NDSU started the week with a win by the Wrestlers in Utah, 20 - 15. A couple of days later the Basketball teams were in Omaha. The men played on Wednesday and won 86 - 78 with a quartet of double-figures scorers. The women followed suit with their own victory on Thursday, 74 - 65 and similarly had four top contributors on offense. Into the weekend, the Track & Field facility was busy with their Open and not surprisingly, both the men and the women had strong showings. Pun only partly intended. Meanwhile, in the Southeast, the Softball team got some super early Spring work in against other major programs in the sport but only prevailed against the last of them, Southern Illinois. I know, that's not exactly an elite foe but South Carolina and Ohio State are. The men's Basketball team returned to the court on Saturday against another title hopeful at the SHAC and the guys took care of business in large part because Vinnie Shahid continued his torrid pace, this time with 31 points. He was joined in dubs by four others, including Sam Griesel with a season-high 13. The Wrestlers rounded out Saturday against Fresno State with a 28 - 7 victory. The week closed with the aforementioned SB win that had NDSU score four of the final five runs on their way to the 5 - 2 win. Back at home, the women's Basketball team pushed ORU to overtime but then came up just short, 80 - 76.
Wrestling also opened the week for the Dragons but in a loss to Mankato 36 - 12. Their Track teams also participated in the Bison event and managed some noteworthy accomplishments. The Basketball teams started the weekend in Marshall and managed a split, 67 - 52 for the men while 66 - 62 continued what has been a disappointing season for the women to this point of the year. As they have been so often, the guys were lead by Gavin Baumgartner with 23. On Saturday they were in Sioux Falls but each one ended up on the wrong end of the final scores. The Tennis team made their home debut against Mankato on Saturday and was unblemished when it counted most. They followed that up on Sunday with another 7 - 0 win against SW MN to remain undefeated on the young season.
Concordia started with a 2-step against Hamline but they missed the beat in both chances. On Wednesday they traveled to Bethel for another doubleheader but with no better end. The Hockey teams had a home & home against Gustavus and the men claimed victory, 3 - 2 with an Alex Stoley goal in the third period. The rematch was more one-sided for the home team and the women couldn't do any better back in Moorhead. The Basketball teams also tried again to get W's but to no avail against St. Thomas. Things weren't much better as the Track teams each took seventh at NDSU's event and the men's Tennis was routed in both of their events on Saturday as well. The same goes for the women as they were at St. Thomas but couldn't hold up.
While the next one's on the roundup tried their hands at some improvement this week, it doesn't hold a candle to what the HOWL pulled off since last Sunday. I reacted to the myriad moves with an H/F but that didn't include the first game of action by the retooled team. Franchise records, even for one such as Minnesota's, won't fall every game but the whoopin they put on a title favorite was a jarring way to start the remainder of the season! I still would have liked to see them keep Covington for his defense and leadership but they put some balm on that for sure!
Minnesota's Baseball team had a peculiar week, to put it mildly. After word broke that they had flipped one of the top pitching prospects for a top-half of the rotation ready starter things got complicated. The reason seems to be because Boston decided to get greedy and/or tried to take advantage of a "lesser" organization. Which put the trade on hold for the time being but showed in a very real way that the guys running the show have the sort of backbone it takes to win a championship & become legendary in MN & the region at-large. Even if the now rumored trade with LA-D doesn't go through, it's pretty obvious that the brain trust wants to reinforce the starting rotation even more than they already have. So sometime between their travel to Florida and the deadline for deals, it's all but a guarantee that the guys under salary now will not be the only ones collecting checks from the TC's. That is great news for each and every championship starved sports fan in the heartland!
Fargo's hockey squad spent the weekend in Iowa, two days in Waterloo then a one-off in Sioux City. Waterloo took game 1, 2 - 1 and then on Saturday beat Fargo 5 - 2. It wasn't a corn sweep as Faro won the finale 6 - 3. Into the 3rd period, Fargo held a 4 - 0 lead. Jack Robilotti scored first, followed by Carter Randklew & then two by Lynden Breen. Sioux City cut the lead in half but Jake Dunlap & Adam Gajarsky finished with two of the last three goals to finalize the double-up. Fargo hosts Omaha for a pair next weekend.
On Tuesday, Sheyenne was at Shanley for a doubleheader which each school managed to get a win from. A few days later Kindred was at Oak Grove for boys hoops and the Vikings pushed their winning streak one step further. But for more on all the games, you know what to do!
Of special note, Moorhead's Chrisanto D’Agostino added to his resume with high finishes in several lifting events, capped with a national championship for his weight class!