Article Category Archives: Sports

Top Dogs


Ellie Weltha

Weltha earned all-region and first-team all-conference honors after averaging more than 16 points and 10 rebounds per game this past season. She pulled down 307 rebounds to rank fifth in a season at Truman and helped the Bulldogs with two clutch free throws in the final seconds as they upset No. 1 Drury at home 67-66, Jan. 17.



Kara Hunt

Hunt led the women’s golf team in competitive rounds played with 18 and tied for the lowest single-round score of the season at 75 with fellow teammate Natalie Fatka. Hunt averaged 84.3 strokes per round. She had one top-10 finish in a tournament, placing eighth at Columbia College. Honorable mention to Macyn Young who recorded the fifth hole in one in Bulldog golf history and first since 2002.



Jacob Morris

Morris qualified and earned All-America honors at the NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field Championships in weight throw after breaking the Bulldog indoor record in the event earlier in the season. Morris finished 10th at the indoor nationals. Moving to the outside season, Morris continued to rule the throwing events and was the GLVC champion in the discus throw.



Grace Feeney

Feeney took the bronze medal at the 2022 GLVC Outdoor Track & Field Championships in the heptathlon and was a member of the 4×400 relay team that qualified for the Drake Relays this spring. Feeney scored a career-best 4,488 points in the seven-event heptathlon and was the individual event winner in the shot put. She won four events at the Truman Twilight meet and was fourth in a fifth event.



Emma Walbert

The senior wrapped up her Bulldog career in style by going 12 for 14 at the plate in her final weekend, including a five-for-five performance that tied a school record for hits in a game. Walbert led the offense with a .389 batting average while playing and starting in all 43 games. She will leave Truman softball with the fourth-best career batting average at .385. She was also a three-time All-GLVC team member.



Cade McKnight

The standout forward saved his best for last as he was once again an NABC All-American performer, D2CCA First Team All-Region and earned CoSIDA Academic All-American Honors. He averaged a career high 19.2 points per game and 6.4 rebounds per game. He shot 57.4% from the field and 39.5% from three-point range, also both career bests. He will use his final year of eligibility at Indiana State University as a graduate student.



Holden Missey

The junior first baseman led the Bulldogs in most offensive categories again in 2022, leading the team in batting average (.357), runs scored (30), hits (56), home runs (12), doubles (16) and total bases (110). He also served as the team’s closer, earning six saves and a 2-1 record in 13 appearances. He had arguably the best hitting performance in program history against Lewis this season, going five-for-five with three home runs, five runs scored and four RBI, April 29.



AJ Kohler

The sophomore earned two B Cuts at the GLVC championships. In the 200 freestyle he finished fifth in the conference with a time of 1:38.54, and in the 200 butterfly he finished 15th with a time of 1:49.99. He also set a new personal best split in the 200 freestyle relay with a time of 20.53 at the GLVC championships.



Emma Brabham

The senior capped off her career by qualifying for nationals in three events: the 50 freestyle, 100 backstroke and 100 freestyle. She swam 23.83 in the 50 free prelims, 55.97 in the 100 back prelims and 52.87 in the 100 free prelims. It was her second-straight appearance at nationals, qualifying in the 100 back in 2020-21.



Julia Fangman

Playing primarily in fourth singles this year, the junior earned a 16-6 overall record in singles play this season. In doubles play with Samantha Seggerman, the duo went 13-7 overall, playing mostly second doubles with one match at first doubles. She picked up a win in conference play at William Jewell at fourth singles.

Coach Schwegler Passes

Tim Schwegler, the head cross country and track & field coach at Truman, passed away April 14.

A 1980 graduate of the University, Schwegler served as captain of the Bulldog cross country team and was a member of the track team. After graduation, he worked at Kirksville High School as the boys cross country/track & field coach. He led the Tigers to three district titles, two North Central Missouri Conference championships and had three top 10 state finishes.

Schwegler returned to Truman to complete his master’s degree and served as a volunteer assistant for the women’s cross country/track & field squads. Following his master’s degree completion, he was named the head coach at Highland (Kan.) Community College where he built a top-20 NJCAA track and field/cross country program. Schwegler coached 106 athletic All-Americans and 192 academic All-Americans during his tenure at Highland. The Scotties won eight Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference championships and were named the NJCAA Top Academic Team of the Year nine times. He was the 1999 NJCAA Men’s Track Coach of the Year and the 2004 NJCAA Region VI Women’s Coach of the Year. He was inducted into the Highland Hall of Fame.

In 2006, Schwegler returned to Truman to serve as an assistant coach for the Bulldogs. He was elevated in 2013 to the head coaching position. During that time period, he helped produce 25 conference champions, six NCAA Division II All-Americans, one national champion, numerous USTFCCCA All-Academic scholars and teams, nine CoSIDA Academic All-Americans and new school records in 15 different events.

Schwegler is survived by his wife Nancy and two sons, Matt and Sam.

Two Bulldog Teams Enshrined into Athletics Hall of Fame

The 1997 men’s soccer team and the 1972 men’s track & field team were inducted into the Truman State University Athletics Hall of Fame in April.


1997 Men’s Soccer (16-6 – NCAA Final Four)

The Bulldog men’s soccer team in 1997 advanced to the NCAA Final Four after winning their fourth-straight Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association title and sixth overall. Dennis Sweeney’s team went 14-5 during the regular season and was selected to their fourth NCAA Division II tournament in the past seven years.

Round one was a match again rival Southern Illinois Edwardsville in frigid conditions. The Cougars struck three minutes into the match to take the early lead. Senior Jimmy Duran deflected a shot off the post from Adrian Marrero for the equalizer. Late in the match, Marrero scored the winner off a pass from Jeremy Jackson to give Truman their first postseason victory.

The Bulldogs returned home and faced East Stroudsburg (Pa.) University with a ticket to the Final Four on the line. It was Marrero again getting the lone goal as his header off a corner kick in the 14th minute stood up for the win.   

Truman traveled to Boca Raton, Florida, for the Final Four and faced California State-Bakersfield in the national semifinals. The Roadrunners scored a first-half goal off a corner kick. The Bulldogs thought they tied the match early in the second half but Duran’s goal was waved off due to a foul. Bakersfield would score with 20 minutes left to seal the victory. They would eventually win the national title two days later.

Marrero finished with a team-high 15 goals. He was one of six Bulldogs to earn first-team All-MIAA honors along with Matt Berry, Mike Quante, Heine Andersen, Lee Letourneau and MIAA Most Valuable Player Steve Wilhuesen. Scott Meis, second team, and Duran, honorable mention, were also listed for the Bulldogs.

Andersen, Marrero and Quante were all named to the NSCAA All-Region team, Andersen was a first-team selection.

1972 Men’s Track & Field Team

Fifty years ago this spring was a magical time for Coach Kenny Gardner’s Bulldogs and the 1972 track & field team.

Before the indoor MIAA Championship meet in Columbia, Larry Jones captured the NCAA indoor title in the 440-yard dash held in Detroit, Michigan, March 12.

A week later in historic Brewer Fieldhouse on the campus of the University of Missouri, the Bulldogs dethroned the defending MIAA indoor champion, Southeast Missouri State, by scoring 71 points to claim the conference championship. It was the 12th MIAA title in the previous 14 years for the Bulldogs. The team had six first-place finishes and placed in all but two of the 14 events.

Moving outside, the team opened with events at Eastern Illinois, duals with Central Missouri, Northwest Missouri and Western Illinois and competed in the Kansas Relays. On May 12-13, the MIAA outdoor championships took place in Springfield, Missouri, and the team took six first-place trophies and collected 76 points. Tom Geredine, Don Allbritton and Larry Jones each won two MIAA individual titles apiece.

Ashland, Ohio, was the scene for the 1972 NCAA College Division Track & Field Championships. With more than 611 athletes representing 115 schools, the Bulldogs earned the highest team finish in school history.

The University had three national champions — Allbritton in the decathlon, Geredine in the triple jump and Jones in the 440. Allbritton earned 22 points during the meet with a three-way tie for second in the high jump and third in the pole vault. Geredine earned All-American honors in the long jump with a sixth-place finish. Jones set a new NCAA record with a time of 45.8 in the event.

Joining Jones in the mile relay to earn All-American honors was Wayne Ventling, Bob Gonzales and Rob Nelson.

Dennis Littrell matched Allbritton’s height in the pole vault at 6 foot 8, but due to tiebreakers, earned All-America honors by placing sixth. Al Fulton and Linley Lipper also competed for the Bulldogs at the championships.

Eastern Michigan scored 93 points to win the team title and Norfolk College was second, only six points in front of the Bulldogs.

The season was not done yet. The following week the “Best in Show” moved west to Eugene, Oregon, for the 1972 NCAA University & College Track & Field Championships, now known as the Division I Championships.

Jones finished second, behind UCLA’s John Smith, in the 400-meter dash with a time of 45.1 to Smith’s 44.5. Allbritton earned the bronze medal in the decathlon.

Coach Gardner’s teams would win 34 MIAA championships and earn six, top-10 team finishes at the NCAA College/Division II meet during his career. He was one of the first inductees into the Truman Athletics Hall of Fame in 1983 and the track at Stokes Stadium bears his name after being dedicated to him in 1996.

Allbritton, Geredine, Jones, Lipper, Littrell and Ventling have all been inducted as individuals to the Truman Athletics Hall of Fame.

Dogspy Awards Return

The Student-Athlete Advisory Committee put on the Dogspy Awards for the first time in three years this April, honoring the past year in Truman athletics. The ceremony was led by SAAC President Morgan Smith, and many different presenters gave out awards, including President Sue Thomas. Awards were given out for Scholar of the Year, Men’s and Women’s Athlete of the Year, Newcomer of the Year, Coach of the Year and Team of the Year. Additionally, there was an Athlete of the Year for each sport. There was also a special tribute to Mike and Wanda Elam, Pershing Arena maintenance workers who retired this year.


Scholar of the Year

Tom Cormier

One of the top distance runners over the past four seasons, Cormier ran in more than 60 races as a member of the cross country/track & field teams. He ran a personal record 31:11.23 in the 10K earlier this spring and also competed in the famous Drake Relays this April. In the classroom he earned a 4.0 GPA in accounting.



Men’s Athlete of the Year

Cade McKnight

The standout forward was once again an NABC All-American performer, D2CCA First Team All-Region and earned CoSIDA Academic All-American Honors. He averaged a career high 19.2 points per game and 6.4 rebounds per game. He shot 57.4% from the field and 39.5% from three-point range, also both career bests.



Women’s Athlete of the Year

Emma Brabham

The senior capped off her career by qualifying for nationals in three events: the 50 freestyle, 100 backstroke and 100 freestyle. She swam 23.83 in the 50 free prelims, 55.97 in the 100 back prelims and 52.87 in the 100 free prelims. It was her second-straight appearance at nationals, qualifying in the 100 back in 2020-21.



Newcomer of the Year

Jessica Kozol

She started nine of 16 matches this past fall and logged more than 1,100 minutes at midfield and right back. She was part of a stingy Bulldogs back line that allowed only 11 goals all season. She also scored the game winning goal in a 2-0 victory over William Jewell in late October.



Coach of the Year

Gregg Nesbitt

The football team played a compressed spring schedule in early 2021 and then a regular fall schedule. During the 2021 spring campaign he led the Bulldogs to a 3-1 record and an appearance in the GLVC championship game. During the fall season he led the Bulldogs to a 9-3 overall record and their second-straight victory in the America’s Crossroads Bowl.



Team of the Year

Men’s Basketball

The Bulldogs entered the season ranked No. 6 in the country and reached as high as No. 2 in the NABC poll this season as they won 20+ games for the eighth time in the last nine seasons. The team qualified for the NCAA Midwest Regional for the third-straight season as the No. 4 seed in the region.



Athletes of the Year

Tal Dean – Baseball

Hunter Strait – Men’s Basketball

Ellie Weltha – Women’s Basketball

Nathan Key – Men’s Cross Country

Lily Ende – Women’s Cross Country

Josh Schiederer – Football

Kara Hunt – Golf

Justin Olwig – Men’s Soccer

Kate Peterson – Women’s Soccer

Emma Walbert – Softball

AJ Kohler – Men’s Swimming

Emma Brabham – Women’s Swimming

Julia Fangman – Tennis

Gracie Feeney – Women’s Track & Field

Jacob Morris – Men’s Track & Field

Morgan Smith – Volleyball