The amount of great plays, individual performances and prestigious team accomplishments have always been what separates the Bison athletic program from the rest. Our athletes have been pushed to rise to their full potential while creating these memorable moments as we stood by the wayside, documenting their journey to greatness. An endless amount of great moments are on the brink this upcoming season, but before we indulge ourselves in more breathtaking moments, here are 101 from last season that left you in awe.
Summit League Domination- When we look back at last season, the one theme that reoccurred over and over again was the Bison success within conference play. From basketball to track and field, conference dominance has become a habitual occurrence for the Bison athletic program. Let’s look back at the most notable conference moments from last season.
- *Men’s Basketball — Heading in the Right Direction –The Bison won their first Summit League tournament game since 2009, beating Kansas City 69-58 in the opening round of the playoffs. Returning from an injured foot and with his family in the crowd, Taylor Braun nailed a career-high 16 of his 18 free throws on his way to 27 points and also added seven rebounds along the way. The eventual runner-ups will be returning all five of their starters and eight of their top scorers.
- *Baseball — John Straka throws a shutout for his sixth complete game of the season in the first round against Oakland in the Summit League tournament.
- Baseball — David Ernst throws a complete-game two-hitter in the second round of the Summit League tournament against Western Illinois.
- Baseball — It takes a four-game sweep, but the Bison secured their third-seed in the Summit League tournament.
- Men’s Basketball — The Bison score on 21 of their 26 shots in the first half on their way to a 92-66 blowout of South Dakota.
- Soccer — Tristyn Walczak scores in the 90th-minute to break a scoreless tie as the Bison go on to defeat IUPUI, 1-0.
- *Soccer — Underclassmen, Anisha Kinnarath and Meghan Johnston help Bison topple Kansas City, 2-1 on Senior Night.
- Men’s Basketball — Taylor Braun lights it up with seven three-pointers, tying a school record while introducing Omaha to the Summit League with a 95-51 beat down.
*Dome Field Advantage- Every Saturday in the fall has become the most anticipated holidays all across Bison Nation. The consistent success of the football team at the FargoDome has become tradition in itself for every fan. But the football team wasn’t the only team that took advantage of the Dome-field advantage. Here are some of the most memorable moments from last season at the FargoDome.
- Football–After a long summer, the Bison open the season in front of a sold out FargoDome against Robert Morris. The Colonials never stood a chance against the superior Bison as NDSU rolled to a 52-7 victory in their home opener. (pic:Smugmug.com>>BI>>Football>>NDSUvsRMU>>131)
- Football–It was a tightly contested football game through-out and with minutes remaining Marcus Williams sealed the W for the Bison with an interception right in-front of the student section against Southern Illinois. This gave the Bison the 23-17 victory moving their record to 7-1. (pic:Smugmug.com>>BI>>Football>>NDSUvsPV>>9)
- Football–In the first meeting of the year, the Bison edged SDSU and won the Dakota Marker trophy for the third straight year. (pic:Smugmug>>BI>>Football>>2012vsSDSU>>80)
- Men’s Basketball–The football team wasn’t the only team making memories inside the FargoDome. The Bison use a well-timed run to beat UND by twenty in the FargoDome, 72-52.
- Football–Leave it to the crafty Brent Vigen to dial up a trick play to get the FargoDome rockin’. Ryan Smith took a handoff in the second quarter of the FCS second round playoff game against SDSU, sprinted his way into the endzone and gave the momentum and the lead to the Bison putting them up 14-3. (pic: Smugmug.com>>BI>>Football>>PlayoffsvsSDSU>>62)
- Softball–Whitney Johnson threw her second no-hitter of the season as the Bison sweep a double-header against SDSU in the FargoDome. The Bison went 3-0 this year in the FargoDome, moving their all-time record to 16-2 underneath the roof at the Dome.
- Football–The Bison took down Missouri Valley rival South Dakota State twice at the FargoDome last season. The second time made it the sweetest, advancing the Bison to the FCS quarterfinals. (pic:Smugmug.com>>BI>>Football>>PlayoffvsSDSU>>66)
- Football–The defense holds against Wofford in the quarterfinals holding Wofford to zero points in two redzone appearances. The Bison won 14-7 to advance to the semi-finals against Georgia Southern.
- Football–Brock Jensen scores on fourth down for the go-ahead touchdown late in the fourth quarter against Georgia Southern. The TD put the Bison ahead 23-20 with three minutes left in the semi-final game.
- Football–In one of the most dramatic plays of the season, Carleton Littlejohn blocked Georgia Southern’s last-second field goal attempt advancing the Bison to their second consecutive championship game.
Re-writing the Record Books- “Records are meant to be broken.” This old sports cliché dates back since sports writers started tracking statistics and last season, a countless number of Bison records were shattered. The bar for excellence at NDSU has been set high, but who knows when it will be raised next.
- *Football–Grant Olson breaks school record in tackles recording 29 against Wofford.
- Volleyball–Andrea Henning breaks the school record with 39 digs against South Dakota State.
- Volleyball–Megan Lambertson breaks school career hitting record with a 38.3 percentage.
- Men’s Track & Field–In his last race as a Bison, Travis Fitzke breaks the 34-year-old record with a 3:42.32 in the 1500m.
- Men’s Golf– Bison set new team record with a four-player scoring average of 295.19 beating the old mark by four strokes.
- Wrestling–Bison finish second in the NCAA West Regional, their highest finish as a division I program.
- Men’s Golf–The Bison also set a team record with a 18-hole round score of 279 and 36-hole tournament record with a score of 565 at the Rice Intercollegiate.
- *Women’s Golf– G.O.A.T. 4/9/13–Amy Anderson breaks Juli Inkster’s record of 17 tournament victories by winning the Kangaroo Invitational in Oklahoma City. Anderson’s 18th career tournament victory came in dramatic fashion beating Jessica Schiele by two strokes, finishing two strokes under par. Anderson didn’t quit there, the Oxbow native finished her career with 20 tournament victories including another Summit League crown in 2013
- Women’s Track & Field–Deborah John breaks school 100m hurdles at Trinidad & Tobago National Track and Field Championships with a time of 13.24.
- Men’s Track & Field–Casey Orgon breaks school record in hammer throw tossing the ball and chain 65 meters.
- Women’s Track & Field–Antoinette Goodman sets the Bison record in the 100 meter dash with a time of 11.68 during the Summit League Outdoors Championship.
- Women’s Golf–Amy Anderson wins school-record fourth-title of the year shooting an even par at the Creighton Classic.
Bringing Home the Hardware– The trophy case at NDSU is becoming more and more crowded as each season passes. While administration worries about expanding the trophy case, here are some of the awards Bison athletes were able to accumulate last season.
- *Football–Craig Bohl is voted AFCA FCS Coach of the Year. (pic: smugmug.com>>BI>>Football>>NDSU2012-2013 Championship>>129)
- Women’s Basketball–Dani DeGagne wins two-straight Summit League Co-Player of the Week.
- Wrestling–Trent Sprenkle is name WWC Wrestler of the Year after going 34-6.
- *Wrestling– KISH — It was another historical season for the wrestlers. Trent Sprenkle was named to the All-American team, numerous wrestlers had career seasons and head coach Roger Kish was named WWC Coach of the Year, his first such honor. Kish led the Bison to a conference championship and guided four wrestlers to the NCAA Championships. In his second season as head coach, Kish has already made a name for himself in the coaching ranks and will bring in one of the nation’s top recruiting class to NDSU this season.
- Wrestling–Bison win the regular season title outright after a 36-9 beating of SDSU, finishing with a perfect 5-0 in the Western Wrestling Conference.
- Women’s Cross-Country–Heidi Peterson led the way as the Bison claim five of the top nine spots at the UND Ron Pynn Invitational.
- Men’s Track & Field–Casey Orgon becomes first Bison to become NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Division One Honorable Mention All-American for his performance at the Championships in Eugene, Oregon.
- Men’s Track & Field–Andy Lillejord breaks Bison record in the heptathlon during the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships claiming seventh place and becoming an All-American.
Memorable Moment From the Stands– Why do you love sports? Simple. Because the awesome experiences you have at the games! From road tripping to see your favorite players, to saluting them on their way out on senior night, we gathered some of the best fan experiences from last season.
- *Football– Pep Rally For the Ages — A 16-hour car ride and a venue change could not dampen the Bison fan’s moral as they packed inside the Frisco Roughriders ballpark the night before the FCS championship game in Frisco, Texas. The magical night was highlight with speeches from Bison legends, Coach Bohl, president Bresciani and Frisco Mayor Maher Maso. 8,200 Bison fans dapped in gold cheered throughout the night and even enjoyed some fireworks the night before the Bison played Sam Houston State for the FCS’ most coveted prizes. And the best part was, the BearKat hotel was located right behind the centerfield wall. (pic:smugmug.com>>BI>>Football>>NDSU2012-2013 Championship>>5)
- Football–The road trip down to Frisco
- Football–Tailgating in Fort Collins, Colorado taking over the city for a day. Then beating them down 22-7.
- *Women’s Basketball–An emotional night as the Bison honor six seniors on senior night: Katie Birkel, Dani DeGagne, Hannah Linz, Britney Gaines, Catavia Jones and Janae Burich.
- Men’s Basketball–Senior Nate Zastrow scores season-high 10 points as the Bison takedown Utah Valley on Senior Night.
- Women’s Basketball–Hannah Linz scores six points, tallied four assists in 27 minutes against South Dakota State in her final game as a Bison.
Unforgettable Moments You Probably Forgot About– With great performances and championship runs, it is easy to forget the subtle moments of greatness. They may not be moments that stick out while looking back at the season, but they were important none the less. We dug back in the annals of each team’s season and found a handful of moments that you, the fan, may have forgot about.
- Football–Botched field goal attempt goes right for the Bison and they score a two-point conversion against Sam Houston State.
- Football–Down ten early to Illinois State, Marcus Williams takes the ensuing kickoff back 98 yards for a touchdown to get the Bison on the board.
- *Softball–Whitney Johnson throws her first no-hitter of the season against Radford and bounces back and throws a one-hitter against Georgia.
- Women’s Basketball–Freshman Marena Whittle makes her only field goal of the game as her layup with 3 seconds left lifts the Bison over Oakland, 60-59.
- *Baseball– Diamond Drama — After a slow start to the season, the baseball team had some ground to make up late in the season. It took a pair of walk-off hits against IPFW secures the Bison’s spot in the Summit League tournament. The first came when John Skrbec hit a walk-off two-run homerun in the bottom of the tenth and in the second game, Jon Hechtner hit a two-out single to score the game winning run in the bottom of the seventh. The weather always makes the baseball season an interesting one, and this year fans were left not knowing what was going to happen next.
- Soccer–Jordyn Wallenborn ties game late, then scores game-winning goal in the Bison’s Summit League opener against South Dakota State.
- *Men’s Basketball–Bison tie a school record allowing only 34 points against Kansas City.
- Men’s Golf–Bison win the Navy Classic with a collective score of 3 under par. The Bison claim the top three spots with Nathan Anderson, Bill Carlson and Trent Olson.
- Women’s Basketball–The Bison have six players score in double figures on their way to a 111-75 victory over Mayville State.
- Men’s Basketball–Bison rattle off 8 wins in-a-row from December 15th to January 17th.
- Women’s Golf– Women’s Golf–Bison place three in the top-3 at Cobber Open: Abby Knutson with her first tournament victoriy, Amy Anderson second, and Sarah Storandt third.
Best in Show– There’s no “I” in team, but there’s a “me”. Some individual Summit League performances are difficult to go unnoticed and thanks to the Summit League brain-trust, several outstanding Bison athletes were rewarded with the recognition they deserved by being named to the All-Summit League team.
- *Volleyball–Bumping, setting and spiking are what volleyball players live for, and seniors Brynn Joki and Megan Lambertson may have been the best in the Summit League at all three. The Volleyball stars were both named to the All-Summit League first team in 2012. They were no strangers to the recognition they have worked so hard to deserve, making the 2012 selection their third year in-a-row beingq named All-League performers.
- Baseball–Wes Satzinger, Tim Colwell, Kyle Kleinendorst and Jon Hechtner are named to the All-Summit League first team.
- *Soccer–Anisha Kinnarath named to the 2012 All-Summit League First Team
- *Men’s Basketball–Taylor Braun is named to the All-Summit League Tournament first team following a 73-67 defeat in the hands of South Dakota State in the Summit League championship game.
- Men’s Golf–Nathan Anderson and Bill Carlson are named to the 2013 All-Summit League Men’s Golf Team.
- Softball–Darren Mueller and Jamie Trachsel earn Summit League Coach of the Year honors.
- Women’s Golf–Amy Anderson named First Team All-Summit League.
- Women’s Golf–Amy Anderson wins her fourth-straight Summit League Golfer of the Year.
- Men’s Track & Field–Andy Lillejord is named Summit League Indoor Track Athlete of the Year after dominating in all of his events during the indoor season.
- Men’s Track & Field–Casey Orgon is named Summit League Outdoor Track Athlete of the Year after qualifying for the NCAA Championships.
- Softball–Whitney Johnson named 2013 Summit League Pitcher of the Year.
- Women’s Golf–Amy Anderson becomes the first three-time Summit League Individual Champion.
The Turning Point- Throughout a full-season of competition, it is difficult to keep track of the subtle moments that changes the course of a whole season. One play or one game can change a season for the better or worse. Here is a list of those momentum shifting moments for the Bison last season.
- Football–Brock Jensen glides in for the first touchdown against Sam Houston State.
- Baseball–Bison outhit the Jack’s to snap a seven-game hitting streak, 11-10, and win seven of the next eight.
- Football–Marcus William’s pick-six to extend lead during homecoming game against YSU.
- Baseball–Bison throw-out two runners at the plate to defeat Oakland, 4-1.
- Men’s Basketball–Bison start Summit League play by going 7-0 after blowing out IUPUI 78-40
- Men’s Basketball–Marshall Bjorklund and Lawrence Alexander combine for 38 as the Bison take-down eventual Summit League champs SDSU with a 65-62.
- Men’s Basketball–Trayvon Wright makes a career high five three-pointers leading the way 19 points as the Bison break through the stingy defense of Western Illinois for a 55-43 victory in the Summit League tournament semi-finals.
- *Soccer Better Late than Never— In a sequence of events that no one would have expected, Jenna Miller’s first shot of the season found the back of the net, propelling the Bison to a 1-0 victory over Omaha to clinch a spot in the Summit League tournament. A crushing overtime loss in the first game of the tournament ended the Bison’s season, but was also the end of a promising chapter in the program’s book. First year head coach, Mark Cook, has started his tenure with the Bison on a promising note looking to build off of last season’s success with a young team this fall.
- Women’s Basketball–Led by an outstanding 24 of 26 performance from the free throw line, Bison open season with an 81-72 victory over Harvard.
- Soccer–After allowing a tying-goal late, the Bison scored in double-overtime to notch a 2-1 victory over Bemidji State.
Astonishing Accolades- While sifting through the numerous exciting moments from last season, some can’t be thrown in a category, but can’t go ignored. Having a category like this is just another reason the Bison athletic program is doing everything right.
- Baseball–John Straka gets drafted in the 32nd round by the Texas Rangers.
- All Sports–NDSU place 101 athletes Commissioner’s List of Academic Excellence
- All Sports–The Bison claim The Summit League’s Dr. Helen Smiley Women’s All-Sports Award for the fourth year in-a-row.
- Baseball–Tim Colwell and John Straka are named Capital One All-Academic first team.
- Soccer–Bison defeat Eastern Washington, 3-2 giving Mark Cook his first career victory.
- Men’s Track & Field–Andre Martin missing the Summit League Championship Meet to attend St. Louis Rams mini-camp.
- Men’s Golf–Nathan Anderson ties a school-record for lowest score in a round shooting a 64 in the final round at the Rice Intercollegiate.
- *Wrestling–Four wrestlers represent the Bison at the NCAA Wrestling Championships: Trent Sprenkle, Steven Monk, Mac Stoll, Evan Knutson.
- Men’s Cross Country–With a cumulative GPA of 3.45, the Bison were honored by the US Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association to the All-Academic team. The team’s GPA was good enough to rank them tied for 18th in the country.
- Women’s Track & Field–Leslie Brost places 18 during the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Oregon. This was Brost sixth appearance in the NCAA Championships.
- Men’s Track & Field–Bison set school record by sending six athletes to the NCAA West Preliminary Round in Austin, Texas: Casey Orgon, hammer throw; Matt Tetzlaff, 110m hurdles; Jerome Begin, 400m hurdles; Travis Fitzke, 1500m; Tyler Parker, javelin; Brandt Berghuis, shot put.
- Men’s Track & Field– Men’s Track & Field-Tossing His Way into History— Men’s track and field has been a well-respected program for years and with legendary coach Don Larson at the helm, the athletes are some of the most well-rounded on campus. Senior Casey Orgon is the definition of these track athletes that has worked hard and has improved tremendously during is career. His sweat and tears finally paid-off when he was the first men’s track athlete to qualify for the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, finishing 21st in the hammer throw.
*Championship Performances- When you think championships for the North Dakota State University, fans instantly think football, Frisco and back-to-back titles. However, the football team wasn’t the only program who put “NDSU” and “champions” in the same sentence. Here is the list of championship memories from this past season.
- FCS National Champions — For the second consecutive season, the Bison defeated the Bearkats of Sam Houston State in Frisco, Texas in the FCS National Championship game. The Bison stormed into FCS Dallas Stadium and took reigns of the game early in the second half, beating the Bearkats, 39-13. (pic: smugmug.com>>BI>>Football>>NDSU2012-2013 Championship>>133)
- Summit League Decathalon Champion — Ryan Jenson places first in the decathlon at the Summit League Outdoors Track and Field Championships. After the favorite Andy Lillejord withdrew early, the former walk-on Jenson made the most of his opportunity by winning the always elusive decathlon title.
- Summit League Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Champions — If the football team think two Missouri Valley Football Conference championships in-a-row is impressive? Try 12. When the Bison won their sixth-straight Summit League Outdoor Track and Field title, it brouht their total to 12-straight track and field championships including the indoor season.
- Summit League Men’s Indoor Track and Field Champions — Blowing away the competition, the Bison won their fourth consecutive Summit League Indoor Track & Field title. Matt Tetzlaff won the 100-meter hurdles for the third time and the Bison added 29 points placing 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th in the 800 meter.
- Summit League Women’s Cross-Country Champions — The Bison place five in the top-15 and roll to their second straight Summit League title. The Bison were led by Freshman Brecca Wahlund who fished the race as the runner-up running a time of 21:58.5.
- Missouri Valley Football Conference Champions — Bison win their first outright Missouri Valley Conference title with a decisive 38-20 victory over Illinois State in the regular season finale. The Bison have accumulated a record of 14-2 over the past two seasons in Summit League play including a record of 8-0 on the road. (pic:Smugmug.com>>BI>>Football>>PlayoffsvsSDSU>>89)
- Women’s Cross-Country–Redshirt freshman, Brecca Wahlund wins the Bison Invitational individual title with a five-kilometer time of 18:14.47. This was Wahlund’s first meet of her career as a Bison and is definitely a runner to keep a close eye on for the next few seasons.
- Men’s Basketball–The Bison beat James Madison 66-44 in the Progressive Legends Classic Pittsburgh Sub-regional championship. In their first two games of the sub-regional, the Bison defeated Youngstown State 83-80 and Duquesne 57-43. The Bison were stingy all season on defense only allowing 56 point a game.
- Wrestling–Trent Sprenkle defeats two-time 125-pound champion in the Round of 12 sealing his spot on the All-American list. It was one of the most dramatic victories in Bison victory as Sprenkle finally got over the hump that had made his career incomplete. Perseverance prevailed and Sprenkle became the first all-American wrestler in Bison history since 1988.
- Women’s Track & Field –Six-time Summit League pole vaulting champ Leslie Brost pole vaults her way into the NCAA Championships during the NCAA West Prelims by vaulting 13’ 05.75 feet. Seven hours of weather delays later and Brost earned her sixth trip to the NCAAA Championships.
- Women’s Golf –The Bison win their first Summit League championship. Amy Anderson (1st) and Haley Boner (t6) led the way for the Bison as they advanced to the NCAA Regional in Oklahoma.
Women’s Basketball Katie Birkel jumps into the top-10 on the all-time scoring list at NDSU, scoring 23 points against Omaha.