Bulldog Weekly Report

Bulldog Weekly Report

NEWS AND NOTES:
Limback named head men’s basketball coach: Concordia alum Ben Limback has returned to his alma mater to take over the position of head men’s basketball coach. To read more about Limback, click HERE.

The Inspiring story of the Concordia women’s 4x800 meter relay: If you have yet to read the story of how the Concordia women’s 4x800 meter relay team survived a fall on the first leg of their preliminary race at the national championships to become All-Americans, click HERE. The article also appeared in the online edition of the Omaha World-Herald right HERE.

Tennis and track and field to resume after spring break: Both Concordia’s tennis and track and field squads have been idle since March 2. Head coach Kregg Einspahr’s Bulldogs finished the indoor season at the national championships Feb. 28 – March 2 and now enjoy a break from meets until the outdoor season begins March 30 with the Wayne State Invite. Meanwhile, Bulldog tennis, led by new coach Sam Nelson, will return to action March 22-23 when both the men and women have two matches each day in the state of Kansas.

Concordia alum sets world record: Concordia alum Matt Baller set a new world record on March 1 by bench pressing 563 pounds. Baller starred as a member of the Bulldog track and field team, making seven trips to the national championships while also earning all-conference eight times as a thrower. In addition, Baller played nose guard on the football team. For more details, and to see the record-setting lift, click HERE.

Subscribe to Bulldog track and field on YouTube: Concordia track and field has created a YouTube channel. Check it out HERE and watch videos from competitions. Clips from this week’s national championships in Geneva, Ohio, will be posted there.

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.

Women’s Basketball

  • The 2012-13 season came to an end for the Bulldogs in the first round of the 2013 NAIA Division II Women’s Basketball National Championships. Ninth-ranked Concordia fell victim to the upset as No. 21 Cardinal Stritch (Wis.) won 66-60 on March 7. The Bulldogs ended the season with an overall record of 25-7, marking the eighth time in the last 12 seasons that the program has reached 25 wins or more.
  • Offensive droughts and struggles on the boards doomed Concordia in its bid to return to the national semifinals for the second-consecutive year. The Bulldogs shot just 35.9 percent compared to 52.2 percent for Cardinal Stritch. The Wolves also outrebounded Concordia 40-29. “Cardinal Stritch is a really good team. They played well,” Bulldog head coach Drew Olson said. “They deserved to win. We had chances at the end as we continued to chip away at the lead. We didn’t get the rebounds we needed. That’s really what cost us.”
  • The loss was a departure from Concordia’s recent run of success in first-round games at the national tournament. The Bulldogs entered the 2013 event with an all-time record of 8-3 in the first round with wins in seven of the last eight such contests. Concordia is now 18-12 in 12 appearances at the national championships.
  • For Olson it was his fifth national tournament appearance in his seven years as head coach. No other coach in program history has led the Bulldogs to the national tournament more than three times. Olson, now 7-5 in national tournament games, still trails Todd Voss for the most tournament victories among all coaches in school history.
  • Senior guard Katie Rich’s career came to an end on March 7. Rich, whom Olson says “will go down as one of the best players in our program’s history,” played in three national tournaments. She averaged 15.1 points in six career games at the Tyson Events Center. In her career, Rich totaled 1,293 points, 653 rebounds, 265 steals and 233 assists in 124 games in a Bulldog uniform.
  • Concordia will end the 2012-13 season ranked in the national poll, marking the fourth time in Olson’s seven years that the Bulldogs will finish the season in the top 25. During that time period, Concordia has been ranked at some point during the season in all but one year. The team’s four No. 1 rankings this season were the program’s most since being ranked in the top spot in nine-consecutive polls during the 2002-03 campaign.
  • Of the nine players who saw action in at least 13 minutes per game in 2012-13, seven will return for 2013-14. That group is headlined by back-to-back first team all-GPAC choice Kristen Conahan and second team all-conference pick Bailey Morris. Led by Conahan and Morris, Concordia will again have one of the nation’s top backcourts. They will lose three key pieces in Rich, Beth Kohmetscher and Dawn Martin, who were part of teams that went 95-37 (.720) over the last four seasons.
  • Conahan will enter next season with 1,374 career points in 100 games. She has led the team in scoring in each of the last two years. With 626 points as a senior, the Omaha native would become the first player in school history to reach 2,000 points. If Concordia was to play exactly 32 games again next season, Conahan would need to average 19.6 points per game to eclipse the 2,000 mark.
  • Morris has compiled 773 points in her first two seasons at Concordia. She averaged 14.6 points in 2012-13 after posting an average of 8.5 as a freshman, putting her career mean at 11.4 per contest.

Baseball

  • Head coach Jeremy Geidel’s baseball squad is currently in the midst of its Florida trip in which it has already played two doubleheaders in the Orlando area. The Bulldogs got started on March 9 in The Sunshine State with a doubleheader split versus Trinity Christian College (Ill.). They earned another split the next day in two games against Saint Xavier University (Ill.). Concordia now sits at 4-7 overall and 2-2 on the Florida trip.
  • After a slow start offensively prior to getting to Florida, the Concordia bats have begun to heat up like the weather in the southeast. Behind senior shortstop Kyle Ivanoff and sophomore outfield Daniel Wilkerson, the Bulldogs have tallied 18 runs in the four games on the trip, including a season-high eight runs in Sunday’s game one victory. As part of a six-run third inning in the win over Saint Xavier, Concordia strung together six-straight hits. Wilkerson and junior outfielder Zach Gulley punctuated the splurge with back-to-back home runs.
  • Ivanoff, the team’s No. 3 hitter, has found his groove at the plate in Florida. The Tucson, Ariz., native has gone 5-for-11 with four RBIs, four stolen bases and three runs in four games. He is second on the team with a .303 batting average on the season. He has started all 11 games at shortstop after starting all 53 games at the same position in 2012.
  • Wilkerson came through with a big day on March 10. After going 1-for-8 on the first day of the trip, the Santa Fe, Texas, native went 3-for-5 with a home run, double and three RBIs while getting one start each at designated hitter and in right field in the doubleheader against Saint Xavier. He is hitting .278 in six games on the season.
  • Meanwhile, center fielder Camaren Gause continues to be a steadying force in the field and in the middle of the lineup. He is 5-for-12 on the Florida swing and leads the team with a .344 batting average through 11 games. He has been a consistent force with at least one hit in eight of those games. He also has yet to commit an error in 25 chances.
  • The pitching staff has also kept up its stellar work on the mound. The group has given up only 10 earned runs in 28 innings in Florida. Right-hander Jeremiah Luber is the leader of that staff. He hurled six quality innings on March 9 against Trinity Christian. The Waverly, Neb., native gave up five hits, two runs (one earned) and two walks before leaving with the lead after six innings. Among Concordia starting pitchers, Luber’s 2.75 ERA in 19.2 innings is best on the team.
  • Eastern Arizona Community College transfer Luke Parish-Ward picked up his team-leading second win of the season with a five-inning, five-run (three earned) performance against Saint Xavier. He walked only one and struck out three. He is now 2-1 with an ERA of 5.06 in 16 innings (three starts) in 2013.
  • Junior right-handed pitcher Tim Fosmo has appeared in the most games on the mound this season for Concordia. As the Bulldogs short reliever, Fosmo has totaled 4.1 innings pitched over seven appearances.
  • Catcher Ray Finley continues to lead the team with his nine RBIs. He is also tied with Gulley and Gause for the second most total bases with 11 apiece. Ivanoff tops the team with 13 total bases. Ivanoff is also the team leader with five stolen bases for a Concordia squad with 20 steals in 25 attempts.
  • Both weekend opponents – Trinity Christian and Saint Xavier – are members of the NAIA’s Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference. Saint Xavier went 35-23 last season, while Trinity Christian posted a mark of 23-25 in 2012. Concordia will finish up its trip with a doubleheader versus University of Illinois-Springfield (1-2) on Tuesday and then a three game series with Southeastern University (Fla.) (11-17) spanning Friday and Saturday.

Softball

  • The Bulldog softball team is in the middle of an eight game tour of the San Francisco, Calif., area over the spring break. Following a great start to the 2013 campaign in a tripleheader in Shawnee, Okla., on March 1, the Bulldogs sit at 0-4 on the California trip after getting swept in a pair of doubleheaders against solid Golden State teams. To read more about the March 8 doubleheader at Holy Names University, click HERE. For more on the March 9 doubleheader at Menlo College, read the recap HERE. Head coach Frank Greene’s squad is now 2-5 on the season.
  • Despite the 0-4 start to the road trip, Greene has been pleased with how his team has played against stiff competition. He’s been particularly happy with the early progress of young players such as Julia Tyree. The freshman second baseman/pitcher has acclimated quickly to the college game after finding her way to Concordia via Benecia, Calif. She is 6-for-13 with a home run, three doubles and three RBIs during the spring trip and carries a batting average of .333 in seven games on the season. She also has picked up both of the Bulldog victories in the circle.
  • Concordia’s most consistent hitter through seven games has been senior center fielder Natalie Svoboda. The 2012 second team all-GPAC selection has picked up where she left off last season. She is batting .409 with a home run in 22 at-bats while starting each of the first seven games. She has at least one hit in five games and has already recorded two three-hit games. The Lincoln, Neb., native tops the Bulldogs with seven runs scored.
  • Senior Angela Harstad and freshman Danielle Harstad hold more in common than just the fact that they are sisters. The siblings have incredibly similar hitting statistics through seven games. They have the same batting average (.294), slugging percentage (.471) and number of hits (five) and total bases (eight). Danielle has started all seven games at shortstop, while Angela has made four starts while serving as an outfielder and designated hitter.
  • Tyree and junior Amanda Beeson have covered nearly all the team’s innings in the circle. The duo has combined for 41 out of the team’s 43.2 innings pitched (93.9 percent). Beeson tops the team with 24.1 innings and has produced a team high 23 strikeouts. Tyree comes in next with 16.2 innings pitched, while sophomore Hayley Carstens has picked up the remaining 2.2 innings over two appearances.
  • With a roster that does not possess a great deal of speed, Greene says it is imperative that the Bulldogs make runs happen by hitting the ball with authority. So far Concordia ranks 17th nationally in home runs per game (1.0) and is second in the GPAC with seven total home runs. Tyree leads the team with two homers. Five players each have one long ball: Clarissa Beving, Angela Harstad, Danielle Harstad, Allyson Porath and Svoboda.
  • The Bulldogs’ five opponents so far in 2013 have come from four different states. Concordia has faced teams from California, Iowa, Kansas and Oklahoma in the early going while playing in just two states: California and Oklahoma. Concordia is scheduled to play in Nebraska for the first time this season on March 23 when Dordt visits Seward for a doubleheader set to begin at 1 p.m.
  • Among GPAC squads, Concordia’s seven games played are fourth most. Only Northwestern (9-7), Doane (2-9) and Dakota Wesleyan (0-10) have played more games in 2013. Mount Marty is the only conference school still yet to play its first game of the season.
  • Concordia will close its California swing with doubleheaders at Simpson University on Tuesday (2 p.m. CST) and at William Jessup University on Wednesday (4 p.m. CST). All four of these games can be heard live via the Concordia Sports Network with Mike Meyer calling the action.

12 March 2013

Ben Limback, a 1999 Concordia graduate, was named Bulldog head men's basketball coach on Tuesday.