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December 21, 2011

Mines Fifth In Final Fall Learfield Sports Directors' Cup Standings

CLEVELAND, Ohio – With all the fall sports completely wrapped up, Colorado School of Mines fell one spot from fourth to fifth in the final fall Division II Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup fall standings, which were released on Wednesday morning.

STANDINGS
SCORING

The Orediggers got a fifth-place finish from the women’s soccer team, a fifth-place finish from the men’s cross country squad and a 17th-place finish from the volleyball team during the fall season.  CSM was ranked No. 15 following the first installment of the rankings, which were released on November 23, and fourth after the second installment, which were released on December 8.

Mines finished 18th in last year’s final standings and 15th in 2009-2010.

The women’s soccer team (17-2-4, 10-2-2 RMAC) finished fifth in the rankings and fifth in the final National Soccer Coaches Association of America national poll after advancing to its fourth NCAA Tournament in as many seasons. The Orediggers captured the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Tournament Championship for the first time in school history en route to an appearance in the NCAA Elite Eight for the second time in the last three seasons. Head Coach Kevin Fickes’ squad lost to two-time defending national champion and then-top-ranked Grand Valley State in a shootout during the round of eight after shutting out the Lakers through regulation and two overtimes. It was the first time GVSU had been shut out in 50 matches.

Coach Fickes was named the 2011 NSCAA/Mondo Central Region Coach of the Year in just his second season at the helm of the program. Junior Megan Woodworth and sophomore Kelsey Neal became the third and fourth All-Americans in the history of the program after Woodworth was named First Team All-Amercan and Neal was named Third Team All-American by Daktronics. Woodworth also garnered First Team All-American honors from the National Soccer Coaches Assocation of America - the first athlete in school history to earn All-American honors from the NSCAA. The squad posted a 4-1-2 record against teams ranked in the top 25.

The men’s cross country squad captured its third-straight top-five finish and seventh-straight top-ten finish at the NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships in Spokane, Wash., on November 19. Mines captured a team score of 134 – the lowest in school history - on the afternoon. Sean Gildea recorded the third-highest finish by a CSM men’s cross country runner at the NCAA Championships with a 14th-place finish to end the season with All-American honors for the second-straight year. A 28th-place finish by Derek Alcorn in his national championship debut earned him All-American honors while a 33rd-place finish by Russell Drummond gave him All-American honors as well. 

Head Coach Art Siemers' squad finished fourth at the championships in 2010 and third in 2009. They captured two team championships during the 2011 season and finished third at both the RMAC Championships and the Central Region Championships (behind eventual national champion Western and national runner-up Adams State).

The volleyball squad (19-11, 12-6 RMAC) advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the third-straight season and earned its first NCAA Tournament victory with a win over then-No. 4 and top-seeded Nebraska-Kearney in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Due to its first-round win in the NCAA Tournament, and the use of the Team Bracket formula for scoring, the volleyball team was given a 17th-place finish in the rankings. They were receiving votes in the final edition of the AVCA Division II Coaches Poll.

Head Coach Jamie Skadeland’s squad spent much of the season inside the national rankings and posted a 6-4 record against teams also ranked in the top 25. Junior Jackie Stabell was named Third Team All-American – the first volleyball All-American in school history – by the American Volleyball Coaches Assocation (AVCA).

The football team (8-3, 6-3 RMAC) also spent time in the national rankings and placed eight players on the All-RMAC squad. Senior Clay Garcia was named Capital One/CoSIDA Division II Football Academic All-American of the Year and a finalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy as well as a Harlon Hill Trophy Regional Finalist. Junior punter Taylor Accardi garnered Daktronics First Team All-American honors for the squad as well. The Orediggers posted their fifth-straight winning season under Head Coach Bob Stitt, and the 10th overall in his 12 seasons at the helm of the program. They finished the season by receiving votes in the AFCA Division II Coaches Poll.

The men’s soccer team (11-7-1, 8-5-1 RMAC) posted its eighth-straight winning season and 10th overall under the direction of Head Coach Frank Kohlenstein. The squad posted two wins over teams ranked in the top 25 while sophomore Tesho Akindele, junior Alex Nass and senior Philip Wilson all earned Daktronics All-American honors with Akindele also earning Second Team All-American honors from the NSCAA.

The women’s cross country team posted two top-five finishes during the season, including a fourth-place finish at the RMAC Championships. Chloe Gustafson qualified for the NCAA Championships as an individual and finished 74th at the meet.

The Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup was developed as a joint effort between the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) and USA Today.  Points are awarded based on each institution's finish in up to 14 sports -- seven women’s and seven men’s.  

Complete standings and the scoring structure can be found on NACDA’s website at www.directorscup.org.  In addition, please visit www.thedirectorscup.com, like us on Facebook at facebook.com/lsdirectorscup or follow us on Twitter @lsdirectorscup

About Learfield Sports:  The 2011-12 athletics season marks its fourth year as title partner of the Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup. A preeminent leader in the collegiate sports marketplace for nearly four decades, Learfield Sports manages the multimedia rights for more than 50 collegiate properties, including flagship Mizzou, which it has represented since 1975.  An operating unit of Learfield Communications, the company also operates regional and statewide radio networks, provides exclusive sports programming to more than 1,000 radio stations nationwide and creates nearly 7,000 radio game broadcasts and coaches’ shows each year. These ever-expanding, collegiate relationships also feature comprehensive corporate sponsorship platforms, official university publications, Internet, digital media, hospitality and game-day events. To learn more about Learfield Sports’ expertise, its history and complete collegiate portfolio, visit www.learfieldsports.com.

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