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A valiant effort

December 19, 2008 at 5:07am By: D.M.B. Posted in D.M.B. Sports Report

It just wasn’t to be folks.  Nebraska gave Penn State all they could handle today but they came up just short in the national semifinal against Penn State 3 games to 2.

Penn State won the first two sets easily 25-17 and 25-18.  Penn State had not lost a set all year and Nebraska cruised to a 3rd set victory 25-15 and then got a huge 25-22 victory in set number 4.  Then came the thrilling 5th set.  Nebraska battled back and forth with Penn State in the 5th and actually had a bit of a lead but Penn State cruised at the end and won 15-10 to stay perfect and they will go to the national final against Stanford.

A great run by the Huskers at the end of the season and got about 1 match farther than anybody had thought they would before the tournament began.  The state got to see some great volleyball the past week and it was fun to follow.

Cardiac Kids

December 14, 2008 at 6:57am By: D.M.B. Posted in D.M.B. Sports Report

*photo courtesy of LJS*

Are you kidding me?  Seriously…are you kidding me?!?!?!!

The Nebraska Cornhusker volleyball team will go back to the Final 4 after one of the greatest comebacks in school history.  Nebraska wins the Washington regional after defeating host Washington 3 sets to 2.

Nebraska lost the first two sets 14-25 and 23-25.  Nebraska then came back to win sets three and four 25-17 and 26-24.  Then came an amazing game number 5.  Nebraska trailed 3-0 and 9-3 in the 5th set.  Nebraska then reeled off 9 straight points on the serve Kayla Banwarth.  Nebraska closed out the match with an ace serve from Jordan Larson winning game number 5, 15-13.

Nebraska will come back to Omaha and play at the Qwest Center for the Final 4.  Nebraska won the national championship in the Final 4’s previous appearance at the Qwest in 2006.  Their semifinal matchup will get much more difficult.  Penn State comes in at 36-0.  Wait…there’s more.  They have not lost a game (set)...ALL YEAR.  My college math tells me that is 108 (36x3) straight games.  On the other side it will be Texas vs. Stanford. 

But let us not dwell on the juggernaut that will be ahead of the Huskers on Thursday.  What an amazing comeback from the Huskers.  One of the best matches in Husker history.

Two days at the Coliseum

December 8, 2008 at 7:51pm By: D.M.B. Posted in D.M.B. Sports Report

I was privileged enough this weekend to attend both Husker volleyball matches this weekend thanks to Mr. Wilson.  I was trying to think of the last time I had been to the Coliseum to see a match and it had been quite some time.  This weekend I was thinking it was the thriller with South Carolina in the 2nd round of the NCAA tournament in 2000.  Then going back and looking, I’m sure I went to games in 2001 and I think I went to one more in 2002.  But its been a long time.

Friday - Huskers did not play well at all and Liberty, while out sized, was a scrappy team.  They blocked very well and played excellent defense digging up a good amount of Nebraska’s hits.  Nebraska did a good job coming out of the break after being tied 1-1 after 2 sets and put away Liberty.  It was closer than anybody would have liked it to be, but Nebraska got it done.

Saturday - Great seats 5 rows from the top on the main side of the Coliseum.  Nebraska played much better against UAB on route to a 3-0 victory.  I was telling Mr. Wilson during the match that teams like Liberty who play sports in unconventional ways tend to give the better teams more problems than teams like UAB who play it conventional, but just don’t play it as well as teams like Nebraska.  Meaning, Nebraska does things normally when it comes to playing volleyball, they just do it better than most everybody.  But when they’re playing teams who don’t play the game normally, like Liberty, sometimes they have a tough time adjusting and playing well.

Nebraska closed out their season at the Coliseum on the verge of history.  Nebraska has 87 straight home wins and that ties them with Penn State as the all time NCAA home court winning streak.  The first home match of the ‘09-‘10 season will be for the record.

Nebraska now goes to Seattle for the Washington regional for a chance to come back to Omaha for the Final 4.  Unfortunately, I don’t think its in the cards for the Huskers this year.  First up for the Huskers is Michigan who upset #13 seed St. Louis in the 2nd round.  Nebraska should be able to get by the Wolverines but a potential regional final matchup with host school Washington (who plays Utah in the other regional semifinal) might be too much to ask for an injury depleted Husker volleyball team.  I’d like to see them play at the Qwest but I don’t think its going to happen.

The pool is closed in 2012

December 3, 2008 at 5:43pm By: D.M.B. Posted in D.M.B. Sports Report

Omaha will not be the repeat host of the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials in 2012 according to omaha.com.

The schedule for the trials overlapped with the College World Series and the two parties could not come to an agreement to move their dates.  USA Swimming selected to start on June 17th and the CWS was scheduled to start on the 16th.  USA Swimming decided they could move back 4 days but that would have meant the CWS would have had to move their tournament up at least 5 days.  With the new baseball stadium going up that close to the Qwest Center it would have been a logistical nightmare to put both events on.  Could the trials and the CWS coexisted had the CWS still been out at Rosenblatt in 2012?  My answer is no.  To have two huge events like that going on in one city at the same time is a bad idea and might have actually hurt the CWS.  I know there’s enough fans to fill both stadiums but since the trials are a once every 4 years type of event, the coverage might overshadow the CWS.  The reason why they both worked in Omaha this year was because of the later starting date of the olympics (8/8/08 instead of the 7/27/2012 of the London games)

Omaha might have caught the perfect storm this year when hosting the trials and will not see another one like it for a long time.  Why?  Micheal Phelps of course.  Phelps’ run for 8 gold medals started in Omaha.  The general public was introduced to Phelps in Omaha.  2012 is not going to create the same buzz that in Omaha that it did in 2008.  Phelps won’t be going for 8 gold medals (or more) again and while his celebrity status will be at an all time high, its just not going to be that big.  We have to keep the CWS #1 in this town and can’t give them a reason to leave.

Gator Bowl news

December 2, 2008 at 8:58pm By: D.M.B. Posted in D.M.B. Sports Report

Nebraska is all but locked up in the Gator Bowl like I said yesterday but the opponent is looking a bit different than it did yesterday.  It seems that Florida State is out and Clemson is in.

More on the Tigers when it becomes official.

Assorted leftover sports news

December 1, 2008 at 6:41pm By: D.M.B. Posted in D.M.B. Sports Report

Thought I would throw together everything left over from the Thanksgiving weekend:

-All indications are that Nebraska is going to the Gator Bowl.  That invitation could come as early as today.  Nebraska’s opponent though is still up in the air.  Indications are that the Gator Bowl would like to have Florida State as an opponent.  If that doesn’t work out then Clemson or Georgia Tech would be the likely opponents.  If for some strange reason, Nebraska does not go to the Gator Bowl, the Alamo Bowl is the next likely destination.

-The football team won the co-Big 12 North championship due to Missouri’s loss to Kansas over the weekend.  The Tigers and Huskers have identical 5-3 records, but of course due to the shellacking Mizzou put on Nebraska, they will go to the Big 12 title game.  I find it funny that if Nebraska were the one going to the title game that Nebraska fans wouldn’t be claiming a co-championship but since we’re not going and we’re looking for anything positive, we’re latching onto that like its our own.  Small victories, I know…small victories.

-As Mr. Wilson stated here the volleyball team will host the 1st and 2nd rounds of the NCAA volleyball tournament starting this Friday.  Nebraska’s opponent is Liberty.  UAB and Missouri State are the two other teams in NU’s 4 team regional.  Nebraska should have no trouble winning the 1st two rounds.  Then it would be on to Washington for the Sweet 16 and Elite 8.  Nebraska is the #4 overall seed in the tournament and Washington (the #5 seed) would be a potential Elite 8 opponent.  The Final 4 this year is at the Qwest Center in Omaha.

-The Nebraska mens basketball team defeated Creighton on Saturday 54-52.  It looked bleak in the 1st half but the Cornhuskers roared back in the 2nd half and with stood a late CU charge to remain undefeated on the season.  There was supposed to be a lengthy column over the weekend about the team but it was pushed aside after the dramatic ending to the football game.  The outlook for the rest of the non-conference season is easy, 8 left.  6 are at home and against opponents that NU should easily take care of but this Sunday NU starts a 2 game west coast road trip.  The first is a return trip to Tempe to play Arizona State in the Pac 10/Big 12 Hardwood Series and then a week later NU plays at Oregon State.  NU beat Arizona State last year in Lincoln but they are 5-1 this year.  Oregon State is 1-4 so far on the year.  If the Huskers can split that series it should be smooth sailing going into the conference opener against Missouri.

-Outside of Lincoln, the Creighton mens soccer team won their 3rd round game against Connecticut 2-1 and are 1 win away from going to the final 4.  A win in Maryland will do the trick for CU.  No small task in itself.

-Outside of Nebraska, Oklahoma got into the Big 12 title game despite losing to Texas.  I think its a horrible decision but it is what it is.

That will do it for now.  Hope everybody had a good holiday.

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