Nelson is the sports editor of the Herald
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UND senior linebacker and captain Ryan Kasowski delivered a message following Southern Utah's 31-21 win against the Sioux on Saturday. He was blunt in his delivery. "This (loss) has nothing to do with our coaches," Kasowski said, obviously frustrated with the day that started well and ended poorly. "It's our inability as players to make plays. And that's what is frustrating. "We had great schemes offensively and defensively.
Minnesota-Duluth, the No. 1-ranked women's hockey team in the country, will take some chances. Most of the time, the Bulldogs capitalize on those chances -- just like they did against UND on Friday night at Ralph Engelstad Arena. Minnesota-Duluth scored three goals in a five-minute stretch of the second period to beat No. 8 UND 4-0 before 2,366 fans, the fourth-largest crowd to watch a women's hockey game at UND. "The difference was turnovers," UND coach Brian Idalski said. "Those were costly.
The helmet-to-helmet blow that UND's Mitch Sutton took three weeks ago could have been worse, the kind that could have left the Sioux perilously thin at the running back position with half a season to play. "The hit that Mitch took could have been serious," Sioux coach Chris Mussman said. Sutton, however, was cleared to play this week after missing the last two games with a concussion. His return will strengthen the Sioux running game today as UND takes on Southern Utah at the Alerus Center.
The Alerus Center can take its toll on UND opponents. Just ask UC Davis coach Bob Biggs about the 2001 Division II playoff game between the Sioux and Aggies.
UND made some purchases last week at the DakotaDome in Vermillion, S.D. The purchases weren't cheap, either. And there is some concern UND can cover the expenses. "We bought ourselves some work defensively," Sioux coach Chris Mussman, referring to a handful of big pass plays UND gave up in its 27-17 loss to the Coyotes. "Those plays are now on film for everyone to see." Southern Utah, UND's Great West Conference opponent Saturday in the Sioux homecoming game, has big-play capabilities with receivers Fesi Sitake and Tysson Poots.
The Summit League will conduct a site visit at UND on Nov. 1-2, the league announced Monday. The Summit will visit the campus to gather information regarding UND's application to join the conference. UND's top priority since moving its athletic programs to the Division I level is finding a stable conference. The Summit is a 10-school league that also includes North Dakota State and South Dakota State.
VERMILLION, S.D. -- UND's Josh Murray deserves a break. He was the busiest Sioux player Saturday in UND's 27-17 loss against South Dakota in the DakotaDome. And he paid the price. Murray was leveled by South Dakota's Eric Leon on a crunching hit on a UND kickoff return in the third quarter. The hit dislodged Murray's helmet from his head. "I don't really remember it," Murray said of the hit. "And I don't remember the next two plays, either. But after that, I was fine." Murray popped up right after the hit and carried the ball for a 5-yard gain on UND's first play after the kickoff.
VERMILLION, S.D. -- It was an absolutely beautiful day in southeast South Dakota on Saturday. The sky was clear and temperature was in the low 60s. It was a picturesque fall day. But there was a South Dakota storm brewing inside the DakotaDome. And UND didn't weather it, especially in the first half. South Dakota's first-half surge -- led by the passing and running of quarterback Dante Warren -- carried the Coyotes to a 27-17 win against UND in the Great West Conference opener for both teams.
VERMILLION, S.D. -- UND coach Chris Mussman doesn't believe his football team has South Dakota's number. "The thing that we've been able to do is hang in there most of the time for four quarters," Mussman said. The past few years, UND has figured out how to pull out wins late in its games against South Dakota. Whether that happens again today remains to be seen as UND will meet rival South Dakota in the DakotaDome before approximately 10,000 fans. It's Dakota Days in Vermillion, which is the South Dakota homecoming game.
Benefit for former Herald sports editor set for Nov. 6