Bulldog Weekly Report
Bulldog Athletes of the Week
Male: Brent Houchin, Basketball
Houchin went off for a career high 26 points to go with eight rebounds last week against Briar Cliff. He averaged 17.0 points and 7.0 rebounds over the past week’s two games, while making 13 of 16 shots from the field. The senior forward is averaging a career high 9.1 points per game on the season.
Female: Katie Rich, Basketball
Rich totaled 23 points, 12 rebounds and seven steals over two games last week. The Tilden, Neb., native led the Bulldogs with 17 points in the Feb. 9 Senior Day victory over Dordt. The senior guard is third in the GPAC in steals per game (2.46) and is 30th nationally with 64 total steals.
Tennis season gets underway: Head coach Amy Harms took her men’s and women’s programs into action for the first time in 2013 on Feb. 8-9. The women began their season with a thrilling 5-4 victory over Bethany College. Check out our season preview HERE.
Bulldog baseball set to open season this weekend: Head coach Jeremy Geidel’s baseball squad will open the 2013 season on Saturday with a doubleheader at Bethany College. The two teams will also square off in a doubleheader on Sunday. Concordia is scheduled to play 10 games in the state of Kansas from Feb. 16 – 26. ConcordiaBulldogs.com will release a season preview on Thursday. Check out the video the baseball program created in preparation for the season, HERE.
Football announces the addition of 20 recruits: Head coach Vance Winter and his staff announced the additions of 20 recruits last week on college football’s national signing day. If you missed it, click HERE to read what Winter and defensive coordinator Patrick Daberkow had to see about this crop of new student-athletes.
Concordia Sports Network: Live webcasts for most home varsity contests can be accessed by visiting http://webprod2.cune.edu/csn at game time. Check team schedules/results pages for webcast dates. Scrimmages, exhibitions and junior varsity events are not broadcasted.
Track and Field
- Eleven teams joined the Bulldogs in the Concordia Indoor Invite on Feb. 8 inside the Fieldhouse. Some of the usual suspects like Stephanie Coley, Carson Farr, Adam Prahlow, Jena Schwalenberg and Kim Wood again turned in solid marks, while displaying the team’s balanced roster throughout the meet.
- Coley recorded tosses in the weight throw and the shot put that both cleared NAIA automatic qualifying marks. The freshman from Gering, Neb., took fourth in the shot put (45’ 5 ¾”) and fifth in the weight throw (54’ 5 ½”) as the Bulldogs’ top thrower of the meet. She currently holds the eighth best shot put and the seventh best weight throw in the NAIA.
- Prahlow, a junior from Florrisant, Mo., put up an NAIA automatic national qualifying mark in the only event he competed at on Feb. 8. He clocked in at 2:31.22 in the 1,000 meter run, finishing in second out of 20 competitors. That time ranks eighth best in the NAIA this season. Prahlow also holds a ‘B’ qualifying mark in the one mile run with a time of 4:23.07 at the Prairie Wolf Invite.
- The Bulldogs also put up solid times in the 1,000 meter run on the women’s side, where senior Jena Schwalenberg and freshman Kim Wood came in second and third, respectively. Both collected ‘B’ qualifying marks as Schwalenberg finished in 3:02.92, less than a second off the ‘A’ qualifying time. Wood followed Schwalenberg with a time of 3:03.86. Schwalenberg posted an A qualifying mark earlier this season in the one mile, while Wood owns the fifth best time in the NAIA in the 600 meters (1:36.03).
- Freshman sprinter Quriosity Young performed well in both the 200 and 400 meter dashes. She finished 11th in the 200 meters with a time of 27.13 and seventh in the 400 meters at 1:01.13.
- Junior John Cartier returned from injury to compete in the 400 meter dash. He completed the race in fourth place out of 38 runners with a time of 50.62. His mark of 49.15 in the event at the Polar Dog Dual ranks fifth in the NAIA and is an automatic national qualifying time.
- Cambridge, Neb., native Carson Farr continues to come up just short in his pursuit of the automatic qualifying mark of 15’ 7” in the pole vault. Farr cleared that height consistently at the Concordia Indoor Invite but couldn’t quite manage to keep from knocking the bar down. He ended up fifth with a top clearance of 15’ 1.” His best mark on the season was a ‘B’ mark of 15’ 5 ½” at the Concordia Classic. That ranks 11th best in the NAIA.
- Bulldogs placed second and third in the men’s 800 meter run, in which Jared Hoffman clocked in at 1:58.23 and Andrew Malan in 1:58.97. The automatic qualifying time is 1:56.
- Sophomore Ben Sievert put up a ‘B’ mark in the one mile with a time of 4:21.33 at the Concordia Indoor Invite. He also has a ‘B’ qualifying time of 8:45.88 in the 3,000 meter run.
- The Bulldog men now have nine ‘A’ national qualifying marks and eight ‘B’ marks. The women own eight ‘A’ marks and five ‘B’ marks. In total, Concordia has 17 ‘A’ marks and 13 ‘B’ marks. Senior Colin Morrissey continues to lead the way with three automatic times in distance running events. For the full list of top NAIA marks, click HERE.
- Up next are the GPAC Championships on Friday and Saturday. The multi events take place both Friday and Saturday at Doane. All over events will be held on Saturday at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Devaney Center. The complete schedule can be viewed HERE.
- Thoughts from head coach Kregg Einspahr on the GPAC men’s meet: “The GPAC men scores out to be an extremely close race between Doane, Morningside and Concordia. We’ve had some injuries recently and some sickness. It’s really taken it out of some of our guys. So we’ll have to get healthy and hopefully really come out and have a very good meet and battle for the conference championship.”
- Thoughts from Einspahr on the GPAC women’s meet: “On the women’s side, the clear favorite is Doane. We’re trying to get ourselves in the top tier of the conference. That’s not going to be easy to do this year. We’re a little bit of a young team. We have some people competing well. We’re particularly strong in the pole vault and the shot put. We’ll see how it all shakes out at the conference meet.”
- Fourth-ranked Concordia split a pair of conference home games last week. It began play on Feb. 6 with an 89-80 loss to No. 9 Briar Cliff in a key battle of teams within striking distance of the GPAC crown. The Bulldogs rebounded with an 87-64 victory over Dordt on Feb. 9 to improve to 22-5 overall and 14-4 in GPAC play. That mark puts head coach Drew Olson’s squad one game behind first place Morningside heading into the final week of the regular season.
- Concordia used a huge second half effort to blow past Dordt on Senior Day after going to the half with a one-point deficit. The Bulldogs outscored the Defenders 56-32 over the final 20 minutes and led by as many as 30 points. That performance marked the 11th time this season Concordia has out-numbered a team by 20 or more points in a half (nine have occurred in the first half of games). For just the fourth time this season, the Bulldogs trailed at halftime. They have been outscored in only 13 halves through 27 games.
- Olson’s frenetic defensive philosophy resulted in 31 turnovers committed by Briar Cliff and 28 by Dordt last week. Concordia has forced 25 turnovers or more in 18 games this season and at least 20 in all but one game. It caused a season high 44 turnovers in a 121-72 victory over Johnson & Wales (Colo.) on Nov. 9. The Bulldogs have forced 735 turnovers on the season for an average of 27.2 per game.
- For the first time in her career, junior Kristen Conahan enjoyed a perfect shooting day with her line of 5-for-5 from the field, 4-for-4 from 3-point range and 1-for-1 from the foul line against Dordt. Despite a season low five field goal attempts, Conahan came in just below her season average (team-leading 15.7 ppg) with 15 points. The Omaha native always has the green light to shoot. She has attempted at least 10 field goals in 24 of 27 games with a season high of 24 shots last week against Briar Cliff.
- The Bulldogs’ senior class of Katie Rich, Beth Kohmetscher and Dawn Martin was recognized prior to the victory over Dordt. Rich has been a key player ever since she arrived on campus. She has earned numerous honors throughout her career, including GPAC Defensive Player of the Year and all-tournament at the national championships last season. She has played in 119 games in her career, amassing 1,241 points, 626 rebounds, 253 steals and 223 assists. Kohmetscher’s playing time has steadily increased since her freshman season. She has developed into one of the conference’s top 3-point shooters. Her 46 3-point field goals are second most on the team. Martin has also become a solid role player, especially on the defensive end. She has played in 90 games as a Bulldog.
- Olson’s squad has now appeared amongst the top five in the national coaches’ poll 17-straight times. Concordia has been placed in the top 25 in each of the last 22 polls, including 21 top-10 mentions. The Bulldogs spent the first four polls of this season at No. 1. The last time Concordia went unranked was in the final poll of the 2010-11 season. The program’s longest run at No. 1 occurred during the 2002-03 season when the Bulldogs spent nine-straight weeks at the top.
- Concordia closes the regular season with games on the road against Hastings and Mount Marty. First-place Morningside will also play the same two teams in the final week of conference action. The Mustangs were upset 77-68 at home by Mount Marty on Jan. 9. Morningside defeated Hastings 74-66 on the road on Nov. 17. The Mustangs are aiming for their first conference title since the 2008-09 season when they went 38-0 and won the national championship.
- Wednesday’s game at Hastings (15-13, 10-8 GPAC) will tip off at 6 p.m. The Bulldogs won the first meeting played inside Walz Arena by a score of 76-57 on Jan. 8. Concordia has triumphed in six straight in the series against the Broncos.
- The regular-season ends on Saturday when the Bulldogs travel to Yankton, S.D., to challenge Mount Marty (16-11, 10-8 GPAC) in a 2 p.m. affair. Concordia defeated the Lancers 91-61 in the conference opener for both teams back on Nov. 17. The Bulldogs have come out victorious in each of the last three meetings with Mount Marty.
- Head coach Dana Vote’s squad competed in just a single dual (Feb. 7) over the past week. Seniors Frank Ayala, Jordan Fowlkes and Brandon Starkey were honored on Senior Day prior to the Bulldogs and Broncos battling in Concordia’s final dual of the season. Hastings spoiled the party with a dominant 52-6 victory that included five pins and a major decision for the visitors. The Bulldogs concluded the 2013 season with a dual mark of 2-10 overall and 1-5 in GPAC action.
- Ayala went out in style in the final bout of his career at Walz Arena. The West Covina, Calif., heavyweight pinned the Broncos’ Pat Mattfeld in 2:15 to improve his season record to 19-19. Mattfeld actually took a 4-1 advantage early on the match before Ayala responded with an escape and takedown that ultimately led to the fall. It was Ayala’s sixth pin of the season, tying him with Alex Stepanek (141) for the team lead while putting him atop the Bulldogs’ wins chart. “It was a great opportunity. It’s bittersweet,” Ayala said. “I’m sad I’m leaving the program, but I’m glad I got to come and experience Concordia and all the great people here. I’m just glad I had this opportunity.”
- Fowlkes, sidelined all season due to injury, and Starkey both sat out Thursday’s Senior Day. Starkey, at 17-14 (.548), carries the top winning percentage on the team. He is the program’s all-time leader in wins (70), matches wrestled (128) and tournament place finishes (12). He entered this season as the Bulldogs’ career record holder in takedowns (96) and reversals (72).
- Concordia now prepares for national qualifying action. The Bulldogs will travel 12 wrestlers to Fremont, Neb., on Saturday to compete in regionals. The top four finishers in each weight class from each qualifying group advances to the national championships in Des Moines, Iowa, March 1-2. Concordia currently has three wrestlers ranked in the North qualifying group: Brandon Starkey (No. 6 at 157), Kale Hintz (No. 6 at 174) and Ayala (No. 3 at 285).
- Of the 12 grapplers Vote will take to Fremont, three have prior national championships experience. Brandon Starkey has made it to nationals in each of the last three years, while Ayala and Stepanek have both made one appearance on the grand stage. Fowlkes also wrestled at nationals in 2011.
- Brandon’s brother Austin should also be a factor at 157 at the regional tournament. Austin appeared in the national rankings earlier in the season and carries a 14-15 record on the season, placing him fourth on the team in wins. Like his older brother, Austin has proven to be a quick study when it comes to collegiate wrestling.
- Of the 15 individuals on the Concordia roster, three of them were on the initial 2009-10 roster when Bulldog wrestling inaugurated. Fowlkes, Brandon Starkey and Peter Greimann were all part of building the program in its first year of existence. As Vote wrote in his Senior Day tribute to Starkey, “Brandon is the leader of this team and will be greatly missed next year.” While Fowlkes career on the mat was cut short, Vote believes that the Newman Grove, Neb., native has a bright future as a wrestling coach.
- With regionals taking place on Saturday, the Bulldogs must put behind a rough performance at last week’s dual. Ayala has his sights set high: “My goal is to place first so I get a good seed at nationals. Hopefully I qualify, but I just want to go out and wrestle tough. I’m just going to practice hard with my coaches and my teammates and see what happens at regionals.” For more information on the qualifying tournaments, click HERE. The North qualifying group includes the seven GPAC schools that sponsor wrestling as well as Dickinson State (N.D.), Jamestown (N.D.), York and Waldorf (Iowa).
- Concordia completed the 2012-13 home slate last week with losses to a pair of GPAC opponents. It first fell 72-68 to Briar Cliff on Feb. 6 in an exciting game that went down to the wire. The Bulldogs then gave a good showing in an 84-73 defeat against No. 15 Dordt on Feb. 9 as part of Senior Day. The Bulldogs sit at 6-20 overall and 2-16 in the GPAC as they head into the final week of the season.
- A pair of seniors enjoyed huge games in their final week playing inside Walz Arena. It started on Feb. 6 with forward Brent Houchin’s monster 26-point, eight-rebound effort against Briar Cliff. As head coach Marty Kohlwey pointed out, it’s not always pretty but Houchin finds a way to twist and turn to score in the paint. His 26 points were a career high, topping his previous best of 19 – a figure he had reached on two occasions. He hit the 19-point mark earlier this season versus Morningside on Jan. 12 and also did so on Jan. 1, 2011, against Friends (Kan.).
- Phil Friedrich took the baton from Houchin on Feb. 9 and blew past his own previous career high in scoring. The senior guard from Seward piled up 18 points, 10 more than his former career best of eight, on 7-for-9 shooting. Friedrich, who has played in 24 of 26 games this season and in 60 games for his career, has been known best for his hustle and relentlessness on the court.
- The Bulldogs put together perhaps their most efficient two-game stretch of basketball on the offensive end last week. They combined to shoot 49.0 percent (48-for-98) from the field and 77.0 percent (36-for-47) from the free throw line in the two games. Houchin was nearly automatic, draining 13 of 16 shots on the week.
- Kohlwey’s squad competed favorably against two teams in the top half of the conference despite notable absences in the lineup. Three starters missed the game against Briar Cliff and two sat out on Senior Day. Senior post Porter Birtell (who has been sidelined the past six games) and junior guard Adam Vogt (missed eight games due to injury) will both sit out this week’s games. Senior point guard Charles Dunbar returned to action against Dordt after missing the Briar Cliff contest. Senior wing Beau Smith was held out of four games in November because of injury.
- Smith has been a productive player since coming to Concordia last season as a transfer from College of the Sequoias. The native of McKinney, Texas, has amassed 628 points and 316 rebounds in 52 games as a Bulldog. He has improved his shooting percentages considerably from last season, going from 42.4 percent from the field and 33.1 percent from 3-point range in 2011-12 to 47.0 percent and 41.8 percent, respectively, in his senior season.
- Friedrich became the 11th different player to start a game for the Bulldogs this season when he took the court on Senior Day. It was the first start of Friedrich’s career. Sophomore Joel Haywood is the only Bulldog to start all 26 games. Dunbar comes in next with 24 starts.
- Concordia will play at Hastings (19-9, 10-8 GPAC) on Wednesday at 8 p.m. The Broncos defeated the Bulldogs 85-75 on Jan. 9 in the first meeting between these two teams.
- The season will come to an end on Saturday when Concordia travels to play Mount Marty (7-20, 3-15 GPAC) for a 4 p.m. game. The Bulldogs will try to sweep the season series after knocking off the Lancers 66-63 on Nov. 17 in the GPAC opener for both teams.
- Head coach Amy Harms’ men’s and women’s teams began their 2013 campaigns over the weekend. The women got it started with a thrilling 5-4 victory over Bethany College (Kan.) on Feb. 8 in Lincoln. The men played No. 10 Bethany the next morning and dropped a 9-0 decision to the perennial power from the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference. Both Bulldog squads expect to compete favorably with the top teams in the GPAC this season.
- The Concordia women took a 2-1 advantage over Bethany after doubles play and were tied 4-4 with only No. 1 singles left to be completed. That’s where Concordia junior Katelyn Koll came up big with a 2-6, 6-1, 10-6 super tiebreaker decision over Monica Chapman to send the Bulldogs to a season-opening victory. Koll enjoyed a breakout season in 2012 with a 10-6 mark at No. 1 singles, including a 6-1 record against conference opponents.
- “She stays really even when she plays,” Harms said of Koll. “She started out well and I think her opponent kind of figured her out a little. After Katelyn lost the first set she stayed with it. She just doesn’t get down. She fights back. She took advantage of some opportunities coming into the net, being more aggressive and keeping her serve in play.”
- Freshman Chelsea Haack stepped into her first collegiate match and breezed to a 6-1, 6-2 win over Kara Agamaite at No. 2 singles. Haack, a native of Columbus, Neb., earned four varsity tennis letters at Columbus High School. While there she set a school record with 38 wins in a single season at No. 2 singles.
- The Bulldogs’ other singles win came at No. 6 where sophomore Liz Kjellsen won 6-1, 6-4. She posted a record of 4-11 last season in singles play while competing at Nos. 3, 4 and 5. She also teamed with senior Mikaela Barz at No. 3 doubles for a 9-7 victory.
- Koll and senior Lindsea Vaudt figure to be a formidable pair once again at No. 1 doubles. They went 5-2 last season in GPAC matches and began this season with an 8-1 win on Feb. 8.
- The men followed the next day with a match that was more competitive than the 9-0 team score indicated. The Swedes from Lindsborg, Kan., brought four individuals into singles play that were ranked in the NAIA’s top 50 by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association following the 2012 season. All four claimed victories, but they were pushed by a hard-working Bulldog bunch.
- “It’s always tough to lose, but the team we were playing today is ranked No. 10 in the NAIA,” assistant coach James Ingrahm said following the match. “It’s good for the guys to see this level of competition. The next time we’re on the practice court we have something to try to aspire to, an aim and a vision to be like in terms of level of play.”
- Junior Joel Kaldahl had one of Concordia’s more impressive performances in singles play. After dropping the first set 6-1, he came back and narrowly lost the second set 7-5. With the stiff competition, Kaldahl believes the Bulldogs are only getting better. “It was definitely good to get out there and compete against new faces,” Kaldahl said. “We’re all ready to compete so that was a good thing. The first set he was running me all over the place. I just had to hang in there and change some things up and work on the second set – keep fighting.”
- The Concordia women get back to action on Friday when William Jewell College (Mo.) visits Seward for a 6 p.m. match in the Fieldhouse. The Cardinals are 3-0 with all three wins coming in September as part of their fall season. Meanwhile, the men are off until Feb. 22 when Simpson College (Iowa) comes to Seward. First serve is set for 6 p.m.
12 February 2013