The Minot State University men's golf team lost its No. 1 golfer for at least the fall season Friday when Matt Procyshen broke three bones in his foot.
The senior from Yorkton, Saskatchewan, had been playing the best golf of his career, MSU coach Chipper Farrell said. Procyshen qualified for Canadian Amateur Golf Championship earlier this summer.
"We were excited to see how he played," Farrell said. "He finished the end of last year as the top player, so it's too bad for him. ... I don't know what his status will be going forward."
Minot State University sophomore Kowan O’Keefe putts during a March 2011 tournament at Bear Creek Golf Club in Golden, Co., In this photo provided by MSU Sports Information.
The good news for the Beavers: depth is one of their strengths. Sophomore Kowan O'Keefe won the individual title at MSU's first tournament of the season - the Augustana College (S.D.) Luxury Auto Mall Classic - despite not being one of the five golfers Farrell chose to fill the varsity scorecard.
O'Keefe, a Blind Bay, British Columbia native, shot 70-75 on the Bakker Crossing Golf Course to beat two Augustana players by three strokes.
"It's nice to see that we've got the depth in the bottom half of our lineup that the guys in the top half can't slack off," Farrell said. "You've gotta earn your spot every week. Hopefully that'll be our forte this season."
Farrell said O'Keefe will be in the starting lineup when the Beavers play at the Bemidji State University (Minn.) Invite this weekend.
On Wednesday, the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference named O'Keefe the male golfer of the week. MSU swept the category as junior Rebecca Heinitz earned the same honor on the women's side.
Heinitz, a Hillsboro native, shot a 1-under-par 71 to win the Jamestown College Jimmie Open at the Jamestown Country Club on Aug. 29. Her score - 10 strokes better than closest teammate, junior Mackenzie Nagel - also helped the Beavers to a first-place team finish.
The women's team will compete this weekend at the Concordia College Cobbler Open at Wildflower Golf Course in Moorhead, Minn.
Heinitz and O'Keefe join soccer player Zoe Fisher as the first MSU athletes to earn the NSIC weekly honors.
Soccer team to host tough non-conference teams
After a 1-0 overtime loss at the University of Mary on Sunday, the MSU women's soccer team returns home for a pair of non-conference matchups this week.
The Beavers (1-1) play Southwest Baptist University (Mo.) at 7 tonight and NCAA Division II powerhouse University of Central Missouri at noon Saturday. Both games will be at Herb Parker Stadium.
SBU is 1-1 this season, having split a pair of matches against Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference opponents. The Bearcats lost to Upper Iowa University 2-1, but beat Concordia-St. Paul 2-0.
UCM (2-0) has lost just one regular-season match since 2010, and beat Winona State (Minn.) and Minnesota State-Mankato to open its season. Mankato and Winona State were picked first and second, respectively, in the NSIC preseason coaches' poll.
"We got a tough couple games coming up," MSU coach Jason Spain said. "We scheduled to get in the national tournament. If we lose them, we're not quite where we wanna be, but if we win them, we're good."
Football team faces another challenge in Week 2
There will be no respite for the Minot State University football team after its 44-10 season-opening loss to Minnesota State-Mankato last week.
The Beavers travel to Wayne, Neb., Saturday to take on Wayne State College, who crushed Minnesota State-Moorhead, 49-6, last week in Moorhead.
The Wildcats, who finished 7-3 in the NSIC last season, racked up 587 yards of total offense in the game. Junior running back Charlie Davidson rushed for 127 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries, and junior quarterback Nate Most completed 15-of-21 passes for 274 yards and three touchdowns.
"They're pretty tough, pretty physical," MSU coach Paul Rudolph said. "They've got some skill back - got a guy that can take you deep and got a couple running backs that can pound it."
Rudolph said team morale is good after totalling just 32 yards of offense against Mankato.
"They'll bounce back," he said of his players. "We were pretty frustrated. We think we could've played better. Give them credit but we didn't think we played as well as we could've."
One bright spot in the Mankato loss was the performance of the kickoff-return unit. Junior Glyn Borel had two long returns, including one that set up the Beavers' only touchdown of the game.
"I thought it was pretty well blocked," Rudolph said. "There was a lot of guys that had a good effort on the play and he got into the seam, which was good."
Junior inside linebacker Chad Marshall, MSU's leading tackler last season, left the Mankato game with an upper leg injury. Rudolph said the injury isn't serious and that Marshall is day-to-day.
Senior Brett Mohr and sophomore Casey Weinmann may get more reps at linebacker after some solid play in week one.
"We'll have to keep getting those guys in there and finding guys that can make plays," Rudolph said.