marks on the team. Javier Moreno ranks No. 1 with his record of 8-7 (all at No. 2). Patricio Esquivel comes in next with a mark of 7-8 (6-8 at No. 3; 1-0 at No. 5). At 2-3 in GPAC contests, Moreno is tied with senior Mike McCartney (2-2) for the most conference singles wins among Bulldogs.
  • On the women’s side, Koll’s 9-4 overall record is best. Juniors Grace Hollenbeck (4-8) and Elyse Kohl (4-9) have four wins apiece. In doubles, the combo of Koll and Kohl lead the way with three wins this season.
  • Because Mount Marty did not have enough players, the Concordia women were credited with a forfeit win on Monday, allowing them to reach this weekend’s conference tournament. The team’s other win came at Midland on March 29.
  • In quarterfinal action at the GPAC tournament, the third-seeded Concordia men will take on sixth-seeded Midland at 9 a.m. on Friday. The sixth-seeded Bulldog women will challenge third-seeded Doane at 11:30 a.m. on Friday. All matches will take place in Fremont, Neb. The tournament features six teams for both men and women and is single elimination.

29 April 2014

Junior Andrew Yerrell