Bulldog Weekly Report (Jan. 8)

By Jake Knabel on Jan. 8, 2019 in Athletic Announcements

Bulldog Athletic Association Athletes of the Week

Male: Zack Moistner, Wrestling

Moistner, a junior from Fallbrook, Calif., went 3-2 while place fourth in the 133-pound weight class at last week’s Cusatis Open in Hastings. Moistner defeated an opponent from the University of Nebraska. He also chalked up a victory by major decision to vault himself into the third-place bout.

Female: Mackenzie Koepke, Basketball

Koepke, a freshman from Lincoln, Neb., poured in 3-of-4 attempts from 3-point range in the 93-85 win over fifth-ranked Northwestern – Concordia’s third win over a top-five opponent in a three-week span. Koepke is now shooting 38.0 percent from 3-point range and averaging 6.2 points per game.

Previous Athletes of the Week
Dec. 31 – Brevin Sloup (basketball) / Philly Lammers (basketball)
Dec. 18 – Taylor Cockerill (basketball) / Michael Stann (wrestling)
Dec. 11 – Deandre Chery (wrestling) / Philly Lammers (basketball)
Dec. 4 – Tanner Shuck (basketball) / Taylor Grove (track & field)
NOVEMBER Athletes of the month: Alberto Garcia (wrestling) / Quinn Wragge (basketball)
Nov. 27 – Alberto Garcia (wrestling) / Taylor Grove (cross country) / Quinn Wragge (basketball)
Nov. 13 – Zac Walter (football) / Grace Barry (basketball)
Nov. 6 – Jack Bennett (soccer) / Tori Cera (soccer)
OCTOBER Athletes of the Month: Carlos Ferrer (soccer) / Maria Deeter (soccer)
Oct. 30 – Carlos Ferrer (soccer) / Taylor Cockerill (basketball)
Oct. 23 – Josiah McAllister (cross country) / Jenna Habegger (volleyball)
Oct. 16 – Carlos Ferrer (soccer) / Maria Deeter (soccer)
Oct. 9 – Kordell Glause (football) / Brynn Suddeth (soccer)
Oct. 2 – Zac Walter (football) / Maria Deeter (soccer)
SEPTEMBER Athletes of the Month: Ryan Durdon (football) / Emmie Noyd (volleyball)
Sept. 25 – Roger de la Villa (soccer) / Erin Lokke (shooting sports)
Sept. 18 – Lane Napier (football) / Emmie Noyd (volleyball)
Sept. 11 – Ryan Durdon (football) / Marissa Hoerman (volleyball)
Sept. 4 – JP Verissimo (soccer) / Lauren Martin (soccer)
Aug. 28 – Garrett Perry (soccer) / Jenna Habegger (volleyball)

News and notes:

Buy passes for the 68th annual Concordia Invitational Tournament: The 68th Concordia Invitational Tournament is set to get underway two weeks from this Friday (Jan. 25-26). This year’s host will be Concordia University, Ann Arbor. Advanced tournament passes can be bought for $15 via THIS LINK. On the opening day of the event, the Bulldog basketball teams will play at 12 and 2 p.m. CST (1 and 3 p.m. EST). Both squads will go against Concordia University, Wisconsin.

2019 football schedule announced: The 2019 Concordia football schedule was made public on Jan. 4. The Bulldogs will open up the new season by welcoming Doane to Bulldog Stadium for a 6 p.m. CT kickoff on Sept. 7. For the second year in a row, Concordia’s lone nonconference game will be against NCAA Division III Buena Vista University. The complete schedule can be viewed HERE.

Indoor track and field preview:
The 2019 indoor track and field season is rapidly approaching. Both squads will begin their campaigns this weekend with the Graduate Classic hosted by the University of Nebraska (Jan. 11-12) and the Ward Haylett Invite hosted by Doane (Jan. 12) on the docket. The Bulldogs again have expectations of achieving conference and national relevance under the direction of head coach Matt Beisel. The women’s team in particular appears stacked with the return of national champions Samantha Liermann and Addie Shaw. For an outlook on the season, click HERE.

Twenty-five Bulldogs named All-Nebraska by Omaha World-Herald:
Twenty-five Bulldogs from the sports of football, men’s soccer, women’s soccer and volleyball were named to All-Nebraska teams by the Omaha World-Herald just before Christmas. The top honor went to Lane Napier, who was tabbed the defensive captain of the All-Nebraska football team. The All-Nebraska teams can be viewed by clicking the links below.
-Football
-Men’s Soccer
-Women’s Soccer
-Volleyball

Bulldog Coaches Show airs every Thursday at 5:30 p.m. CT: The Bulldog Coaches Show is underway in its fourth 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 2018-19 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 in his fourth season calling Concordia volleyball.

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

  • Other than letting a lead slip away at No. 13 Dordt, it was a spectacular holiday season for the third-ranked Bulldogs. In a span of three weeks, Concordia defeated four nationally-ranked teams, including three in the top five: No. 1 Dakota Wesleyan, No. 2 Southeastern University (Fla.), No. 5 Northwestern and No. 21 Arizona Christian University (NAIA Division I). The Bulldogs bounced back from their 97-92 double overtime setback last week at Dordt with a 93-85 home win over Northwestern. Thirteenth-year head coach Drew Olson’s squad is now 15-2 overall and 9-2 in conference play (one game out of first place). For more information on Concordia women’s basketball, click HERE.
  • Even with the two losses this season, the Bulldogs appear to have the best résumé to date of all NAIA women’s basketball teams. According to Massey Ratings, Concordia has played the nation’s most difficult schedule. It has already played 10 ranked opponents and has beaten eight of them. There are more tough battles to come within the GPAC, which Massey rates as by far the best NAIA women’s basketball league. In Massey’s formula, the GPAC boasts the top five teams in NAIA Division II: Concordia, Dakota Wesleyan, Northwestern, Morningside and Dordt.
  • Many of the nation’s elite teams have not been immune to miscues while faced with the Bulldog press. Dordt committed 35 turnovers and Northwestern piled up 31 turnovers in last week’s action. Dakota Wesleyan and Southeastern handled the pressure better than any other Concordia opponents. Both teams turned it over 14 times in losses to the Bulldogs. On average, the opposition commits 31.6 turnovers per game. The plus-18 turnover margin versus Northwestern pushed Concordia back to No. 1 nationally in that category (plus-13.8).
  • With 15 points in the victory over the Red Raiders, Quinn Wragge moved up another rung to No. 9 on the program’s all-time scoring list. Now at 1,571 career points, Wragge leapfrogged Andrea Janssen (1,559). In school history, the Crofton, Neb., native ranks seventh in rebounds (723) and 14th in steals (220). Wragge got the Bulldogs rolling versus Northwestern with a nine-point first quarter.
  • After turning it over itself 24 times at Dordt, Concordia cut that number down to 13 versus Northwestern. Despite some foul trouble, point guard Grace Barry again served as a catalyst in the latest triumph over a ranked foe. She posted a line of 12 points, eight assists and two steals to go against just one turnover. Barry set the tone in the fourth quarter by darting into the lane for two quick buckets. Barry tops the nation in assists in assists (5.88) and steals (3.94) per game.
  • Like Wragge, Philly Lammers also figures to continue to climb the program’s all-time leaderboards. She burned Northwestern for 19 points, eight rebounds, four assists, three blocked shots and two steals. In program history, Lammers currently sits eighth in rebounds (692), tied for 15th in steals (214) and 18th in scoring (1,262). She is the most recent winner of the GPAC player of the week award, which was handed out on Dec. 18.
  • Lincoln Lutheran High School product Mackenzie Koepke has established herself as a dependable weapon off the bench. After getting shaken up at Dordt, Koepke was questionable to play versus Northwestern. She played nine minutes against Northwestern and tallied nine points on 3-for-4 shooting from 3-point range. Two of those treys came in the fourth quarter to help thwart the chances of a Red Raider comeback. On the season, Koepke is shooting 38.0 percent from beyond the arc.
  • In beating Northwestern, Concordia again avoided falling in back-to-back games. The Bulldogs have yet to drop back-to-back contests in a season since the tail end of the 2015-16 campaign. Since then, Concordia has a combined record of 85-7. During that run, the Bulldogs have dropped only one game played inside Walz Arena.
  • GPAC play continues this week with a short trip to No. 15 Hastings (10-7, 6-5 GPAC) on Wednesday before a Saturday home clash with Briar Cliff (10-9, 4-7 GPAC). Pending the new top 25 poll release, the Hastings game will mark Concordia’s sixth in a row against a nationally-ranked opponent. The Bulldogs will be aiming for regular-season sweeps of both foes.

Wrestling

  • The Bulldogs went nearly three weeks between outings by the time last week’s Cusatis Open hosted by Hastings took place. Eleven wrestlers represented Concordia and combined for 19 wins and two place finishes at the tournament that included competitors from NCAA Division I and II schools. The event marked the fifth tournament this season for head coach Levi Calhoun’s squad. In dual action, the Bulldogs are 4-3 overall (2-0 GPAC). For more on Concordia wrestling, click HERE.
  • Just prior to New Year’s Day, the NAIA released a new set of rankings. As a team, the Bulldogs checked in just outside of the NAIA coaches’ top 20, sitting third among the squads listed as “receiving votes.” Individually, four Concordia grapplers sport national rankings: No. 18 Maria Ybarra (125), No. 9 Alberto Garcia (133), No. 4 Deandre Chery (174) and No. 18 Michael Stann (285). At the conference level, nine Bulldogs are rated in the top six of their respective weight classes. Chery and Stann are both listed No. 1 in the GPAC.
  • At 133 pounds, junior Zack Moistner of Fallbrook, Calif., turned in his first place finish of the season while scrapping in Hastings. He took fourth in the bracket as part of a 3-2 day, which included a 5-2 decision over an opponent from the University of Nebraska. Moistner also chalked up a victory by major decision to vault himself into the third-place bout, which resulted in an 8-4 defeat at the hands of Colin Poynter of the Air Force Academy. Moistner also competed at the Dan Harris Open and the University of Nebraska-Kearney Open and is now 9-9 overall on the season.
  • Chery has set the standard all season for Concordia wrestlers. Chery rattled off three more pins at the Cusatis Open on his way to a fourth-place finish. In the third-place tussle, Chery got upset by No. 8 Chase Vincent of Oklahoma City University. Chery is now 25-6 overall with 13 pins this season. He has succeeded in placing at every tournament this season: first at the Dan Harris Open, third at the Dakota Wesleyan Open, fifth at the UNK Open, second at the Doane Open and fourth at the Cusatis Open.
  • Junior Cam Devers (141) and senior Josh Nelsen (184) equaled Chery and Moistner with three wins apiece in Hastings. In the two prior tournaments that Devers had competed in, he wrestled at 149 pounds. He moved to his more natural 141 weight last week and produced his best results so far this season. Of Devers’ two losses, one came against an NCAA Division I foe and another came versus an NCAA Division II opponent. Meanwhile, Nelsen notched a pin before his run ended with a loss by sudden victory.
  • A trio of Bulldogs picked up exactly two wins on the day: Walker Fisher (174), Tyler Jorgensen (197) and Stann (285). Darrin Miller (184) recorded one victory. Additional Concordia reps in Hastings included Ybarra (125), Kyle Carey (141) and Jason Watkins (157). It was a rare 0-2 day for Ybarra, who entered the Cusatis Open with a 17-5 record while cracking the NAIA national rankings.
  • The Bulldogs will have this week off from competition before heading to the Missouri Valley College Invite next week (Jan. 18-19) in Marshall, Mo. The next duals on the slate will be the GPAC Duals on Jan. 26 when Concordia will host Briar Cliff, Doane, Hastings and Jamestown. That day will go a long ways towards determining whether the Bulldogs can climb back to the top of the conference. Concordia put together GPAC championship seasons three-straight years from 2014-15 through 2016-17.

Men’s Basketball

  • Over the holiday break, the Bulldogs were in action for four games, including two that took place in Phoenix, Ariz. Concordia went 1-3 over that stretch with the win coming over MacEwan University (Canada) by a 70-64 score. In last week’s play, the Bulldogs fell at Dordt, 91-73, and then at home to Northwestern, 76-59. Sixth-year head coach Ben Limback’s squad is now 8-10 overall and 1-9 in conference play. For more information on Concordia men’s basketball, click HERE.
  • The rotation has gotten a shake up recently in part due to injuries and other circumstances. Three Bulldogs were forced to exit the win over MacEwan after enduring injuries. One of those, Ryan Holt, has been sidelined since that game. On a positive note, Concordia has gotten a nice in-season addition with transfer Sammy Adjei. In his first four games as a Bulldog, Adjei has averaged 7.5 points and 3.8 rebounds. His highest point total thus far was 12 at Dordt.
  • Tanner Shuck and Brevin Sloup remain the headlining performers, but a youth movement has taken hold. Eight freshmen saw action at Dordt and another six played versus Northwestern. Rookie Carter Kent has been a starter all season long. In the game against Northwestern, he was joined in the starting five by another freshman in Justin Wiersema. The native of Loveland, Colo., went on a personal 8-0 run at Dordt as part of a stretch that saw Concordia come all the way back from a 20-point deficit to take a second half lead.
  • The Bulldogs hope Shuck is back to himself. He felt under the weather this past week and played only 13 minutes at Dordt. He then played 31 versus Northwestern and nailed 3-of-4 shots from 3-point range while putting up 13 points. That performance pushed Shuck over 200 career made 3-point field goals. He is also closing in on 1,000 career points. Shuck currently stands at 971 points in 79 career collegiate games.
  • Shuck and company are about due for a breakout offensive performance. Concordia shot just 36.2 percent in the loss to Northwestern. The Bulldogs have shot below 45 percent in seven-straight games. The 12-for-28 effort from 3-point range at Dordt was an encouraging sign. Among GPAC teams, Concordia ranks ninth in scoring offense (69.7) and field goal percentage offense (.440). The Bulldogs shot a season best 54.4 percent in the 92-87 overtime win over Hastings.
  • The losing streak within conference play has reached seven since that victory over the Broncos. Five of those seven defeats have been decided by double digit margins. The closest Concordia came to a triumph occurred on Dec. 8 when Mount Marty edged the Bulldogs on a 3-pointer at the buzzer. As it stands halfway through the conference slate, Concordia will have work to do in order to qualify for the eight-team GPAC tournament. The Bulldogs are two games behind Doane and Midland, who are both tied for eighth place.
  • One freshman who has gotten increased playing time of late is 5-foot-10 guard Nick Cito. He played 14 minutes at Dordt and then seven versus Northwestern. Cito scored six points at Dordt. He entered that contest having notched three points in his career. In addition, freshman Klay Uher totaled eight points and seven rebounds in last week’s outings.
  • The GPAC grind resumes this week with a road game against Hastings (12-6, 5-5 GPAC) on Wednesday before returning home to host No. 6 Briar Cliff (14-3, 8-2 GPAC) on Saturday. The Bulldogs will go for a regular-season sweep of the Broncos and attempt to earn a split with the Chargers, who topped Concordia, 81-64, in Sioux City, Iowa, on Nov. 10.