Monthly Archives: October 2011

Shutouts force men’s soccer to crumbling loss

Linfield’s men’s soccer team traveled to Washington to play games against Whitworth College on Oct. 29 in Spokane, Wash., losing 2-0, and against Whitman College on Oct. 30 in Walla Walla, Wash., also losing 2-0.

The game against Whitworth proved to be difficult as it led the Wildcats to their third shutout loss in a row.

Throughout the first part of the game the Wildcats kept the pace with Whitworth, attempting close to the same number of shot attempts. Whitworth, however, managed to finish the goal first and scored its first goal within the 26th minute.

 After halftime, Whitworth let loose and fired 14 shots onto the Linfield defense, breaking down the Wildcats defense while Whitworth’s back line proved to be unbeatable.

Junior goalie Cody Tipton made saves all throughout the first half of the game for the Wildcats, but was taken out approximately three and a half minutes into the second period after using his hands outside of the box and then receiving a red card.

During the 66th minute, Whitworth scored another unassisted goal off a free kick that was placed within the middle of the box.

The Wildcats’ game against Whitman ended with a total of 14 losses, one tie and two wins for the Wildcats, with one being a pre-season game. Whitman scored twice within the first 33 minutes of the game. Whitman managed a total of 11 shots alone within the first period, while the Wildcats only achieved a total of three during the 45-minute time frame.

Sophomore Xavier Reed came the closest to scoring a goal for the Wildcats with a header at the 29th minute, but was blocked by the Whitman goalie. Junior Danny Snelgrow also managed two shots along with senior Wil Hiles, who achieved one. However, this was not enough for the Wildcats, and once again their chance of a win escaped them.

The Wildcats’ next game is the last game of the season against Willamette on Nov. 5 at home, where they hope to end the season on a better note.

______________________________________________________________________________________________
Samantha Sigler/
Copy editor
Samantha Sigler can be reached at linfieldreviewsports@gmail.com.

Linfield deserves more attention

To Whom it May Concern,

Hello. My name is Chris Forrer, and I cover sports for Linfield College’s award-winning weekly publication, The Linfield Review. I am writing to you to express concern over what I see as a slight against one of the nation’s top athletic departments and my shock that a storied school like Linfield could be treated this way.

I think that it’s fair to say that a large number of people, sports-savvy or not, are aware of the East Coast media bias when it comes to athletics. Sports at every level have an overwhelming information slant that leans East in everything from frequency of coverage, size of media deals and even how quality of play is analyzed.

This doesn’t begin and end with big-time sports like Division-I football and the NBA, either. As a West Coast school, Linfield sports programs receive sparse attention from Division-III pundits, no matter how strong the season or convincing the victory.

Our women’s soccer team just pulled into first place in the Northwest Conference standings, but this week’s regional rankings released by the NCAA had second-place Puget Sound ranked fourth in the West Region.

Linfield was unranked. Looking over recent Top 25 polls on www.d3soccer.com, the only real website devoted to this division of soccer, the women’s team has not been ranked or even received a single vote in any poll all season.

The football program doesn’t have it any better, despite the fact that we still boast the nation’s longest streak of consecutive winning seasons and have made deep playoff runs for the past two years.

Every week, I check the wrap-up of Top 25 play on www.d3football.com, hoping to find a mention of the Wildcats. There has only been one all season, despite numerous pastings of teams that looked pretty damn good before rolling into Maxwell Field, such as Pacific Lutheran or California Lutheran.

This is a team whose defense is allowing less than eight points a game this season and whose special teams has scored at least one touchdown in the past three games, sometimes two.

Oh, and the offense isn’t bad either. They’re only averaging more than 400 yards and 40 points a game. This team is going to threaten perennial contenders University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and Mount Union come playoff time, and the only website dedicated to the in-depth coverage of Division-III ball barely ever gives them mention.

Pundits, this is a message for you: Wake up. The old guard is changing and Linfield is here to sound the death knell.

Puget Sound has a streak of conference championships dating back to 2003 that is now about to come to an end. Their regional ranking is more a reflection of their legacy and status as a nationally recognized contender than it is of their quality of play in the 2011 season.

This is Linfield’s season, and I think it’s time you acknowledge that. Furthermore, this is a squad that has 12 freshmen on roster, many of whom see regular game action.

This team is going to be a force in the NWC for many years to come.

Furthermore, this Wildcat football team is the best I’ve seen in my three years here—a more complete, well-rounded and tight bunch who even Aaron Boehme’s 2009 squad that took UW-Whitewater to the limit in a national semifinal.

I would think as true analysts of D-III ball you would have noticed this by now. If not, I invite you to watch our team in the coming weeks before and during playoffs to see what they’re made of.

I have no doubt your conclusions will be the same as mine.

I look forward to hearing from you and seeing the Wildcats back in the public eye, where they deserve to be during special seasons such as these.

Sincerely,

Chris Forrer

______________________________________________________________________________________________
Chris Forrer/
Sports columnist
Chris Forrer can be reached at linfieldreviewsports@gmail.com.

Volleyball digs up win after suffering loss

Freshman Audrey Fraizer and senior Tara Hill block a Boxer spike Oct. 29 at home. Joel Ray/Photo editor

Coming toward the end of its season, the volleyball team played matches, on Oct. 28 against Lewis & Clark University in Portland and Oct. 29 against Pacific University at home.

During the volleyball match the team came out with a win against Pacific by winning three of the four sets. The first set of the day, Linfield lost 25-9.

The Wildcats came back strong during the second set. Starting the set off, junior Bethany Dickey scored the first point with a serve. The Boxers were defeated due to attacking errors.

Sophomore Shayli Coppock scored the winning kill. In the third set Linfield came back from behind and reclaimed a win, 25-23. The winning point of the third set was made by freshman Kailana Ritte-Camara.

The final set was evenly matched for majority of the time, until Pacific outside hitter Keahi Braginsky-Ahloo made an error after sophomore Kelsey Ludin spiked the ball over the net. The Wildcats took the lead early in the set staying ahead for the entire set. winning 25-13.

The Wildcats played Lewis & Clark for a close match.
Linfield took an early lead in the match, winning the first match 25-17.

The second set was closely fought for the win, but the Wildcats struggle and narrowly lost, 26-24.

The teams continued to battle it out, and the Wildcats earned another win during the third set, winning 25-23. The turning point of the match was the fourth set, when the Pioneers pulled ahead by four points, winning 25-21.

The final set was quickly lost with the Pioneers scoring 15, while the Wildcats were only able to score five points. Lewis & Clark won the match three to two.

The team is placed in sixth the Northwest Conference standings.

The Wildcats play their final two matches Nov. 4 and 5 at home against Pacific Lutheran University and George Fox University.

Pacific University is ranked second in the Northwest Conference, while George Fox is ranked eighth. The last to matches will finalize the volleyball standings.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________-
Kaylyn Peterson/
Sports editor
Kaylyn Peterson can be reached at linfieldreviewsports@gmail.com.

Swim teams jump in with a bonding meet

The Wildcat men’s and women’s swim teams started the season off Oct. 28 and 29 in Spokane, Wash., against the other six conference swim teams.

The meet consisted of more than 200 swimmers, creating a fun bonding experience for the Linfield swim teams.

The first day of the meet, the swimmers competed in a sprint pentathlon. Each swimmer swam the 100-yard individual medley, the 50-yard butterfly, the 50-yard backstroke, the 50-yard breast stroke and the 50-yard freestyle.

The women’s team sent 25 competitors to the meet.

 For the first event of the meet, the women’s 100-yard individual medley, the top Wildcat competitor was  freshman Kelcie Kimura, who swam the event in 1:05.95. Kimura placed 13th out of 109 places.

 The women’s second event was the 50-yard butterfly, where sophomore Natalie Groat tied for 16th place, with a time of 29.18.

 For the women’s 50-yard backstroke, Linfield sophomore Maggie May received 13th place finishing the race in 30.6 seconds.

Placing the highest of all the women in the meet for the Wildcats was freshman Brandi Halemano in the 50-yard breaststroke who came in 7th place with a time of 33.7 seconds.

 In the final women’s event, the 50-yard freestyle, Kimura placed 27th finishing the race in 27.14 seconds.

Overall, the first day ended with Linfield women’s team in 6th of the seven teams.

Freshman MacKenzie Green said that the team has pushed to reduce its times.

“We’re did well considering our last two weeks of practice, we’re working really hard to improve times and get faster,” Green said. “The last two weeks have been hard with us going hard the first week, and the second week was for recovery but we still went hard.”

Swimming the same events, the men’s team fared just as well as the women’s.

The men’s top competitor for the entire meet was sophomore Lee Rivers, who placed 16th and finished the race in 57.84 seconds in 100-yard individual medley.

Rivers also placed the highest for the 50-yard butterfly, finishing in 17th place with a time of 25.57.

He also finished 20th for the 50-yard backstroke and finished 34th for the 50-yard freestyle.

The top competitor for the 50-yard breaststroke was junior Seth Ruwitch who placed 5th with a time of 29.34 seconds.

Rivers said that the combination of new skill and seasoned talent creates a team with a solid dynamic.

“I feel like everyone has high hopes for the team this season,” Rivers said. “We got a lot of new talent that came in this year, and all the returning swimmers want to see them swim fast. Most of all, though, I care about holding on to the great team dynamic we’ve developed already this season.”

The second day of the competition was made up of relays.

Green described the relay meet as a “fun meet.” The day was filled with bonding, “but with being on a bus so long, what else can you do?”

In starting the season, the Wildcats welcomed 21 freshmen to the team.

With the team off to a good start, Rivers said that having all these new swimmers will create new opportunities for everyone.

“We have a huge number of new swimmers that came on the team this year, and they bring with them a lot of advantages,” Rivers said.  “The added number of swimmers allows for more people to do events that they are best in. With a limited number of swims in a meet, this frees up people to compete in their fast races.”

Both the men’s and women’s teams finished the relay meet in 6th place out of the seven teams, but left the meet feeling much more like a family.

Green said that in addition to getting faster times, the team has worked on connecting as a group of athletes and as a family with shared goals.

“We’ve been bonding more and more, getting closer and becoming a family and breaking down social barriers,” Green said. “Everyone is supporting each other, and we’re all pushing each other.”

The Wildcats will swim Nov. 11 and 12 in Tacoma, Wash., against Pacific Lutheran University and Puget Sound University.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________
Kaylyn Peterson/
Sports editor
Kaylyn Peterson can be reached at linfieldreviewsports@gmail.com.

Cross Country strides ahead to regionals

The Wildcats’ season comes close to an end as the Linfield cross country teams competed in Brooks, Ore., for the Northwest Conference Championships on Oct. 29. The nine conference teams gathered for the race and qualified for regionals.

As the season comes to the end, senior Shanna Peaden said that the team has come a long way since the beginning of the season.

“The team has done wonderfully this season, we still have some work to do and the time to do it,” Peaden said. “But, overall, it has been fantastic, we have really set the stage for great things to come from Linfield Cross Country.”

Reflecting on the season,  Peaden said that the highlight of the season “is still to come.”

“It was pretty fantastic to pull off third in conference on both sides with such a young team,” Peaden said. “And the women weren’t far off first or second place. It was exciting to see.”

The women’s team finished third with a total time of 1:54:39.86.

The team’s top competitor was sophomore Mimi Seeley who finished seventh in the women’s six kilometer run. She ran the race in 22:29.42. Not far behind her was teammate, junior Nelly Evans, who finished in 10th place with a time of 22:51.24.

The women’s team had eight of its 10 women finish in the top 40.

For the men’s team, senior Scott Gage finished second in the men’s eight kilometer run, leading the way for the men’s team. He ended the race in 25:21.74. Gage finished 19 seconds behind the race winner from Willamette University, senior Leo Castillo.

The men’s team had seven men finish the race in the top 40. Overall, the team finished third with a combined time of 2:10:46.02.

Peaden said that the race itself “is different since it is the conference meet.”

 “We know these kids, how fast they run, who to stick with, and who to look for,”Peaden said.  “It gets really nerve-wracking, there is a lot to think about it. “ Its also a lot of fun though. The atmosphere is different at such a competitive meet. It makes finishing and being successful that much more exciting.”

The two teams will head off to race again in Claremont, Calif., on Nov. 12 for the NCAA regional race held at Pomona-Pitzer College.

“I expect it to be a really good meet for Linfield,” Peaden said about the regional meet.  “I hope we send some guys and girls—if not teams—to Nationals.  It will be different running in warmer weather and in a different place, but it will be exciting too.”

Peaden said she doesn’t “exactly know what to expect, but thinks [the team] could surprise some people.”

_____________________________________________________________________________________________
Kaylyn Peterson/
Sports editor
Kaylyn Peterson can be reached at linfieldreviewsports@gmail.com.