Gone so soon? After an amazing 16-2-2 season and a final NSCAA National Ranking of No. 7, the Mustang men’s soccer team suffered a short postseason as they lost to UNC in the NCAA quarterfinals on penalty kicks after tying the Tar Heels 1-1 in regulation on Saturday, Dec. 3. Junior midfielder Arthur Ivo (pictured) broke the ice early in the game as he scored within the fifth minute. Goalkeeper Craig Hill made three impeccable saves in regulation but was ultimately unable to prevent four converted penalty kicks in the shootout.
SMU downs Grambling State: After a slow start to the season, Men’s Basketball Head Coach Matt Doherty has to be feeling pretty good about his Mustangs, who have won four out of their last five and are now back above .500 at 5-4 this season. SMU added to their win record with a sharp 71-51 victory over Grambling State on Saturday, Dec. 4. Junior forward Robert Nyakundi scored 22 points and senior forward Papa Dia added 20 in the victory. SMU was 14 of 22 from the field (63.6%) and took a 40-23 lead into halftime. The Mustangs get a break for studying, with their next game (at McMurry in Abilene) taking place on Dec. 18.
Remembering a great: Legendary football quarterback, television broadcaster and noted SMU alum Don Meredith (pictured) died of a brain hemorrhage on Sunday, Dec. 3 at Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He was 72. Born April 10, 1938, in Mount Vernon, Texas, Meredith was a two-time All-America selection (1958 and 1959) on the Hilltop, setting a Southwest Conference record with 69.6 completion percentage in 1957. The Chicago Bears then selected Meredith in the third round of the 1960 NFL Draft, but traded him to a young Dallas Cowboys franchise for future draft picks. “Dandy Don” was stellar through his nine-year career with the Cowboys, leading the team to three straight division championships and two NFL Championship games following the 1966 and 1967 seasons. He was inducted into the Cowboys “Ring of Honor” in 1976, and his name can still be found in the renovated Ring at the new Cowboys Stadium. Meredith had a wildly successful second career with Frank Gifford and Howard Cosell as an analyst on ABC’s “Monday Night Football.” He retired in 1984 after broadcasting Super Bowl XIX. Meredith also received the Pro Football Hall of Fame‘s 2007 Pete Rozelle Radio-Television Award. Funeral arrangements are pending.
Beginning of the end? In what some Mustang fans no doubt hope is a prologue to victory against TCU football this weekend, the volleyball team gave a sound 3-1 thrashing to TCU on Sept 21. TCU struck first with a 25-18 victory in the opening game, which prompted Mustang stars like Dana Powell (double-double, 20 kills, 18 digs), Kathryn Wilkerson (right, double-double, 15 digs, 14 kills), and Sidney Stewart (16 digs) to win the next three straight games and finish off the Horned Frogs. The Mustangs will resume conference play with two matches against UAB on Sept. 24-25.
Get your red on: SMU is calling for a “RED OUT” for Friday’s much-awaited SMU-TCU game, which will be broadcast nationally on ESPN. Mustang QB Kyle Padron, who threw 280 yards for four touchdowns (and added a rushing TD himself) in last week’s 35-21 shootout victory against Washington State, will be taking on the No. 4-ranked Horned Frogs in this year’s Battle for the Iron Skillet. SMU has earned the prized cooking utensil only once in the past ten years in a 21-10 victory on Sept. 10, 2005. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. For ticket and parking information, call the SMU Ticket Office at 214-SMU-GAME.
By the way, where did the Iron Skillet come from? Chris Dell of SMU News has the story.
Lucky number seven: After another weekend sweep, the men’s soccer team continues its perfect season with a 7-0-0 record and is now ranked ninth in the NSCAA/HendrickCars.com national poll. At last weekend’s Bradley Invitational, SMU came from behind to defeat Creighton 3-2 in double overtime on Sept. 17. A victory over host Bradley followed on Sept. 18 as the Mustangs posted a second straight comeback win of 3-1. Reigning C-USA Player of the Week Juan Castillo got both comebacks started by scoring the first SMU goal in both games. Junior Arthur Ivo converted two penalty kicks to seal the Creighton match, and freshman Robbie Derschang added two late goals in the 84th and 87th minutes of the Bradley match.
Running up the rankings: The cross country team has placed in the rankings for its third consecutive United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) poll, with a No. 1 placing in the South Central region and a move up to No. 21 nationally. Sophomore Mary Alenbratt (right), winner of the C-USA Cross Country Athlete of the Week earlier this month, finished second in the UT-Arlington Season Opener. SMU returns to the track on Oct. 2 at the Notre Dame Invitational in South Bend, Indiana.
The 3rd season of “Inside College Hoops with Matt Doherty” debuts Nov. 24, 2008 on KAAM 770 AM, live from Ten Sports Grill, 1302 Main St. in downtown Dallas. Listen online and submit questions for Coach Doh or call in at 972-445-0770 or 877-272-5226. Read more.
The men’s soccer team fell to South Carolina 3-0 in the quarterfinals of the 2008 Conference USA tournament Nov. 12. The NCAA announces the field for its postseason tournament Nov. 17. Read more.
Meanwhile, 8 Mustang soccer players have earned All-Conference honors. On the men’s team, sophomore defender/midfielder Leone Cruz, junior forward Paulo da Silva (right), senior midfielder Jeff Harwell and sophomore midfielder Kekoa Osorio were named 2nd-team All-Conference. Midfielder Diogo de Almeida and forward Arthur Ivo were named to the Conference USA All-Freshman team. Read more.
On the women’s team, junior defender Kim Peabody was named first-team All-Conference, and first-year forward Logan May was selected to the league’s All-Freshman team. Read more.
Fresh from winning its first Conference USA title, the cross country team heads to Waco Nov. 15 for the 2008 NCAA South Central Regionals. Running for the 19th-ranked Mustangs will be the 2006 and 2007 South Central Regional Female Athletes of the Year, senior Rachael Forish and sophomore Silje Fjortoft. Fjortoft also owns the 2008 C-USA individual title after clocking the fastest 5K time in conference history, 16:46. (Left, Fjortoft and Forish.) Read more.
Senior Petra Klosova received her 6th career Conference USA Swimmer of the Week honor Nov. 11. The SMU Olympian was recognized for her performance at the 2008 Mean Green Duals Nov. 8, in which the SMU women’s swimming and diving team beat Colorado State, New Mexico State and North Texas. Read more.