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ISSUE 118 VOL 20 PUBLISHED 5/13/2005

Optimal Ole moments

By Julia Midthun
Staff Writer
and Anna Harrison
Staff Writer

Friday, May 13, 2005

Throughout the 2004-2005 academic year, stuents go to the Ole games, cheer on the players, and when they miss an important match, read about it in the Messenger. But entering into finals madness, students’ brains often run out of room for sports trivia. Fortunately, students can glance over highlights from Ole fall and winter seasons to refresh their memories.

In the fall, the men’s cross country team made history by finishing seventh at the National Championships in November. Prior to the meet, the Oles won four of their five regular season meets and took first in the conference where Kelly Fulton ‘05 was named MIAC Athlete of the Meet. Following the conference chapionship, the Oles triumphed at regionals, and progressed to nationals. At the NCAA Championship, Fulton and Malcolm Richards ‘05 came in eighth and tenth respectively, leading their team to the second best finish in St. Olaf cross country history. Fulton and Richards both earned All American distinctions for placing within the top fifteen at the event.

With only one conference loss, the men’s soccer team tied Gustavus for the 2004 MIAC Championship title. Though the team lost to Macalester in the November playoffs, their regular season was strong. Despite the short season, captain Matt Osborne ‘05 fondly recalled defeating the Oles’ cross-town rivals.

A best memory indeed was “beating Carleton on their home field for a share of the conference championship,” Osborne said. “They beat us the year before to knock us out of the playoffs, so it was some sweet revenge.”

In addition to the team’s success, individual players stood out during the season, with both Abu Farah ‘06 and Kyle Trimble ‘05 earning MIAC Player of the Week distinctions.

During winter sports, the women’s hockey team finished third in the MIAC in March with a record of 13-4-1. Four members of their team, Lindsay Boeser ‘08, Kerry Rollwagen ‘05, Susannah Brokl ‘07 and Lindsay Weier ‘06 were named to the 2004-05 MIAC All-Conference women's hockey team.

“My greatest memory, and something that will continue to stick with me, is the fact that all the girls were able to pull together during difficult times,” captain Brit Schultheis ‘05 said. “We have been playing as a team at a varsity level since the first game, and have beaten many records. Tying St. Thomas this year is just one example.”

After winning the regional title this March, the men’s nordic ski team went on to take first at nationals. The women’s nordic ski team also took the regional title and continued on to nationals where the nordic team took first and the alpine team took fifth. The combined men and women’s nordic and alpine teams claimed the United States Collegiate Ski and Snowboard Association President’s Cup, the overall combined alpine, nordic and snowboard title. In the nordic competition, Linn Dale ‘07 won the individual women’s title while Nate Erlandson ‘06 took the men’s.

Coming in a close second at the MIAC Championships was enough to carry the men’s swimming and diving team to the NCAA Championships, where they took 15th place this February. Christian Lorentzen ‘07 was named the 2005 MIAC Championships Male Diver of the Meet after he won the three-meter event and tied Brad Wourms ‘05 for first in one meter diving.

Taking first in February’s 2005 MIAC championships was an easy task for the women’s swimming and diving team, as the win allowed them to continue to the national meet. They scored over 100 points more than second-place Carleton at the meet.

“The dual meet against Gustavus really stands out in my mind,” captain Katie Brentz ‘05 said. “They’re our biggest rival and we absolutely annihilated them at the beginning of the season [final score 148-95]. The most amazing moment was on the last day of conference. We went 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 in the 200 Butterfly. It was incredible, because that never happens.”

Overall the fall and winter Ole athletes did an excellent job this year. Many contenders helped propel St. Olaf into national recognition. Although some key students will be lost to graduation in a few weeks, St. Olaf can look forward to another great year when new and returning athletes arrive at the Hill next fall.

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