Bulldog Athletic Association Athletes of the Week: Due to the absence of the weekly BAAM meetings, Athletes of the Week will not be announced. BAAM meetings have now been canceled for the remainder of the 2020-21 academic year.
News and notes:
Cheer & Dance teams make final home appearance, ready for GPAC Championships: The best competition season in the short history of competitive cheer and dance at Concordia continued last week as the Bulldogs made their final home appearances of the 2021 season. The Bulldogs treated the home fans to victories over Doane as cheer won, 69.6 to 66.3, and dance won, 73 to 65.1. In previous competitions this season, the Concordia Cheer team has won duals over Mount Marty and Morningside, placed third at the Friends University Day of Duals and placed second in a home triangular with Hastings and Peru State. Meanwhile, the Concordia Dance team has won duals over Mount Marty, College of Saint Mary and Hastings, lost to Morningside and earned second place at the Friends University Day of Duals. The GPAC Cheer & Dance Championships are up next. The competitions will be held at Doane with dance taking place on Friday and cheer following on Saturday. Both teams hope to move up the ladder after placing sixth in the GPAC in 2020. For more information on the cheer and dance programs, click the following links: Cheer | Dance.
Baseball/Softball get started today (Feb. 23): At long last, the Concordia Baseball and Softball programs are getting underway with their seasons. Both squads are in the state of Kansas today (Feb. 23) for nonconference action. Head Coach Ryan Dupic’s team is taking on both York College and Missouri Baptist University (game times at 12 and 5 p.m. CT) while Head Coach Shawn Semler’s squad gets started with a doubleheader at Benedictine College at 12 p.m. Both sides enter the 2021 campaign with GPAC championship aspirations. For more on the baseball/softball teams, check out the season previews linked below.
-Baseball Season Preview
-Softball Season Preview
GPAC basketball tournaments set: The GPAC basketball tournaments are now set after regular season action concluded this past week. In GPAC quarterfinal matchups, the Concordia women will host Dakota Wesleyan while the Bulldog men will play at Dakota Wesleyan. Both games will tip off at 7 p.m. CT on Wednesday. The proceeding rounds will take place on Saturday (Feb. 27) for the semifinals and next Tuesday (March 2) for the championship games. Use the links below to buy advance online tickets for both games.
-Women’s Basketball vs. DWU
-Men’s Basketball at DWU
Shooting Sports begins spring season at Lindenwood Invitational: Head Coach Scott Moniot’s Shooting Sports program will begin the spring portion of the 2020-21 season this weekend (Feb. 27-28) at the Lindenwood University Invitational at Black Hawk Valley Hunting Club in St. Charles, Mo. The mountaintop moment of the fall occurred the weekend of Sept. 26-27 when the Bulldogs claimed the conference title at the Prairie Circuit Classic Championship. Concordia outgunned rival Midland at the conference championship while paced by top overall shooters Erin Lokke, Colten Uitermarkt and Wyatt Hambly. Moniot’s squad also seized team titles at the Midland Ice Out and the Hastings Invite. While putting on the fifth annual Concordia Bulldog Sporting Invitational, the Bulldogs placed second. For more information on Concordia Shooting Sports, click HERE.
Current fan attendance policy: In accordance with Directed Health Measures released by the state of Nebraska, Concordia continues to allow 50 percent capacity in indoor facilities. Please note that spectators will not be permitted to attend indoor track and field meets (per GPAC policy). For additional details on how to purchase tickets to Bulldog Athletic events, see the paragraph below regarding HomeTown ticketing.
HomeTown Ticketing and Fan protocols for home events: Fans who plan to attend Concordia Athletics home events are advised to read through our protocols HERE. All fans are expected to self-screen and are required to wear masks while viewing contests in either Bulldog Stadium or Walz Arena. Non-family members are welcome to be present on our campus during these contests. Fans are also encouraged to order advance tickets through HomeTown Ticketing. By purchasing tickets online, fans are guaranteed entrance on game days. Concordia is allowing 75 percent capacity in outdoor venues and 50 percent capacity in indoor venues.
Bulldog Coaches Show airs every Thursday at 5:30 p.m. CT: The Bulldog Coaches Show is underway in its fifth 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 2020-21 season, Bulldog football, men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball contests will be aired live on Max Country. Parker Cyza serves as the host of the coaches’ show as well as the play-by-play voice for basketball. Frank Greene is in his sixth season calling Concordia volleyball.
Concordia Sports Network: Live webcasts for most home varsity contests can be accessed by visiting https://www.cune.edu/athletics/watch-bulldogs at game time. Beginning in 2019-20, Concordia Athletics partnered with PrestoSports for live video and statistical streaming. For more details on this change, click HERE. Check team schedules/results pages for webcast dates. Scrimmages, exhibitions and junior varsity events are not broadcasted.
Track & Field
· The run of GPAC titles has continued for the women’s program, which dominated the 2021 GPAC Indoor Track & Field Championships by piling up 217 points (compared to 137 for second-place Hastings). On the men’s side, the Bulldogs placed third with 76 points (behind Dordt and Doane). The meet was hosted by Dordt in Sioux Center, Iowa, Feb. 19-20. Head Coach Matt Beisel’s program has now competed in seven meets this indoor season, with the national meet yet to come. For more information on Concordia Track & Field, click HERE.
· Four Bulldogs emerged from the conference meet with individual GPAC titles: Rachel Battershell (400 meters), Morgan De Jong (weight throw), Kylahn Heritage (1,000 meters) and Cody Williams (heptathlon). Concordia athletes also combined for nine GPAC runner-up claims: the women’s 4x400 meter relay, the men’s 4x800 meter relay, Battershell (55 hurdles), Heritage (mile), Elle Luehr (shot put), Cora Olson (55 meters; long jump), Josie Puelz (pole vault) and Zach Zohner (pole vault). Olson accumulated the most points as an individual by way of two second-place and two fifth-place finishes.
· As Beisel has said, the run of conference championships should not be taken for granted. The women’s program had not won a GPAC title since 2012 before it rose to the top at the 2019 conference indoor meet. Before this current streak, the women’s program had previously won conference championships four times (one indoor and three outdoor). On the women’s side, Beisel has led the Bulldogs to 2019 indoor and outdoor, 2020 indoor, 2021 indoor and 2019 cross country GPAC championships.
· It was a bit of an upset for sophomore Josie Puelz not to win the pole vault title. She placed second with her vault of 12’ 4.” Amira Cummings (fifth) and Erin Mapson (seventh) also scored in the event (13.5 team points). The long jump also produced a lofty 22 points thanks to the work of Olson, Katie Severt, Jamey Broman and Gabby Diamond (who placed 2-3-4-6). Another 17 points came via the 600 meters with Keri Bauer (third) being the top place finisher in that event. The shot put contributed 15 points as Luehr led the way with a second-place claim. Additionally, the women’s 1,000 meters accounted for 20 points (Rylee Haecker placed third).
· Williams got back to the top of the mountain in the heptathlon, an event he also won at the conference level in 2019. His final point total came in at 4,956 for the heptathlon. The men got crucial points in the pole vault with Zach Zohner (15’ 11 ¼”), Zach Bennetts (15’ 7 ¼”) and Chase Berry (14’ 9 ½”) placing 2-3-4. Chris Wren (weight throw) and Wyatt Loga (high jump) both placed third while Jacob Jennings took fourth in the 400 meters. It was enough to stave off the Red Raiders for third place.
· The top relays for Concordia included its women’s 4x4 (second), men’s 4x8 (second) and women’s 4x8 (third). The Bulldogs had dominated the women’s 4x4 in recent years. This time around, they placed second with Sarah Lewis, Bauer, Kennedy Mogul and Battershell clocking in at 3:58.68. The men’s 4x8 was made up of Camden Sesna, Calvin Rohde, Cameron Gray and Nick Price. Lewis contributed 10 team points (fourth place in two events). Mogul was one of three scorers in the pentathlon (including Emily Loy and Amy Richert).
· At the Early Bird meet (Dec. 4-5), Concordia athletes combined for what were classified at the time as nine automatic national marks, nine ‘B’ standard national marks and five marks that met the minimum national standard in the heptathlon/pentathlon. Since that meet, the NAIA announced that the national championships would simply include the top 16 in each event. Bulldogs who are currently in the top 10 nationally (as of Sunday) of their respective events are listed below. There are 27 total marks listed.
o Women’s 4x400 meter relay, 4th (3:54.37)
o Men’s 4x400 meter relay, 6th (3:19.01)
o Women’s 4x800 meter relay, 10th (9:37.74)
o Women’s distance medley relay, 6th (12:24.63)
o Rachel Battershell – 400 meters, 1st (55.93); 600 meters, 5th (1:35.93); 60 hurdles, 10th (8.90)
o Zach Bennetts – pole vault, 9th (15’ 8 ¼”)
o Jamey Broman – long jump, 9th (18’ 5”)
o Morgan De Jong – weight throw, 4th (56’ 10’ ¾”)
o Rylee Haecker – 1,000 meters, 9th (2:59.65)
o Kylahn Heritage – 1,000 meters, 7th (2:58.02); mile, 8th (5:05.89)
o Sarah Lewis – 60 hurdles, 8th (8.88); 400 meters, 9th (57.98)
o Wyatt Loga – high jump, 5th (6’ 9”)
o Elle Luehr – shot put, 4th (45’ 3 ¾”)
o Jacee Pfeifer – 600 meters, 10th (1:36.75)
o Josie Puelz – pole vault, 2nd (13’ 4 ½”)
o Sarah Ragland – weight throw, 6th (55’ ¼”)
o Amy Richert – high jump, 8th (5’ 5 ¼”)
o Xavier Ross – 400 meters, 5th (48.09)
o Katie Severt – long jump, 8th (18’ 7 ¼”)
o Cody Williams – heptathlon, 3rd (5,030); high jump, 5th (6’ 9”)
o Chris Wren – weight throw, 5th (62’ 4”)
o Zach Zohner – pole vault, 5th (15’ 11 ¼”)
· A couple of notable personal bests were turned in last week by throwers as Chris Wren moved up to fifth nationally in the weight throw with his toss of 62’ 4.” Meanwhile, Luehr jumped to fourth in the NAIA in the shot put with her mark of 45’ 3 ¾.” Luehr gave it a strong run at a conference championship, but was clipped by Doane’s Allison Skala. Four Bulldog throwers are listed among the top 10 of the country in either the shot put or weight throw.
· The 2021 NAIA Indoor Track & Field National Championships will play out over four days next week (March 3-6) in Yankton, S.D. Official national qualifiers will be announced late this week after teams have submitted their entries. At the 2020 indoor national meet, Concordia placed fourth on the women’s side and 17th on the men’s side.
· The season has concluded for all but three Concordia wrestlers who have qualified for the NAIA Wrestling National Championships. The conference tournament unfolded this past weekend (Feb. 19-20) in Fremont, Neb., and saw the Bulldogs place sixth as a team with 70 points. Five Concordia individuals earned place finishes, including GPAC heavyweight champion Jacob Telles. He will be headed to the national tournament along with Mario Ybarra (133) and Gabe Crawford (165). For more information on Concordia Wrestling, click HERE.
· The tradition of strong heavyweights continues for the Bulldogs, who have had an individual in the GPAC heavyweight final in five of the last six years. That run includes four GPAC championships claimed by Telles (2021), Tanner Farmer (2020) and Ceron Francisco (2016 and 2017). In addition, Michael Stann was the runner up in 2019. Telles would appear to be the most surprising champion of the three winners. He entered the tournament as the No. 2 seed and an underdog to his counterpart from Doane.
· The roadblocks Telles faced included Doane’s Samuel Peterson, Briar Cliff’s Matthew Wilke and Doane’s Brandon Antesberger. Telles defeated Peterson, 5-0, and then Wilke, 5-1. That set up a clash with Antesberger, who is ranked 10th in the NAIA. One takedown was enough in a 3-1 squeaker over an opponent that had beaten him at the GPAC Duals. That victory marked No. 33 in an astonishing rookie season for Telles, who also leads the team in pins with 13.
· Additional GPAC place finishes were recorded by Crawford (second at 165), Brandon Gonzalez (fifth at 149), Issiah Burks (sixth at 157) and Mason Garcia (fifth at 197). A senior captain from Virginia Beach, Va., Crawford has persevered through injuries this season on his way to earning an automatic bid to nationals. He seemed to wrestle angry after he was beaten by decision in his first match of the tournament. His next three matches went – pin, technical fall and pin. Crawford then avenged his only loss of the weekend with a victory over Dakota Wesleyan’s Marcus Urban. Crawford rallied on the back side and was credited with true second.
· A junior captain, Burks joined Telles as a semifinalist. At 157 pounds, Burks began his tournament with wins over Dakota Wesleyan’s Coby Eikenhorst (decision) and Jamestown’s Jacob Hamilton (pin). That’s when things went sideways. Burks lost his next two matches and then was unable to wrestle in the fifth-place bout. Despite the disappointment on day two, Burks put together a fine season that saw him go 24-10 overall with 12 pins.
· Head Coach Levi Calhoun’s GPAC roster included 11 competitors. Unfortunately, starters in Ybarra and TJ Huber (174) were unable to wrestle at the conference tournament. Ybarra would have entered the event as the favorite at 133 pounds (reigning 125-pound GPAC champion). Had both been available, Concordia could have realistically leaped in front of Hastings (85.5) and Northwestern (75.5) for fourth place in the GPAC. As it turned out, seven Bulldogs contributed to the team scoring, including Jose Sanchez (157) and Oscar Ramirez-Garcia (184).
· Eight Concordia wrestlers have accumulated 10 or more wins this season: Telles (33-12), Burks (24-10), Jeaven Scdoris (19-18), Garcia (19-12), Huber (16-18), Sanchez (14-17), Ybarra (12-1) and Tavoris Smith (12-16). In the most recent NAIA national rankings, three Bulldogs appeared in the top 20: Ybarra (fourth at 133), Telles (15th at 285) and Burks (20th at 157). Based on the rankings, Concordia qualified about the number it was expected to for nationals.
· The 2021 NAIA Wrestling National Championships remain on schedule for March 5-6 at Hartman Arena in Park City, Kan., where the event was also staged last year. The GPAC will have a total of 26 wrestlers at the national tournament. Ybarra was fortunate to been chosen as an at-large selection despite not having wrestled since December. More details on the national tournament can be found on the NAIA website HERE.
· The Bulldogs closed the regular season last week by routing two in-state rivals: Hastings and Doane. In a rescheduled contest, Concordia trounced the Broncos, 106-73, on Feb. 17 before routing the Tigers, 84-63, on Feb. 20. Those results meant that the Bulldogs earned season sweeps over each of their Nebraska GPAC rivals: Doane, Hastings and Midland. Head Coach Ben Limback’s squad tied for third in the GPAC standings, but will be the No. 5 seed in the conference tournament. Concordia stands at 17-8 overall (14-6 GPAC). For more information on Concordia Men’s Basketball, click HERE.
· The 14 conference wins equaled a program single-season record while the third-place GPAC finish was the highest in the regular season for the Bulldogs since finishing second in 2004-05 (14-4 GPAC). Under Limback, the previous standards were 12 wins in league play and a fourth-place finish (as achieved by the 2019-20 squad). Now the challenge is to attempt to duplicate last season’s GPAC tournament title run. As the No. 4 seed in 2020, Concordia hosted Northwestern and Hastings before winning at Dakota Wesleyan.
· The level of home dominance bears repeating. The Bulldogs are 11-1 at home this season with 10 of the victories coming by double-digit margins. Concordia defeated eight GPAC teams by 10 or more while playing inside Friedrich Arena: Midland (82-55), Dordt (82-59), Mount Marty (82-71), Jamestown (81-70), Briar Cliff (81-58), Dakota Wesleyan (89-77), Hastings (106-73) and Doane (84-63). The only exceptions were the 77-74 win over Northwestern and 95-77 loss to Morningside.
· The tear Gage Smith went on to finish the season could land him first team All-GPAC accolades. Over the final eight games of the regular season, Smith averaged 20.3 points, 9.9 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.63 steals per game while shooting 57.1 percent from the floor. In last week’s action, Smith notched his ninth and 10th double-doubles of the season by posting 17 points and 11 rebounds versus Hastings and 21 points and 13 rebounds versus Doane. On the season, Smith is averaging 14.1 points and 9.4 rebounds.
· Justin Wiersema has gone wire-to-wire as the team’s leading scorer. He finished the regular season with a scoring average of 16.6. Wiersema and Morningside’s Trey Brown are the only two players in the GPAC to score in double figures in every game this season. A native of Loveland, Colo., Wiersema has run his streak of consecutive games with at least 10 points to 27. Wiersema is also the team leader in assists (3.0) and steals (1.6) per game. His field goal percentage of 56.3 is best among GPAC guards.
· The program honored a group of four seniors prior to tipoff versus Doane. The senior class includes Ryan Holt, Sam Scarpelli, Grant Wragge and Thomas Young. Holt and Scarpelli moved into the starting lineup this season and have been integral role players. Holt is averaging 7.6 points and 4.3 rebounds per game while Scarpelli has chipped in with 6.1 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.6 assists per contest. Meanwhile, the athletic Wragge produced one of the highlight reel plays of the season with his alley-oop dunk on senior day. Young can be a nice shooting weapon off the bench (career 21-for-50 from 3-point range).
· Concordia is currently the only team in the GPAC to rank in the top three of the league in both scoring offense (82.4) and scoring defense (72.6). The team’s offensive efficiency numbers have been on the rise of late – the Bulldogs are now shooting 47.1 percent from the field and 34.5 percent from 3-point range for the season. Before the month of February began, Concordia was sitting at 46.4 percent from the field and 33.4 percent from beyond the arc.
· The only way to guarantee a bid to the national tournament for a second year in a row is for the Bulldogs to win the GPAC tournament. As the No. 5 seed, Concordia would likely have to win three in a row on the road (barring upsets). The Bulldogs went 5-5 in GPAC road games during the regular season. Their at-large national tournament hopes were hurt by two nonconference losses. On the other hand, the two victories over Northwestern have continued to look more impressive.
· Undoubtedly, the season will be over if Concordia is unable to win at the Corn Palace on Wednesday. Tipoff will be at 7 p.m. CT as the Bulldogs go head-to-head with Dakota Wesleyan (18-7, 14-6 GPAC), which started out 9-0 in conference play before stumbling down the stretch. Concordia won handily in the most recent meeting, but it took place at home. The winner will advance to the GPAC semifinals and play either top seed Morningside or eighth-seeded Mount Marty on Saturday.
· In this quirky season, the 22nd-ranked Bulldogs had nine idle days before closing the regular season by hosting Doane on Feb. 20. The game went about as planned as Concordia routed the Tigers, 98-57. The win clinched the No. 2 seed in the GPAC tournament for Head Coach Drew Olson’s squad, which will head into the postseason at 18-7 overall (17-5 GPAC). The Bulldogs closed the regular season with six-straight wins. For more information on Concordia Women’s Basketball, click HERE.
· The losses have been few and far between since an 0-3 start in which all three defeats occurred at home. Those types of results were unheard of for a program that had gone a combined 63-1 at home over the previous four seasons. But the Bulldogs regrouped nicely and now own a five-game home win streak. The records this season are nearly identical home (9-4) and away (9-3). It’s worth noting that three of the four home losses have come against teams ranked 17th or higher in the most recent NAIA poll.
· As expected in a blowout victory like the one that took place last week, the points were spread up and down the roster. All 14 Bulldogs in uniform registered in the scoring column. Leading the way was Mackenzie Koepke, who enjoyed her best offensive outing of the season. She splashed in a season high 17 points while making 4-of-7 attempts from 3-point range. While her scoring average is right in line with last season (7.9 points/game), Koepke has produced 5.2 rebounds, 1.9 steals and 1.0 block per game.
· The series versus Doane has been incredibly one-sided with Concordia winning 19 of the last 20 meetings, including each of the last 10. The Bulldogs have won six matchups in a row by 40 or more points with the margins finishing at 40, 59, 63, 55, 59 and 41 points, respectively. Doane is attempting to rebuild its program under Ryan Baumgartner, who became head coach after the 2019-20 season had already gotten underway. The Tigers finished the season at 5-20 overall.
· Taylor Cockerill will likely be a first team All-GPAC choice, just as she was in her most recent healthy season (2018-19). Cockerill’s shooting percentages this season are remarkably similar to her 2018-19 campaign. She’s currently shooting 41.3 percent from the floor, 36.4 percent from 3-point range and 77.9 percent from the free throw line (compared to respective percentages of 40.3, 36.2 and 77.4 in ’18-19). Cockerill is the only player in program history with at least 1,200 points, 450 rebounds, 230 assists, 160 steals and 140 3-point field goals.
· A couple of unsung contributors put forth fine outings versus Doane. Wahoo High School product Kendal Brigham saw varsity action for the first time since Jan. 13 and made the most of it. She knocked down 3-of-4 tries from 3-point range and notched nine points. In two games against Doane this season, Brigham went a combined 6-for-7 from beyond the arc. Meanwhile, Averie Lambrecht posted a career high 11 points to go along with five rebounds and a steal.
· Concordia finished the regular season right on the heels of Morningside for the top scoring offense in the GPAC (80.1 compared to 79.4). The Bulldogs haven’t shot a particularly high percentage from the field (.398), but they always feast on turnovers. Concordia has taken nearly 300 more shots from the field than its opponents while ranking 18th nationally in turnover margin (+6.6). The Bulldogs also lead the GPAC in made 3-point field goals per game (in conference play) with 11.1.
· Considering Concordia’s strong national reputation and placement within the national rankings, it has put itself on the radar for a national tournament at-large berth, should it be unable to claim the GPAC’s second automatic bid. The Bulldogs can earn an automatic bid by winning the GPAC tournament or by finishing as the tournament runner up to Morningside. A total of 48 teams will make up the national qualifying field. Concordia is looking to qualify for the 10th-straight season.
· As the No. 2 seed, the Bulldogs will host seventh-seeded Dakota Wesleyan (14-10, 12-10 GAC) at 7 p.m. CT on Wednesday in the GPAC tournament quarterfinals. The two sides split the regular season with the home team winning in both instances. Going back further, Concordia is 10-2 in its last 12 versus DWU. The winner will advance to Saturday’s GPAC semifinals and play either third-seeded Northwestern (16-9, 16-6 GPAC) or sixth-seeded Midland (15-10, 12-10 GPAC).
· The Concordia Tennis teams have waited since September to resume their 2020-21 seasons. The spring portion of the campaign got underway this past Saturday (Feb. 20) as the men’s and women’s teams ventured to Hutchinson, Kan., for nonconference action with Sterling College. The men earned a 5-2 win while the women took a 4-3 decision. Factoring in fall wins over William Jewell College (Mo.), Head Coach David DeSimone’s squads are both 2-0 this season. For more information on Bulldog Tennis: Men | Women.
· To recap, both teams had the same fall schedule that featured the aforementioned wins over William Jewell as well as tournament play at the GPAC Individual Tournament (Sept. 18-19) and the ITA Central Regional Championships (Sept. 25-27). In ratings released last week by the NAIA, Concordia landed at No. 3 in the GPAC for both men and women. Neither program was able to play against a conference opponent last season before it was shut down by the COVID-19 pandemic. The team records in 2019-20 were 6-3 for the women and 6-4 for the men.
· In last week’s men’s win over Sterling, Concordia was not far off from winning all nine matches. The only two losses came in singles tiebreakers at the Nos. 1 and 2 positions. Jack Kitson’s stellar day included a 6-3, 6-1 win over Blake Gladson at the No. 3 singles spot. He also teamed up with Eduardo Rojas on a 6-0 decision in No. 1 doubles. In a dominant run through doubles, Jeremy Berryman and Joe Bindl won at No. 2, 6-3, and Isaac Howes and Juan Rabellino won at No. 3, 7-5.
· Additional singles victories were claimed by Bindl at No. 4, 6-4, 6-0, by Rabellino at No. 5, 6-2, 6-3, and by Luke Johnson at No. 6, 6-3, 6-4. The results provide further evidence that many opponents will have a challenge stacking up with the Bulldogs throughout their lineup. This marked the first dual match of the 2020-21 season for the Warriors, a member of the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference. Concordia and Sterling also played last February in Lincoln, Neb., where the Bulldogs took a 7-0 win.
· The women’s victory over Sterling could have easily gone the other way considering three singles matches were decided by tiebreakers, two of which were won by the Warriors. At No. 6 singles, Concordia’s Luisa Esquivel managed to eke out a critical tiebreaker. Singles wins were also produced by Bulldogs in Claudia Miranda Viera, 7-6, 6-1, at No. 2, and Katy Krejci, 6-1, 6-3, at No. 5. DeSimone put freshman Sofia Morales at the top of the lineup while Tara Ferrel and Ansley Gates held down the Nos. 3 and 4 spots.
· Concordia picked up the doubles point thanks to the work of Esquivel and Morales at No. 2 and Gates and Julia Phillips at No. 3. Both matches finished with 6-4 scores. At No. 1, the Sterling duo of Nicole Marin and Maddie Thrasher got the best of Ferrel and Miranda Viera, 6-4. This marked the first dual match of the 2020-21 season for the Warriors, who compete as a member of the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference. Last February Sterling shut out the Bulldogs, 7-0, in a matchup that took place in Lincoln, Neb.
· Through two dual matches, the men are a combined 8-4 in singles and 4-2 in doubles while the women are 7-5 in singles and 4-2 in doubles. Two men’s players now sport 2-0 singles marks: Bindl and Rabellino. Counting the men’s and women’s teams, 10 Bulldogs have notched exactly one singles victory. While mixing things up in the early going, the doubles teams at Sterling were entirely different from the ones that were put together versus William Jewell.
· The schedule is similar this week with one nonconference match coming up on Saturday for the men and women. However, they will be much closer to home as they take on Bethany College (Kan.) at Genesis Racquet Club in Lincoln, Neb. First serve is set for 3 p.m. CT. The two programs last met in 2019 with the results being two Concordia wins – 9-0 on the women’s side and 5-4 on the men’s side. It should be noted that beginning with last year, NAIA tennis began counting doubles as just a single team point.