The most recent notch in the Ripon/Lawrence rivalry clearly shows that Lawrence is on its way up in the MWC. LU Men’s and Women’s Basketball teams both handily defeated the Red Hawks in front of a boisterous home crowd. Once again, Dean Truesdell’s alma mater was unresponsive in the clutch. For many years in the esteemed Midwest Conference, Lawrence was not considered a powerhouse. Little or no respect was given to Lawrence’s athletes, who concentrate on studies first. The Vikings garnered little attention. Those days are clearly over in the MWC.
Lawrence has thrust itself upon the athletic scene without sacrificing any of its highly respected academics. This is very hard to do in a small school setting. Many schools in the conference are struggling right now for equilibrium.
Illinois College recently built a large new athletic facility and now has little money for its academic departments. Ripon is cutting departments, as it does not have the funds to support a teaching staff.
At times when others are falling in academics, Lawrence has stayed the course. Now Lawrence is asserting itself on the field, too.
In basketball, both men and women are particularly hot. The men have a one game lead on Grinnell, and the women are winners of six of their last seven.
Men’s Hockey is in contention for conference, despite a disappointing weekend against Marian.
The baseball team is looking for another quality year behind head coach Korey Krueger.
Men’s golf is scorching behind Jeff Henderson, Blake Nelson and the Orth brothers. Last year the women received the all-sports Midwest Conference Champions.
This recent surge of athletic prowess must be from the brilliant recruiting job of the head and assistant coaches. Recruiting classes are getting bigger and more talented.
With this new depth, experience will come in a few years. Lawrence will maintain this recent success as long as our coaches keep up their hard work. Credit the players for their drive for excellence and hard work.