The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on October 16, 1996 · Page 25
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 25

Salina, Kansas
Issue Date:
Wednesday, October 16, 1996
Page 25
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WEDNESDAY oef©sif*mi§96 THE SALINA JOURNAL Sports SCOREBOARD/ D2 BASEBALL/D3 HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL STANDINGS/ D4 D V THE BOTTOM LINE TBASEBALL PLAYOFFS BOB DAVIDSON The Salina Journal FHS dilemma: improving on 34-0 season They were the best team in NCAA Division II last season, as '"• evidenced by their incredible 34-0 ..record and national championship. But as talented and dominant as the Fort Hays State men's basketball team was last year, the Tigers could conceivably be better this winter. Perhaps much better. Granted, it will be difficult to improve on 34-0. The Tigers could . ,• play more games, but improving on .100 percent can't happen. There are no degrees of perfect. .-'••• Still, on paper, the 1996-97 Tigers • appear to be a leg up on last year's „. team in at least one area — depth. •••;• Head coach Gary Garner, the NCAA Division H Coach of the Year, greeted three returning starters and six of the top eight players from last year's team when the Tigers gathered Tuesday after: . noon for their first official practice .^of the season. .; Ail-American center Alonzo Goldston was there. So were for.;,wards Sherick Simpson and Antho'•"• "ay Pope. Simpson, you might remember, was the Outstanding Player in last year's Elite 8 Tournament in Louisville, Ky. Pope, you might recall, hit six of seven 3-point shots in the championship game. Also returning are sixth-man Mark Eck, talented backup point guard Earl Tyson, and reserve center Jeremy Kester. All three played 'significant roles last year, and are ; expected to again this year. There are two holes in the back- court where shooting guard Geoff Eck, the Tigers' record-setting 3- point bomber, and four-year point guard Chad Creamer have graduated. They will be missed. But Garner has seemingly filled those holes, and any others that might develop. He bolstered the Tigers' hardly-• sagging ranks with five junior college transfers who are expected to T contribute immediately and significantly. Three plus three plus five equals 11. Depth times two, and then some. Leading the list of newcomers is 6-foot-5 forward Donnie Collins, who practiced with the team last .spring as a redshirt. Insiders say Collins, a transfer from Arizona Western Community College, was .... virtually unstoppable during work,,outs and could have a profound im. v pact on a team loaded with impact players. '••" There's also guards Tim Nunnery (Moorpark College, Calif.) and .Ethan Kruse (Grays Harbor C.C., Washington), swingman Gerald Coops (Illinois Central College) and 6-11 center Tyler Newton (Eastern Utah). Watching the team practice . would be worth the price of a game admission with this roster. ; Of course, games and titles aren't won on paper. Team chemistry, al- "viays a fragile formula, is the key. • Garner masterfully molded last year's collection of transfers and holdovers into a juggernaut no one could stop. ;. He faces a similar task this year "but few, if any, are betting against him and new assistant coach Mark Johnson. The Tigers' abundant talent won't be wasted. The Rocky Moun- •tain Athletic Conference welcomes five teams from the former Colorado Athletic Conference to its Vanks, CAC teams bring with them a solid basketball reputation that will only enhance the expanding RMAC. Of the seven teams in the RMAC's Eastern Division this season, three played in the North Central Regional a year ago — Fort Hays, Regis and Nebraska-Kearney. Fort Hays will rightfully be atop the NCAA Division II preseason poll. It will be a shock if they ever vacate their perch. Their overwhelming success has- -n't gone unnoticed. A reporter and .photographer from Sports Illustrated spent two days on the FHSU ; -campus last week gathering information for an article in the upcoming preseason college basketball edition. - ,v- The enormous target gets even bigger. Tiger opponents will be laying in \vait to spring the upset of the century. They are a marked team. But this is a team capable of deal- 'ing with whatever comes its way. ;, They were the best a year ago. .They might be better a year later. Cardinals, Braves verbally jab On day off, teams look for psychological advantage in preparation for Game 6 tonight with St. Louis ahead 3-2 By BEN WALKER The Associated Press ATLANTA — Even on an off day in the NL championship series, the games kept going between the St. Louis Cardinals and Atlanta Braves. The psychological games, that is. Without much prompting, and peppering his comments with more profanity than usual, St. Louis manager Tony La Russa took off on the Braves during practice Tuesday at Busch Stadium. "The only one that really bothers me is the one that's coming out today at their getting upset at our emotion," La Russa said, a day after Atlanta's 14-0 Tonight's starting pitchers romp cut the Cardinals' edge to 3-2. "I've always admired their ability to handle things well, but it surprised me some. "I watched their celebration. They shook hands quietly, patted each other on the back. They want to be what they want to be? Fine, we'll be the way we want to be. We're not getting on them for being real cool, and I don't want to hear this about us being too emotional." Perturbed? Probably. Looking for an ALAN BENES MADDUX emotional edge? Clearly. La Russa did the same thing before the series started, pouncing on an innocent remark by Atlanta's Chipper Jones about how the Dodgers were the team the Braves really feared in the playoffs. Then again, La Russa surely was looking for something after Monday night's rout. Game 6 is tonight (7:11, Fox TV) in Atlanta, with four-time Cy Young winner Greg Maddux starting for the * More playoff coverage / Page D3 Braves. If they win, 1995 World Series MVP Tom Glavine would follow in Game 7. While Maddux and Glavine are set up to pitch on their regular four days of rest, La Russa probably will change his rotation to give his tired pitchers a break. Rookie Alan Benes is expected to get the start in Game 6, pushing Donovan Osborne back to a possible Game 7. Todd Stottlemyre, pushed up to work on three days' rest for the first time since July 1995, was pounded for nine hits by the 12 batters he faced. T COLLEGE SOCCER DAVIS TURNER/The Salina Journal Kansas Wesleyan's Lauren Humphrey keeps his eye on the ball as teammate Mark Chaney (left) gets tangled with Friends' Jason Zlnn during Tuesday's game at the Salina Family YMCA fields. Wesleyan downs Friends By BOB DAVIDSON The Saltna Journal Harold Calvo lives to kick a soccer ball. When Calvo, Kansas Wesleyan's standout forward, gets it, he seldom has it for long. Frequently, he deposits it in the opposing team's goal, as evidenced by the fact he is the Kansas Conference's leading scorer. Calvo was at it again Tuesday, scoring one goal and setting up another by way of a. penalty kick in Wesleyan's 3-1 victory over Friends 3-1 at the Salina Family YMCA soccer fields. "I love to get the ball," said Calvo, a junior college transfer from South Mountain College in Phoenix. "When I get it I feel unstoppable. Right ^ow, I feel I can beat anybody." Calvo has beaten several this season. He leads the KCAC in scoring with 16 goals in 11 games. Teammate Mike Dibbini is a close second with 14 goals in 11 games. Calvo, a Phoenix native, gave Wesleyan a 1-0 lead in the first minute Tuesday on a spectacular jaunt through Friends' defense. Calvo weaved through three defenders, broke into the clear See SOCCER, Page D3 T COLLEGE FOOTBALL Aggies' record not fooling Snyder, K-State SNYDER At 3-3, Texas A&M hasn't lived up to high preseason projections By HAROLD BECHARD The Salina Journal MANHATTAN — BUI Snyder is as perplexed as the next guy when it comes to trying to figure out the Texas A&M footbalLteam. Snyder says the Aggies have "speed, talent and balance" and he believes they will be one of the toughest teams they face all season when the two knock heads Saturday night in College Station, Texas. But despite all the accolades and preseason buildup, Texas A&M is just 3-3 heading into its game with Kansas State, and the Aggies came close to being 2-4 after last weekend's 24-21 victory at Iowa State. So why are the Aggies, who were expected to have one of the best front seven's on defense in the nation this season, just a .500 team through the first half of the season. "I've asked myself that very question and asked others as well because, if you have an answer, I'd like to know," Snyder said Tuesday afternoon at his weekly press conference. "They have talented players and good coaches." The Aggies are also close to being pushed out of the bowl picture. They need six wins against NCAA Division I-A teams to qualify for a bowl, and still have road games at Oklahoma State, Baylor and Texas remaining. "I know full well this is a big game for them because of the situation they're in," Snyder said. Kyle Field A crowd of 70,210 is expected for Saturday's game, which was moved from 1 p.m. to 6:10 p.m. to accommodate Fox/Prime Network. The crowd at Kyle Field is among the loudest in the country and has helped the Aggies to a 413-1 record under head coach R.C. Slocum since 1989 and 65-5-1 since 1985. "I've never been there, but I've heard a lot about it," Snyder said. "I know it can be loud, kind of nonstop noise." To get the K-State players ready "I know full well that this is a big game for them because of the situation they're in." Bill Snyder K-State football coach on Texas A&M for the .crowd noise, loud speakers are present at Wildcat practices this week to simulate ,the noise. "The kids hate it, I hate it, but we do it anyway," Snyder said. "We do it a couple times a year. I couldn't stand it anymore than that." Lawrence stars Junior running back Mike Lawrence entered last week's Missouri game No. 2 on the despth chart with only 180 yards rushing in five games. Lawrence may have turned his season around with a career-high 168 yards and two touchdowns on 25 carries against the Tigers. "Mike played well," Snyder said. "I thought he ran hard and the people up front played well. But Mike also caught the ball and his pass blocking was also good." Snyder wouldn't say which running back — Lawrence or Marlon Charles — will start against Texas A&M, but did say both will play. "I'll play whoever has the hot hand," Snyder said. "If Marlon has the hot hand it won't do us any good if he's standing next to me." WIBW continues agreement • Kansas State athletic director Max Urick announced Tuesday that Stauffer Communications of Topeka would continue as the Wildcat Sports Network after the two signed a five-year contract. The contract, which begins with the 1997-98 season, is worth in excess of $1.5 million plus additional promotional opportunities and gives WIBW Radio of Topeka rights to K-State football, men's and women's basketball and baseball. WIBW has been the flagship station for K-State athletics since 1980. "During our conversations with several potential rights holders," Urick said, "it became obvious that WIBW and the Wildcat Sports Network was absolutely the correct choice for Kansas State University." V PRO FOOTBALL It's a trend: Chiefs have won 10 of 11 from Seahawks Seattle players hope to turn tide Thursday when teams play in KG By JIM COUR The Associated Press KIRKLAND, Wash. — The Seattle Seahawks are tired of the Kansas City jinx. "It's been real tough," Cortez Kennedy said Monday. "They've had it mostly their way the last couple of years." Couple of years? Try 10 losses in 11 games against the Chiefs, who continued their domination of the Seahawks with a 35-17 victory Sept. 15 in the King- dome. And Seattle's veterans are sick of it. "They've had our number since I've been here," Michael Sinclair said. "I've only beaten them once." The Seahawks (2-4) will play the Chiefs (4-2) Thursday night in Kansas City. Sinclair is in his sixth season with the Seahawks and Kennedy his seventh. Chris Warren is another Seattle seven-year veteran with a long memory. He'd like to settle the score — make that a lot of scores — against Kansas City, an AFC West team the Seahawks have to face twice a year. "They're a tough team and they have a great defense," Warren said. "They match up well against us. So that's probably the biggest reason." Warren, a three-time Pro Bowl running back with four consecutive 1,000-yard rushing seasons, knows all about Neil Smith, Derrick Thomas and company. Warren had a total of 13 yards on 25 carries in his last two games against the Chiefs. Kansas City held him to 6 yards on 14 carries in Week 3 this season. "You go through cycles where you have a hard time beating teams," Warren said. "If we beat them this week, it can possibly turn our year around," said Sinclair, who is tied for the NFL sacks lead with eight this season. Kennedy, a five-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle, has a feeling about his seventh trip to Arrowhead Stadium. "It's going to be a big difference," he said. "We've been working hard all week." John Friesz will be making his second career start at quarterback against the Chiefs. In his first career start, a 26-3 loss in Kansas City last Christmas Eve, Friesz started in place of Rick Mirer and completed 10 of 26 passes for 80 yards. He also came out of the game with a major headache after suffering one of two concussions he's had as a football player. Mirer came in and finished the game. ; "We ran a little inside screen and I got hit by both ends," Friesz said. "Right when I let it go, Neil Smith hit me and then Derrick Thomas hit me." Friesz is making his second consecutive start. SUGGESTIONS? CALL BOB DAVIDSON, SPORTS EDITOR, AT (913) 823-6363 OR 1-800-827-6363

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