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Gopher Sports Non-Revenue Review 11/21

Two seasons end while Whalen’s bunch is on a roll

Taiye Bello is off to am amazing start for Minnesota this season

One Minnesota team is off to a flying start while two others seasons came to an end last weekend—we recap them and more in this week’s Non-Rev Review.

Minnesota Soccer:

The Gophers fantastic postseason run came to an end last Friday in LA when the #2 seeded UCLA Bruins beat the Gophers 5-0 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Bruins are ranked #4 nationally and are on a tear as they also defeated NC State 5-0 in the third round Sunday to advance to the Elite 8. Minnesota ends the season as 12-9-2.

Women’s Cross Country:

The Gophers finished their season last Saturday at the NCAA Championships in Madison. Minnesota finished in 29th place. Bethany Hasz was the top individual finisher for the Gophers ending the race in 49th place in 20:43:49 for 6k. Her sister Megan would finish in 105th place. The Colorado Buffaloes won the National Championship.

Gopher Women’s Basketball:

Lindsay Whalen has her team off to a 4-0 start this season. The Gophers who were ranked #23 in the most recent AP poll snuck out a win against San Diego at the Barn last Saturday night and then doubled up on Arkansas-Pine Bluff Tuesday night with an 84-42 win.

Junior Taiye Bello is off to an amazing start for Minnesota this season. She had three double-doubles all of last season and reached that mark in her third game this season against San Diego. While she only scored six points against Arkansas- Pine Bluff she set a new career high with 19 rebounds! Senior Kenisha Bell led Minnesota with 24 points against the Lions. The Gophers had four players in double figures and nine who scored at least a point in their blowout.

The Gophers will need to work on ball security however. Minnesota had 23 turnovers for the second consecutive game. But a 50-19 advantage on the boards will cure a lot of ills. Minnesota gets to enjoy Thanksgiving before Cornell comes to town for a game at the Barn Friday night.

Gopher Swimming and Diving:

The Gophers had a good weekend at the Hawkeye Invite in Iowa City. The women finished in first place while the men too second behind the host Hawkeyes. Both teams won several individual events posting times near the best in nation this season.

The teams have this weekend off before hosting the Minnesota Invitiational at home next weekend.

Gopher Wrestling:

The #9 Gophers kicked off their home dual meet season at the Pav last Saturday against #2 Oklahoma State. While the team did not fair as well as hoped dropping the meet 23-9 to the Cowboys, Minnesota had several individual performances that were very impressive.

Minnesota won three weight classes in their meet. At 141 pounds #8 Mitch McKee defeated #5 Kaid Brock 6-3. He trailed entering the third period but got an escape at the beginning of the period followed by a clutch takedown to get the decision. He jumped to #5 in the newest individual rankings this week. At 157 pounds #11 Steve Bliese got a win with a takedown in the third period.

The highlight of the meet for Minnesota was freshman heavyweight Gable Stevenson. The #5 ranked freshman took out #3 Derek While of the Cowboys with a 8-2 win. It was pure domination as within the first minute of the match Steveson had a takedown and near fall to take a six-point advantage.

Stevenson impressed so much he jumped to #2 in the country in the newest rankings, and also was named the Big Ten Wrestler of the Week. He is undefeated on the year with two tournament titles from the Bison Open and Daktronics Open before his win last Sunday.

The Gophers will face South Dakota State Sunday at the Pav in a dual meet.

Gopher Women’s Hockey:

The Gophers continued their four game wining streak with a weekend home and home sweep of St. Cloud State. The Gophers got a scare on Saturday in St. Cloud when it took a Taylor Heise overtime goal to give the Gophers a 4-3 win.

Sunday the Gophers looked more like the Gophers in picking up a 7-2 win. Grace Zumwinkle had a pair of goals for the Gophers.

It was the last WCHA series for the #2 ranked Gophers until mid-January. Minnesota now plays non-conference series the next three weeks. The first of two weekends out east will be this weekend when Minnesota participates in the Windjammer Classic hosted by Vermont. The Gophers will play #8 St. Lawrence in the opener on Friday and will either play host Vermont or Syracuse on Saturday.

Minnesota Softball:

The Gophers will have a huge part of their recent success missing next spring. The news leaked out earlier this week and was confirmed by Joe Christensen of the Star Tribune on Tuesday that Minnesota junior catcher Kendyl Lindaman had decided to transfer. The two-time All-American was the Big Ten Player of the Year each of the last two seasons. It’s a huge blow for a Gophers team who struggled to get over the NCAA Tournament hump.

No reason for her transfer was given but the best guess would be that she never really got along with new Gopher coach Jamie Trachsel. NCAA rules allow for her to transfer and be eligible to play next spring for her new team. Minnesota will have a hole hole in it’s lineup to figure out how to fill.