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Drake received 34 points from Lizzy Wendell and placed three other players in double figures as the Bulldogs beat UND 99-91 on Friday in the season opener for both teams. UND received 24 points from Makailah Dyer and 21 from Leah Szabla. Drake is the preseason favorite in the Missouri Valley Conference and Wendell is the league's preseason player of the year. UND will play at Texas Tech on Sunday.
Road miles in the three time-zone Big Sky Conference rack up in a hurry. UND senior Leah Szabla knows that better than anyone. Travel can be difficult. At times, there isn't much time between games, either. "It's hard but it's something we prepare for," said Szabla. "We have tough practices; in the preseason we do a lot of running and workouts to prepare for it."
Prep football 6 All-Top of the State
Officially, UND now is ready for the upcoming regular season. UND had a chance to fine tune a few things Sunday night at The Betty, where the Fighting Hawks downed Minnesota-Crookston 83-48 in an exhibition game. On Friday, UND opens its women's basketball regular season with a home game against Drake. All things considered, UND coach Travis Brewster liked what he saw from a team that went 19-14 last season and graduated three players.
UND was one of the hottest teams late in the Big Sky Conference last season, winning 14 of its final 17 games. The Fighting Hawks season, however, ended in the semifinals of the league tournament in Reno, Nev. UND returns the bulk of its rotation from last year's team, a good sign as the 2016-17 season approaches. "I think we have the tools to get back there and get in that championship game," said UND senior Makailah Dyer. That journey is set to begin tonight as UND will play Minnesota-Crookston in an exhibition game at The Betty.
UND's John Santiago and Cole Reyes received Big Sky Conference football weekly honors Monday. For just the second time as a Big Sky member, UND had multiple players in the same week earn league weekly honors. Reyes collected his second Defensive Player of the Week honor of the season, while Santiago earned his first after being named the Special Teams Player of the Week.
Three things are now clear after UND pressured its way past Weber State 27-19 on Saturday at the Alerus Center. No. 1, John Santiago runs the 100-yard dash in 12 seconds. He proved that returning the game-opening kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown—a play that really turned out to be a big one considering UND's up-and-down offensive performance the rest of the game. No. 2, Cole Reyes is a really, really good player, evidenced by two game-turning interceptions. When No. 8 is on the field, good things happen.
COLLEGE BASKETBALL Former Indiana basketball player Todd Jadlow claims in a new book that Hall of Fame coach Bob Knight physically and emotionally abused him and his teammates during his time with the team in the late 1980s. The recently published book, "Jadlow: On The Rebound," details Jadlow's time as a member of the Hoosiers' national championship team in 1987 as well as his struggles with drug and alcohol addiction and depression. Jadlow co-wrote the book with journalist Tom Brew.
TODAY'S LOCAL CALENDAR Prep volleyball West Fargo Sheyenne at GF Central, 7 p.m. Red River at Fargo South, 7 p.m. Sacred Heart at Fertile-Beltrami, 7 p.m. Crookston at EGF Senior High, 7 p.m. TODAY'S TV/RADIO College football Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh, 6 p.m., ESPN Appalachian State at Georgia Southern, 6:30 p.m., ESPNU Prep football Woodland Christian at California School for the Deaf, 7 p.m., ESPN2 NHL Minnesota at Buffalo, 6 p.m., FSN NBA Boston at Chicago, 7 p.m., TNT NFL
During the 2015-16 season, the UND men's basketball team finished with 17 wins, a run at a Big Sky Conference title and another postseason tournament appearance. But there could have been so much more. "On one of our (practice) shirts, it says, "finish" on the back of it," said UND forward Drick Bernstine. That's UND mission this season—to finish. A year ago, UND lost eight games by a combined 23 points.