Tuesday Talk: Soccer goalie closes fall season at No. 1

Tuesday Talk: Soccer goalie closes fall season at No. 1

St. Thomas senior Tarynn Theilig finished her 2016 season ranked first among Division III women goalkeepers in save percentage. She gave up just six goals in 21 games -- no multiple-goal games allowed all season -- and had 88 saves for a .936 percentage.

Theilig was twice named MIAC Women's Soccer Defensive Player of the Year. She finished with 27 career shutouts and helped the Tommies win back-to-back MIAC championships in 2015 and 2016.

UST finished 17-3-1 this season with eight victories by 1-0 margins; two 2-1 wins; seven shutout wins by two or more goals; three losses by 1-0 margins; and a 1-1 tie.

 

Bobbleheads

St. Thomas will celebrate Steve Fritz Bobblehead Day on Saturday, Jan. 14, at a home basketball doubleheader with Concordia College.

The university will sell Fritz bobbleheads during the 1 p.m. women's game and the 3 p.m. men's game against the Cobbers in Schoenecker Arena. He will be on hand to greet fans and sign the bobbleheads, which will cost $15 and will be sold for the first time on that day. They also will be available in the Tommie Shop in the Anderson Student Center beginning Jan. 16.

The promotion is sponsored by CliftonLarsonAllen LLP, and Pat '73 and Jeanne Hickey.

St. Thomas created the bobblehead to accompany a fall magazine story on Fritz, who is in his 50th year here. He enrolled as a student in 1967 and has worked at St. Thomas since 1971, including 10 years as an assistant men's basketball coach, 31 years as head coach, and 25 years as athletic director. His uninterupted 50-year run at St. Thomas is the longest current string of any MIAC coach or administrator. He's also the Dean of MIAC athletics directors.

During that half-century span, Fritz has been involved in 1,359 St. Thomas men's basketball games, with an overall record of 966-393 (.710):

  • 84-23 (.785) as a player;
  • 151-99 (.604) as an assistant coach;
  • 594-246 (.707) as coach;
  • and 137-25 (.843) as athletic director since John Tauer became head coach in 2011.

 

Poll Talk

St. Thomas is currently nationally ranked in nine sports:

  • Football (No. 3 D3Football.com and AFCA);
  • Women's Basketball (No. 4 D3Hoops.com, No. 6 WBCA);
  • Men's Soccer (No. 3 final NSCAA poll);
  • Women's Golf (No. 14, GolfStat computer);
  • Women's Swim-Dive (No. 12 CollegeSwimming.com power rank)
  • Men's Golf (No. 26, GolfStat computer);
  • Women's Cross Country (No. 28 USTFCCCA);
  • Men's Swim-Dive (No. 33 CollegeSwimming.com power rank)
  • Women's Tennis (No. 37 ITA)

Men's Hockey fell out of both polls this week but are receiving votes; Men's Basketball is receiving votes; Women's Soccer received votes in its final poll of 2016.

 

Women's Basketball

No. 4-ranked St. Thomas (12-0 overall, 6-0 MIAC) plays Wednesday night at St. Olaf at 7 p.m., and is home Saturday at 1 p.m. to face Concordia-Moorhead.

The Toms have won 24 consecutive regular-season games; their last 17 games away from Schoenecker Arena; and 20 consecutive contests against MIAC opponents. They are scoring 76 points a game while giving up just 50.2.

UST received one first-place vote in this week's D3hoops.com poll.

Senior Kaitlin Langer, who is closing in on 1,000 points and 500 rebounds, was named MIAC Player of the Week on Monday -- her second such honor of the season. Langer came up huge in recent defeats of ranked Hope and Bluffton, and MIAC contender Bethel. Those three teams have a combined 33-6 record.

 

Men's Basketball

Riding a five-game winning streak, St. Thomas Men's Hoops (9-3 overall, 5-2 MIAC) plays Wednesday night at home against St. Olaf (7 p.m.) and is home Saturday to face Concordia-Moorhead (3 p.m.).

The Tommies went 3-0 on the road in MIAC play last week, all without injured senior point guard Grant Shaeffer. In a nine-point win at first-place Bethel, junior guard John Veil exploded to record 27 points and 12 assists, both career highs. It's the first time in at least 16 seasons that an MIAC player had 25 or more points and 12 or more assists.

St. Thomas will attempt to extend its string of excellence in January games, with a 98-12 slate over the last 12 seasons in that month.

 

Men's Hockey

St. Thomas split a hard-fought series with St. Mary's last weekend and remains in the conference lead near the halfway point of the 16-game MIAC schedule.

The Tommies (7-4-3 overall, 6-1-1 MIAC) won 6-5 in overtime at home, after rallying from a 4-1 deficit, but lost 2-1 on the road.

Six teams are in the thick of the title race: UST (6-1-1), Augsburg (4-1-1), St. Mary's (4-2), Concordia-Moorhead (3-1), St. John's (3-2-1) and Hamline (3-3).

The Toms have non-conference games this weekend against UW-Stout on Friday (7:30 p.m.) at home, and Saturday night at UW-Eau Claire.

Fourteen different players have scored goals in 14 games this season for the Toms, who are allowing just under 2.50 goals per contest.

 

Women's Hockey

St. Thomas is in the midst of playing four games in six days starting with home non-conference games Jan. 10 vs. UW-Superior and Jan. 11 vs. UW-Stevens Point, both in Mendota Heights.

The Toms also play a weekend series against St. Mary's -- Friday night in Winona, and Saturday afternoon on home ice (2 p.m.).

With 12 games to play in the conference race, six teams still appear to be in the championship chase. Once beatens Augsburg, Concordia, Hamline and Bethel are followed closely by Gustavus and UST atop the standings with 12 games left to play.

 

Swimming and Diving

St. Thomas will host a multi-team men's and women's competition at Anderson Pool on Saturday Jan. 14. Diving events will start at 9 a.m., with swimming races at 1 p.m. 

Hamline, Macalester, St. Olaf and St. Thomas will enter both men's and women's teams, and St. Ben's and St. John's will join the action.

The Toms have been off competition for nearly six weeks for final exams and the holiday break. After this weekend the Toms will only have two competitions prior to the Feb. 16-18 MIAC Championships meet.

 

Track and Field

St. Thomas will host a 2017 season-opening men's and women's competition at the Anderson Fieldhouse on Friday Jan. 13. The action starts at 3:30 p.m. It's the first of four home indoor meets for UST track and field over the next six weeks.

UST, Hamline, St. Olaf and Augsburg will have men's and women's entrants, and St. Catherine also will have entries.

The Tommie teams are starting preparation for the Feb. 24-25 MIAC Championships to be held in Anderson Fieldhouse.