Although we at the Manitou Messenger hibernated over interim, St. Olaf athletes certainly did not, continuing to compete during the frigid month of January. That being said, we as a sports-consuming student body have much to catch up on, so let us dive right into it.
Though I am usually quick to criticize the St. Olaf hockey teams, even I must admit that this past January was relatively successful. The men’s hockey team increased their win total by 200 percent, finishing the month with a record of 2-3-1, bringing their overall record to 3-14-1. More significantly, they recorded the first-ever win in the new St. Olaf Ice Arena, over one year after its inaugural game.
The defeat of the University of Wisconsin-Stout on Jan. 18 by a score of 3-2 was followed by another home win in overtime against Bethel on Feb. 8. Finally, hockey fans got to celebrate a St. Olaf win on their home ice.
The women’s team went 0-5-2 in January, recording their first ties over interim and bringing their overall record to 0-16-2. While neither team recorded a winning record over interim, these results are significantly better than expected, especially when compared to the rest of the season. This goes to show that as a fan of St. Olaf hockey, it is always important to look on the bright side of things, no matter how small they are.
For a more uplifting look at Ole athletics, we turn to the St. Olaf basketball teams. Over interim, men’s basketball went 4-6, while the women went 3-5. While neither team finished the month ideally, both find themselves in a position to compete for a postseason berth entering the final stretch of games in the season. As of now, both teams are hovering under 0.500 with the men sporting a record 11-12 and the women at a solid 8-15 in the win-loss columns, respectively.
This analysis goes to show the consistency of St. Olaf athletics. Even when we as the general student population cease to pay attention, more focused on surviving the cold, harsh winter with our limbs and GPAs intact, our winter athletes continue to perform. For that, I am proud to be an Ole.