Cavs, Seawolves Share GNAC Team Of The Week Honors
A 2-1 overtime victory handed Concordia its first-ever GNAC Championships title on Saturday in Portland.
A 2-1 overtime victory handed Concordia its first-ever GNAC Championships title on Saturday in Portland.

Monday, November 5, 2018

PORTLAND, Ore. – A Saturday filled with intense competition in the state of Oregon provided a pair of winners in two conference championships events along with a pair of GNAC Team of the Week selections.

The day got underway at the GNAC Cross Country Championships in Monmouth, where the Alaska Anchorage men’s and women’s teams recorded a clean sweep en route to the conference crown.

Fresh off a pair of top-three team finishes at the Western Washington Classic, the Seawolves built on the momentum they’ve been building throughout the year and capitalized on it over the weekend. They were paced by sophomore Wesley Kirui and junior Emmah Chelimo, both of which took individual titles back to Anchorage.

Kirui finished the men’s 8,000-meter race in a time of 24:38.0, just six-tenths of a second ahead of teammate Felix Kemboi. Chelimo had a full six-second advantage on the next-highest finisher in the women’s 6,000-meter race, crossing the finish line with a time of 21:25.1.

“We feel honored by this award due to the competition of the GNAC and the large number of nationally-ranked teams competing,” head coach Michael Friess said.

Alaska Anchorage now sets its sights on the NCAA West Regional, which will take place on Nov. 17 in Billings, Mont. The women’s team is coming off a second-place finish in last year’s regionals, which were also held at Ash Creek Preserve in Monmouth.

Up in Portland, Concordia women’s soccer team capped the day with an overtime victory in the GNAC Championships final. The win gave the program its first-ever GNAC Championships title.

Ninety minutes weren’t enough to separate the Cavaliers and top-seeded Western Washington, but forward Sydney Van Steenberge gave her team the championship with a goal in the final seconds of the first overtime period.

For head coach Grant Landy, the win was the culmination of a season-long emphasis on team success over individual accolades.

“I am so proud of my entire team,” said Landy after the victory. “They bought into the team-first mentality from day one. The best thing for me is that the season continues and I get to coach these guys some more.”

That season will continue into the NCAA Division II Women’s Soccer Tournament, which begins this week at campus sites across the country. Concordia’s postseason fate will be revealed on Monday’s NCAA selection show, which begins at 3:30 p.m. (PST).