MUSTANG HOOFPRINTS: Mustang fans, it’s bowl week!

Hello Mustang Fans!

Big weekend in store for SMSU Athletics!

It is bowl week for the SMSU football team (7-4) which will play No. 17 Pittsburg State, Kan., (9-2) in the 48th Mineral Water Bowl on Saturday, in Excelsior Springs, Mo. with kickoff set for 12 p.m. at Tiger Stadium.

The Mineral Water Bowl is hosted by the Excelsior Springs Quarterback Club and the City of Excelsior Springs. The Mustangs travelled to Missouri on Thursday for a dinner hosted by the bowl committee.

SMSU will be making its first appearance in the bowl game and will be making just its third postseason appearance in the 46-year history of the program. The Mustangs come into the contest a four-game winning streak – their longest streak since 1999 – and tied for the third-longest streak in program history.

Today, the Mustangs will practice at 10:45 a.m. at Tiger Stadium, before heading to the Mineral Water Bowl Banquet, which will be held tonight.

Bowl game information

For all Mustang fans travelling to the game, SMSU Athletics and Advancement will be sponsoring a tailgate tent at the stadium Saturday morning. The tailgating will begin at 10 a.m.

Director of Athletic Development, Tim Steinbach, will have the game tickets with him at the tailgating tent for fans to pick up or purchase. We have currently sold 320 of the 500 tickets SMSU purchased for the bowl game as part of the NSIC contract with the Excelsior Springs Quarterback Club.

Please support the SMSU Department of Athletics by meeting our goal of selling all 500 tickets ($10 per ticker) to the Mineral Water Bowl. You can contact the SMSU Department of Athletics at 507-537-7271 to reserve your tickets or find Tim Steinbach at the tailgate tent on Saturday, prior to the game.

Also on Saturday morning, Marshall Radio will be hosting a breakfast at the Elms Hotel, where it will be broadcasting Saturday Morning Mustang from 8 to 9 a.m.

The breakfast and special Mineral Water Bowl edition of Saturday Morning Mustang are sponsored by the Marshall Radio Station, D&G Excavating, Avera Medical Group of Marshall, Lockwood Motors and Fuzzy’s Bar.

The breakfast is open to all SMSU officials, Mustang Booster Club members and the sponsors of the event.

Thank you to Marshall Radio and the sponsors above for their continuous support of SMSU Athletics.

There are still a few seats available of the fan busses travelling to the Mineral Water Bowl. The cost is $40 for community members and alumni and $10 for SMSU students with a valid SMSU ID. Game ticket is included in the price.

The busses will leave at 4:15 a.m. on Saturday from Founders Hall on the campus of SMSU and will return to Marshall by 10 p.m. following the game. Please contact the Alumni Association Office at 507-537-6266 to reserve your seat today.

It is an exciting time for the SMSU football program!

Ag Bowl Scholarship Challenge

The SMSU Department of Athletics will also be holding its second annual Ag Bowl Scholarship Challenge, sponsored by Ralco, Inc., on the campus of SMSU at 9:30 a.m. Saturday in Charter Hall.

We have five teams attending this year’s event competing in three areas: agriculture issues, agriculture marketing and agriculture communications. The winners of each category will be recognized at halftime of the Mustang men’s basketball game Saturday evening.

I would like to thank all our sponsors: ADM, CHS, Midwest Ag and, our title sponsor, Ralco, Inc., for their support and commitment to the Ag Bowl Scholarship Challenge. I would also like to thank the SMSU Ag Club for its hard work and dedication at the event.

For all the latest information on the Mineral Water Bowl, NCAA Central Region Volleyball action and Mustang Athletics go to

This Week in SMSU Athletics

Mustang Award-Winners

Congratulations to SMSU soccer player Miranda Cadena, who was named to the 2013 Daktronics NCAA Division II Women’s Soccer All-America honorable mention team. This season, sophomore forward has been named to the National Soccer Coaches’ Association of America / Continental Tire All-Central Region first team, 2013 Daktronics All-Central Region Player of the Year, Daktronics All-Central Region first team, and All-NSIC first team.

Congratulations to junior running back Tyler Tonderum has been named to the 2013 Daktronics Super Region 3 first team, and senior offensive center Brandon Puffer who was named to the second team.

Tonderum and Puffer are the first SMSU players to earn Daktronics All-Region honors since 2009, while Tonderum is the first player to be named first team since 2007. Tonderum was one of just three offensive players from the NSIC named to the first team. Tonderum is now eligible for Daktronics, Inc. Division II Football All-American selection. The announcement of the All-American teams is expected on December 17, preceding the NCAA Division II Football Championship, which takes place December 21 in Florence, Ala.

Congratulations to sophomore volleyball player Abbey Thissen has been named to the 2013 American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-Central Region honorable mention team. Thissen was named to the All-NSIC first team for the second consecutive season, but this marks the first time she has garnered AVCA All-Central Region accolades.

Men’s Basketball

The SMSU men’s basketball team (2-4 overall, 0-1 NSIC) returns to the R/A Facility to host Augustana College (4-3, 1-0) and Wayne State College (3-2, 0-1) in a pair of NSIC home games. SMSU battles Augustana at 8 p.m. Friday, while the Mustangs play Wayne State at 7 p.m. Saturday.

SMSU went to overtime last Saturday at the University of Sioux Falls, falling 83-87 to the Cougars in the extra period.

Women’s Basketball

The SMSU women’s basketball team (2-3 overall, NSIC 0-1) will kick off its NSIC home schedule tas the Mustangs welcome the No. 10-ranked Augustana and Wayne State. SMSU will play its first NCAA-ranked opponent of the season on Friday in a showdown versus Augustana at 6 p.m. On Saturday, Wayne State comes to town for a 5 p.m. tip-off at the R/A facility.

The Mustangs are coming off a tough 60-70 loss to the University of Sioux Falls last Saturday in their first NSIC game of the season.

Wheelchair Basketball

The SMSU wheelchair basketball team will be back in action at the University of Missouri Tournament held in Columbia, Mo., today and Saturday.

The Mustangs will play Texas-Arlington and the University of Illinois today at 12 and 4 p.m. On Saturday, SMSU will take on Missouri at 9:00 a.m. and Whitewater at 11:30 a.m. to conclude the tournament.

I would like to wish all of our teams the best of luck this weekend!

Go Mustangs!

Trivia Contest

No one was able to provide the correct answer to last week’s Mustang Hoofprints Trivia Question: Head Mustang Volleyball Coach, Terry Culhane, has accumulated a 257-69 overall record equaling a .788 winning percentage in his 10 years at SMSU. What former Mustang Head Volleyball Coach has the second highest winning percentage in the school’s history?

Ryan Dehnel in his only season as head coach of the SMSU volleyball program collected a .645 winning percentage (20-11). Jeri Madden had a .540 winning percentage (254-204) and Deb Denbeck had a .467 winning percentage (308-352).

Trivia Question

John Sterner, Leon Bullerman and Link Steffen

all earned a National Championship as members of the SMSU wrestling program. SMSU has also had three individuals who took second place in the national championships, can you name those three Mustang wrestlers?

The first person to email meat with the correct answer to this question will receive an SMSU T-shirt.