The theme of the week was cancellations due to the life threatening cold that we were subjected to. NDSU was pretty lightly hit on the sports front with only one game getting axed. So as the weekend started, the Track & Field teams hosted the "Bison Open." It was another dominating performance by many of the participants for the home team but for the full break down of the men's and women's results, click the link. Suffice it to say that NDSU is establishing itself on the national stage to a degree that maybe only the Softball team had previously managed. It seems that with each passing week they ascend the ranks of the athletics department for national success, if you've looked at the results and actually thought about but aren't impressed I would like to know why & how.
Friday also featured an obliteration of Utah Valley by the Wrestling team 47 - 3. I've been to a couple showdowns this year but still don't fully grasp how the scoring works. I don't need to though to know that a 44 point margin could be a dictionary definition for domination.
Then Saturday & Sunday brought visits by the Basketball teams to Western Illinois. Thanks in large part to 22 points off the bench by Deng Geu & 15 by Vinnie Shahid, the Bison edged the Leathernecks 78 - 76. The women followed that up with a strong fourth quarter that wasn't strong enough to make up for the previous three quarters in which Western handled their business. NDSU got 12 or more from four different players but the defense wasn't able to get enough stops to make up for the 20 free throw shots that were attempted, with 75% going through. There's still reason for optimism but the likelihood of a middle seed in Sioux Falls is beginning to wane for the women.
Moorhead State started off with a trip by the Wrestling team to St. Cloud State. They pulled out a pair of the matches but the other eight went the wrong way, leading to the 32 - 6 final score. They followed that up on Friday at Southwest MN but still came up a bit short, 24 - 16.
The Track teams had competitors at the "Bison Open" on Friday & Saturday, highlighted by Chris Cook's high jump victory. For the rest of the results, here's the link.
The success kept right on going as the Tennis team were victorious in their first event of the year against Concordia. The Water team also faced off against Concordia & won decisively, 147 - 53.
It wasn't all sunshine and rainbows though, as the winning streak was snapped for women's Basketball, to go along with a loss for the guys. Both games against Mankato State were down to the wire but the Mavericks just managed to finish with the upper hand in each, 88 - 87 against the men & 76 - 70 against the women. Neither team would have to wait long to get back to their winning ways, as they travelled to Concordia - St. Paul on Saturday. The women started slowly and had to come back in the second half but managed to pull off an overtime victory. Point/rebound double-double's by Megan Hintz & Kiley Borowicz were driving forces in the win but they also got 16 from Jacky Volkert. The guy's on the other hand jumped out to a 13 point halftime lead that they were never forced to relinquish. 26 from Bryce Irsfeld tied for the game high and paced the way for the sextet of double figure scorers for the Dragons as they won 102 - 90.
Concordia started the back half of the week with a visit to St. Catherine's by the women's Basketball team. They kept it close into the break but then were doubled up in the third quarter while not being able to make up the ground in the fourth. They returned to the court on Saturday against St. Olaf but came up one shot short thanks to an impressive fourth quarter rally from down 10.
Friday continued the female efforts as Hockey, Tennis & Water were all taken to in competition. Hamline humilated them 10 - 0 on the ice while it was 9-0 on the Tennis court & 147 - 53 in the water.
Saturday didn't prove to be much better. The men's Basketball team fell 79 - 58 against St. Olaf. The men's Tennis team lost 8 - 1 against Gustavus Adolphus. The women's Hockey team kept it to a one goal game in the rematch but still came up short. The women's Tennis team lost 9 - 0. But the Track & Field teams managed to finish in fourth place at NDSU's Open.
The men's Tennis team closed out the week against Carlton, 7 - 2 the way of the other guys.
That's pretty close to a rock bottom week, or at least so it would seem. I'd like to think that things could only go up for there!
It's the day of the NFL championship but it also marks the start of a make or break week for team Howl. Last night may have simultaneously shown how close and how far away they are from a return trip to the post season, much less being a top team in the association. So like I said last week, if they're going to be in the lottery again then get the best odds possible. It makes my skin crawl slightly but that would mean losses to all of the bottom feeders that are on the crest of the schedule. It should not be that way but coulda, woulda, shoulda doesn't help anything. It's the same old MO.
So that ends the wrap up on a low note but with all the cancellations this week, it'll be better starting tomorrow in the FMWF!