Bulldog Athletic Association Athletes of the Week
Female: Taylor Cockerill, Basketball
Cockerill, a native of Waverly, Neb., tallied a game high 18 points on 7-for-12 shooting while adding three rebounds in Concordia’s 77-65 win over No. 19 Hastings on Dec. 6. The freshman guard is averaging 12.4 points and 4.2 rebounds this season for the undefeated Bulldogs (10-0).
Male: Cordell Gillingham, Basketball
Gillingham, who hails from Greeley, Colo., recorded a career high 16 points on 6-for-9 shooting in addition to six assists and three rebounds in his team’s 81-75 win over Hastings on Dec. 6. The sophomore guard is averaging 6.5 points and 3.0 rebounds for a Concordia squad currently in a three-way tie for first place in the GPAC standings.
Previous athletes of the week
Dec. 5 – Brevin Sloup (basketball) / Sydney Feller (basketball)
November Athletes of the Month: Tarence Roby (football) / Quinn Wragge (basketball)
Nov. 28 – Jake Hornick (basketball) / Quinn Wragge (basketball)
Nov. 14 – Cameron Devers (wrestling) / Jeannelle Condame (soccer)
Nov. 7 – Tarence Roby (football) / Emily Deschaine (cross country)
October Athletes of the Month: Ryan Durdon (football) / Lindsey Carley (soccer)
Oct. 31 – Ryan Durdon (football) / Kaitlyn Radebaugh (soccer)
Oct. 24 – Marcelo Hernandez (soccer) / Lindsey Carley (soccer)
Oct. 17 – Carlos Ferrer (soccer) and Grady Koch (football) / Sami Birmingham (soccer)
Oct. 10 – Micah Lehenbauer (soccer) / Kaitlyn Radebaugh (soccer)
Oct. 3 – Micah Lehenbauer (soccer) / Maria Deeter (soccer)
September Athletes of the Month: Tarence Roby (football) / Lindsey Carley (soccer)
Sept. 26 – Kordell Glause (football) / Emily Deschaine (cross country)
Sept. 19 – Lewis Rathbone (soccer) / Victoria Cera (soccer)
Sept. 12 – Tarence Roby (football) / Murphy Sears (golf)
Sept. 5 – Jack Bennett (soccer) / Lindsey Carley (soccer)
News and notes:
Roby named second team All-American by AFCA: The American Football Coaches Association named senior defensive back Tarence Roby a NAIA second team All-American on Monday. With Roby’s selection, the Concordia football program has now had a player represented on the AFCA All-America teams in five of the past six years. Former teammate Trey Barnes collected All-America accolades in both 2015 and 2016. Other recent All-Americans included Darnell Woods (2013) and Kenny Zoeller (2012).
Lehmann picks up third Academic All-America award: For the third year in a row, offensive lineman Hallick Lehmann has been named a CoSIDA Academic All-American. The native of Albion, Neb., sports a 3.90 cumulative grade-point average while studying psychology and behavioral science. Lehmann also picked up honorable mention All-GPAC recognition this fall and is on track to be named a NAIA Scholar-Athlete for the third time.
Ceron follows dream: A heavyweight national runner up this past March, Ceron Francisco will follow his dream of someday becoming an Olympic athlete. He is set to soon leave Nebraska for an opportunity to train with the Cavalier Wrestling Club at the University of Virginia as a resident athlete. Francisco will also serve as a youth coach and work alongside the Virginia wrestling team in Charlottesville. For more on Ceron’s opportunity, click HERE.
United Soccer Coaches honor three members of women’s soccer team: Three players from head coach Greg Henson’s GPAC regular-season champion women’s soccer team scooped up awards from the United Soccer Coaches last week. The organization named Chelsea Bright, Lindsey Carley and Maria Deeter to the NAIA All-Plains Region first team. Deeter also made her way onto the United Soccer Coaches Women’s Scholar All-America Team.
Four men’s soccer athletes collect United Soccer Coaches awards: A quartet of student-athletes from head coach Jason Weides’ men’s soccer program garnered United Soccer Coaches honors last week. The organization cited Florian Caraballo, Micah Lehenbauer and Marcelo Hernandez as NAIA All-Plains Region second team choices. Additionally, Lehenbauer and Lewis Rathbone picked up United Soccer Coaches Scholar All-America Team recognition.
Bulldog Lip Sync Challenge voting underway: The Bulldog Lip Sync Challenge, featuring 15 Concordia student-athletes, got underway with the first round last week. Each of the challengers lip-synced a Christmas song of their choosing in the first round. Voting for the challenge began on Monday via the @cunebulldogs Twitter account. All are welcome to participate in the voting.
Bulldog Coaches Show airs every Thursday at 5:30 p.m. CT: The Bulldog Coaches Show is underway in its third year of existence. The show airs live for a half hour every Thursday beginning at 5:30 p.m. CT on KTMX-FM 104.9 Max Country. The weekly feature can also be heard live via 104.9 Max Country’s website or by downloading the Max Country app. Throughout the 2017-18 season, Bulldog football, men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball contests will be aired live on Max Country. Tyler Cavalli serves as the host of the coaches’ show as well as the play-by-play voice for football and basketball. Frank Greene is again calling volleyball action.
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.
- In a light week, the second-ranked Bulldogs survived a scare from No. 19 Hastings in their only outing since the last report. Concordia again dominated the Broncos in the fourth quarter and pulled away for a 77-65 victory inside Walz Arena on Dec. 6. The Bulldogs pushed their series win streak versus Hastings to four and remained undefeated. Twelfth-year head coach Drew Olson’s squad moved to 10-0 overall and to 6-0 in conference play. For more information on Concordia women’s basketball, click HERE.
- Over the past three Bulldog-Bronco matchups, Concordia has won the fourth quarter by a combined score of 73-23. In each instance, Hastings has hung right with the Bulldogs through the third quarter. The scores after three quarters in those three meetings were 42-42 tie, 42-37 Hastings and 53-51 Concordia, respectively. In all three cases, the Bulldogs ultimately won by double digits with an average victory margin of 15.7 points.
- Concordia has gotten off to a 10-0 start for only the second time since Olson became head coach prior to the 2006-07 season. The 2012-13 squad spent several weeks ranked No. 1 in the national poll on the strength of a 15-0 run to begin the season. Last season’s team lost the season opener to eventual national champion Marian University (Ind.) before rattling off 26 wins in a row. The 2002-03 team coached by Todd Voss set the bar exceptionally high by going 33-0 before finally falling in the GPAC tournament.
- Freshman Taylor Cockerill has now led the Bulldogs in scoring in each of the last two outings. She totaled a game high 18 points while helping lead her team to a comeback win over Hastings. The Waverly High School product has consistently proven herself to be ready for primetime. She ranks third on the team in scoring average (12.4). Cockerill is lethal on the drive. Her aggressiveness has led to her shooting 55 free throws this season – 21 more than the next closest Bulldog. Cockerill also contributes 4.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game.
- Sophomore Philly Lammers just missed her fourth double-double of the season while totaling 16 points, nine rebounds and two blocks versus Hastings. Despite playing a modest 22.9 minutes per game due to several blowout victories, Lammers ranks 21st nationally in rebounding average (9.0). The Omaha native has also been on a shot blocking tear of late, rejecting 12 shots over the past five games. She is now averaging 1.5 blocks per game in addition to her team best average of 2.3 steals per outing.
- The 10-0 start has put Olson more than 200 games above .500 in his career. His mark now stands at 292-91 (.783). Already the winningest coach in program history, Olson is closing in on becoming just the second basketball coach to record 300 wins. Men’s coach Grant Schmidt amassed 445 wins over 23 years guiding the Bulldogs. Olson has taken the women’s program to 10 national tournaments with three of those appearances ending in either the semifinals or the championship game. Fourteen of Olson’s wins have come at the national tournament.
- The argument could be made that no NAIA women’s basketball team, Division I or II, has put together a better early season résumé than Concordia. The Bulldogs now own four wins over nationally-ranked opponents, including three versus the top 10. According to the Massey Ratings that include 224 NAIA women’s basketball programs, Concordia ranks as the best team in the nation. Massey also rates the Bulldogs’ schedule as being the fifth most challenging up to this point in the season.
- While faced with a daunting schedule, Concordia has still managed to put up impressive statistics. Among all NAIA Division II teams, the Bulldogs rank second in 3-point field goals per game (11.9), second in scoring (91.2), second in scoring margin (+31.4), seventh in turnover margin (+8.0), 10th in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.2), 11th in field goal percentage (.450), 12th in rebound margin (+8.8), 18th in field goal percentage defense (.352) and 23rd in scoring defense (59.8).
- It’s finals week on the Concordia campus, meaning the Bulldogs will be idle until Friday’s road trip to 15th-ranked Northwestern (8-4, 5-1 GPAC). Tipoff from Orange City, Iowa, is set for 4 p.m. CT. Concordia has won two of its last three times playing at Northwestern, including last season’s 88-81 victory in Orange City. The Bulldogs will be on the road for each of their next five games in the month of December.
- Concordia played just one official game last week while holding serve at home once again. In a matchup with rival Hastings, the Bulldogs stroked 15 more 3-point field goals on their way to an 81-75 win on Dec. 6. Concordia now owns a four-game win streak and has moved to 9-2 overall and to 4-1 in conference play. Fifth-year head coach Ben Limback’s squad sits in a three-way tie for first place in the GPAC standings. In what went down as an exhibition game for the Bulldogs, they also played at NCAA Division I South Dakota State University on Dec. 8 and fell by a score of 103-67. For more information on Bulldog men’s basketball, click HERE.
- After being picked to finish eighth in the GPAC preseason poll, Concordia has hopes of competing for its first conference regular-season title since the 1995-96 team captured the NIAC title. Since then the Bulldogs also won a NIAC tournament title in 1997 and 1998 and took GPAC postseason crowns in 2003 and 2005. The 2004-05 group is also the program’s most recent national tournament qualifier.
- Concordia’s is both 9-2 overall and 4-1 in conference play for the first time since the 2008-09 season. Going back to last season, the Bulldogs also won nine of their last 11 games to finish up the 2016-17 campaign. Not only has the program gone 18-4 over its last 22 outings, it has gone 10-2 in GPAC regular-season games over that timeframe. Additionally, Concordia has not lost a home game during that stretch. Its home win streak moved to 11 with last week’s victory over Hastings.
- No team has been able to slow down the Bulldogs’ perimeter shooting inside Walz Arena this season. In five home games, Concordia has drained at least nine 3-point shots in each instance. The Bulldogs have combined for 66 treys in those games. They have knocked down at least 15 triples in three-straight home contests. Concordia has found the bottom of the net from 3-point range at least 10 times in seven of 11 games. It ranks 13th nationally in 3-point field goal makes per game (10.6).
- Limback relied heavily upon his starting five in order to eke out last week’s win. All five starters played at least 33 minutes with the group consuming 174 of a possible 200 individual player minutes. The starters also totaled all but eight of the team’s 81 points. Both Kyle Pierce (15 points, 10 rebounds) and Clay Reimers (14 points, 11 rebounds) posted double-doubles while Cordell Gillingham led the team with 16 points on 4-for-6 shooting from 3-point range.
- Three players reached double figures in scoring in the exhibition at South Dakota State. Brevin Sloup (14 points, 6-for-12), Reimers (12 points, 4-for-4) and Pierce (10 points, 4-for-8) each totaled at least 10 points. The contest was the second this season that came against either a NCAA Division I or II team. The Bulldogs came up just short of an upset in an 86-84 overtime loss at NCAA Division II sixth-ranked Colorado School of Mines on Nov. 24.
- Concordia now has four starters averaging in double figures in scoring: Reimers (16.9), Jake Hornick (16.7), Tanner Shuck (14.2) and Pierce (10.3). Those figures would represent career best for all four Bulldogs. Of them, only Shuck was a consistent member of the starting lineup during the 2016-17 campaign. A breakout performer at the point, Hornick leads the team with an average of 32.7 minutes per game.
- In terms of the polls, Concordia still has something to prove. After appearing at eighth in the conference preseason rating, the Bulldogs moved up to sixth on Nov. 27 and then fifth on Monday (Dec. 11). Though tied for first in the standings, Concordia ranks behind No. 1 Briar Cliff, No. 2 Morningside, No. 3 Northwestern and No. 4 Dakota Wesleyan in the official GPAC rankings released on NAIA.org. The move to fifth in the poll could result in national votes for the Bulldogs. A new national coaches’ poll is set to be unveiled today (Dec. 12).
- A significant measuring stick is coming up on Friday when the Bulldogs will conclude finals week with a trip to play at No. 1 Northwestern (11-2, 3-2 GPAC). As of Tuesday (Dec. 12) afternoon, the Red Raiders still held the No. 1 ranking, however, they will likely drop down in this week’s poll. Northwestern won its first nine games before suffering back-to-back losses to No. 15 Morningside and No. 9 Briar Cliff. Friday’s tipoff from Orange City, Iowa, is set for 6 p.m. CT.
- The 17th-ranked Bulldogs just completed their busiest two-day stretch so far this season with a weekend slate full of action. It began on Dec. 8 with a 23-21 home dual loss at the hands of Northwest Kansas Technical College, ranked 13th in the National Junior College Athletic Association. The next day, Concordia rebounded by claiming a total of 57 individual wins and 10 place finishes at the Doane University Open. Second-year head coach Andrew Nicola’s squad is now 1-1 in dual meets and has competed in five tournaments this season. For more information on Bulldog wrestling, click HERE.
- The 57 wins and 10 place finishes were both season bests for Concordia, which had 23 wrestlers take part in the action in Crete. Bulldog place finishers were Deandre Chery – 2nd (174), Chucky Hedrick – 2nd (165), Walker Fisher – 3rd (174), Darrin Miller – 3rd (184), Jon Lado – 4th (165), Alexander Reimers – 4th (197), Victor Haro – 5th (157), Chris Kimball – 6th (141), Josh Nelsen – 6th (184) and Jerry Stepps III – 6th (125). Both Chery and Hedrick made their way to championship matches in their respective brackets.
- Chery, a sophomore from Miami Gardens, Fla., made a splash at the Doane Open by winning his first four matches of the day on the way to the title bout. The biggest highlight for Chery was a third period pin of Baker University’s (Kan.) Lucas Lovvorn, ranked 16th nationally at 174 pounds. Chery (13-8) owns a team high seven pins. He also placed third at the season opening Dan Harris Open hosted by Baker.
- Though he did not place, sophomore Cameron Devers continues to stack wins. He added six more to his total last week, pushing his team high win count to 15 for the season. After earning a victory by major decision in the dual with Northwest Kansas Tech, Devers won five times at Doane, including three triumphs by pin. His six pins are second only to Chery for the team lead. Devers won the 141-pound bracket at the Dan Harris Open and placed third at the Grand View Open.
- Chery and Devers are two of seven Bulldogs to have reached double-digit wins this season. The others are Miller (14-8), Cody Lambert (13-11), Josh Nelsen (12-8), Blake Castillo (11-9) and Fisher (10-4) with several additional teammates knocking on the door of 10 wins. Seven Concordia grapplers have either eight or nine wins: Haro (9-8), Hedrick (9-8), Tyler Jorgensen (9-10), Kyle Carey (8-10), Chris Kimball (8-7) and Alexander Reimers (8-8).
- Prior to last week’s loss, the Bulldogs had not dropped a home dual since a 34-6 defeat at the hands of eventual GPAC champion Morningside on Jan. 16, 2014. Concordia then won each of its next 13 home duals. Despite last week’s setback, the Bulldogs still possess a GPAC dual win streak of 22. They will carry that streak into a Jan. 12 home battle with GPAC rival Midland.
- Though it’s still early in the dual season, Six of the nine GPAC wrestling schools have already been dealt at least one conference loss. Only Northwestern (2-0), Concordia (1-0) and Morningside (1-0) are unbeaten in GPAC duals. In the official GPAC ratings released last week by the NAIA, the Bulldogs moved back into the top spot, in front of Briar Cliff and Midland. The national rankings show Concordia at 17, Briar Cliff at 19 and Midland at 20 with Northwestern and Hastings just outside of the top 20.
- The Bulldogs will be in action for a rare Sunday event this weekend when they take part in the Oklahoma City University Duals in Oklahoma City. Four duals will keep Concordia busy for much of the day. The slate includes No. 15 Baker (10 a.m.), Bethany College (11:30 a.m.), Oklahoma City University (1 p.m.) and Lyon College (2:30 p.m.). Bethany, Oklahoma City and Lyon are listed as receiving votes in the national rankings. The Oklahoma City Duals will close out the pre-New Year’s Day schedule for the Bulldogs.