Tuesday, November 29, 2011

UND's Brock Nelson earns WCHA weekly honors

GRAND FORKS, N.D. – University of North Dakota sophomore forward Brock Nelson has been named Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) co-Offensive Player of the Week for his performance in UND’s sweep of fourth-ranked Colorado College last weekend.

Nelson, a 6-4, 192-pound sophomore forward from Warroad, Minn., produced six scoring points and factored in on both game-winning goals to propel the Fighting Sioux to their first series sweep of the season.

Nelson recorded three points in each game, a 7-6 victory last Friday (Nov. 25) and a 4-3 win on Saturday (Nov. 26). In Friday’s win, Nelson scored a pair of power-play goals, including the game-winner at 11:54 of the third period, and also added an assist. The following night, he scored another power-play goal and added a pair of assists, helping setting up teammate Danny Kristo’s shorthanded game-winner in the third period to earn first star honors.

In addition, Nelson fired eight shots on goal on the weekend and earned a +2 plus/minus rating. The New York Islanders’ (NHL) draftee shares the scoring lead for North Dakota this season with 17 points (10g, 7a) in 14 games, and is tied for the national lead with six power-play goals.

Nelson shared offensive player of the week honors with CC’s Rylan Schwartz, who netted a hat trick in each game of the series at UND.

Wisconsin junior defenseman Justin Schultz was named defensive player of the week, while Denver freshman goalie Juho Olkinuora earned rookie of the week honors.

UND (6-7-1, 4-6-0 WCHA) travels to Alaska Anchorage (5-7-2, 2-7-1 WCHA) on Friday and Saturday

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Section 8AA Football All-Tourney selections

Name School Grade Height Weight Position
Ross Merriman Warroad 12 5' 9" 160 QB/S
Aaron Haataja Warroad 11 5' 8" 165 RB/CB
Alex Sandahl Warroad 12 6' 176 WR/CB
Tyler James Fish Warroad11 6' 2" 301 OL/DL
Andy Foster Warroad 12 5'10" 200 MLB
Hunter Lawson Hawley 11 5'10" 150 QB/S
Riley Burns Hawley 12 5'11" 180 RB/LB
Alex Ames Hawley 11 5'10" 180 FB
Alex Schwendeman Hawley12 6' 180 LB/TE
Kris Skersick Bagley 12 6' 1" 235 FB/LB
Tyler George Bagley 12 6' 1" 170 TB/S
Nick Neeland Bagley 12 5'11" 190 QB/LB
Colby Braton Barnesville12 5' 9" 165 FB/LB
Kyle Johnson Barnesville11 6' 220 G/DE
Austin Martz Barnesville11 6' 1" 165 RB/SS
Tanner Dufault Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton 12 5'10" 163 QB
Jake Hanson Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton 12 5' 9" 219 DL
Cody Piper Frazee 12 5'11" 163 RB/DB
Daniel Janu Frazee 12 6' 5" 202 TE/DE
Bryson Vasey United North Central 12 5'11" 275 OL/DL
Tanner Burgau United North Central 12 5' 9" 160 WR/DB
Luke Halbakken Pelican Rapids 12 6' 6" 200 SE/LB
Tucker Forsgren Pelican Rapids 11 6' 5" 205 SP/LB
Christopher Zimmer Walker-H-A/Laporte 11 5'10" 205 LB

Thursday, November 17, 2011

NDSU’s Lopez Player & Setter of the Year

FORT WAYNE, Ind. - Five North Dakota State women's volleyball players earned spots on the All-Summit League teams and two Bison earned individual awards selected by a vote of the league's 10 coaches announced Thursday, Nov. 17, at the league championship banquet.

Senior Jennifer Lopez became the first player in league history be named both Player of the Year and Setter of the Year, and Kari Thompson was named Coach of the Year in her first full season at the helm of the Bison.

Junior middle hitter Megan Lambertson joined Lopez on the All-Summit League first team, and senior middle hitter Chrissy Knuth and junior outside hitter Brynn Joki were named to the second team. Outside hitter Lauren Cammack was named to the All-Freshman Team.

Oral Roberts sophomore libero Bruna Silva was named Defensive Player of the Year and IPFW outside hitter Emily Spencer was named Freshman of the Year.

Lopez guided the league's top offense in hitting percentage, kills and assists. She ranks in the league's top-four in hitting percentage (.299) and assists (10.75 per set) overall and was among the top 10 in league play.

Thompson led NDSU to its fourth straight regular-season crown and fifth straight tournament berth with a league record of 16-2. NDSU posted its fifth consecutive 20-win season and tied its Division I program record for wins with a 24-8 record.

2011 All-Summit League Volleyball Teams
First Team
Meghan Bray, Oakland, Jr., OH
Kelli Fiegen, South Dakota State, Jr., MH
Megan Lambertson, North Dakota State, Jr., MH
Jennifer Lopez, North Dakota State, Sr., S
Analaine Pelaez-Mailoto, Southern Utah, Jr., OH
Bruna Silva, Oral Roberts, So., L
Emily Spencer, IPFW, Fr., OH

Second Team
Shari Bernhardt, IUPUI, Sr., L
Brynn Joki, North Dakota State, Jr., OH
Chrissy Knuth, North Dakota State, Sr., RS
Kendall Kritenbrink, South Dakota, Fr., OH
Tessa McGill, IPFW, Jr., L
Elizabeth McVicker, Oral Roberts, Jr., MH
Megan Steenhuysen, IPFW, Jr., S

All-Freshmen Team
Lauren Cammack, North Dakota State, OH
Taylor Humm, Oakland, OH
Kendall Kritenbrink, South Dakota, OH
Ann Miller, Western Illinois, OH
Gabi Mirand, Southern Utah, S
Emily Spencer, IPFW, OH
Kendall Wienkes, IPFW, OH

Player of the Year
Jennifer Lopez, North Dakota State

Defensive Player of the Year
Bruna Silva, Oral Roberts

Setter of the Year
Jennifer Lopez, North Dakota State

Freshman of the Year
Emily Spencer, IPFW

Coach of the Year
Kari Thompson, North Dakota State

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Moller Resigns Head Football Coach Position at UMC

CROOKSTON, Minn. (November 16, 2011) – The University of Minnesota, Crookston announced this afternoon that Charles “Chuck” Moller has resigned as head football coach for the Golden Eagles.

“Coach Moller has chosen to pursue other opportunities,” said U of M, Crookston Chancellor Charles Casey. Moller was named head football coach for the Golden Eagles in December of 2010. He had been hired on a one-year contract.

Effective immediately, Assistant Football Coach Paul Miller, who served the Golden Eagles this season as offensive coordinator, will step in as interim head football coach.

“We appreciate Coach Moller’s contributions to our program over this past year,” said Athletic Director Steph Helgeson, “and we wish him and his family the best in the future.”

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Dragons Men's Basketball Signs Four Recruits for 2012-13 Season

Collin Boyles, Sports Information Coordinator

MOORHEAD, Minn. - On the opening day of regular season basketball games for Minnesota State University Moorhead, the men's club announced the signing of four recruits to add depth for seven exiting seniors.

The Dragons announced Tuesday the signing of Tyler Vaughan from Braham High School (Braham, Minn.), Damien Reinke from Becker High School (Becker, Minn.), Matt Nelson from Rosemount High School (Rosemount, Minn.) and Ryan Benoy from Baldwin-Woodville High School (Baldwin, Wisc.).

Vaughan, a 6'0" guard, earned MVP honors in the Great River Conference while recording 24.6 points, 7.7 rebounds, 7.5 assists and three steals per game in his junior season for the Braham Bombers. Vaughan took his talents into spring and summer circuits while playing with the Minnesota Comets. A two-sport athlete, Vaughan led the school's football team to the Minnesota State Tournament.

Reinke, a 6'6" forward, put up 19.3 points and 7.7 rebounds per game with the Becker Bulldogs as a junior. Reinke, a distinguished three-point shooter, played alongside Vaughan on the Comets' spring and summer circuit travel-team. Also a two-sport athlete, Reinke's play at wideout for the Bulldogs' football team has led to college recruitment in both sports.

Nelson, a 6'9" forward, has been called a team-first player while scoring 11.7 points per game in his junior season for the Rosemount Irish. The tall presence will add shot blocking ability, strong defense, scoring opportunities from the post and perimeter and intelligence while running the floor. Nelson competed with the Minnesota Select on the travel-team circuit.

Benoy, a 6'0" guard, leads the Baldwin-Woodville Blackhawks from the point after averaging 2.5 assists and 18.2 points off a .500 field goal percent as a junior. A .390 three-point percent shows the potential of his perimeter game. As MVP of the Middle Border Conference, Benoy will take on a distributor role with the Dragons while defending opponents from end-line to end-line. Benoy played on a travel-team circuit with the Wisconsin Playground Warriors.

The recruits will join the team for the 2012-13 season that will lose seven seniors from this year's squad. The Dragons women's and men's teams tip-off regular season play Tuesday night at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m., respectively. The Dragons will take on the Vikings of Valley City State University in Alex Nemzek Fieldhouse.

Ness Trusty Safety Net for the Dragons

Larry Scott, SID Emeritus

MOORHEAD, Minn. - Forgive Katy Ness for being downright defensive about her volleyball career at Minnesota State Moorhead. It's just part of the job description.

A three-year fixture in the Dragon lineup, Ness fills the defensive specialist role of libero. It's an essential and often thankless assignment, but one Ness readily accepts.

“Technically, all I can do is receive serves and play defense,” said Ness. “I was an outside (hitter) in high school, but I knew coming here I wouldn't play outside because I didn't have the height.”

Ness had a simple solution. “You just come to learn to play your role and love that part of the sport.”

Ness is well aware of the importance of the libero in today's game, and she's willing to shoulder a bigger part of the load. “I'm looked at as a leader, and if our passing is not going well I'm going to take most of the blame for it, but I like to handle the heat. I'm fine with that.”

Ness appeared in all 27 matches this year and was credited with 567 digs, an average of 6.03 per game. She finished second in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference with 6.38 digs a game and earned honorable mention all-conference honors. She was also saluted as NSIC Player of the Week five times in 2011.

Ness was installed in the MSUM starting lineup early in her freshman season and finished with 456 digs. As a sophomore she reached double figures in digs in 22 matches, and finished with 447 digs, and hiked her career total to 1,470. She needs 338 to replace Emily Hegg as the Dragons' all-time leader.

A three-time all-conference selection at Ada-Borup High School, Ness was named to the Minnesota All-State Volleyball team as a senior. She was also honored as team and conference MVP.

Ness helped the Cougars advance to a third place finish at the 2008 Minnesota State High School Volleyball Championships. She was named to the Minnesota All-State Tournament team and earned All-State Academic honors as well. Ness also served as basketball and track captain of the Cougars.

Despite her classy prep pedigree, Ness knew she would face some adjustments in adapting to college volleyball. It could all be a blur at times.

“The speed of the game, and rotating from base to defense, that was the biggest change,” Ness said. “Getting to your spot is so important. If you're not to your spot when the ball is being hit, there's no way you're going to get it.”

Ness also understands the need for more lineup adjustments. “In college if you're having an off night you can be taken out, but it doesn't mean you're going to lose your spot for good. In high school you weren't likely to be taken out even if you were having a bad game.”

An Elementary Education major with a Math minor, Ness has been named to the Dean's List as a freshman and sophomore, and admits reaching a balance between academics and athletics is taxing at times. “You learn to get used to is, when you have a day off you take advantage of it,” said Ness.

When she graduated from Ada-Borup High, Ness wasn't about to put athletics on the backburner. Sorting out the options was another matter.

“I was looking at here (MSU Moorhead) or Valley City State, because my parents are both Valley City alumni,” she said. “If I went there I was going to play two sports, basketball and volleyball.”

Ness ultimately settled on MSUM. “It came down to if I really wanted to play two sports, and the distance. Plus, I'm such a homebody, and my sisters both live up here. That was part of it, too.”

Playing in the strongest volleyball conference in NCAA Division II presents a lot of challenges for Ness and her Dragon volleyball pals, but she also insists it also affords some special opportunities.

“You're playing against national champions and some of the best players in the country. That's always fun. I came from a high school where we didn't lose much, so it is challenge, but that's what motivates me. We're the underdog, so we have to prove them wrong.”

MSUM head coach Tammy Blake-Kath has been delighted with the contributions of Ness.

“Katy is one of our captains, and a great leader for us,” said Blake-Kath. “She's the glue who holds us together, a great role model for our younger players, especially with her defensive work ethic. Katie is very competitive and has improved a lot with her defense and passing game. That's become one of our real strengths.”

MSU Moorhead, stocked entirely with underclassmen, finished 13-14 overall and 11-9 in the NSIC this fall. The young Dragons suffered through some growing pains in 2011, but Ness is confident the experience will pay major dividends next season.

“We're young and inexperienced, and you can't coach experience,” said Ness. “You just have to play it day-by-day and put the time in.”

Ness will certainly be there again next year to help mentor the younger Dragons. “We want the freshmen to feel comfortable coming in. They're our teammates and we look at everyone the same. Overall, it's just getting the confidence and getting used to the pace of the game.”

Ness plans to explore a career in teaching and coaching in the future and she confident his athletic career, especially volleyball, has taught her some valuable lessons.

“You learn a number of things, including responsibility.”

Consider Katy Ness a fast learner.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Top of the State Conference Honors

2011 Top of State Conference Champions - Kittson County Central Bearcats
Coach of Year - Cory Waling and Staff, Kittson County Central Bearcats

Conference MVP's
Co-Lineman: Alex Yeager, Badger/Greenbush-Middle River & Kyle Braun, Kittson County Central
Back: Alex Aguilar, Climax/Fisher
Co-Special Teams: Corey Roach, Sacred Heart & Daniel Polansky, Goodridge/Grygla

Alex Rhen - BGMR
Timm Ingle - BGMR
Preston Swenson – Grygla-Goodridge
Drew Monson - Grygla-Goodridge
Jake Saurdiff - Grygla-Goodridge
Devin Drangsveit - Grygla-Goodridge
Daniel Ewens - EGFSH
Blake Labine – Stephen-Argyle
Davis Mills – Stephen-Argyle
Nick Olson – Northern Freeze
Tyler Rogstad – Clearbrook-Gonvick
Weston Bakke – Clearbrook-Gonvick
Dillon Fenno – Climax-Fisher
Alex Wentzel – Climax-Fisher
Mason Grimes – Climax-Fisher
Zach Rynning - KCC
Derek Coffield - KCC
Kyle Petersburg - KCC
Tyler Lyberg - KCC
Tanner Lyberg - KCC

Honorable Mention
Nick Dostal - BGMR
John Melin - EGFSH
Daniel Haugen – Stephen-Argyle
Seth Hoglo – Northern Freeze
Tyler Johnson – Clearbrook-Gonvick
Michael Beiswenger – Climax-Fisher
Tucker Cosley - KCC
Keith Sparby – Grygla-Goodridge

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Area Women's BB signings

(Crookston, Minn.)- University of Minnesota, Crookston head women’s basketball coach Mike Roysland announced today the signings of Avery Jackson and Katrina Moenkedick to a National Letter of Intent to play for the Golden Eagles during the 2012-13 season.

Jackson is a 5-8, guard from Wadena Deer Creek High School in the Mid State Conference. She is an all-conference player and was twice named the Best Defensive Player. She earned the Hustle Award and was named to the North Central All-Star team. Her AAU team was named Gopher State Champions four times and she earned two silver medals at the National State Games of America.

Jackson plans to major in early childhood education at the University of Minnesota, Crookston. She is the daughter of Junelle and Jay Jackson.

Moenkedick is a 5-10, forward/center from Perham High School in the Heart O’ Lakes Conference. She is a three-time all-conference selection, a two-time conference MVP, and a two-time all-state honorable mention player. Moenkedick is a two-year team captain and earned the team’s best field-goal percentage and most steals in tenth grade and best field-goal percentage in eleventh grade.

Moenkedick is undeclared on a major at the University of Minnesota, Crookston. She is the daughter of Katy and Andy Moenkedick.

MOORHEAD, Minn. - The Minnesota State University Moorhead women's basketball team announced Wednesday, Nov. 9 the signing of four recruits, including Jessy Noreen of Hawley High School.

Noreen, a 5'7" guard, is currently a three-time selection to the All-Heart O' Lakes Conference team. Hawley High School, with a record of 28-1, made an appearance in the 2010 Minnesota High School State Tournament. Noreen averaged 11.6 points, 2.5 assists and 1.5 steals per game as a junior. Noreen has totaled 1,018 points in three seasons at HHS. Basketball is one of three sports Noreen participates in as she has lettered in softball and volleyball as well. She earned five letters in softball following five All-Conference team selections. She also is a two-time All-Conference volleyball athlete.

Other signees include Leah Miller from Lawton-Bronson High School (Hornick, Iowa), Savanna Handevidt from Stillwater High School (Stillwater, Minn.) and Rachel Boegeman from Shakopee High School (Shakopee, Minn.).

The Dragon recruits will join the team for the 2012-13 season that will graduate only two seniors by that time. The 2011-12 season starts Nov. 15 as the men's and women's teams look to take on Valley City State University at Alex Nemzek Fieldhouse

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

UMC's Brittany Looker Named NSIC Volleyball All-Conference Honorable Mention

(Burnsville, Minn.)- The Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) announced today the 2011 Volleyball All-Conference team, as voted on by the league coaches. University of Minnesota, Crookston freshman, outside hitter, Brittany Looker (OH, 5-10, Fr., Rochester, Minn.) earned recognition for her play as a member of the NSIC All-Conference Honorable Mention team.

To date, Looker has played in 104 sets and started all 28 matches. She leads the Golden Eagles with 351 kills (3.38 K/Set). She is second on the team with 28 service aces and 234 defensive digs. At the net, Looker amassed six solo blocks and 34 assisted blocks. She is tied for fifth in the NSIC in total kills and in eighth in kills per set. She was named KROX Athlete of the Week for the week of October 3, 2011

Looker is majoring in biology at the University of Minnesota, Crookston. She is the daughter of Jim and Sherry Looker.

For more information, visit the Golden Eagle Athletics website at: www.goldeneaglesports.com.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

NorthStar Football Players of the Week

(October 31, 2011)
The North Star Football Conference has announced the final Players of the Week for the 2011 football season.

Tyler George (Bagley) earned the East Division’s Offensive Player of the Week while teammate Chance Halverson garnered the Defensive Player of the Week award.

For the West Division, Justin Haugvedt (Warren-Alvarado-Oslo) and Nick Otto (Mahnomen) earned Co-Defensive Players of the Week and Luke Littlewolf (Mahnomen) was named the Offensive Player of the Week.

Tyler George (Sr., Tailback) led the Flyers to a 26-14 victory over Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton in the first round of the Section 8AA playoffs. Tyler had over 100 rushing while scoring a touchdown. Tyler also has big contributions on defense and special teams.

Chance Halverson (Jr., Lineman) has been one of the unsung heroes for the Flyer defense all season long. His efforts in practice and during games have been an inspiration to his teammates as season long. He may not stuff the stat sheet, but his contributions are immeasurable.

Justin Haugvedt (Sr., Defensive End) had 5 solo tackles and 3 assists. He also had 1sack, caused a fumble and added a fumble recovery in Warren-Alvarado-Oslo’s win over Cass Lake-Bena. The Ponies also defeated Fosston and will now play Fertile-Beltrami for the Section 8A Championship.

Luke Littlewolf (Sr., Tight End) had three touchdown catches in two games this past week. He also blocked extremely well from his Tight End position. Luke was a big part of the Mahnomen offense as the team won their first two playoff games and will be playing for the Section 6A Championship against Browerville.

Nick Otto (Jr., Linebacker) had 12 tackles in two games despite not playing the entire time. When Nick was making the play, he certainly was disrupting the play for his teammates. Nick will help lead the defense for Mahnomen as they battle for the Section 6A Championship.