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Sports News

Greg Wagner Outdoor Report

There will be plenty to do this week with Western Nebraska Community College athletics as four Cougar teams will have home contests or scrimmages this weekend.

The Cougar volleyball team, who went 4-2 last week in six games including 2-2 at an invite in Las Vegas, Nevada, will host the Wyo-Braska Invite on Friday and Saturday. Before the invite, though, WNCC will play host to McCook Community College on Thursday, Sept. 20 at 6 p.m. in a Region IX South contest.

Thursday’s volleyball match will pit the 10-6 WNCC Cougars against McCook, who is 10-4 on the season. The corporate sponsors for the match will be Arby’s and Bellevue University.

Friday and Saturday will be a busy day of volleyball at Cougar Palace with matches starting at 11 a.m. on Friday and then 10 a.m. on Saturday.

Friday’s compete schedule pits EWC vs. Trinidad State at 11 a.m., McCook against Dawson at 1 p.m., Trinidad vs. Dawson at 3 p.m., EWC vs. McCook at 5 p.m., and WNCC takes on EWC at 7 p.m. Friday’s corporate sponsors include Bluff’s Sanitary and FBG Cleaning Services.

Saturday’s volleyball slate pits EWC vs. Dawson at 10 a.m., WNCC taking on Dawson and McCook against Laramie County at noon, Trinidad State vs. Laramie County and Casper against McCook at 2 p.m., and then WNCC meeting Casper at 4 p.m. to wrap up the invite. Saturday’s corporate sponsors will be B&C Steel and Monument Smiles.

All the volleyball Cougar home games as well as the entire Wyo-Braska Invite will be streamed live on the Internet through the WNCC Cougar Athletics Youtube channel. There will be no radio play-by-play of the four Cougar volleyball matches this weekend.

While volleyball is going on, the WNCC Cougar men’s soccer team will have a Region IX South conference contest at Landers Soccer Complex at 3 p.m. on Saturday when Central Community College-Columbus comes to town.

WNCC enters the soccer match 5-3 overall and 2-1 in conference play, while CCC-Columbus is also 5-3 overall, but 0-1 in conference play. CCC-Columbus will face conference-leading Northeastern Junior College on Friday. NJC is 6-3 overall and 3-0 in the conference.

Volleyball and men’s soccer are not the only teams hosting events this weekend. The Cougar softball and baseball teams will also be home. The softball team will host the Cougar Classic this weekend for three days, playing nine games in the three days.

Friday’s softball schedule has WNCC facing the Utah Cruisers at 5:30 p.m., the Southern Thunder at 7 p.m., and Avalanche at 8:30 p.m.

Saturday’s schedule begins at 8 a.m. with the last game slated to start at 8 p.m. WNCC will face Utah Cruisers at 8 a.m., the Avalanche at 12:30 p.m., and Southern Thunder at 3:30 p.m. Northeastern Junior College will also be here in facing the same teams at 9:30 a.m., 11 a.m., and 2 p.m.

Sunday’s schedule will have WNCC playing at 9 a.m., 11:30 a.m., and 1 p.m. at Volunteer Field against the Cruisers, Avalanche, and Southern Thunder, while NJC will be playing the same teams at the Scottsbluff High School softball field.

The baseball team will be at home this weekend. On Friday, Sept. 21, the Cougars will scrimmage McCook Community College in two, 7-inning games beginning at 2 p.m. WNCC will then scrimmage Northeastern Junior College on Sunday, Sept. 23 beginning at 11 a.m. in two, 9-inning games.

Thursday, September 20
  • Volleyball: HOME vs. McCook Community College, Cougar Palace, 6 p.m.
Friday, September 21
  • Volleyball: HOME Wyo-Braska Invite vs. Eastern Wyoming College, 7 p.m.
  • Softball: HOME — Cougar Classic Tourney
                        — 5:30 p.m. -- WNCC vs. Utah Cruisers
                        — 7 p.m. -- WNCC vs. Southern Thunder
                        — 8:30 p.m. -- WNCC vs. Avalanche

  • Baseball: HOME McCook scrimmage, Cleveland Field, 2 p.m.
Saturday, September 22
  • Volleyball: HOME Wyo-Braska Invite
                        ­— noon vs. Dawson Community College
                        ­— 4 p.m. vs. Casper College
  • Men’s Soccer: HOME vs. Central-Columbus, Landers Field, 4 p.m.
  • Softball: HOME — Cougar Classic Tourney
                        — WNCC plays at 8 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m.

Sunday, September 23
  • Softball: HOME — Cougar Classic Tourney
                        — WNCC plays at 9 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1 p.m.
  • Baseball: HOME NJC scrimmage, Cleveland Field, 11 a.m.


The Nebraska baseball team’s recruiting class has been ranked in the top 35 of Baseball America’s recruiting rankings, which was released this week.

After announcing its top 25 recruiting classes last week, Baseball America released its “Next 10” list in alphabetical order this week. NU is ranked between 26th and 35th nationally, along with Arkansas, Duke, Georgia, Mississippi, Missouri, Oregon, Oregon State, Tennessee and Wake Forest. Nebraska is one of two Big Ten teams ranked in the top 35 recruiting classes by Baseball America, along with No. 24 Illinois.

The Huskers welcome 15 newcomers to the 2019 roster, including 11 freshmen, as the entire recruiting class made it to campus.

Two newcomers - Spencer Schwellenbach and Bo Blessie - were drafted in June 2018, but chose to come to Nebraska to play college baseball. Schwellenbach, an infielder/right-handed pitcher from Saginaw, Mich., was selected in the 34th round by the Cleveland Indians. Blessie, a right-handed pitcher from Midland, Texas, was drafted in the 36th round by the Washington Nationals.

Four newcomers - Aaron Palenksy, Trey Kissack, Ty Roseberry and Gareth Stroh – bring previous college baseball experience to NU’s roster.

Palensky is a sophomore outfielder from Papillion, Neb., who spent one season at Southeast Community College. Kissack is a junior right-handed pitcher from Grand Island, Neb., who played one season at UNC-Greensboro and one year at Southeast Community College.

Roseberry is a junior first baseman from Kearney, Neb., who transferred from Nebraska-Kearney. Stroh is a senior left-handed pitcher from Kearney (Gibbon High School), who spent two years at Purdue after spending one year at Coffeyville Community College. In 2017, he earned third-team All-Big Ten honors for the Boilermakers.

Of the 42 student-athletes on Nebraska’s roster, 27 return from last year’s squad, including Big Ten All-Freshman Team selections Jaxon Hallmark and Gunner Hellstrom. Hallmark started 50 games last season and ranked among the top five on the team in several statistical categories, including batting average (.261), hits (48) and RBIs (24). Hellstrom started 19 of his 26 appearances and hit .310, including at least one hit in 11 of his last 17 games with three multi-hit efforts.

Juniors Luke Roskam and Mojo Hagge were also among offensive team leaders in 2018, each ranking in the top four in batting average, hits, doubles and total bases. Senior infielder Angelo Altavilla, who earned third-team All-Big Ten honors in 2017, ranked in the top five of the 2018 team in home runs (5), runs scored (35), RBIs (28) and stolen bases (6).

Senior Matt Waldron led the 2018 pitching staff in ERA (4.26) and wins (6), while ranking second in strikeouts (61). Senior Mike Waldron became a key reliever for the Huskers last season, leading the team in appearances (21) and ranked in the top five of most statistical categories. The 2018 squad also saw double-digit outings from returners Paul Tillotson (16), Nate Fisher (15), Andrew Abrahamowicz (15), Byron Hood (14) and Ethan Frazier (13).






TV - FS1 (Tim Brando, Spencer Tillman, Holly Sonders)
RADIO - Husker Sports Network (Greg Sharpe, Matt Davison, Ben McLaughlin)
SATELLITE RADIO - Sirius Channel 83, XM 384
APP AUDIO - Official Huskers App, TuneIn App


Record: 0-2, 0-0 Big Ten
Last Game: lost to Troy, 24-19
Rankings: NR
Coach: Scott Frost
Career/NU Record: 19-9 (3rd Year)/0-2 (1st Year)
vs. Michigan: 0-1

Record: 2-1, 0-0 Big Ten
Last Game: def. SMY, 45-20
Rankings: 19 AP, 21 Coaches
Coach: Jim Harbaugh
Career/Michigan Record: 88-39 (11th Year)/30-12 (4th Year)
vs. Nebraska: 0-0

The Matchup

Nebraska takes to the road for the first time in 2018, traveling to Michigan for the Big Ten opener. The matchup between two of college football's iconic programs will kick off at Noon ET (11 a.m. CT) on Saturday at Michigan Stadium. The game will be televised on FS1 and available on the IMG Husker Sports Network.

Nebraska and Michigan both rank among the top five all-time in college football in victories and have combined to win 88 conference championships and play in 99 bowl games. Both schools have a history of national championships, most recently sharing the 1997 national title.

Nebraska will head to Ann Arbor looking for its first victory of 2018, following a second close home loss in a 24-19 setback against Troy. The Huskers controlled the stat sheet for a second straight win, but had three costly turnovers in dropping to 0-2.

Michigan will enter Saturday's game with a 2-1 record following a 45-20 victory over SMU on Saturday in Ann Arbor. The Wolverines dropped their opener at No. 8 Notre Dame, but have rolled to wins the past two weeks, outscoring the opposition 94-23. Michigan has made a statement in the running game, churning out 308 and 237 yards on the ground the past two weeks..

This Week's Numbers
10 - Nebraska and Michigan will be meeting for the 10th time on Saturday in Ann Arbor. The series is tied at 4-4-1, with Nebraska holding a 2-1 advantage since the Huskers joined the Big Ten in 2011.

14 - Nebraska sophomore receiver JD Spielman will be playing in his 14th career game on Saturday at Michigan.Spielman needs 58 receiving yards to reach 1,000 career yards, which would mark the fastest Husker to the 1,000-yard plateau. Heisman winner Johnny Rodgers accomplished the feat in 16 games.

7 - Nebraska is one of only seven teams in the FBS to rank among the top 25 nationally in both rushing offense and rushing defense. The Huskers are the only Big Ten team in that group and join Air Force, Cincinnati, Georgia, Mississippi State, Oklahoma State and Texas A&M.

Nebraska-Michigan Series

Nebraska and Michigan will meet for the 10th time overall and the fourth time as Big Ten opponents on Saturday in Ann Arbor. The schools met each season from 2011 to 2013 as members of the Big Ten Legends Division.

This week's meeting is the first matchup between the schools since the Big Ten switched to an East-West Division format in 2014.

  • Nebraska owns a 2-1 record against the Wolverines in Big Ten matchups, including a 2013 victory at Michigan Stadium.
  • The schools have met in a pair of bowl games, splitting two closely contested games. Michigan defeated the Huskers, 27-23, in the Fiesta Bowl following the 1985 season. Nebraska won 32-28 over the Wolverines in the 2005 Alamo Bowl.
  • Nebraska is 2-2 against ranked Michigan teams, with the Wolverines ranked in four of the past five meetings.
  • Traditional Powers Set for Saturday Showdown

    Nebraska and Michigan are two of the most successful program in the history of college football. Michigan ranks first in college football history with 945 wins, while Nebraska is fifth at 893 victories.

    The Cornhusker football program has won five national championships, while Michigan has 12 national crowns in its history. The schools shared the 1997 national championship, with Nebraska earning the Coaches crown, and Michigan being named the AP national champs.

    Huskers Ready to Open Big Ten Conference Action

    Nebraska will begin the Big Ten portion of its 2018 schedule Saturday at Michigan. The game marks the start of the Huskers' eighth season of Big Ten competition.

  • The Huskers are 5-2 in Big Ten openers since joining the league in 2011.
  • Michigan is the fifth different school Nebraska has faced in a Big Ten opener. It also marks the second straight year, Nebraska has opened league play against an East Division foe, after defeating Rutgers in last year's Big Ten opener.
  • Nebraska has won 39 of its past 43 conference openers overall, with three of those losses against top-20 teams.
  • Overall, Nebraska is 91-21-2 all-time in conference openers (.807 winning percentage).
  • Saturday's game is also the first of five Big Ten road games in 2018. The Huskers are 3-4 in their first conference road game since joining the Big Ten. NU has won its last two conference road openers, picking up wins at Northwestern (2016) and Illinois (2017).
  • Huskers to Face Nationaly Ranked Wolverine Squad

    The trip to Ann Arbor on Saturday will mark Nebraska's first game of the 2018 season against a ranked opponent. Michigan enters the game ranked 19th in the Associated Press poll and No. 21 by the coaches.

    Nebraska has four upcoming games against teams in the AP poll including No. 4 Ohio State, No. 18 Wisconsin, No. 19 Michigan and No. 24 Michigan State.

  • Nebraska will be looking for its first win over a ranked opponent since a win over No. 22 Oregon in Lincoln in 2016. It would also be the highest ranked team Nebraska has defeated since a 39-38 win over No. 6 Michigan State in 2015.
  • The Huskers' last road win over a ranked opponent was a 17-14 win at No. 12 Penn State in 2011.
  • Head Coach Scott Frost led UCF to three consecutive wins against ranked teams to complete the 2017 season, capping the perfect campaign with a win over No. 7 Auburn in the Peach Bowl. Frost was 3-1 overall against ranked opponents at UCF, with the only loss at No. 5 Michigan in 2016.
  • Nebraska Set for Frost's First Big Ten Game

     Scott Frost will coach his first Big Ten Conference game on Saturday at No. 19 Michigan. The contest will also mark Frost’s first road game as Nebraska’s head coach and first time facing a ranked opponent at Nebraska.

  • The last first-year head coach to win his conference opener at Nebraska was Bill Callahan in 2004, when the Huskers defeated Kansas, 14-8, to open Big 12 play. Callahan is also the last first-year Husker to win his first road game, leading the Huskers to a 24-17 victory at Pittsburgh on Sept. 18, 2004.
  • The trip to Ann Arbor brings Frost back to the location of his first road game as a head coach. On Sept. 10, 2016, UCF lost to Michigan in the second game of Frost’s head coaching career.
  • Michigan also marked the first road game for Bob Devaney as Nebraska’s head coach. Devaney led Nebraska to a 25-13 victory over the Wolverines at the Big House on Sept. 29, 1962 in his second game as Husker head coach.
  • NU Looks to Keep Run Game Moving Against Wolverines

    Nebraska churned out 329 rushing yards in the opener against Colorado, and added 187 rushing yards against Troy.

    The rushing total against Colorado bettered Nebraska's season highs from 2017. In fact, the Huskers had 243 rushing yards by halftime, surpassing last year's single-game high of 225 yards against Arkansas State.

  • The 329 rushing yards were Nebraska's most yards on the ground since rushing for 458 yards against Illinois in 2014.
  • Nebraska surpassed 300 yards on the ground for the first time since rushing for 310 yards at Northwestern on Sept. 24, 2016.
  • Adrian Martinez (117) and running back Greg Bell (104) both cracked the century mark on the ground. That marked the first time Nebraska had a pair of 100-yard rushers in the same game since a 2014 win over Illinois.
  • Nebraska had a pair of runs of 40 yards or more against Colorado–a 41-yard touchdown by Martinez and a 45-yard rush by Bell. That was the first time Nebraska had two runs of at least 40 yards in a game since a 2014 win at Fresno State.
  • Nebraska was solid again on the ground against Troy, rushing for 187 yards. NU was again led on the ground by a true freshman, with Maurice Washington rushing 14 times for 92 yards.
  • Head Coach Scott Frost led a successful rushing attack in his previous meeting with Michigan. In a 2016 loss at Ann Arbor, UCF rushed for 275 yards, more rushing yards than Michigan has allowed in a single game in the subsequent 27 games.
  • Huskers Elect Four Captains

    Four Husker seniors were elected by their teammates as captains for the 2018 season. On offense, the captains are OG Jerald Foster and WR Stanley Morgan Jr. Representing the defense are NT Mick Stoltenberg and LB Luke Gifford.

    2018 Nebraska Team Captains
    Jerald Foster, Sr., OG, Lincoln, Neb.
    Stanley Morgan Jr., Sr., WR, New Orleans, La.
    Luke Gifford, Sr., LB, Lincoln, Neb.
    Mick Stoltenberg, Sr., NT, Gretna, Neb.

  • This marks the second straight season Nebraska has had three Nebraska natives as captains. Prior to last season Nebraska had not had three homegrown captains since 2001.
  • This marks the 13th straight season at least one native Nebraskan has been elected as a captain.
  • Foster and Gifford were teammates at Lincoln Southeast High School. This marks the first time high school teammates have served as captains in the same year since Jerry Tagge and Jim Anderson in 1971. Tagge and Anderson both went to high school at Green Bay West in Wisconsin. Foster and Gifford are the first pair on in-state high school teammates to serve as captains together.
  • Foster is serving as a captain for the second straight season, and becomes just the 11th two-time team captain in NU history. This marks the sixth straight season an offensive lineman has served as a captain.

  • -
    LINCOLN, Neb. - The fourth-ranked Nebraska volleyball team finished non-conference play with its ninth straight win, defeating Missouri State 3-0 (25-19, 25-12, 25-4) on Saturday night at the Bob Devaney Sports Center in front of a crowd of 8,149. The Huskers (9-1) wrapped up a 3-0 weekend to take the Husker Invite team title over the Bears (7-6), who had won their previous two matches in the tournament by sweeps.

    The Huskers put on a clinic, hitting .500 with just four attacking errors on 84 swings while holding the Bears to -.011 hitting. Nebraska's 25-4 win in set three matched its most decisive win in the 25-point rally scoring era (2001-present). The Huskers also won 25-4 against Louisiana-Monroe in 2013. 

    Lauren Stivrins had 11 kills and hit a career-best .714 on the night. Mikaela Foecke also had 11 kills and hit .478 without an error. She also added 11 digs. Lexi Sun chipped in nine kills and seven digs while hitting .368, and Jazz Sweet had eight kills on .500 hitting with five blocks.

    One night after posting a career-high 13 blocks, Callie Schwarzenbach led the Huskers again with nine blocks and added five kills on .417 hitting. Nicklin Hames set the Huskers to their season-high .500 hitting percentage with 35 assists and two kills on two attacks. 

    The Huskers out-blocked the Bears, 13-2, and had a 44-31 advantage in digs. Kenzie Maloney led all players with 17 digs, a season high for a three-set match. 

    Maloney was named the most valuable player of the Husker Invite. Foecke, Stivrins and Hames were also named to the all-tournament team.

    Set 1: Hames served the Huskers to a 4-0 lead to start the match, but the Bears answered with a 6-1 run to go up 6-5, thanks to consecutive service aces off the top of the net. Hames and Sweet posted back-to-back kills to regain a 12-10 lead for the Huskers. Stivrins terminated consecutive rallies to make it 19-16 Huskers, and the Huskers pulled away down the stretch for the 25-19 win with kills by Foecke and Sweet and a Foecke ace. The Huskers had a .419 to .083 advantage in hitting. Missouri State stayed close thanks to two more aces than the Big Red (3-1) and three fewer service errors (2-5). 

    Set 2: The Huskers got off to another good start with Hames serving a 5-0 run. Schwarzenbach was in on two blocks, and Foecke and Sweet had kills. Foecke and Schwarzenbach then struck kills before Sun stuffed a Missouri State attack for an 8-2 Husker lead. Later in the set, Schwarzenbach and Foecke fired kills before a Hames ace made it 17-8 Huskers. Nebraska continued to pile on with consecutive kills by Sun, Stivrins and Foecke, helping the Huskers to a 25-12 win.

    Set 3: Nebraska's strong starts continued as the Huskers opened up a 9-1 lead with Schwarzenbach posting four blocks and two kills. The Huskers were dominant from start to finish, closing the set at their biggest lead, 21 points. Nebraska had 16 kills on 23 swings (.696) and stuffed five Missouri State attacks. The Bears had three kills on 27 swings and hit -.148 in the set. 

    Up Next: The Huskers begin Big Ten play at home against No. 19 Michigan on Friday. The match will begin at 8 p.m. 

    2018 Husker Invite All-Tournament Team
    Kenzie Maloney, Nebraska (MVP)
    Mariessa Carrasco, New Mexico
    Aubrey Cheffey, Missouri State
    Laynie Dake, Missouri State
    Mikaela Foecke, Nebraska
    Nicklin Hames, Nebraska
    Lyza Myers, Central Michigan
    Lauren Stivrins, Nebraska

    Lincoln – For the second straight week Nebraska out-yarded its opponent but could not overcome early turnovers in a 24-19 loss to Troy on Saturday at Memorial Stadium.

    The Trojans, who are the defending Sun Belt Conference champions, improved to 2-1. Nebraska slipped to 0-2 while playing in front of the 363rd consecutive sellout at Memorial Stadium.

    Nebraska managed 364 total yards with sophomore Andrew Bunch playing from start to finish at quarterback for the Big Red. Bunch completed 19-of-27 passes for 177 yards with two touchdowns, but he also threw a pair of interceptions. He added 23 rushing yards on 10 carries.

    As a team, the Huskers out-gained the Trojans 187-143 on the ground, but three first-half turnovers by Nebraska and a 58-yard punt return for a touchdown by Troy’s Cedarius Rookard helped the visitors jump out to a 17-0 lead midway through the second quarter.

    Maurice Washington led the Husker rushing attack with 92 yards on 14 carries, while Greg Bell added 68 yards on 14 totes.

    The Huskers also won the time of possession battle (32:54-27:06), but several big plays in the punting game sparked the Trojans. Not only did Rookard’s return for touchdown help Troy, Tyler Sumpter’s 79-yard punt after the Trojans’ opening offensive possession of the game and two other long punts helped Troy maintain a field position edge. He finished the game with a 53.8-yard-per-punt average.

    For the second consecutive week, the Huskers fought their way back starting with Bunch’s eight-yard touchdown strike to senior wide receiver Stanley Morgan Jr. with 3:02 left before halftime.

    Trailing 17-7 at the half, the Huskers helped themselves by recovering a fumbled punt by Troy inside its own 10-yard line on its opening touch of the second half. The mishandled punt was recovered by Nebraska’s Cam Taylor and set the Huskers up at the Troy 6. But the Huskers settled for Barret Pickering’s first career field goal from 23 yards out to cut the margin to 17-10 with 10:25 left in the third quarter.

    The Huskers appeared to have tied the score momentarily on a touchdown catch by JD Spielman, but Spielman’s run to the end zone after the catch was wiped away by a holding penalty, and the Huskers settled for Pickering’s 32-yard field goal to cut Troy’s lead to 17-13 with 3:02 left in the third.

    For the game, Nebraska was flagged 10 times for 77 yards, while Troy also committed 10 penalties for 95 yards.

    Troy then mounted its only sustained drive of the second half, marching 62 yards in 10 plays over 4:34 to go up 24-13 with 6:45 left in the contest.

    However the Huskers refused to quit, as Bunch and the Big Red answered with an 11-play, 75-yard drive capped by Spielman’s touchdown catch.

    The Blackshirts then forced a 3-and-out by Troy on the ensuing drive to give the ball back to Bunch and the offense at the NU 27 with 2:31 left in the game. But Nebraska’s chance to complete the comeback was short-lived, as Bunch was intercepted by Will Sunderland. The Trojans ran out the clock for the victory.

    Quarterback Kaleb Barker led the Trojans by completing 14-of-21 passes for 110 yards. He did not throw a touchdown pass but did toss one interception. He also rushed eight times for 12 yards.

    B.J. Smith provided the biggest plays for the Troy offense with 11 carries for 70 yards, including a pair of touchdowns. Sawyer Smith pitched in 60 rushing yards on just four carries, including a 57-burst in the first half to set up a Trojan score.

    Will Honas led the Husker defense with eight tackles, while Tre Neal pitched in seven stops for the Blackshirts. Lamar Jackson added his first career interception as one of Nebraska’s two turnovers forced.

    The Husker offense suffered from three turnovers on the afternoon, but Troy did not convert any of Nebraska’s turnovers directly to points.

    Nebraska will hit the road for the first time next week when they travel to the Big House to battle Michigan. Kick-off in Ann Arbor is set for 11 a.m. (CT) with live national coverage by FS1.

    The Western Nebraska Community College women’s soccer team put together a strong defensive effort, recording a late goal to earn a 2-2 double overtime tie with Gillette College on Saturday at the Landers Soccer Complex.

    The Cougars, who entered the contest on a 2-match winning streak, received a goal from Thais Nayara with 11 minutes remaining to force overtime.

    Rafael Passos, redshirt freshman team captain, said they played well, especially the last time they played Gillette they fell 2-0.

    “We did a good job and we grew up a lot since the first game against this team,” she said. “They are a good team and we did a good job. It was a nice game and we had fun.”

    Passos said it was a marked difference of the Cougars from Saturday to the last time they played Gillette two weeks ago. One big reason is the team watched video of the last time they played Friday night.

    “We just stepped on the field and knew we could beat them,” she said. “When we played up there the field was turf and today it was grass and it was our home. We watched the last game and we just grew up. We fixed the mistakes and keep working hard.”

    WNCC scored early and late as well as playing a solid defensive game in earning the tie against Gillette.

    Passos said the defense did a good job holding Gillette down.

    “The defense is amazing,” she said. “They did a pretty good job all day.”

    WNCC didn’t waste any time on igniting its offense either. The Cougars scored first, just under nine minutes in the contest when Caroline Vieira delivered a pass to Rafael Ornelas who planted the ball in the back of the net.

    The lead didn’t last long. Four minutes later, Gillette’s Kierra Cutright scored to tie the match at 1-1. The Pronghorns went ahead 2-1 with 15 minutes left in the first half on a Angie Smith goal.

    Passos said after that, the Cougars settled in.

    “The second half after coach talked to us, we just stepped on the field and worked harder to tie the game,” she said.

    Neither team could find the back of the net for the percentage of the second quarter. Finally, with 11 minutes remaining in the contest, Amy Romero fed Thais Nayara the ball and Nayara found the back of the net for the equalizer.

    The two defenses stepped up as neither team scored in the two 10-minute overtime periods for the tie.

    WNCC finished with 16 shots, nine of which were on goal, while Gillette had 17 shots with 13 on goal.

    WNCC goalkeeper did a decent job in net, recording 13 saves.

    The WNCC women will have two weeks off before their next contest against Otero and Trinidad Sept. 28 and 29 at the Landers Soccer Complex.

    The Western Nebraska Community College men’s soccer team received a clutch first-half penalty kick save from Ruam Barbosa and then scored two late goals in registering a 2-1 win over Gillette College Saturday afternoon at the Landers Soccer Complex.

    Saturday’s win was huge for a Cougar men’s team that was stinging a bit after falling to Northeastern Junior College on Wednesday. WNCC didn’t want to repeat that match and fought hard to earn the victory.

    Leo Palomo, a Kearney High School graduate, said they played hard to get the win.

    “After a tough loss, I thought we came out and played well,” Palomo said. “The team played hard and it was a different situation because a lot of us got yellow cards  but we fought through it.”

    Palomo said the team bouncing back from the NJC loss was huge.

    “It definitely gave us a lot of confidence,” he said. “Right now we have a set of home games and it is good to get our confidence back and keep on winning.”

    It was a yellow-card filled match, too, with nine yellow cards issued in the 90 minutes of play. And a big key to the win was the play of the defense, holding Gillette without a goal for 89 minutes of action.

    One of the biggest defensive plays of the match was Barbosa’s penalty kick save that came just 10 minutes into the contest. Barbosa was inserted into the contest after a yellow card was issued to starting goalkeeper Leandro Faria. What Barbosa did to dive and save the ball on the penalty kick ignited the Cougar defense.

     Palomo said that Barbosa’s save was huge.

    “Ruam stepped up big for us,” Palomo said. “He gave us life in this match.”

    The two defenses, in fact, were dominating action. Neither team scored in the first half. It wasn’t until the 75 minute mark that the first goal was scored and it came off the foot of Palomo, who took a pass from Ramses Atahualpa and planted it into the net.

    The lead stayed that way until with under three minutes to play WNCC added an insurance goal for the 2-0 lead. This time it was Atahualpa, who took a pass from Ohmar Sissoko for the goal.

    The Cougars almost shutout the Pronghorns, but with 31 seconds remaining, Gillette’s Gregoire Sebm scored to cut the lead in half. WNCC then ran out the clock for the win.

    WNCC had 14 shots, seven of which were on goal. Gillette had nine shots, eight of which on goal.

    Faria had five saves in net, while Barbosa had two saves.

    WNCC will be back in action next Saturday when they host Central Community College-Columbus in a Region IX South conference game at 4 p.m.

    Palomo said they are going to keep working hard to get ready for the rest of the season.

    “We are going to hit the training field hard and keep working like we always do,” he said.

    Thursday (09/13/2018)

    Central Valley 72, Elgin Public/Pope John 22
    Clearwater-Orchard 58, West Holt 6
    Creighton Preparatory School 35, Millard North 14
    Lincoln Northeast 24, Norfolk 21
    Lincoln Southwest 30, Elkhorn 0
    Omaha Northwest 45, Omaha Benson 7
    Omaha Roncalli Catholic 62, Ralston 23

    Friday (09/14/2018)

    Adams Central 21, Gothenburg 0
    Allen 34, Winside 0
    Alliance 35, Brush, CO 26
    Ansley-Litchfield 32, Cambridge 30
    Aquinas Catholic 28, Ponca 14
    Archbishop Bergan 27, Stanton 14
    Ashland-Greenwood 54, Boys Town 14
    Auburn 35, Omaha Concordia 28
    Aurora 42, Northwest 27
    BDS 52, Lourdes Central Catholic 26
    Battle Creek 35, ONeill 0
    Bellevue West 38, Elkhorn South 3
    Bishop Neumann 53, Lincoln Christian 6
    Blair 14, Norris 0
    Boone Central/Newman Grove 35, Arlington 6
    Brady 51, Wallace 0
    Broken Bow 28, Chadron 8
    Centennial 41, Sutton 22
    Centura 43, Hershey 20
    Chase County 45, Holdrege 7
    Clarkson/Leigh 58, Parkview Christian 38
    Columbus 28, Fremont 14
    Columbus Lakeview 27, Wayne 6
    Cozad 14, Sidney 7
    Creek Valley 76, Maywood-Hayes Center 38
    Creighton 60, Homer 14
    Crete 56, South Sioux City 8
    Deshler 68, Eustis-Farnam 26
    Doniphan-Trumbull 55, Southern Valley 0
    Dundy County-Stratton 66, Kimball 24
    EMF (Exeter-Milligan/Friend) 62, Thayer Central 20
    Fairbury 28, Falls City 14
    Freeman 34, Sandy Creek 14
    Fullerton 30, Cross County 20
    Gordon-Rushville 28, Bennett County, SD 6
    Grand Island 56, North Platte 0
    Gross Catholic 42, Schuyler 0
    Hartington Cedar Catholic 41, David City 17
    Harvard 68, Sterling 36
    Hastings 51, Gering 7
    Hastings St. Cecilia 41, Wood River 6
    Heartland 66, Nebraska Lutheran 0
    Heartland Lutheran 56, Santee 0
    Humphrey St. Francis 76, Giltner 40
    Johnson County Central 41, Yutan 6
    Johnson-Brock 66, Lawrence-Nelson 14
    Kearney 35, Papillion-LaVista South 7
    Kearney Catholic 43, Ogallala 26
    Kenesaw 74, Twin Loup 7
    Laurel-Concord-Coleridge 52, Osmond 24
    Lincoln High 19, Lincoln Pius X 16
    Lincoln Lutheran 26, Milford 13
    Lincoln North Star 21, Omaha South 6
    Lincoln Southeast 14, Lincoln East 12
    Logan View/Scribner-Snyder (LVSS) 38, Fort Calhoun 13
    McCook 63, Beatrice 3
    McCool Junction 64, Silver Lake 12
    Meridian 52, Tri County 24
    Millard West 34, Millard South 27
    Minatare 61, Cody-Kilgore 34
    Minden 41, Fillmore Central 7
    Mitchell 30, Bridgeport 28
    Mount Michael Benedictine 27, Plattsmouth 13
    Norfolk Catholic 49, BRLD 14
    North Bend Central 41, Grand Island Central Catholic 37
    North Platte St. Patrick's 17, Gibbon 7
    Oakland-Craig 63, Syracuse 26
    Omaha Burke 41, Omaha North 24
    Omaha Central 60, Omaha Bryan 14
    Omaha Skutt Catholic 42, York 37
    Omaha Westside 49, Gretna 13
    Ord 44, Central City 14
    Osceola-High Plains 69, Elkhorn Valley 38
    Overton 68, Loomis 0
    Palmyra 60, Southern 59
    Papillion-LaVista 61, Bellevue East 0
    Pierce 59, Columbus Scotus 21
    Plainview 66, Emerson-Hubbard 52
    Randolph 68, Pender 8
    Raymond Central 30, Nebraska City 28
    Red Cloud 66, Elba 13
    Riverside 70, Cedar Bluffs 6
    Sandhills/Thedford 44, Paxton 8
    Scottsbluff 48, Sterling, CO 18
    Seward 56, Bennington 21
    Shelby-Rising City 44, Superior 8
    St. Paul 47, Malcolm 0
    Sumner-Eddyville-Miller 52, Spalding Academy 46
    Sutherland 44, Southwest 12
    Tekamah-Herman 44, Conestoga 8
    Twin River 39, Crofton 19
    Wahoo 60, Platteview 0
    Wakefield 70, Lutheran High Northeast 66
    Waverly 48, Lexington 7
    West Point-Beemer 47, Douglas County West 27
    Wilber-Clatonia 46, Louisville 17
    Wilcox-Hildreth 76, St. Edward 22
    Winner, SD 26, Valentine 20
    Wisner-Pilger 68, Madison 20

    Former WNCC Cougar soccer player Eseah Ingram and Andre Matzuda will be experiencing something a little different at their new school at Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina, and its name is Hurricane Florence.

    That is right, Ingram and Matzuda’s playing has been put on hold for a weekend because of Hurricane Florence that will be coming ashore on the east coast by North Carolina.

    Shaw University was supposed to play Cincinnati Clermont in Durham, North Carolina, on Saturday, but that game was postponed until a later day.

    Ingram, a Scottsbluff High graduate, said the hurricane changes everything from game schedules to practice time. Matzuda said practices, games, and classes were canceled for security reasons.

    “The hurricane changes everything, as anything athletic based is canceled until the storm passes,” Ingram said. “We were scheduled to have a game this Saturday, but it’s been postponed until a later date. It’s rough, as we’ would love to practice and play, but these are the circumstances we are in, so we will be doing our own body workout circuits to try and maintain our shape as we go about these next few off days.”

    While things have been put on hold for now, Matzuda said some students have left campus for their hometowns. But for Matzuda and Ingram, they are stuck in North Carolina.

    “Some of the players have left to go to their homes,” Matzuda said. “But others have stayed here.”

    While there is no official practice going on, Ingram said they will practice on their own and work out in the weight room until the Hurricane passes.

    “Team-wise, it hasn’t affected us too heavily, we just came off of a good weekend where we beat the 23rd-ranked team in the nation and we would have loved to continue our momentum into the next game,” Ingram said. “But, things like the weather we are just not in control of, so we are just trying to stay as fit as we can until practice and games resume. And, of course, we will try to stay as safe as possible, too.”

    Neither Matzuda or Ingram have ever experienced a hurricane before, so this is something new.

    “Neither Andre or I have been in a hurricane before,” Ingram said. “Andre, being from Peru, is more used to earthquakes. For me, being born in Texas and living in Nebraska for a while, I have always just been more used to tornadoes.”

    Where Shaw University is situated in Raleigh, North Carolina, they should get a direct hit from the hurricane considering they are inland. Still, the predictions are for strong winds and around 10 inches of rain.

    “Well, we aren’t on the coast, so it will not hit us as strong, but the last that we know, we are predicted to get some very strong winds and about 5-10 inches of rain,” Ingram said. “It should begin early Friday morning and last until mid Sunday and maybe early Monday.”

    Ingram said as of Thursday afternoon, it was calm in Raleigh.

    “The weather has been normal as usual,” he said. “It is hot and sunny!”

    While their season is on hold, Ingram said the soccer team is off to a good start. In the 2-1 win over Bloomsburg University, Matzuda was scored the team’s first goal in the 10th minute of the first half.

    That was Matzuda’s second straight game of scoring a goal, having netted a goal in the team’s 3-2 win over Christendom the day before.

    Ingram, who is a defensive specialist, has started four of five matches for the Bears this season.

    “We are off to a good start in the season,” Ingram said. “We are currently 3-1-1, coming off a big win against a nationally ranked team!! We are a good group of guys who get along both on and off the field, so I think that helps us out a lot.

    “Andre and I have both cracked the starting lineup and have been playing well, Andre, in these five games, already has two great goals and I have been able to contribute one assist so far.”

    Because of the hurricane, next action for Shaw is slated for Sept. 19 when they face Barton College.

    Ingram said that he and Matzuda wish WNCC athletics the best this year.

    “We wish WNCC athletics the best this year and want to give a special shout-out to the men and women’s soccer teams,” Ingram said. “We hope the year is a great one and both are able to bring back a Region 9 title. We hope every sport is dominate and bring back Region titles and National titles as well. Go Cougars!”