MSU President's Column for Traill County Tribune

October 6, 2018 

Getting fired up for the basketball season

The annual 7:00 Rock Show held Thursday evening, Oct. 4 was a preview of the upcoming men’s and women’s basketball seasons. The evening started out with free pizza and popcorn for all. At 7 p.m. the lights went out, the spotlights came on, and the music played. The evening included introductions of the 2018-19 teams, scrimmages by the women’s and men’s teams, a team three-point shooting contest, shooting games, celebrity guest participation and a dunk competition. It was a fun way to kick off what we anticipate will be an exciting season for our basketball teams.

The first games of the year will be home games versus Providence College on Saturday, Oct. 13 and Sunday, Oct. 14. The women will play at 6 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday. The men will play at 8 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. We look forward to seeing the Comets in action and hope you’ll join us at the Lewy Lee Fieldhouse on those days.

The first conference games of the year will be Saturday, Dec. 1, when we host Valley City State University. The bulk of conference play will take place after the first of the year.

Dennis Hutter is entering his 13th season as the head women’s basketball coach at Mayville State. The Comets have been a model of consistency under Coach Hutter’s leadership. They have finished with a winning record in eight of Hutter’s 12 seasons. During the past six seasons, the Comets have compiled an overall record of 111-54, for a winning percentage of .676. They have advanced to the national tournament twice, making it to the “Sweet Sixteen” in 2014. Hutter’s teams also won a conference championship and a conference tournament championship during that six-year period.  

Serving as assistant coaches under Coach Hutter this year are his former players, Andi Gayner and Karleigh Weber.  

Men’s basketball head coach Darren Tighe returns for his second season this year. Year one for Coach Tighe and the Comets was an outstanding success. The Comets finished in last place in the conference in 2016-17. In the 2017-18 pre-season poll, they were picked to finish last in the North Star Athletic Conference. Instead, the Comets doubled their previous year’s win total from 9 to 18. They were nationally ranked for four weeks (as high as #22), beat nationally ranked Jamestown College (#18) and Bellevue University (#22), and won the NSAA conference tournament. They advanced to the national tournament last spring for the first time since 2007. Gorg Alhag and Daniel Lindgren were named to the NSAA honorable mention team. Michael Slaba, Garek Droog, Daniel Lindgren, and Jacob Eaton were named NAIA Scholar Athletes. Alhag, Lindgren, and Slaba will be back this season.

Mayville State graduate Alex Herman returns as assistant men’s basketball coach this year. Jake Leier is the student assistant.

Our volleyball, football, softball, and baseball teams have provided us with some great entertainment during the last couple of months. The fan support and school spirit has been over the top. While the fall schedule for softball and baseball are now completed, there will be no shortage of college athletic events to watch as both football and volleyball have a number of games left on their schedules for the season. Things will be hopping in the Lewy Lee Fieldhouse with volleyball, men’s basketball, and women’s basketball all hosting games during the same time period. I invite you to join us as often as you can at Mayville State athletic events. It’s a great time and one more reason for all of us to be “Comet proud.”