MUSTANG HOOFPRINTS: Spring season coming to fast conclusion

Hello Mustang Fans!

The spring semester is winding down, and we are two weeks away from finals on the campus of Southwest Minnesota State University.

The women’s tennis team has concluded its spring season with baseball, softball and track and field just two weeks away from Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference postseason competition. SMSU women’s golf team begins its postseason play this weekend at Dakota Ridge Golf Club in Morton, where the Mustangs will be competing in the NSIC Spring Championships.

Patnoe earns NSIC scholarship

Congratulations to SMSU senior women’s golfer Rachel Patnoe, who was been named the 2014 Willis R. Kelly Scholar-Athlete Award winner as the top female scholar-athlete in the NSIC. University of Sioux Falls cross country/track and field student-athlete William Brockmueller was awarded the 2014 Dr. William Britton Award for Academic Excellence as the top male scholar-athlete in the NSIC.

The member institutions of the NSIC nominate one male and one female student-athlete for the Britton and Kelly awards. The nominees must meet the following criteria: a grade-point average of 3.5 or better (on a 4.0 scale); evidence of academic excellence beyond the minimum grade-point average (scholarship prizes and other academic recognition), evidence of participation in the life of the institution and evidence of participation in at least two-thirds of the varsity events of the individual’s primary sport. The award is voted on by the NSIC faculty athletic representatives.

The 30 student-athletes nominated for the NSIC’s two most prestigious awards will also be honored as NSIC Male and Female Honor Student-Athletes of the Year at their respective institutions. Patnoe and Brockmueller will be recognized July 9 at the 2014 NSIC Hall of Fame Banquet at the Best Western Kelly Inn and Convention Center in St. Cloud, where each student-athlete will each receive a $2,500 post-graduate scholarship. Patnoe is the sixth SMSU female student-athlete to earn the award in the last 29 years.

Download app to follow Mustangs

The Southwest Minnesota State University Department of Athletics and sponsors, Aramark, Hy-Vee and Pepsi, are excited to announce a new way for fans to interact with the Mustangs on their mobile devices.

The Mustang app, which is now available for download, will not only allow you to keep updated with SMSU athletics, but will also allow you to earn rewards for attending Mustang events and receive great offers from Aramark Dining Services, Hy-Vee, and Pepsi.

The app, which is compatible with Apple devices and Android-based platforms, can be downloaded by searching, “Mustang app” in the Apple App Store, Google Play Store or any other app stores.

Another way you can download the Mustang app is to follow these instructions: Step 1, text Mustangs to 80802; Step 2, click the link in the text message you received; Step 3, download it from Application Store; Step 4, register for the application; Step 5, start earning rewards.

Drown SMSU Golf Classic

Save the date!

The 29th annual David and Carol Drown SMSU Golf Classic will be held June 20 at the Marshall Golf Club.

The Golf Classic is the next Mustang Booster Club fund-raising event, and the Golf Classic Committee will be convening in the next couple of weeks to begin the planning for this great event.

Online

For all your information on the Dick Bragg Spring Volleyball Invitational, the Mustang app and SMSU athletics, visit our website: www.smsumustangs.com.

Upcoming SMSU athletic events

Baseball

The SMSU baseball team (17-20 overall, 8-13 NSIC) lost a pair of games Tuesday to Concordia-St. Paul.

The Mustangs have moved this weekend’s games to Friday and Saturday in Crookston due to forecasted weather conditions. SMSU will play two doubleheaders versus the Golden Eagles as the Mustangs look to earn one of the eight spots in the NSIC Tournament Championship.

Softball

The Mustangs softball team (12-29-1, 9-16-1 NSIC) split a doubleheader at Concordia-St. Paul on Tuesday.

SMSU will be on the road this Saturday, taking on Minnesota State-Moorhead, and Sunday, battling Northern State in Aberdeen, S.D., with doubleheaders scheduled for both days. The Mustangs are also looking to earn a trip to the NSIC Tournament Championships with a strong finish to the regular season.

Women’s Golf

The SMSU women’s golf team will compete this weekend in the third and fourth rounds of the NSIC Championship at Dacotah Ridge Golf Club. The first two rounds of the championship were played at The Classic at Madden’s in Brainerd on October 5-6, 2013.

The Mustangs are currently in fifth place in the 12-team championship with a two-round score of 122-over-par 698. Augustana and Concordia-St. Paul are tied for the team lead with an 80-over 656 and hold a 12-shot lead over Minnesota State. Maggie Leland from Augustana is the individual leader at 14-over 158. The third round begins with tee times starting at 10 a.m. Saturday, while Sunday’s final round begins at 9 a.m. with a shotgun start.

Track and Field

The SMSU women’s and men’s track and field teams competed in the two-day Red Raider Open hosted by Northwestern College last Thursday.

For the women, Samantha McNeel led SMSU by earning a third-place finish in 1:08.72 in the 400-meter hurdles and also finished fourth in the long jump with a mark 16-feet, 10 1/2-inches. Rylee Armstrong, who won the high jump in the heptathlon with a jump of 1.55m, finished third overall in that event with 3,363 points. Amanda Grengs finished in sixth place in the 1,500 run in 5:06.58, while Nia Buom recorded an eighth-place finish in 1:06.81 in the 400 dash.

On the men’s side, SMSU’s Kelly Fitzsimmons captured first place in the 3,000 steeplechase in 10:41.59. Anthony Dean picked up a second-place finish in both the long jump, with a mark of 20-7 3/4 and the triple jump, with leap of 43-8 1/2. Alejandro Sanchez had a strong showing in the 400 dash, finishing second with a mark of 49.11 seconds, while Austin LaFollette also recorded a second-place finish in the 400 hurdles in 55.96 seconds.

Dallin Finley finished third in both the 100 and 200 dashes in 11.28 and 22.31 seconds, respectively. Ben Tonsager also finished third in the shot put with a throw of 49-3 1/2.

SMSU’s 3,200 relay team (O.J. Ojullu, Chris Kveseth, Sanchez and Fitzsimmons) earned a third-place finish in 8:09.20, while the Mustangs’ 1,600 relay team (LaFollette, Chris Kveseth, O.J. Ojullu and Sanchez) earned a fourth-place finish out of 15 teams in 3:21.40.

The Mustangs will be competing on Satruday at the Gustavus-Drake Alternative Meet in St. Peter.

Good luck to all of our SMSU teams competing this weekend!

Go Mustangs!

Trivia Contest

Congratulation to Neil Kruse who provided the correct answer to the Mustang Hoofprint’s Trivia Question: Can you name the two recipients from SMSU who have received the Noel Olson Volunteer of the Year Award from the NSIC?

Ken Mukomela (2011) and Kevin and Karla Anundson (2013) were nominated by SMSU and received the award for their service and dedication to SMSU athletics.

Trivia Contest

Who was the last SMSU female student-athlete to be awarded the Willis R. Kelly Award as the top female scholar-athlete in the NSIC?

The first person to email me at MustangHoofPrints@SMSU.edu with the correct answer to this question will receive an SMSU T-shirt.