Winter, women’s swim team honored for academic excellence

Taylor Winter
Taylor Winter

APPLETON, Wis. — Lawrence University star Taylor Winter and the women’s team were both honored by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America for academic excellence.

Winter (Bayside, Wis./Nicolet) received honorable mention on the Scholar All-America team, and the Lawrence women’s squad was chosen as a CSCAA Scholar All-America team.

Winter, a senior who earned a degree in environmental science, was one of nine swimmers chosen from the Midwest Conference. To be eligible for the award, a swimmer had to have a minimum 3.50 grade point average and achieved a “B” qualifying standard.

Winter, who won Lawrence’s Ruth Bateman Award for excellence in scholarship, athletic ability and leadership by a female athlete, was chosen for the first time. The swim team captain, Winter won the 1,650-yard freestyle for the second consecutive year at the 2015 Midwest Conference Championships and also finished third in the 500 freestyle. Winter broke her own school record in the 1,650 freestyle and recorded an NCAA “B” cut in the event. She also broke Hayley Vatch’s school record in the 500 freestyle.

To capture the team award, a team had to have a minimum 3.0 GPA during the spring semester. Lawrence’s 21-member women’s swim team posted an impressive 3.33 team GPA. Lawrence was one of five women’s teams from the Midwest Conference to be honored.

Speckman named Lawrence football offensive coordinator

Mark Speckman
Mark Speckman

APPLETON, Wis. — Acclaimed coach Mark Speckman has joined the Lawrence University football staff and will serve as offensive coordinator, Vikings head coach Rob McCarthy announced.

Speckman joins the staff at Lawrence after serving for the last two seasons as the running backs and tight ends coach of the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League.

“Mark brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our football program,” McCarthy said. “With him as our offensive coordinator, our offense will have an identity.”

Speckman has a long and successful history as a head coach and is one of the experts in the game on the “Fly” offense.

“I look forward to becoming a member of the Lawrence University football family,” Speckman said. “With the new leadership of Rob McCarthy and the renovation of the Banta Bowl, this is an exciting time for Viking football. I also look forward to working with the outstanding student-athletes that attend Lawrence University.”

Speckman was a head coach at the collegiate level for 15 seasons, including 14 at Willamette University. Speckman coached Willamette 1998-2011 and compiled a record of 83-59. The Bearcats won the Northwest Conference in 1999 and 2008 and made appearances in the NCAA Division III playoffs in 1999, 2004 and 2008.

Speckman’s 2008 team finished with an 11-1 record and was ranked as high as fourth nationally. Speckman was a finalist for the Liberty Mutual National Coach of the Year and was named American Football Coaches Association West Region Coach of the Year in 2008.

Speckman, who has been named a conference Coach of the Year 10 times, also served as the head coach at Menlo College in 2012 before going to the Canadian Football League.

Speckman served as a prep head coach at four different high schools from 1981-94 before joining the staff at Willamette as the offensive coordinator in 1995.

“Coach Speckman has had success building a successful Division III football program, and he will play an important role as we rebuild the program here at Lawrence,” McCarthy said. “Mark is a passionate coach and motivator. This, coupled, with his proven ability to recruit high-caliber student-athletes from throughout the country, will make him a valuable asset to both the football program and the university.”

Speckman has served as a consultant to high-powered college football programs like Wisconsin, Oregon and Stanford and also has worked with the staffs of the Green Bay Packers, San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks.

“Securing a coach with as much experience as Mark Speckman bodes well for the future of Viking football,” Director of Athletics Mike Szkodzinski said. “We are very excited to watch how his influence will help to move our program and department forward in a positive direction.”

A sought-after football theory and motivational speaker, Speckman drew media attention as a player decades ago. Born without hands, Speckman played linebacker at Menlo and later at Azusa Pacific University and was a NAIA All-American. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Azusa Pacific in 1977 and picked up a master’s degree in health and human services from Columbia Pacific University in 1994.

Speckman, along with W. Jason Niedermeyer, authored the book, Figure It Out: How I Learned To Live In A Digital World Without Digits.

Lawrence opens its football season at the renovated Roberts Field at the Banta Bowl on Sept. 5 against Rockford University.

Renovated Banta Bowl field to honor Lawrence legend Ron Roberts

The name Roberts Field will sit atop the new scoreboard in the Banta Bowl.
The name Roberts Field will sit atop the new scoreboard in the Banta Bowl.

APPLETON, Wis. — The field of the renovated Banta Bowl will honor legendary Lawrence University football coach Ron Roberts, university officials announced.

Roberts Field at the Banta Bowl is the new name of the facility where Lawrence’s iconic coach prowled the sidelines for 20 seasons. The naming of the field was done at the request of Tom Rogers, Lawrence class of 1965, who provided the lead gift for the stadium renovation.

“It was a fitting way to recognize what Ron Roberts had done for Lawrence. He just did an amazing job,” Rogers said.

“When we were talking about the Bowl and the naming rights, it was very apparent to me that he was the person after whom we should name the field. His former players said he was an amazing coach, and he had the ability to inspire them to do some great things they didn’t think they were capable of doing.”

Rogers was a student at Lawrence when Roberts began his coaching career in Appleton. Rogers was a soccer player who helped establish that program at Lawrence, but he was impressed by what Roberts did for the football team.

“They had the beginnings of some very good teams, and I was very aware that Ron Roberts had a tremendous impact on the football program,” Rogers said. “It was a very obvious choice.”

Lawrence Director of Athletics Mike Szkodzinski said this is a fitting tribute to a Lawrence legend.

“The Roberts family has been tremendously supportive of our programs,” Szkodzinski said. “Ron Roberts’ legacy is something that people continue to marvel at even today. Coach Roberts demonstrated excellence in every aspect while at Lawrence and in life. The idea of naming the field after Coach Roberts is absolutely appropriate, and we appreciate the generosity of Tom Rogers.”

Ron Roberts, left, coached the Lawrence football team for 20 seasons, won six Midwest Conference championships, reached the semifinals of the 1981 NCAA Division III playoffs and compiled a record of 121-54-1.
Ron Roberts, left, coached the Lawrence football team for 20 seasons, won six Midwest Conference championships, reached the semifinals of the 1981 NCAA Division III playoffs and compiled a record of 121-54-1.

Ron Roberts served as Lawrence’s head football coach from 1965-83 and for a single season in 1992. His teams won six Midwest Conference championships and reached the semifinals of the 1981 NCAA Division III playoffs. Roberts compiled a career record of 121-54-1 and retired after the 1992 season with the 12th-best winning percentage (.690) in NCAA Division III football history.

“I wrote a thank you note to Tom Rogers,” said Marlene Roberts, Ron’s widow. “Tom said Ron had a positive impact on his life. His gift will have a tremendous impact on Ron’s memory so he will remain a visible part of Lawrence athletics.”

Ron Roberts passed away in December 2012, and Marlene said their three children, Ron Jr. ’84, Carrie ’86 and Elizabeth, were excited to hear the news about Roberts Field.

“I was so happy for Ron because this is something he would revel in,” Marlene said with a sparkle. “He would love it.”

The Banta Bowl, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this fall, is in the midst of a renovation project that will give the historic stadium a facelift. Lawrence has received $4.15 million toward the goal of $4.5 million for renovations. Lawrence’s Development Office is in a final push to complete the fundraising campaign.

The stadium floor will be raised and expanded to accommodate both football and men’s and women’s soccer. The grass field is being replaced with FieldTurf, an artificial surface that will allow more use of the facility.

Construction work on the Banta Bowl is progressing rapidly and scheduled to be completed in September.
Construction work on the Banta Bowl is progressing rapidly and scheduled to be completed in September.

A new building is currently under construction that will house the Lawrence locker room, a visiting team room, bathrooms, concessions and ticketing. The concrete structure of the stadium will be covered and new bleachers will be installed. A new scoreboard and sound system are also set to be installed.

A memorial to Bernie Heselton, long-time coach and director of athletics, is set to be included in the renovated stadium. Heselton served as Lawrence football coach from 1938-64, won six Midwest Conference championships and compiled a record of 111-79-5.

A fundraising effort also is under way to include a memorial for Carl Berghult ’64, a friend and fraternity brother of Rogers. Berghult, a native of Chicago, Ill., was a running back for the Vikings and played in the final years of Heselton’s tenure. After graduating from Lawrence, Berghult was a lieutenant in the United States Naval Reserve, and he was killed in the flight deck fire aboard the USS Enterprise on Jan. 14, 1969.

The aggressive construction schedule calls for having the field completed when Lawrence opens its football season with a non-conference game against Rockford University on Sept. 5.

Ron Roberts was the first-year head coach of the Vikings when the stadium, a gift from George Banta Jr. ’10 that was called the Lawrence Bowl until 1978, opened in 1965. Lawrence christened the stadium with a 26-21 victory over St. Olaf College on Oct. 2, 1965.

“I do remember the pressure was on to win that game,” Marlene Roberts said. “Ron was so happy to beat St. Olaf. To open the Bowl with a win was wonderful. Ron always thought the best of his players. He thought his players could do anything. He genuinely believed that. I think that incited and inspired them.”

A native of Chicago, Ill., Ron Roberts earned a bachelor’s degree in history and physical education and a master’s degree in educational administration from the University of Wisconsin. A Professor Emeritus of Physical Education at Lawrence, Roberts earned an advanced degree from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. in educational administration from Brigham Young University.

A charter member of the Lawrence Intercollegiate Athletic Hall of Fame, Roberts came to Lawrence in 1963 as the offensive line coach under Heselton. Roberts, who was inducted into the Wisconsin Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1996, also coached the wrestling and men’s tennis teams upon his arrival in Appleton.

Roberts won his first Midwest Conference championship in 1966 as the Vikings finished 7-1. In just his third season, the 1967 squad finished 8-0 to become only the fourth unbeaten, untied team in school history and won another conference title. Roberts’ teams would go on to win four more conference championships (1975, 1979, 1980, 1981).

Ron Roberts, right, shouts instructions to the field while being flanked by All-America quarterback Chuck McKee '68.
Ron Roberts, right, shouts instructions to the field while being flanked by All-America quarterback Chuck McKee ’68. McKee helped lead the 1967 team to a perfect 8-0 record.

In Roberts’ tenure as head coach, the Vikings posted 14 winning seasons, including an impressive 10-year stretch from 1974-83. During that time, Lawrence never lost more than two games in a season and posted a 77-15 record. Lawrence also put together a school-record 18-game winning streak during that time.

The 1981 season was perhaps the pinnacle of Roberts’ coaching career. Lawrence won the Midwest Conference championship and finished with a 9-0 regular-season record (10-1 overall). Lawrence then became the first Midwest Conference team selected for the NCAA Division III playoffs.

Lawrence also became the first Midwest Conference team to host, and win, a NCAA playoff game when Lawrence defeated Minnesota-Morris in the quarterfinals. Lawrence was finally eliminated in the national semifinals but no Midwest Conference team has ever advanced farther in the Division III playoffs.

Roberts, who also was Lawrence’s director of athletics, stepped away from football after the 1983 season but returned to the team to coach the 1992 season before retiring. When Roberts finished coaching football, only Cornell College’s Jerry Clark had won more games in the Midwest Conference.

Roberts also served as the head coach of the wrestling, tennis and track teams during his time at Lawrence. Roberts coached the wrestling team for 19 seasons in three different stints (1963-69, 1972-74, 1985-93). He coached the men’s tennis team for six seasons from 1964-69 and the team won the 1968 conference championship.

Roberts took over as director of athletics following Heselton’s retirement in 1971 and oversaw the introduction of women’s varsity sports at Lawrence. Women’s basketball, soccer, volleyball, cross country, tennis, track and field, swimming and softball all began varsity play during Roberts’ tenure as director of athletics.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2015 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

 

Student-athletes receive awards at Honors Celebration

APPLETON, Wis. — More than a dozen Lawrence University student-athletes recently received awards at the 2015 Honors Celebration.

The awards and winners are as follows.

The Ruth Bateman Award is given for excellence in scholarship, athletic ability and leadership by a female athlete. Senior swimmer Taylor Winter (Bayside, Wis./Nicolet) won the award for a second consecutive year. The swim team captain, Winter won the 1,650-yard freestyle for the second consecutive year at the 2015 Midwest Conference Championships and also finished third in the 500 freestyle. Winter broke her own school record in the 1,650 freestyle and recorded an NCAA “B” cut in the event. She also broke Hayley Vatch’s school record in the 500 freestyle.

The Iden Charles Champion Cup is given for excellence in scholarship, athletic ability, college spirit and loyalty. Senior men’s basketball player Andrew Borresen (West Bend, Wis./Living Word Lutheran) has won the award for the second consecutive year. A member of the Dean’s List and Mortar Board, Borresen has a 3.92 grade point average and will graduate with a degree in history. A member of the Academic All-Midwest Conference team, Borresen is co-chairman of Lawrence’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. He has served as a volunteer at Richmond Elementary School, worked on Habitat for Humanity projects and volunteered with Lawrence’s Food Recovery Network. He also works in Lawrence’s Sports Information Office and Admissions Office.

The Outstanding Freshman Athletic Award for Men is given the freshman man who has made the most outstanding contribution to Lawrence athletics. Sharing the award are tennis player David Jumes (Appleton, Wis./Xavier) and hockey player Brendan Vetter (Phillips, Wis./Phillips). Jumes finished with a 14-7 record in singles and an 8-11 mark in doubles. Jumes, who reached the semifinals at No. 2 singles at the Midwest Conference Championships, was named the team’s Most Valuable Player. Vetter, a defeseman, led the team with seven goals scored and was tied for third on the team with 11 points. Vetter also led the team in plus-minus and has been named an assistant captain for next season.

The Outstanding Freshman Athletic Award for Women is given to the freshman woman who has made the most outstanding contribution to Lawrence athletics. Erin Schrobilgen (Oak Park, Ill./Oak Park River Forest) competed in cross country and indoor and outdoor track and field. Schrobilgen earned All-Midwest Conference honors in cross country after a 12th-place finish at the league championships. During the indoor track season, Schrobilgen broke the school record in the mile that had stood since 1978. She also earned Academic All-America honors from the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.

The Ralph V. Landis Award was established by the Lettermen of Lawrence in honor of Dr. Landis, physician to Lawrence students from 1926-78, and is awarded for outstanding contributions to Lawrence athletics by a senior male athlete. Senior men’s basketball player Ryan DePouw (Oconto, Wis./Oconto) was honored after finishing a stellar career. A three-year starter and team captain, DePouw is one of just 22 players in Lawrence basketball history to score 1,000 points. He finished 21st in career scoring with 1,028 points.

The Charles E. Pond Award for Men is given for all-around athletic ability by a senior man in two or more sports and for sportsmanship, school spirit and scholarship. Senior soccer player and swimmer Steve Salansky (Parker, Colo./Legend) was a standout in both sports. On the soccer field, Salansky was a three-year starter and two-year team captain. As a defender, he earned All-Midwest Conference three times and was a two-time All-Wisconsin selection. Salansky, who also served as swim team captain, was the second-leading scorer for the squad.

The Charles E. Pond Award for Women is given for all-around athletic ability by a senior woman in two or more sports and for sportsmanship, school spirit and scholarship. Senior multi-sport athlete Kassidy Rinehart (Hortonville, Wis./Hortonville) starred in three sports and won 12 letters for the Vikings. During the fall, Rinehart ran cross country for the Vikings and helped Lawrence to a third-place finish at the Midwest Conference Championships in 2014. During the winter season, Rinehart was a four-year player for the basketball team. She served as the basketball team captain as a senior and was named the team Defensive Most Valuable Player all four years. During the spring season, Rinehart has won four letters as a sprinter and jumper for the track and field team. Rinehart also is the co-chairperson of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and is a four-year Academic All-Midwest Conference selection.

The Marion Read Award is given for outstanding contributions to Lawrence athletics. The award had two winners this year as seniors Keli Muchowski (Neenah, Wis./Neenah) and Kara Vance (Racine, Wis./Park) shared the honor. Muchowski was the leading scorer for the women’s soccer team and earned All-Midwest Conference honors three times. She scored nine goals and handed out three assists in 2014 for 21 points. Muchowski finished ninth in Lawrence history with 26 goals and is eighth with 65 points. Vance was a standout pitcher for the Vikings and finished with a 28-20 career record. Vance was named Midwest Conference Pitcher of the Week twice during her career and her 28 wins ranks sixth in Lawrence history. She holds the Lawrence record for fewest walks per innings pitched with just 36 bases on balls in 292.2 innings pitched. The softball team captain, Vance also served as a student manager for football and is a leader in the Kids Give campaign.

The Letterwinner Award is presented by the L Club to those outstanding seniors who have earned eight or more letters. The winners are:

Kyle Dockery (Barrington, Ill./Barrington), cross country and track and field

Pat Mangan (Barrington, Ill./Barrington), cross country and track and field

Kassidy Rinehart (Hortonville, Wis./Hortonville), cross country, women’s basketball and outdoor track and field

Savannah Vogel (Deerfield, Wis./Deerfield), cross country and track and field

Sunday’s games wiped out by rain at Division III World Series

The entire slate of four games on Sunday (May 24) at the NCAA Division III Baseball Championship was postponed due to rain. Play is tentatively set to resume at 9 a.m. on Monday (May 25) at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium in Appleton.

The Pool A elimination contest between Ramapo College (N.J.) (33-15) and Frostburg State University (Md.) (42-8) is scheduled to commence play on Monday at 9 a.m. The winner will play unbeaten State University of New York at Cortland (42-4) at 3 p.m.

The Pool B elimination game on Monday features Trinity University (Texas) (38-13) opposing Emory University (Ga.) (31-14) at 12 p.m. The winner plays unbeaten University of Wisconsin-La Crosse (35-13) at 6 p.m. in the last game of the day.

The championship concludes with games on Tuesday (May 26) and Wednesday (May 27).

More information can be found at ncaa.com.

Monday, May 25 Schedule
Game #9 – 9 a.m.
Frostburg State University (Md.) (42-8) vs. Ramapo College (N.J.) (33-15)
Game #10 – 12 p.m.
Emory University (Ga.) (31-14) vs. Trinity University (Texas) (38-13)
Game #11 – 3 p.m.
Winner of Game #9 vs. State University of New York at Cortland (42-4)
Game #12 – 6 p.m.
Winner of Game #10 vs. University of Wisconsin-La Crosse (35-13)

Sunday, May 24 Results

All Games Postponed Due To Rain


Saturday, May 23 Results

Game #5
Ramapo College (N.J.) 14, Webster University (Mo.) 2
Game #6
State University of New York at Cortland 4, Frostburg State University (Md.) 1
Game #7

Trinity University (Texas) 9, Salisbury University (Md.) 1

Game #8
University of Wisconsin-La Crosse 3, Emory University (Ga.) 2, (12 Innings)

Friday, May 22 Results

Game #1

Frostburg State University (Md.) 3, Ramapo College (N.J.) 1

Game #2

State University of New York at Cortland 12, Webster University (Mo.) 4

Game #3

Emory University (Ga.) 9, Trinity University (Texas) 7

Game #4

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse 7, Salisbury University (Md.) 3

Lawrence softball star Jaskolski named first-team All-American

Lawrence shortstop Amanda Jaskolski was named a first-team All-American by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association.
Lawrence shortstop Amanda Jaskolski was named a first-team All-American by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association.

APPLETON, Wis. — Anyone who watched Lawrence University softball star Amanda Jaskolski play this season knew she was one of NCAA Division III’s elite. The rest of the country agreed with Vikings nation.

Jaskolski (Shawano, Wis./Shawano) was named a first-team All-American by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association today. The senior shortstop is the first All-American in Lawrence softball history.

“When (Lawrence coach Kim Tatro) told me I could not believe it,” Jaskolski said. “As a softball player you always talk about the people who have been All-Americans and how they are idols for all of us, and now to be put in that group of people is an incredible honor. It’s beyond my wildest dreams for my softball career.”

This is the latest and greatest honor for Jaskolski, who was the Midwest Conference Player of the Year in 2014 and 2015. Jaskolski also earned first-team NFCA All-Great Lakes Region honors in each of the last two seasons.

“It has never been my goal to win any awards,” Jaskolski said. “My goals have always been to have fun, give my best and respect the game I’ve known and have loved since I was a little girl. As I get older I realize that the true All-Americans here are my parents for running me around the country to play this sport and for giving me unconditional support.

Jaskolski hit .462 on the season with 37 runs scored, 13 home runs and 46 runs batted in. Jaskolski led the Midwest Conference in on-base percentage at .573 and was first in RBIs, homers and walks and finished second in hits, slugging percentage and runs scored.

“Jazz is one of the most complete and gifted players we have had in our program,” Tatro said. “She is explosive at the plate in addition to being patient and smart, and she has one of the best gloves I’ve ever seen in 22 years at the college level on any team.”

Jaskolski decimated the Lawrence season records in 2015 by tying or setting six marks. Jaskolski’s 13 homers eclipsed the record of 12 set by Carli Gurholt in 2009, and her 46 RBIs topped Gurholt’s 2009 mark of 45. Jaskolski obliterated the total bases record with 104. The mark was 79, set by Jenny Burris in 2001 and matched by Gurholt in 2009.

Jaskolski’s 54 hits broke the record of 51 set by Burris in 2001, and she tied Burris’ record of 37 runs scored in 2001. Jaskolski also smashed the season walks record as teams consistently pitched around her. Jaskolski drew 31 walks, topping the mark of 22 held by Stephanie Ash (1992) and Kristynn Fields (1988).

With Jaskolski leading the way, Lawrence finished with a 28-12 record, tying the mark for the second-highest season win total in school history. The Vikings won the Midwest Conference’s North Division and finished second in the league tournament.

“There is no question that she is a game changer and deserves much credit for our success,” Tatro said. “When you couple her athletic ability with her leadership skills, competitive nature and humble attitude, you have greatness and that’s what she is. There is no question that she is deserving of this award and we are so proud of her.”

Jaskolski is the first Lawrence All-American in any sport since Ryan Kroeger was selected in men’s basketball in 2009. She is the first first-team All-American since 2006, when Chris Braier was chosen in men’s basketball.

Gordon earns All-Central Region honors again

Jake Gordon
Jake Gordon

APPLETON, Wis. — Lawrence University baseball standout Jake Gordon has been named to the D3baseball.com All-Central Region team.

Gordon (Winnetka, Ill./North Shore Country Day), who was chosen for the all-region team for the second consecutive season, earned a spot on the third team.

A senior center fielder, Gordon hit a team-high .364 with 10 doubles, four triples, three homers, 29 runs scored and 23 runs batted in. Gordon, who hit .349, scored 13 runs and drove in 13 during 16 Midwest Conference games, also earned all-conference first-team honors for the second straight season.

Gordon overcame an injury in the final few games of the season to break Lawrence’s career hits record in his final plate appearance. Gordon’s final hit gave him 155 for his career, moving him past Andrew Wong, who had 154 hits from 2003-06.

Gordon had 14 multi-hit games despite being limited to just 33 games this season. Gordon had seven games in which he had three or more hits. An outstanding defensive outfielder, Gordon also picked up seven outfield assists and compiled a .989 fielding percentage.

A four-year starter in the outfield, Gordon is a career .338 hitter and finished with 27 doubles, eight triples, five homers, 92 runs scored and 59 RBIs.

This marks the second consecutive season and the third time in the past six seasons that Lawrence has had an all-region selection.

Tatro takes home eighth MWC Coach of the Year award

Lawrence head coach Kim Tatro congratulates catcher Sam Belletini during the 2015 Midwest Conference Tournament.
Lawrence head coach Kim Tatro, left, congratulates catcher Sam Belletini during the 2015 Midwest Conference Tournament.

APPLETON, Wis. — Lawrence University softball coach Kim Tatro has been named the Midwest Conference Coach of the Year for the eighth time.

In a vote of league coaches, Tatro won the award in the wake of her team finishing second in the Midwest Conference. Tatro just completed her 22nd season at Lawrence and also won Coach of the Year honors in 2013, 2011, 2006, 2002, 1999, 1998 and 1997.

“This is really recognition for our entire program,” Tatro said. “We have a tremendous group of people and everyone contributes to our success. Our coaching staff couldn’t be more proud of the outstanding women we get the opportunity to work with. They truly made this a very special year.”

Lawrence won the North Division for the first time since 2005 and qualified for the Midwest Conference Tournament for the third consecutive season. The Vikings hosted the MWC Tournament at Whiting Field and reached the title game before falling to Lake Forest College.

The Vikings compiled a record of 28-12, and that is the second-highest season win total in school history. The 1999 team set the record with 31 victories.

Lawrence put together separate five-, six- and seven-game win streaks during the 2015 season. The Vikings finished with a 10-4 record in conference play and an 18-8 mark in non-conference and post-season contests.

Tatro has won more MWC Coach of the Year honors than any coach in Lawrence history. Former men’s basketball coach John Tharp is next on the list with four conference Coach of the Year awards.

Tatro, who was inducted into Lawrence’s Intercollegiate Athletic Hall of Fame in 2014, also has more victories than any coach in school history. Tatro’s softball teams have a record of 367-321-1, and her overall mark, which includes eight seasons of volleyball, is 458-442-1.

Lawrence also had several players honored after the season. Shortstop Amanda Jaskolski was named the MWC Player of the Year and was a first-team All-Great Lakes Region selection. Catcher Sam Belletini was a first-team all-conference pick and earned third-team all-region honors. Pitcher Liz Barthels was a second-team all-conference selection.

Kaeding named MFC Coach of the Year

Lawrence's Alex Kaeding was named the Midwest Fencing Conference Coach of the Year.
Lawrence’s Alex Kaeding, second from left, was named the Midwest Fencing Conference Coach of the Year.

APPLETON, Wis. — Lawrence University’s Alex Kaeding has been named the Midwest Fencing Conference Coach of the Year.

Kaeding, who just completed his first season as the Vikings’ head coach, captured the award in the wake of the Vikings finishing fourth in the combined team standings at the MFC Championships.

Kaeding, a 2009 Lawrence graduate and former standout fencer for the Vikings, shared the award with Jim Vesper of the University of Michigan.

Lawrence enjoyed a banner season with top finishes at the MFC Championships and nine Vikings were chosen for the all-conference team.

The Lawrence men’s team won the title in sabre at the conference championships and picked up victories over Ohio State in the semifinals and Michigan in the final. The Vikings finished second on the men’s side and trailed champion Ohio State by just 35 points. In addition to winning the sabre championship, men’s foil took second place and epee was fifth.

On the women’s side, Kaeding’s Vikings finished fifth overall. Epee placed fifth, foil took seventh and sabre was ninth.

Other awards went to Laurie Schiller of Northwestern, who was named Varsity Coach of the Year, and Michigan, which won Club Team of the Year.

Jaskolski, Belletini earn All-Great Lakes Region honors

Amanda Jaskolski
Amanda Jaskolski

APPLETON, Wis. — Lawrence University softball stars Amanda Jaskolski and Sam Belletini have been named to the All-Great Lakes Region team by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association.

Jaskolski (Shawano, Wis./Shawano) was named to the first team for the second consecutive season, and Belletini (Gurnee, Ill./Warren Township) was a third-team selection.

Jaskolski, who was the Midwest Conference Player of the Year in 2014 and 2015, hit .462 on the season with 37 runs scored, 13 home runs and 46 runs batted in. The senior shortstop led the Midwest Conference in on-base percentage at .573 and was first in RBIs, homers and walks (31) and finished second in hits, slugging percentage and runs scored.

Jaskolski decimated the Lawrence season records in 2015 by tying or setting six marks. Jaskolski’s 13 homers eclipsed the record of 12 set by Carli Gurholt in 2009, and her 46 RBIs topped Gurholt’s 2009 mark of 45. Jaskolski obliterated the total bases record with 104. The mark was 79, set by Jenny Burris in 2001 and matched by Gurholt in 2009.

Jaskolski’s 54 hits broke the record of 51 set by Burris in 2001, and she tied Burris’ record of 37 runs scored in 2001. Jaskolski also smashed the season walks record as teams consistently pitched around her. Jaskolski drew 31 walks, topping the mark of 22 set by Stephanie Ash in 1992.

Belletini, a sophomore catcher, was named to the all-region team for the first time.

Batting in the clean-up spot, Belletini hit .367 with 13 doubles, four homers and 24 RBIs. Belletini, who was a first-team All-Midwest Conference selection, tied the season doubles record set by Alex Goodson in 2009. A two-time conference Player of the Week in 2015, Belletini

Sam Belletini
Sam Belletini

also was very good defensively and threw out eight of 18 runners attempting to steal.

Belletini was especially good in conference play as she hit .551 with seven doubles, four homers and 13 RBIs. She had a .600 on-base percentage and a staggering .939 slugging percentage.

The Midwest Conference had 10 selections to the all-region team, including three first-team picks. Only league champion Lake Forest College had more selections than Lawrence with four.

Lawrence finished second in the Midwest Conference and compiled a 28-12 record. That is the second-highest season win total in school history.