Bulldog Weekly Report
Athletes of the Week
Male: Zach Lurz, Track & Field
Lurz, a native of Torrington, Wyo., and became the first thrower in school history to post automatic national qualifying marks in the discus, hammer throw and shot put. His throw of 177’ 9” in the discus at the UNK Invitational on April 5 places him at No. 2 on the national leaderboard.
Female: Shelby Yelden, Track & Field
Yelden, a junior from Seward, rose to No. 1 on the NAIA leaderboard with her pole vault clearance of 12’ ½” at the UNK Invitational. That mark automatically qualified her for nationals and slots her in at No. 3 on the school’s all-time outdoor pole vault list.
News and Notes:
Santa Fe, Texas, natives thriving for Bulldog baseball: Longtime friends Daniel Wilkerson and Andrew Yerrell made their way to Concordia in 2011 via their hometowns of Santa Fe, Texas. The pair of Texans is thriving as juniors in the middle of the Bulldog lineup. Find out how they ended up at Concordia by reading the feature story HERE.
Spring volleyball update: Head coach Scott Mattera’s volleyball program continues to build momentum now in the middle of its spring practice season. One primary focus of this offseason has been to bring the team even closer together while fostering a winning culture that cultivates character. Read more about how this is being accomplished by clicking HERE.
Bulldog tennis sweeps GPAC weekly honors: Last week the Concordia tennis program swept the GPAC tennis player of the week awards as Patricio Esquivel took the honor on the men’s side and Katelyn Koll received the award on the women’s side.
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.
- Conference action heated up over the weekend as the Bulldogs welcomed Dordt (10-12, 3-3 GPAC) and Mount Marty (15-13, 1-7 GPAC) to Plum Creek Park for doubleheaders on April 5 and 6. The Defenders took two games decided by two runs in the opening twin bill of the weekend. Concordia responded by winning game 1, 13-2, over Mount Marty on Sunday. A 9-5 loss in game 2 put head coach Jeremy Geidel’s squad at 1-3 on the weekend, 13-19 overall and 3-5 in GPAC games. For recaps of last week’s action, click HERE.
- On Sunday, left-handed pitcher Jaydee Jurgensen made his first start on the mound since March 8. The junior from Lincoln, Neb., held Mount Marty to one earned run on five hits and a walk to earn his first career victory as a Bulldog. Jurgensen, who recently sidelined by an injury, has made stops at the University of Kansas and Scottsdale Community College during his collegiate career. This season he has an ERA of 4.24 in 23.1 innings of work.
- At the plate, Camaren Gause continued his power surge with three more homers (two in game 2 versus Mount Marty) on the weekend. The Tucson, Ariz., native has produced all six of his GPAC-leading homer total over the past eight games (all against GPAC opponents). During that stretch, Gause has gone 13-for-28 with six home runs, two doubles, a triple, 14 RBIs and 35 total bases. The hot streak has allowed Gause to bump his batting average from .213 all the way up to .292.
- Despite getting off to a slow start, Gause ranks No. 1 in the GPAC in homers (6), 12th in slugging (.562), 17th in RBIs (21) and 18th in total bases (50). Nationally, Gause’s six home runs rank 25th. His counting stats are also limited to some degree due to the six games he missed because of injury.
- Concordia’s offensive explosiveness was on full display in the sixth inning of game 1 against Mount Marty. The Bulldogs sent 13 hitters to the plate while scoring 10 runs on eight hits during the frame. Both Gause and left fielder Taylor Dudley collected two hits in the inning. Dudley twice drove in Gause as part of the outburst. By adding 27 total runs over the weekend, the Bulldogs moved their season average up to 6.5 runs per game (fifth in the GPAC).
- Dudley (Longmont, Colo.) enjoyed a big doubleheader versus Mount Marty, going a combined 5-for-8 with a triple, two RBIs and three runs. That production came on the heels of a 5-for-25 stretch over the previous eight games. One of the team’s most pleasant surprises, Dudley leads the team with a .357 batting average in 29 games. He has an impressive .901 OPS (on-base plus slugging).
- The focus moving forward will be centered upon protecting and adding onto leads. The Bulldogs have held a lead in all five of their GPAC losses. Concordia is 8-6 (.571) when scoring first. That percentage comes up short when compared to the Major League Baseball average. MLB teams that score first win 68.9 percent of the time.
- Geidel is still looking for consistency out of a bullpen that has gotten the best results from senior righty Tim Fosmo (2.84 ERA in 12.1 innings). Fellow senior right-hander Heath Benker has been the busiest having made 19 appearances (one start) already this season. Every Concordia reliever other than Fosmo has an ERA of 5.40 or higher.
- The Bulldogs again look forward to weekend GPAC doubleheaders – this time on the road. Concordia will take on Northwestern (22-7, 4-2 GPAC) at 1 p.m. on Saturday and then Morningside (13-18, 2-4 GPAC) at 1 p.m. on Sunday. The Red Raiders are currently receiving votes in the national poll.
- It was a busy week for men’s tennis (four matches) and a light week for women’s tennis (one match) as both teams stepped back outside of conference play. The women were shutout in their lone match against Bethel College (Kan.) while the men went 2-2, including a stretch of two wins in three matches at the Concordia Invitational in St. Louis, Mo. (April 4-5). The Bulldog men are now 7-3 overall (2-0 GPAC) and the women are 1-6 overall (1-1 GPAC). For recaps of last week’s action, click HERE.
- At 7-3 (tied for the most overall wins among GPAC teams), the Bulldog men have surpassed their win total from last season when they went 5-11 overall. The school record for wins in a season was set by the 2010 squad that posted an overall mark of 13-5 (4-3 GPAC) under then head coach Amy Harms. The program had double-digit win seasons three-straight years from 2009 to 2011.
- The Concordia men used seven different players to fill out their singles and doubles lineups last week. The Bulldogs had plenty of success in doubles, going 8-4 on the week with sweeps of Concordia Invitational host Concordia Seminary (Mo.) and Greenville College (Ill.). The No. 1 (Nathan Wingfield/Joel Kaldahl) and 3 doubles combos (Mike McCartney/Jonathan Douglas) both went 3-1 last week to lead the way. Overall, Concordia has a doubles mark of 20-10 this season.
- In singles play, freshman Javier Moreno produced the best results last week with wins in three of four matches at No. 2 singles. The native of Morelia, Mexico, outlasted two of his opponents in three sets on the way to improving his season record to 6-4. As a team, the Bulldogs are 31-29 in singles bout. Moreno and Patricio Esquivel are tied for the top singles marks on the team.
- The Concordia women fell by a 9-0 score in last week’s only match. The Bulldogs were outgunned by a solid Bethel College team that received votes in last week’s national poll. The Bulldogs came closest to recording a win at No. 1 doubles, where Katelyn Koll and Elyse Kohl dropped an 8-6 decision.
- Koll’s personal five-match winning streak at No. 1 singles was snapped by Bethel’s Bree Honer, who claimed a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Koll. The native of Wilber, Neb., tops the Bulldogs with a singles record of 5-2.
- Both Bulldog tennis teams are scheduled to play three times on the road this week, going up against the University of Nebraska-Kearney (Tuesday, 4 p.m.), Doane (Thursday, 4 p.m.) and Grand View University (Friday, 4 p.m.). The next home match will be April 15 for the men and April 16 for the women.
Track and Field
- Windy conditions in Kearney, Neb., limited the success of competitors on the track at the April 5 University of Nebraska-Kearney Loper Invitational, but it did not stop freshman thrower Zach Lurz from enjoying a huge day. Lurz’s efforts highlighted the day for Bulldog teams that competed in a large field that included GPAC rivals Hastings and Midland. For a recap of the meet, click HERE.
- Lurz finished in the top three of each of the events he participated in at UNK and became the first thrower in school history to post automatic national qualifying marks in the discus, hammer throw and shot put. Already an automatic qualifier in the discus and shot put entering the weekend, Lurz added another national mark by hurling the hammer 178’ 1” (10th in the NAIA). Lurz’s highest national ranking is in the discus (2nd), an event in which Lurz recorded a mark of 177’ 9” – second best in school history (Corbin Jones ranks No. 1 – 178’ 8”).
- Just as impressively, senior Shelby Yelden (Seward, Neb.) cleared a NAIA-leading mark of 12’ ½” in the pole vault to place second behind a competitor from NCAA Division II University of Sioux Falls at the UNK meet. Yelden’s vault topped her previous personal best of 11’ 9 ¾” and places her at No. 3 on Concordia’s all-time women’s outdoor pole vault list. Already a 2014 All-American thanks to her fifth-place finish at the indoor national championships, Yelden will be headed back to nationals for outdoor.
- The UNK Invite also brought two fresh ‘A’ national qualifying marks for Bulldog women’s throwers. Freshman Katricia Svoboda (Norfolk, Neb.) bumped her B mark to an A with her toss of 146’ 6” in the discus, placing her fifth at the meet and sixth on the NAIA leaderboard. Also in the discus, sophomore Kattie Cleveland (Petersburg, Neb.) came in not far behind with her mark of 143’ 2”, allowing her to qualify for nationals for the first time in her career. Cleveland ranks 10th on the national list.
- With cool and windy conditions most greatly affecting the action on the track, senior John Cartier (Las Vegas, Nev.) turned in a solid time of 48.37 in the 400 meter dash to place second among the field of 25. That effort was good enough for a ‘B’ mark that puts him atop the GPAC and eighth nationally.
- In the men’s hammer throw, an event in which Lurz placed third, sophomore standout Cody Boellstorff (Waverly, Neb.) took first place with his personal best mark of 195’ 11”. Only Corbin Jones’ 2011 throw of 198’ 4” ranks higher on the school’s all-time list. Boellstorff is currently the GPAC leader and No. 3 in the NAIA in the hammer.
- On the season, Concordia has totaled nine ‘A’ national qualifying marks and four ‘B’ national qualifying marks (see below). Of the 11 Bulldogs with either A or B marks, Lurz is the only one with more than one national qualifying figure. Of the 13 total A or B marks, 11 have come in field events (nine by throwers, two by pole vaulters).
- 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 – B; shot put (43’ 9”)
- Jamie Crouse – A; hammer throw (167’ 10”)
- Carson Farr – B; pole vault (15’ 5”)
- Liz King – A; javelin (155’ 10”)
- Zach Lurz – A; shot put (54’ 5 ¼”), A; discus (177’ 9”), A; hammer throw (178’ 1”)
- Katricia Svoboda – A; discus (146’ 6”)
- Shelby Yelden – A; pole vault (12’ ½”)
- Concordia will host its first outdoor meet of the spring on Saturday when the Concordia Outdoor Invite gets underway at 11 a.m. with the women’s hammer throw and men’s discus. Running events are set to begin at 12 p.m. The full schedule can be viewed HERE. The field of teams will include Concordia, Colby Community College, Doane, Hastings, Midland, Nebraska-Kearney, Nebraska Wesleyan, Wayne State College and York College.
- Originally scheduled to play eight games last week, the Bulldogs managed to play only twice because of inclement weather. Snow in western Iowa postponed GPAC doubleheaders that had been scheduled at Dordt (April 4) and at Briar Cliff (April 5). Both twin bills have since been rescheduled (view updated schedule HERE). In last week’s only action, Concordia split a pair of games at Bellevue University on April 1. The Bulldogs, who received votes last week in the national poll for the third-straight time, are 20-5 overall and 5-1 in the GPAC. To read recaps of recent action, click HERE.
- Concordia’s split at Bellevue offered another example of the program’s rapid rise back to prominence after a 14-25 record in 2013. Last season the Bruins swept the Bulldogs by a combined score of 31-2 in Seward. This time around Concordia won 4-2 in game 1 prior to a 5-3 defeat in game 2.
- Left fielder Regan Doiel came through with a 4-for-5 doubleheader at Bellevue. The effort included two hits in both games as well as one RBI, one run and one double. The Millard, Neb., native’s eighth and ninth mulit-hit games of the season allowed her to break out of a mini 2-for-22 slump over the previous seven contests. Doiel, a redshirt in 2013, has started all 25 games and is batting .338.
- Senior right-handed pitcher Amanda Beeson continued her fine work in the circle last week by earning a complete game win over Bellevue. Beeson held the Bruins to two runs on six hits and two walks. The native of Waverly, Neb., added six more strikeouts to push her GPAC-leading total to 92. Beeson is now 9-3 with a 3.46 ERA in 91 innings over 17 appearances (12 starts).
- Freshman righty Lexye Bruegman got the ball in game 2 at Bellevue. Although she gave up 11 hits in 5.1 innings, the product of Lincoln North Star limited the damage to five runs (one earned) in keeping the Bulldogs close. As the team’s No. 3 pitcher, Bruegman has made five starts and has covered 28.1 innings.
- Doiel’s RBI double in last week’s game 1 gave her an even 10 runs driven in, making her the ninth Bulldog in a balanced lineup to reach double digits in RBIs. Sophomore Julia Tyree, Concordia’s No. 3 hitter, leads the team with 23 RBIs (sixth in the GPAC).
- Freshman Brittany Hudler connected on the Bulldogs’ second home run of the season when she blasted a solo shot in the first inning of the win over Bellevue. Both of the Concordia homers this season have been recorded by freshmen. Rookie Palmer Bosanko drilled a home run of her own on March 30 in a win at Mount Marty. Despite the lack of home runs, head coach Todd LaVelle’s club continues to lead the GPAC in runs per game (6.7).
- At 20-5 (.800), Concordia tops the conference in overall win percentage and has reached the 20-win mark for the 15th time in program history and for the 12th time in the past 14 seasons. The 2005 team set a school record for wins by going 36-19 (.655) overall. The 2008 team that went 31-11 (.738) and won the GPAC regular-season title holds the program record for the highest winning percentage in a season.
- Weather permitting, the Bulldogs will host three doubleheaders this week: 5 p.m. on Tuesday vs. Hastings (13-14, 4-2 GPAC), 5 p.m. vs. Benedictine College (10-15) on Thursday and 1 p.m. on Saturday vs. Morningside (13-6, 3-0 GPAC). To date, Concordia is 2-0 at home having swept a doubleheader from Doane on March 26.
- The Bulldog men’s golf team has been idle since competing at the Bethel Invite on March 29-30. Meanwhile, the women began their spring season today (Tuesday) at the Midland Invite hosted at the Fremont Golf Club. The event began with a shotgun start at 11 a.m. For an update on where both golf teams sit heading into the April stretch run, click HERE.
- Spring GPAC qualifiers
- Monday, April 21: Men’s GPAC Qualifier No. 3 (Lochland Country Club – Hastings, Neb.)
- Wednesday, April 23: Women’s GPAC Qualifier No. 3 (Fremont Golf Club – Fremont, Neb.)
- Monday, April 28: Men’s GPAC Qualifier No. 4 (Fox Run Golf Course – Yankton, S.D.)
- Monday, May 5: Women’s GPAC Qualifier No. 4 (Fox Run Golf Course – Yankton, S.D.)
8 April 2014
Junior Daniel Wilkerson