Monday Musings - Knee Deep in the Best Month

Does not get much better for me than this time of year.  MLB coming down the stretch and the playoffs looming.  NFL getting going and some crazy results out there.  College football about to get into conference season and you get to tack on Ryder Cup Golf and a decently exciting finish to the NASCAR 1600 Left Turn Race and I had plenty to keep me away from doing laundry on Sunday.  As for Mizzou this week, the volleyball season gets to conference time and soccer finishes its non-con slate.  Golf was out there as well, and I suppose I will talk about the football team a bit.  Let's get to it.

Football:

Yeah...it took me a little bit of time to figure out where I wanted to start with this piece.  I just don't have too much left to say about the game and the effort and the results.  The pod cast (my beer and brownie delivery service aside) kind of put all of my thoughts out there, and you are better off listening to them and the smattering of humor than just reading through this.  I was most pleased at the load Derrick Washington saw in the game, just because he will need to see that load come conference season to further keep defenses honest and/or at bay.  As for Chase, there is really nothing left to be said other than I will be interested to see what sort of lead he gets out to in the Heisman hype this coming week.

As for the defense, I think the bye comes again at a nice time.  Injury aside, the group now has film on four games (really three) and much different looks having been provided both on offense (by the oppositions) and what we did on defense.  We have been very aggressive at times, passive at others, and hopefully getting to have the intended compliment of the 11 starters on the practice field will allow the group to get the rythym so many folks hope we find.  The last question for me remains in the secondary with the 2nd corner position and the safety position.  My guess is that we have seen the last of William Moore-defensive end, for some time and he will drop back to bolster the secondary.  Imagine having to not throw to Gettis but then account for Moore...a lot of checkdowns to ask your QB to go through.

Two weeks, and then the 2nd season begins.  The first season was a nice success, and after the bye week so starts a run of 7 games in 7 weeks, front loaded with the better NU/Okie State/Texas run.  I think they are ready.

And don't forget to be around this coming Saturday for the 1st  Rock M Nation Bye Week Open Thread.  Will I drink more beers than complete loads of laundry?  STAY TUNED!!

Soccer:

Just one game this weekend for the Tigers, as they took their pink uniforms to the pitch at home to take on Big 10 opponent Iowa.  Mizzou was looking to extend their winning streak to four games and would keep constant pressure on the Hawkeyes, outshooting them 22-8 for the game, including 10-3 on goal.  That would allow the Tigers to get out to an early 1-0 lead as a cross from freshman Kelsey Blincow was finished by junior Bree Thornton.  The Tigers would carry that lead through the rest of the first and deep into the 2nd period when a Hawkeye would be brought down in the penalty box after getting behind the Mizzou defense and they would knot it at 1-1.  But the Tigers would answer right back as junior Michelle Collins would score in the 73rd minute to give Mizzou their second tally and final score of 2-1.  The Tigers finished their non-con at a decent 5-2 and now start Big XII play.

The Tigers will hit the road to start Big XII play as they take on 4-3 Iowa State on Friday night and 3-4-1 Nebraska on Sunday afternoon.  This really is a big weekend for the Tigers, as you take on two opponents who are a bit weaker on the road, and getting these wins would be a great start to a then home-loaded schedule the rest of the way.  The starting lineup seems to have rounded back into shape, as Kristen Andrighetto was in the starting lineup and while she did not score, she peppered Iowa with 7 shots and 3 on net...the type of pressure Mizzou needs to put on their opponents to be successful.

Volleyball:

The ladies started Big XII play this past week, travelling (once again) down to Norman on Wednesday and coming out of OU with a 3-1 loss to the Sooners.  The ladies did not hit very well for the match, hitting for only .129 on the night.  Julianna Klein did record 16 kills, though with nine errors, she did not hit well for the evening.  The Tigers dug like crazy, with Caitlyn Vann going for 31 and setter Lei Wang grabbing 22.  However, 12 service errors were part of their ultimate undoing, as they won the first set, but dropped the next three, with the third being especially...um...unclose.

Saturday brought the Tigers home for the first time all season as they took on a tough Baylor squad in front of a decent crowd of just over 2,000 people.  All four sets were close, but the Tigers could not pull it out on the evening, falling 3-1.  Wendy Wang had 13 kills on .343 hitting, and Klein added 13 herself, also with 10 errors on the night.  Five Tigers were in double figures on the night in digs, with Vann leading the way again with 22.  The Tigers cleaned up their serving in this one, with a 2:1 ace to error ratio.  However, the block seemed to leave them, as they only accounted for six total, and in a match as close as this one (25-22, 25-23, 23-25, 25-22), they just needed a little extra something to get them over the top and could not get it.

The Tigers have now lost four of their last five matches and sit at 5-6 overall, 0-2 in the league.  They will head right back out on the road against Texas Tech on Wedneday night, and then will step out of conference one last time this Saturday against SIU-E at the Hearnes.  The group really does need a 2-0 week to get some confidence and momentum back.

Mizzou Men's Golf:

The men headed out to Michigan this past weekend for a tournament in Ann Arbor and came away finishing 11th.  Senior Peter Malnati continues to impress in this fall season, finishing tied for 3rd with a three-round -5.  However, the rest of the Tiger depth was not there, as sophomore Will Hogan's +4 was next best for 37th.  Sophomore Will Harrold was next best at +8, sophomore  Tyler Hillis next at +13 and senior Ryne Fisher got a start and finished at +18.

The team gets a week off before heading to Glencoe, IL next for the Windon Memorial.

Mizzou Women's Golf:

The ladies returned to the links this past weekend as well, and also headed to Michigan (State in fact) for the Mary Fossum Invitational.  The ladies put up a solid performance, finishing 4th at +4.  Senior Chelsea Schreiwer also put forth a great effort, tying for 6th on the tournament.  Junior Michelle Morgan came in tied for 22nd, while sophomore Lindsay Haput and freshman Hannah Lovelock brought up the rear.  Next up for the Tigers will be their home tournament, the Johnie Imes Invitational next Monday and Tuesday.

Random Thoughts:

  • This headline is nice to see
  • And to that end, I cannot really argue against the polls.  LSU deserves to be in front of us right now for the win at Auburn.  Obviously our final score played against us a little bit, along with no TV, but oh well. 
  • The state of professional football in Missouri...wow
  • Am glad the Cubs clinched this weekend, as the Mets have four against them this week now as they try to win the East/win a wildcard spot.  We need all the help we can get, as we quietly have blown almost as many games as the much-publicized Cardinal bullpen woes.
  • The NFL is just all over the place right now.  Up is down, left is right, but it should make for a fun season.
  • Another solid week for Carl Edwards, who came from the middle of the pack to start the race to the lead...and while he could not hold on to the lead at the finish 3rd and now holds a slight lead with 8 races to go
  • It does amaze me the interest that I end up having in the Ryder Cup, as this competition came off as just a really nice and refreshing contest between the groups.  The Americans were too young to know what they did not know, and the Euros were missing some of their stalwarts from previously dominant squads.  But that was a fun win.
  • Yeah...I watched most of the pre-game festivities to close Yankee Stadium last night.  If you never made it there, it really is too bad.  Just one of those places where you feel the history when you walk into it.  And I realize the permutation they are closing is not much like the original, but they just dont build them like that anymore, especially since I dont think the pitch of the upper deck is allowed by code anymore :-)
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