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Loper Basketball Schedules Released

The Nebraska-Kearney Athletic Department announced today themen's and women's basketball schedules for the upcoming 2014-15 season.

Both Loper squads will host 10 MIAA opponents as well as South Dakota Mines in non-conference action on Friday, January 23rd.

The UNK men, going 15-13 in 2013-14 and reaching the second round of the MIAA Tournament, will also entertain former RMAC rival Colorado School of Mines (Nov. 15th) and in-state foes Doane College (Dec. 1st) and Hastings College (Dec. 15th).

On the women's side, the Lopers also host Midland University (Nov. 17th), region rival Southwest Minnesota State (Nov. 21st), Oklahoma Panhandle State (Dec. 31st) and former UNK basketball alumni in an exhibition tilt (Nov. 8th).

In 2013-14, the UNK women went 10-17 and reached the first round of the MIAA Tournament.

"The 2014-15 season promises to bring exciting Loper basketball to Kearney. Improvements made in the Health & Sports Center and new-look Under Armour uniforms will help jumpstart our atmosphere," said UNK Athletics Director Dr. Paul Plinske. "We've changed most of our Saturday start times so spectators can come at night to cheer on the Lopers."

The majority of home games this year will be at 5:30 p.m. (women) and 7:30 p.m.(men). In addition, most of UNK's home games will be held prior to January 23rd.

On Saturday, November 15th, the Loper men will honor the 2003 squad as a "Team of Distinction." That group went 30-3, won the RMAC regular season title and advanced to the NCAA Elite Eight in Lakeland, Fla.

Six days later, it'll be a Homecoming for SMSU women's head coach Allison Kruger. She'll bring her team to Kearney for the first time after starring as a Loper from 1999-04. A two-time All-American, Kruger is tied for third in school history with 1,682 points.

Both UNK teams start official practice on Wednesday, October 15th.

UNK Dominating Small Tournament

Led by junior Ana Summers, the Nebraska-Kearney women's golf team has the lead after the first round of the Chadron State Invitational.

The five-team event is being played at Southern Hills G.C. in Hot Springs, S.D.

Summers (Bellevue, Colo.) shot a career-low 76 to lead the field by five strokes. As a team, UNK fired a 338 to hold a seven shot lead over Dakota Wesleyan. Black Hills State (367), Chadron State (399) and South Dakota Mines (477) are well behind.

Besides Summers, Texas senior Stephanie Moorberg is fourth (84), Utah freshman Samantha Crawford is tied for 7th (88), South Dakota junior Katelyn Haschke is tied for 10th (90) and Wyoming sophomore Ashlee Leum is 20th (106).

Finally, two Lopers are playing as individuals. Colorado sophomore Katherine Kemp is tied for second (81) with Unadilla senior Stephanie Rodgers tied for 21st (107).

The final round starts Tuesday morning.

Abdullah Named Big Ten Co-Player of the Week

Nebraska I-back Ameer Abdullah earned Big Ten weekly honors for the second time this season on Monday.

Abdullah shared Big Ten Offensive honors with Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon following Nebraska's 41-31 win over Miami Saturday night. Abdullah totaled 313 all-purpose yards – an NCAA single-game high in 2014 – as he rushed for 229 yards on 35 carries and two scores and added a three-yard touchdown reception. He also had four kickoff returns for 81 yards in the win, as his all-purpose yard total was second in Nebraska school history. He moved from fifth to third on Nebraska's career rushing list while also becoming the Huskers' career all-purpose yards leader, passing College Football Hall of Famer Johnny Rodgers.

Abdullah also earned the weekly honor against Florida Atlantic in the season opener when he rushed for 232 yards. Abdullah is one of only two players in the country with multiple 200-yard rushing games in 2014. Nebraska has won at least one Big Ten weekly award in each of the first four weeks of the season.

The Big Ten honor was one of several for Abdullah, as he was also named to the Paul Hornung Award Honor Roll for the second this season on Monday and was chosen as the Athlon Sports Big Ten Player of the Week.

Missouri Southern Runs Over Lopers

Missouri Southern State's option offense churned out 364 rushing yards and the Lions defense held Nebraska-Kearney in check in a 34-17 victorySaturday afternoon at Ron & Carol Cope Stadium at Foster Field.

This was the first meeting between the two since 1988. In front of a Homecoming crowd of 4,515, Southern improves to 1-2 while UNK falls to 0-3.

Averaging 397 rushing yards per game last year to rank second nationally, the Lions averaged 5.7 yards per carry today with eight different players having at least one tote. Starting quarterback Jay McDowell left early on but backup Scott Lathrop led five second half scoring drives, rushed for 64 yards and threw one TD pass.

Junior back Giresse Forchu was tough to stop all day, finishing with team-high in carries (25) and yards (110). He capped a 10-play, 46-yard drive to at the 7:08 mark of the 1st quarter by running in from one yard out.

UNK's defense did force the Lions to punt on four straight possessions. Those drives totaled 48 yards and then another drive resulted in a missed 51-yard field goal.

Offensively, the Lopers punted the first four times they touched the ball. A 26-yard punt return by junior Cougar Williams (Hanford, Calif.) put the ball in Lions territory midway through the 2nd quarter.

Junior running back Romero Cotton (Hutchinson, Kans.) and junior QB Bronson Marsh (Millard South H.S.) had back-to-back runs of 11 yards to move the ball further down
the field. Freshman Brendan Wentling (Grand Island) then kicked a 32-yard field goal.

Having a plus 17 minute advantage in time of possession, Southern wore down UNK in the second half. They had scoring drives of 87, 34, 50, 72 and 24 yards. To gain those yards, the Lions needed 37 plays (7.2 avg.).

The scores included a 27-yard run by Chris Jeffries, a 35-yard pass from Lathrop to Anthony Cannon and field goals of 35 and 39 yards by Brock Renken.

UNK didn't go away, finishing with scoring drives of 81 and 75 yards, respectively. Marsh threw a 26-yard TD pass to Williams and then tossed a 14-yard scoring pass to Cotton with 1:21 to go.

Besides Forchu and Lathrop, Shannon Saunders had 15 carries for 57 yards and one TD. Defensively, the Lions had 15 TFL's, including four sacks.

Marsh had 18 carries for 54 yards and was 15 of 27 in the air for 140 yards and those two scores. Cotton had 10 carries for 21 yards with junior Allen Sampson (Tampa, Fla.) having four receptions for 41 yards.

Facing a ground and pound attack, the heart of the Loper defense was busy all day. Sophomore ILB Tyke Kozeal (Sargent) was in on 19 tackles, fellow inside backer Josh Papa (David City) had 16 and three others – OLB Devontay Lefore (Omaha Centarl), end Matt Bowman (Kearney Catholic) and tackle Jack Wardyn (Palmer) -- tallied 13 apiece.

UNK travels to Central Missouri. The Mules are 1-2 after a 37-15 loss to No. 1 NW Missouri State.

Doane Hands Hastings First Loss

The Hastings College football team was clicking on all cylinders in the first quarter before Doane came back to defeat Hastings 28-24 on Saturday.
After getting a defensive stop in Doane's first possession, Hastings wasted no time marching 85-yards in just three plays highlighted by Matt Overmiller connecting with Noah Housh for 75-yards down to the Doane four where Ramiro Flores took it in from there for the 7-0 lead.
The Tigers answered right back marching 72-yards on nine plays capped off by a 1-yard touchdown by Kenneth Boggs to tie things up 7-7.
The Bronco offense went right back to work marching 73-yards in eight plays as Flores picked up his second rushing touchdown of the game and after the extra point the Hastings led 14-7 with 5:34 remaining in the first quarter.
After trading punts, Doane would get great field position when Hastings was called for a 15-yard penalty on the return setting up great field position for the Tigers at the Hastings 27-yard line.
From there it would only take two plays for the Tigers to score to tie things up 14-14.
Once again Doane did not have an answer for the Bronco offense as Hastings marched 75-yards in seven plays as Overmiller would find Jordan Wallman for the 32-yard touchdown on the final play of the first quarter. Hastings led 21-14 after one quarter and it looked like things were set up for yet another track meet.
Hastings piled up 236-yards of total offense in the first quarter.
The game would then slow down for both squads as Hastings would take a 24-21 lead into the halftime break.
Doane would take the lead in the 4th quarter marching 80-yards in eight plays when Brandon Stuart would find Mitch Marvin for the 18-yard score and the 28-24 lead with12:08 remaining.
Hastings would then get the ball back after trading punts and mount a charge with just over 7:30 remaining.
The Broncos would take the ball down to the Tiger 25-yard line before Overmiller was picked off by Cole Wiseman as Hastings would be unable to mount another threat.
Hastings out gained Doane 540-yards to 344-yards but untimely penalties showed costly for the Broncos.
Overmiller finished the day throwing for 384-yards and a score.
Flores ran for 116-yards on 24 carries and two touchdowns.
Hastings is now 2-1 (1-1) on the season and will be back in action Saturday Sept. 27 as Dakota Wesleyan comes to town for homecoming weekend with kick-off set for1:00 p.m. at Lloyd Wilson Field.

Loper Volleyball Bounce Back After First Loss

The 4th-ranked Nebraska-Kearney volleyball team got a combined 22 kills from outside hitters LaRose Currie and Kinslie TeKolste to sweep Missouri Southern State (-10, -20, -17) Saturday afternoon at the Health & Sports Center.

UNK (10-1, 2-1) bounces back from a loss to Central Oklahoma while the Lions fall to 3-8 (0-3).

In the starting rotation for the first time, Currie (Vail, Colo.) had 12 kills, hit .435 and served up four of the Lopers' seven aces. Next, TeKolste (Lincoln SE) was at 10 kills and a .333 hitting efficiency with sophomore middle Bailey Sokolowski (Kearney Catholic HS) at nine kills and a team-best .571 attack percentage.

Hitting a solid .326, the Lopers were in control all afternoon but Southern did make a push late in the second set. A Currie kill stopped an 8-2 MSSU run and made the score 24-20. Junior setter Erin Seele (Johnstown, Colo.) called her own number to give UNK a 2-0 lead in the match.

She finished with 38 assists, eight digs and four kills in six swings.

Katie Politte led the Lions with eight kills and two digs.

Emporia State comes to town Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m.


Teams Combine for 30 Blocks

Kearney, Neb. – The Central Oklahoma Bronchos got 20 kills from junior outside Barbara Jackson and recorded 16 blocks to rally past 4th-ranked Nebraska-Kearney (-23, 18-25, 23-25, -21, -10) Friday night at the Health & Sports Center.

UCO (10-0, 2-0) remains unbeaten while the Lopers (9-1, 1-1) fall for the first time in 2014.

Last year, UCO came to Kearney with an unblemished record but dropped three close sets. Finishing the year with a 24-10 mark, they overcame 14 Loper blocks tonight as well as fine play from freshman middle Tara Ziegelbein (Lincoln Lutheran H.S.).

After having 16 kills, four from Jackson, to control the fourth set and tie the match, UCO grabbed a 5-3 in the fifth set on a kill by reserve Sabetha Young.

The Bronchos never let UNK grab the lead back as Jackson had four kills and no errors in seven swings with sophomore middle Allison Barr doing even better, registering four kills in four swings for a perfect 1.000 attack percentage.

UNK did have seven kills in the final set but also three errors, one coming on a block by Young and senior Juliette Smith. A 6-2 middle hitter, Smith finished with a match-high 13 blocks (two solo).

Both teams had 62 kills with UCO hitting eight points higher, .165 to .157. UNK dug up two more balls, 92-90, with the clubs combining for eight aces and 14 errors in the serve game.

Coming off the bench early on, Ziegelbein finished with 11 kills, a .526 attack percentage and six blocks. Junior right side Kelle Carver (Shawnee Mission, Kans.) also had six blocks, three of the solo variety, to go along with 13 kills.

From the outside, sophomore Kinslie TeKolste (Lincoln SE) had a team-high 16 kills in 56 attempts with freshman LaRose Currie (Vail, Colo.) supplying six kills and a .267 hitting efficiency.

Finally, junior MJ Massanet (Manhattan, Kans.) had a career-high 30 digs as the libero with redshirt freshman setter Brenna Nelson (Elkhorn) seeing her first extensive action as a Loper. She tallied 24 assists, six digs and a block in three sets.

Besides Jackson and Smith, Young had eight kills and four blocks and Barr managed nine kills.

TRI-CITY TRUMPS FARGO IN PRESEASON FINALE

In their final contest of the 2014 preseason, the Tri-City Storm defeated the Fargo Force 3-1 at the Tyson Events Center in the Fall Classic West. Jim Hulton's squad finishes the exhibition season with a record of 6-0-1.

The Storm got goals from Mark Petaccio, Bobby Nardella and an empty net tally from Jake Wahlin, while goaltender Alec Dillon got his second win of the preseason, making 23 saves.

After a scoreless first period, Petaccio opened the scoring with a perfect deflection in front. The initial shot was taken by defenseman Mattias Goransson, and the big winger got a piece of the puck to put Tri-City up 1-0 at 11:40 of the second.

Less than three minutes later, Nardella joined the rush to create a two-on-one and finished the play by taking a pass from forward Joel Herbert and scoring his second goal in as many games. The second assist on the goal was credited to forward Garrett Gamez.

The Force made a game of it late in the third when Brody Stevens snuck one past Dillon to make it 2-1. But Wahlin sealed the win for Tri-City by scoring an empty net goal with just 18 seconds left on the clock.

The Storm will open the regular season in Lincoln on Sept. 26 in and return to Kearney for their home opener on Oct. 3 vs. Sioux Falls.

UNK Avenges a 2013 Playoff Loss

Freshman Marika Van Brocklin scored her first collegiate goal to help Nebraska-Kearney beat Washburn, 1-0, Sunday afternoon at Ron & Carol Cope Stadium at Foster Field.

This was a rematch of last year's MIAA Tournament first round game won by the Ichabods in a shootout. UNK is now 1-3-1 (1-1-0) while WU falls to 0-5-1 (0-1-1).

Controlling much of the action and finishing with seven more shots, the Lopers finally moved ahead in 60th minute when junior Meghan Pasbrig (Chandler, Ariz.) sent a pass down the right side of the field to Van Brocklin (Hastings).

She maneuvered her way past one Washburn defender and her shot, from about 15 yards out, found the left corner of the goal. Over her last two prep years, Van Brocklin tallied 90 points.

UNK kept up the pressure, taking five more shots, several that just missed going into the net. Overall, the Lopers had 10 shots, eight coming after the break.

Omaha junior keeper Regan Zach stopped three shots to her earn first win in college. Seven different Lopers took a shot, including three by Papillion junior Montanna Hosterman and two from Omaha freshman Carly Brown.

UNK begins a four-game road swing Thursday at Missouri Southern State.

Tigers Tally Late Goal

Kearney, Neb. - Senior Hailey Davey tallied a goal in the 108th minute to left Fort Hays State to a 1-0 win over the Nebraska-Kearney women's soccer team Friday night in Kansas.

This was the MIAA opener for both clubs. The Tigers are now 3-2 with the Lopers falling to 0-3-1.

UNK out shot Hays for most of the night with the Tigers registering just one shot on goal during all of regulation. Hays did have a header go wide of the Loper net in the 89th minute.

Junior Montanna Hosterman (Papillion-LaVista South H.S.), who finished with a team-best four shots, almost won it for the Lopers in the 103rd minute but her attempt sailed high.

Soon after, freshman Kelsey Steffens dribbled down the right side of the box and hit a low cross to Davey at the top of the box. After gathering herself, she struck a ball towards the left side of the goal and found the back of the net.

"Heartbreaking to lose like that after working so hard," said UNK head coach John Maessner. "We created good chances throughout and can take away a lot of positives from tonight."

Besides Hosterman, true freshman Carly Brown (Skutt Catholic H.S.) and Madalynn Doughty (North Platte) each had two shots on goal with junior Katelin Mielke (Millard West H.S.) seeing her first action in goal. UNK's starter a year ago, she took over for Regan Zach (Elkhorn H.S.) at halftime.

"We made a lot of progress in different areas tonight. We're excited to get back on the field Sunday and play at home," said Maessner.

Both teams finished with 13 shots, UNK having 11 in regulation and the Tigers taking seven in overtime.

Nebraska-Kearney track & field team members Kevin Carder, Dillon Schrodt and Jackie Ziemke have been selected to the 2014 Capital One Academic All-District 7 teams, as selected by CoSIDA (College Sports Information Directors of America).

To be eligible for this squad, a student-athlete must carry a 3.30 cumulative GPA, be a starter or key reserve and been at his/her current school for one academic year. Finally, sports information directors (SID's) vote on the makeup of the Academic All-American and All-District teams.

District 7 includes schools from the MIAA, NSIC (Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference) and GAC (Great American Conference).

This is the second year of the expanded Academic All-America program as CoSIDA moved from recognizing a University Division (Division I) and a College Division (all non-Division I) and has doubled the number of scholar-athletes honored. The expanded teams include NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II and NCAA Division III participants, while the College Division Academic All-America Team combines NAIA, Canadian and two-year schools.

Carder maintains a 3.99 GPA as Political Science major. Currently running across Europe, the Albion native was the Lopers team MVP in cross country in each of the past two years while being an NCAA provisional qualifier at 10,000 meters this spring.

In the ring, Ziemke (Waco) earned All-American honors in the shot this past March thanks to a third place finish. Also qualifying for the NCAA Outdoor Championships, she has a 3.93 GPA in Business Administration.

A junior from Lincoln North Star, Schrodt was an All-American in the heptathlon at the NCAA Indoor meet with a third place finish. At last week's NCAA Outdoor meet, he placed ninth in the decathlon and also was a qualifier in the 110 hurdles. He maintains a 3.86 GPA in Math (grades 7-12).

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