See it all on Alumni Saturday at MSU-Northern
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George Ferguson Havre Daily News sports editor [email protected]
Alumni weekend at Montana State University-Northern has been a longstanding tradition. But as for the games themselves, Northern is doing something a little different this year. On Saturday, the MSU-Northern Fieldhouse will be the sight for nonstop alumni action as four sports will take to the floor for their annual alumni games. The day will start at 1 p.m. with the annual Alumni wrestling dual, and at 4 p.m., the Skylight volleyball program will hold its alumni game. The day concludes with the basketball games which traditionally marks the start of Northern's basketball season. The women will play at 6 p.m. Saturday and the men will take floor at 8. Also on tap for Saturday is the MSU-N Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, which will take place at halftime of the men's game. This year, former Skylight basketball players Dani Davison-Holgate and Charlene Noreen Wasson, as well as former Skylight volleyball standout Lori M. Hagen are being inducted into Northern's Hall of Fame. The Alumni Dual will kick things off Saturday, and although it honors past Northern greats from a storied wrestling program, the current Lights certainly use the time on the mat as a good practice. MSU-N's season starts for real in just two weeks. The 2009 Alumni Dual will feature 17 matches tentatively, starting with former Havre High standout and MSU-N freshman Ryan Shelstad against 1993 NAIA national champion Matt Campbell. In all, five former national champions and 13 former NAIA All Americans are expected to take the mat for the alumni team on Saturday. Other matches include, freshman Max Payne against former HHS standout and 2006 all-american Aaron Jensen, another former Blue Pony in freshman Phillip Sutherland against Colter Dimas, Harlem freshman Chase Dirden against two-time all-american Jessie Schaeffer, freshman Steven Quesada against Colt Heger, freshman Joe Drinkwalter against 2003 all-american Bobby Mantle, Blue Pony and MSU-N junior Beau LaSalle taking on Mike Mc- Peak, freshman Jim Eavanson versus 2007 all-american Robby Shaw, junior Tay Todd facing two-time all-american Dustyn Azure, freshman Sean Baker against 2000 national champion Jason Fratzke, freshman Cody Miller against two-time all-american Chris Smith, senior Sean Costello against 2008 and 2009 national champion Cory Borges, senior Tyler McGillivray against threetime all-american and Chester native Mitch Overlie, Havre sophomore Evan Hinebauch against two-time all-american Brian Fritchman, senior Austin Ouelette against two-time all-american Rudy James, senior Evan Mattingly against three-time national champion Emmett Willson and freshman Kody Reed squaring off against four-time national champion Turk Lords. The Skylights volleyball match will follow the dual, and Northern will be coming off a regular season match against the University of Great Falls on Friday night in Great Falls. The alumni volleyball roster was not sent at press time, but many former Skylight standouts are expected to be in attendance Saturday. The evening session of alumni Saturday will start with the women's basketball game. Head coach Chris Mouat will take his Skylights up against an alumni team featuring many recent Skylight graduates, including Jaci Heny, Ashlie (Griffin) Nystrom, Camille Gardner, Amanda Quartuccio, Kristi Pullin, Chelsie (Searle) Boyle, Jayla McPherson, Jenna (Heggem) Hansen, Stacie Barker, Ashley Trulock and Michele Van Dyke. Veterans include Davison-Holgate, Skylight assistant coach Anna Bateman and Kelly (Veis) Mazurkiewicz. Fellow hall of fame inductee Wasson will coach the team. MSU-N head coach Shawn Huse's Lights will close out the festivities with the men's game at 8 p.m. The men's alumni team will feature recent Lights like Travis Noble, Leo Bullchild and Clinton Shelton, as well as former greats Shawn Wetzel, Krste Serafimoski, Travis Moran, Buck Merriweather, Michael Claxton, Keith Carothers, Russell Keller and Toby Stack. Proceeds from all gate receipts this weekend will go the Alumni Scholarship Foundation. Once again, all of the action will take place at the MSU-Northern Fieldhouse on Saturday.