Well, the all-conference teams are being announced, which means only one thing: the fall sports season must be over. I can't believe it's done already; it seems like it was just September and I was freaking out about getting everything going and figuring everything out! Now it's on to winter sports -- basketball and wrestling -- and, unfortunately, winter weather. Yuck.
This blog isn't about weather, though, and really -- I've lived in the Midwest my whole life, so nasty weather is nothing new to me.
Anyway... it was quite a fall sports season for several of our teams here at DWU. The football team wrapped up its season with a loss to No. 7 Morningside College Saturday afternoon. The Tigers finished 5-5, which is the second-best record in coach Brad Pole's six years at the helm. A few slight changes here and there and the Tigers could have been 7-3... but that's all in the past, and 5-5 is nothing to be ashamed of. DWU had some big wins, set a few records (Josh Endres for the most rushing yards in a game, Anthony Muilenburg for the most catches in a game) and learned a thing or two. It's sad to see all the seniors go, but exciting to think about what next year brings.
Both soccer teams made it deep into the GPAC playoffs. The men made it to the semifinals in their first-ever trip to the GPAC tournament, and lost in double overtime. It was an exciting game, and a hard way to end the season, but again -- nothing to be ashamed of. The women made it to the GPAC title game for the second straight year, but fell to Hastings, which seems to be a step ahead of everyone in the league this year. Goalie Dani Richardson is the league's co-Defensive Player-of-the-Year for the second straight year, and the Tigers had four girls (Richardson, Ellie Peterson, Kasha Roberts and Sarah Weidler) on the All-GPAC First Team.
Since fall sports are over, we've got to have something to fill our time here in the athletic department. Lucky for us, the basketball teams both have had a fairly full nonconference schedule for the past few weeks. The Tiger men are 5-1 with a few huge wins under their belts. Their only loss was to Southwest Minnesota State, a (very good) NCAA Division II school. DWU beat No. 6 Black Hills State in overtime, and most recently, beat in-state rival Dakota State by 14 points in overtime.
As expected, Brady Wiebe is having an excellent season, and senior Chase Walder is also having a fantastic year. He scored 28 points -- all in the second half and overtime -- against Dakota State, and his 3-point shots have kept the Tigers in games. Newcomers German Madueno and Kris Wilson have also played big roles for the Tigers.
The Tiger women are young this year, and are 0-5 as I write this with a game at York College tonight. DWU starts a freshman, two sophomores a junior and a senior, but is dealing with quite a few injuries and, of course, the learning curve that comes with having so many true freshmen on the roster.
The Tiger men and women open GPAC play Saturday (Nov. 20) when they host Dordt College. Should be a fun game. Who ya rootin for?