Bulldog Weekly Report
Bulldog Athletes of the Week
Male: Kenny Zoeller, Football
The Spring, Texas, kicker drilled three more field goals in Concordia’s Sept. 8 loss to Dakota Wesleyan, making him a perfect 6-for-6 on the season. The senior’s six field goals are the most in the NAIA and his 22 points are second most among all kickers nationally. Zoeller made field goals from 35 yards out twice and once from 22 yards away in the Bulldogs’ most recent outing.
Female: Amanda Abbott, Volleyball
Abbott, a sophomore outside hitter from Temecula, Calif., put down 47 kills over the weekend at the Hastings College Classic as the Bulldogs split four matches against quality opponents. In the team’s 27-25, 25-22, 23-25, 25-17 over Peru State on Sept. 7, Abbott fueled Concordia with a match-high 20 kills on 48 attack attempts. She is currently second on the team with 94 kills in 32 sets played this season.
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 schedule/results pages for webcast dates. Scrimmages, exhibitions and junior varsity events are not broadcasted.
- The Bulldogs pulled off their most impressive win of the young season on Sept. 8 when they knocked off No. 20 Grand View (Iowa) by a 2-1 score in the second game of the weekend in Hastings, Neb. Head coach Jason Weides’ squad overcame a 1-0 deficit with goals by senior forward Aaron Skipworth and freshman forward Dean Stevens.
- “I’m very proud of our guys’ efforts (Saturday),” Weides said. “We responded well to a difficult loss the night before to a top 25-type team (Bethel College) to bounce back and get the win against another top level team. Despite giving up an easy early goal, we kept focus and continued to get better as the game wore on.”
- Skipworth’s goal in the 28th minute against the Vikings was his first in 2012 and the 30th of his brilliant career. The Colorado Springs native is now just one goal away from tying Bernie Ochoa for the school’s career goals record.
- The 6-foot Skipworth continues to be the Bulldogs’ most frequent offensive aggressor. He owns a team-best three assists (No. 1 in the GPAC) and his 16 shots are twice the second-highest individual total of eight from senior midfielder Ian Euler.
- Stevens became the fifth freshman to record a goal this season when he found the back of the net for the game-winning score in the 88th minute. Concordia has now totaled nine goals in 2012 with five coming from freshmen.
- The Bulldogs were shutout 1-0 by Bethel College (Ind.) on Sept. 7 marking the first time they failed to score since playing to a 0-0 double-overtime draw against Doane last Oct. 26. The Sept. 7 game was also the first contest this season in which Concordia has trailed.
- A stingy defense led by freshman center back Sean Doran, named GPAC Defensive Player of the Week on Sept. 4, has allowed only three goals on the way to a 4-1 start. No team has scored more than one goal in single game against the Bulldog defense, which is holding opponents to a GPAC best 0.6 goals per game.
- With a mark of 4-1, Concordia’s .800 winning percentage is the highest in the GPAC so far this season. Defending conference champion and 14th-ranked Hastings is 2-2 with losses against Science & Arts (Okla.) and Bethel (Tenn.).
- The Bulldogs are off until Sept. 15 when they travel to Sterling, Kan., for a matchup with Sterling College at 3 p.m. Concordia will be back at Bulldog Stadium on Sept. 19 when it hosts York College at 7 p.m.
- Click HERE for this week’s depth chart.
- Sophomore quarterback Von Thomas and the Bulldogs were back at home on Sept. 8 for the team’s GPAC opener. Concordia dropped a mistake-riddled nailbiter to Dakota Wesleyan, 26-23.
- “We left points on the field the whole first half,” head coach Vance Winter said. “We had two times down where we were in plus position where we dropped passes. Those guys aren’t trying to drop those things, but it’s disappointing. You have to make those types of plays if you’re going to beat good teams.”
- Concordia’s latest meeting with the Tigers of Mitchell, S.D., proved much different than the previous two matchups. Dakota Wesleyan defeated the Bulldogs 41-17 last season and 56-0 in 2010. Concordia’s last victory in the series came in 2007 by a score of 31-24.
- The outcome remained in doubt until sophomore quarterback Von Thomas lofted a pass that the Tigers’ Josh Thompson picked off in the end zone with 21 seconds left in the game. The interception came on a Bulldog first and 10 at the Dakota Wesleyan 16-yard line. Concordia (0-2, 0-1 GPAC) had marched the ball 64 yards on 10 plays to get within range of a dramatic last-minute victory before Thompson dashed those hopes.
- The interception was the fifth Bulldog turnover of the game, matching the Tigers’ identical five giveaways. Dakota Wesleyan lost four fumbles on the day, but triumphed on the strength of a 396-305 advantage in total yardage.
- Senior kicker Kenny Zoeller drilled all three of his field goal attempts for the second-straight game. He is now 6-for-6 on field goals and 4-for-4 on extra points on the season. His six field goals are the most in the nation. His three-pointers have covered distances of 42, 40, 35, 35, 27 and 22 yards.
- Concordia’s average of 30.0 points per game ranks 25th in the NAIA, but with better red zone execution that average could be much higher. The Bulldogs’ reliance on red zone field goals has become a trend that the team wants to end quickly.
- “We’ve all picked up this new offense really well,” said senior receiver Jeff Balz, who caught three passes for 70 yards and a touchdown on Saturday. “There are still little kinks, little chips, little things we need to get figured out, especially when we get down close. I think we can get it. We’re all definitely disappointed about this loss and a lot of it comes down to offense in the red zone.”
- The Bulldogs continue GPAC play on Saturday when they travel to play Hastings at 6 p.m. in the Broncos’ homecoming game. Concordia won last year’s meeting 10-0 over Hastings in Seward. The Broncos are 1-0 after defeating Dordt 20-7 on Sept. 8 in Sioux Center, Iowa.
- Senior outside hitter Amanda Kisker and the Bulldogs shook off a lopsided loss to No. 22 Midland on Sept. 5 and enjoyed an encouraging weekend at the Hastings College Classic. Head coach Scott Mattera’s squad won two of its four matches against quality competition in Hastings.
- The Bulldogs, now 3-6 overall with an 0-1 GPAC mark, used an efficient effort in netting a 27-25, 25-22, 23-25, 25-17 victory over in-state rival Peru State in their first match of the weekend. Concordia spread the attack around as sophomore Amanda Abbott collected a match-high 20 kills and senior outside hitter Amanda Kisker put down 17 kills. Sophomore middle blocker Mariah Schamp added 10 kills and senior right side Kim Miller posted nine.
- The Amandas were at it again in match No. 2 of the day. The Bulldogs put away McPherson (Kan.), of the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference, in similar four-set fashion, 25-19, 25-21, 21-25, 25-22. Abbott and Kisker each hammered 14 kills.
- “(McPherson) had a fantastic middle so it was key for us to play smart and keep them out of system,” Mattera said. “This match really tested our volleyball IQ. When we made good choices, we won. If we made bad choices, we lost. Fortunately we made enough good ones to pull out the victory. I couldn't be more proud of how the girls bounced back from Wednesday night.”
- Concordia concluded the week with losses to No. 12 Oklahoma Baptist, 25-14, 25-20, 25-21, and to College of the Ozarks (Mo.), 25-23, 18-25, 25-20, 25-14.
- Through nine matches and 32 total sets played, leaders by category include:
- Kisker – 101 kills (Abbott is second with 94 kills)
- Nekoliczak – 154 assists
- Schamp – 22 total blocks
- Carli Smith – 161 digs
- The Bulldogs have already faced off against four ranked teams this season, including No. 12 Oklahoma Baptist, No. 13 Grand View, No. 19 Bellevue and No. 22 Midland. Five of the team’s six losses have come to teams either ranked or receiving votes in the coaches’ poll. The Bulldogs get another test from a ranked opponent when they host No. 11 Doane on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. Concordia went 3-7 in matches inside Walz Arena last season.
- Head coach Brett Muller’s men’s golf squad opened up its season Sept. 6-7 at the Siouxland Invite, held in Orange City, Iowa, and Sioux Center, Iowa. The Bulldogs shot a two-day 323-328–651 on the way to a 12th-place finish out of 17 teams in the event.
- Sophomore Shawn Rodehorst again paced Concordia by shooting a 78 in the event’s final round, following a 76 on day one. Rodehorst’s 36-hole total of 154 placed him in a tie for 21st overall. Junior Sam DeFreece shot a 78-81–159 as the Bulldogs’ next-best performer.
- Muller was disappointed with his team’s regression on the second day of the event with the understanding that there will be growing pains for one of the youngest varsity squads in the NAIA. The Bulldog group of five featured one junior, two sophomores and two freshmen at the Siouxland Invite. The quintet combined for 17 varsity rounds in 2011-12, 13 of which came from Rodehorst.
- Freshman Brock Colelasure made the biggest improvement of any Concordia participants as he shaved six strokes off his day one total in carding an 84 on the final day. Sophomore Andy Nevius posted an 83-88–171 while freshman Sam Simonson matched that two-day total with a consistent 86-85–171 performance.
- The Bulldog men’s team will return to action on Sept. 13 when it takes part in the first GPAC Qualifier event of the season. It will be held in Orange City, Iowa.
- The women, who finished sixth at the Aug. 31 Midland Invite, have their first GPAC Qualifier today at Landsmeer Golf Course in Orange City.
- The visiting Bulldogs played No. 21 Bellevue to a 0-0 draw for the first 50 minutes of their Sept. 5 in-state, non-conference matchup. However, the host Bruins ignited for three goals between the 52nd and 59th minutes in route to a 4-1 victory.
- The lone Concordia goal came in the 74th minute when sophomore midfielder Rachel Mussell knocked in her fourth goal already this season. That score came on the heels of a three-goal game in the team’s 5-4 loss to the University of Nebraska-Kearney on Aug. 23.
- Despite falling to 0-3, the Bulldogs showed an ability to hang with top competition when playing in a more controlled manner. “Our offensive possessions were much better (than in the first two games). We were less frantic and more composed on the ball,” Concordia head coach Lisa White said. “Our decision making was better and we played with a purpose.”
- The game got away from the Bulldogs early on in the second half when they appeared to lose focus and allowed the Bellevue strikers to get several clean looks on goal. “Our back line got caught watching,” White said. “We didn’t respond very well. They got behind us and got a lot of one versus one on our goalkeepers, and those are tough to stop.”
- Concordia is still looking for a consistent scoring option to complement Mussell’s fantastic start to the season. Junior forward Jordan Donohoue and sophomore forward Melissa Stine, both with one goal apiece, are the only other Bulldogs to notch goals this season. Donohoue is the team’s leading returning goal scorer from 2011, when she piled up six goals.
- The Bulldogs will take to the road for the third time in their first four games when they play at Sterling College on Saturday at 1 p.m. The Warriors of the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference are off to a 4-0 start. Concordia comes back home Sept. 19 when York College visits Bulldog Stadium for a 5 p.m. matchup.
- Head coach Kregg Einspahr got a first look at both of his men’s and women’s squads on Sept. 8 at the annual Blue-White-Alumni Run on the Concordia University campus. “We were able to get a glimpse of what our team strengths and weaknesses might be on Saturday,” Einspahr said. “Clearly our men have two outstanding front-runners with (sophomore) Ben Sievert and (junior) Hayden Hohnholt. Our women have a similar situation with (seniors) Sarah Kortze and Jena Schwalenberg being two consistent runners at the front of the pack. We also had some excellent performances from freshman women runners.”
- The annual event also serves as an avenue for past Bulldog cross country performers to re-unite with the program and the university as a whole. “The Blue-White-Alumni run is a great chance for our graduates to come back and get re-acquainted with our cross country program and the Concordia campus,” Einspahr said. “It is good to see them share the great experience they had at Concordia with our new and continuing student athletes.”
- On the women’s side, Kortze and Schwalenberg came in at Nos. 1 and 2 individually in the 4k at the Blue-White-Alumni Run. Schwalenberg’s second-place finish powered the White to a first-place team finish with 30 total points. Blue followed with 35 points, while the Alumni were third with 55 points.
- Bulldog alum Zach Meineke won the individual race in the 5k on the men’s side. Among current runners, Sievert’s second-place finish led the way. Sievert was part of the White squad that posted a team-best score of 29 points. The Alumni were second with 42 points and the Blue were third with 49 points.
- Both the men and women will be in action for their first official meet at 10 a.m. on Saturday at the Greeno Invite at Pioneer Park in Lincoln, Neb. The event is known for attracting some of the top competitors in the Midwest, including teams from the NAIA and NCAA Division I and II. In all, more than 30 schools, several GPAC rivals among them, will make up the field.
11 September 2012