CMU Athletics Weekly Preview – Central Michigan University Athletics

CMU Athletics Weekly Preview – Central Michigan University Athletics

Three invitationals and the No. 2 team in the country highlight the home events this week for Central Michigan Athletics.
 
CROSS COUNTRY
The 2021 Central Michigan cross country season will get underway on Friday when the men’s and women’s teams compete in the annual Drenth Memorial at the Shepherd High School course in nearby Shepherd, Mich.

The women’s race will begin at 11 a.m. with the men’s race to follow at 11:35 a.m. The event is free and open to the public.
 
CMU has been practicing for the last two weeks and will use the Drenth Memorial to gauge its fitness and identify areas that need to be worked on moving forward. CMU will race head-to-head against in-state foe Michigan State. 
 
All-MAC performers sophomores Emily Paupore and Adam Rzentkowski return to lead Central Michigan. 
 
CMU competed in a shortened 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, participating in just three meets. The Drenth Memorial took place on Halloween a year ago, nearly two months later than its regular timeline.
 
GOLF
The Central Michigan women’s golf team is scheduled to open the 2021-22 season by hosting the A-Ga-Ming Invitational on the Sundance Course at A-Ga-Ming Golf Resort in Kewadin.
 
The event kicks off the Chippewas’ five-event fall schedule and is the only tournament CMU will host during the 2021-22 season.
 
Third-year CMU coach Jim Earle has a solid lineup featuring five sophomores and three freshmen.
 
The two-day, 54-hole stroke play tournament begins at 9 a.m. on Sunday with the second round to follow. The final round is scheduled for Monday at 9 a.m. The field includes Oakland and Purdue Fort Wayne.
 
SOCCER 
Following two-straight close calls against Big Ten opponents, Central Michigan will continue its nonconference schedule on Friday when it plays host to Morehead State for a 6 p.m. match at the CMU Soccer Complex.
 
CMU fell to Michigan State, 1-0, in its home opener and then dropped a second 1-0 decision to No. 18 Michigan on Sunday in Ann Arbor.
 
Laila Arab, Amanda Britain and Addie Brown have scored goals for CMU. Sophomore goalkeeper Allison LaPoint has logged every available minute in net (270:00), recording 17 saves.
 
Morehead State is 1-2-1, coming off a 1-1 home tie with Marshall in a game shortened by more than 15 minutes due to the weather. Junior forward Colleen Swift leads the Eagles with two goals. 
 
VOLLEYBALL
The Central Michigan volleyball team hits its home floor at McGuirk Arena for this first time in the fall, 2021 campaign this weekend when it hosts the annual Chippewa Invitational.
 
CMU welcomes North Dakota, Butler and Youngstown State for the round-robin event. The Chippewas’ first match is set for Friday (12:30 p.m.) against North Dakota.
 
CMU is slated to play Butler on Friday (7:30 p.m.) and then closes the tournament on Saturday (3:30 p.m.) against Youngstown State.
 
The Chippewas are coming off an opening weekend in which they finished 1-2 at the CEFCU Invitational in Peoria, Ill. CMU opened with a four-set victory over host Bradley and then fell in straight sets to DePaul and to Southeast Missouri State.
 
Savannah Thompson, a senior outside hitter, led the Chippewas with 42 kills (4.2/set) in earning a spot on the all-tournament team at Bradley. Freshman libero Aly Gurtiza earned the Mid-American Conference West Division Defensive Player of the Week after posting a team-best 69 digs (6.9/set) over the three-match stretch at Bradley.
 
North Dakota, Butler and Youngstown State are each 1-2 after opening their respective seasons last weekend.
 
The Fighting Hawks defeated Seton Hall and dropped matches to Weber State and Utah State at the Utah State Invitational; Butler hosted the Top Dawg Challenge in Indianapolis, topping Illinois-Chicago and falling to Bowling Green and Indiana; Youngstown State defeated Saint Francis and then lost to Duquesne and Akron in the DoubleTree-Youngstown Invitational.
 
FIELD HOCKEY
The CMU field hockey team entertains top-ranked Michigan on Sunday (1 p.m.) at Cristy Freese Field.
 
The Chippewas dropped two one-goal home games last weekend to Indiana, 3-2, and to Davidson, 2-1.
 
Junior Rachel Ruttenberg leads the Chippewas with two goals, while sophomore Kate Biglin has assisted on all three of CMU’s goals this season. Goalkeeper Katie Maxim has made 15 saves and carries a 2.68 goals against average.
 
The Wolverines (2-0) defeated then-No. 1 North Carolina, 3-2, and No. 11 Wake Forest, 2-0, last weekend at the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. The win over the three-time defending champion Tar Heels avenged a loss in last season’s national title game and likely will move the Wolverines into the No. 1 spot in the National Field Hockey Coaches Association poll.
 
Sunday’s game is CMU’s third consecutive at home. The Chippewas are scheduled to make a trip to east next weekend to face Dartmouth and Merrimack in Hanover, N.H., and North Andover, Mass., respectively.
 
FOOTBALL
The CMU football team opens the 2021 season on Saturday (4 p.m.) with a nonleague game at Missouri. The game will be carried live on the SEC Network as well as on WUPS-FM 98.5.
 

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