Hello Mustang fans!
The fall sports season goes by so quickly. The SMSU Athletics Department is in a transitional period as we are coming to the end of our fall sports calendar and beginning the winter sports schedule.
Please join the Mustang family this Saturday at "Andy Wiersma Day" in support of Lucas and Lyndsey Post and their daughter, Mia, who is battling cancer. A portion of the gate and apparel sales at Saturday's game will go to the Post family to help with the costs they will incur on their journey.
This weekend, the NCAA Champion Magazine will be on campus doing a feature story on the SMSU wheelchair basketball program. SMSU has one of only two wheelchair basketball programs in the country to be under the administrative direction of the department of athletics at their respective institutions. SMSU and Edinboro University (Pa.) are the two schools that have an athletics department supervising the wheelchair basketball programs and both are members of NCAA Division II.
The Collegiate Division of the Wheelchair Basketball Association has been working hard to organize the membership in the areas of governance, compliance and organizational structure. This is a process both myself and head wheelchair basketball coach Lew Shaver have been working on over the last three years. At SMSU, we have continually integrated the rules and regulations of NCAA Division II into our wheelchair basketball program. It has been a transitioned Coach Shaver has embraced and is beginning to see the benefits with regards to recruiting and the academic success of our student-athletes.
This Sunday, you may see our student-athletes out in the community raking and cleaning up lawns for Marshall residents as part of the annual SMSU Work-a-thon. The Work-a-thon is a dual-purpose event providing our teams a civic engagement project in the region while raising money for our sports programs. Student-athletes ask for a donation to their individual programs for the volunteer work they perform in the Marshall community. For all the information on SMSU Athletics, please go to SMSUmustangs.com.
Who won last year's game between the Mustang men's basketball team and the SMSU Alumni squad as part of Andy Wiersma Day?
The first person to email me at MustangHoofPrints@SMSU.edu with the correct answer to this question will receive an SMSU t-shirt.
This Week in Mustang Athletics:
The No. 1-ranked SMSU volleyball team (21-1 overall, 13-1 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference) will be on the road this weekend at Winona State (18-6, 10-4) on Friday and at Upper Iowa (14-9, 8-6) on Saturday. The Mustangs are coming off wins last week over the University of Sioux Falls, the University of Mary and Minot State. The Mustangs will look to extend their 14-match winning streak. Friday's game against the Warriors will be at 7 p.m., and Saturday's contest with Upper Iowa will start at 3 p.m. This is a very important road trip for the Mustangs as we close down the conference schedule impacting the NSIC standings and regional rankings.
The SMSU soccer team (7-7-1 overall, 5-7-1 NSIC) will host its final home game at the Regional Event Center this Friday as the Mustangs will welcome the Augustana Vikings (4-10-2, 3-8-2) at 7 p.m. The Mustangs will then travel to take on Wayne State (1-14-1, 1-11-1) on Sunday at 1 p.m. to close out the regular season. After two losses last weekend to Minnesota State-Mankato and Concordia-St. Paul, the Mustangs will need some help from Bemidji State, Concordia-St. Paul, Minnesota-Duluth and St. Cloud State this week in order to qualify for postseason play.
The SMSU football team (3-5 NSIC, 2-2 NSIC South) football team heads on the road for the final time this season, taking on Winona State (6-2 NSIC, 3-1 NSIC South) on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. at Maxwell Field in Winona. Winona State is ranked No. 7 in the first Super Region 3 rankings, which were released on Monday.
Two of the top offensive units in the NSIC meet on Saturday, with SMSU ranked fourth in the conference in rushing offense and fifth in total offense, while WSU is fourth in total offense, including fifth in passing offense and sixth in rushing offense. The Mustangs will return home for their final two games of the season, facing Concordia-St. Paul on Nov. 3 and Augustana on Nov. 10.
The SMSU women's cross country team finished in 14th place, while the Mustang men's team finished 13th, at the NSIC Championships held last Saturday at the University of Minnesota's Les Bolstad Golf Course.
The two Mustang squads were competing in the conference championships for the first time since the programs were reinstated earlier this summer. Alex Solheim led the SMSU men with a 71st-place finish with a time of 29 minutes, 54 seconds, while Demond Carter finished in 77th place with a time of 33:01. Andrew Feucht (33:18), Jason Bentley (33:26) and Ryan Punke (38:00) rounded out SMSU's finishers.
On the women's side, AnnMarie Dykstra was SMSU's top finisher with a time of 27:03 to finish in 72nd place. Tatum Larson recorded a 74th-place finish with a time of 27:15, followed by Diana Moe (27:53), Kaelyn Turner (31:50), Karli Tholen (32:10), Emily Hartwig (32:37) and Amanda Estes (32:49).
SMSU returns to competition on Nov. 3 for the NCAA region championships hosted by Missouri Southern State University in Joplin, Mo.
The SMSU men's basketball team opens its exhibition season this week with a pair of home games at the R/A Facility. Wednesday night, the Mustangs welcomed Waldorf College to Marshall, while on Saturday, the Mustangs face the SMSU Alumni team as part of "Andy Wiersma Day", with the tip-off slated for 4 p.m.
SMSU head men's basketball coach Brad Bigler also announced that a benefit during both games will be held for the family of Lucas and Lyndsey Post from Prinsburg, whose 3-year-old daughter, Mia, is battling cancer.
Gate proceeds from the two games will be donated to the Post family, as will proceeds from SMSU basketball apparel items sold throughout the games. Lucas and Lyndsey are both graduates of SMSU. Lucas played basketball at SMSU during the 1998-99 season and was a teammate of Bigler's, while Lyndsey and Bigler worked together in the SMSU Office of Admission when both attended SMSU.
Lucas is currently the head boys' basketball coach at Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sundburg High School, while Lyndsey is an elementary school teach in the MACCRAY school district.
The SMSU women's basketball will open up the season on Oct. 31 in Omaha, Neb., taking on Creighton University in an exhibition game at 5:05 p.m. The Mustangs will be home on Nov. 5 in an exhibition against Bethel College in the R/A Facility at 6:15 p.m.
The Mustang wheelchair basketball team will hit the court this weekend, hosting the University of Illinois men's and women's teams in the R/A Facility on Friday and Saturday. Friday's games will be at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m., respectively, with Saturday's game being in the morning at 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m., respectively.
The SMSU wrestling team has been practicing for their first competition of the year on Nov. 10 at the Bison Open in Fargo, N.D. The Mustangs will wrestle in the first dual match of the season on Nov. 30 at Concordia-Moorhead. The Mustangs' first home dual match will be on Dec. 5 in the PE Gym.
I would like to wish all of our teams the best of luck this season!
g No one was able to provide the correct answer to a very tough Mustang Hoofprints Question last week: How many of our faculty, service faculty and staff members at SMSU are proud alums of the university? SMSU has 96 faculty and staff members who have graduated from the university.