Gorilla Games brings in record number students

Brayden Land, student of Joplin high school, builds a construction during the Great Gorilla Games in the Weede on Tuesday, April 7.

| Michael Bauer Sports Editor | On Tuesday April 7, high school students from the Four State Area flocked to Pittsburg State to participate in the Great Gorilla Games. The event took place throughout the day as students competed in science, technology, engineering and mathematics-or STEM, for short- competitions at John Lance Arena. The event’s purpose was to promote STEM-oriented curricula, collaboration, teamwork and the practical application of STEM concepts to real world scenarios and problems. Mike Neden, associate professor of technology and workforce learning, said this year’s games were an improvement over the past years. “I feel like we’ve had a great response,” Neden said. “We’ve had a lot more students and a lot…

Gorilla men, women fall short in NCAA Tournament

| Michael Bauer sports editor | “March Madness” is at an end for both the Pittsburg State men’s and women’s basketball teams. The Gorilla men were defeated 80-68 by the Minnesota State-Moorhead Dragons in the first round of the NCAA Division II Tournament on Saturday, March 14, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Playing as a seventh-seed in its first national tournament appearance since 2007, the Gorillas were kept at a distance on the scoreboard for much of the first half, trailing by as much as 13. The PSU season ended with a 20-12 record. “I was very proud of how our guys fought,” said Kevin Muff, head coach. “I thought we fought very hard. We came…

‘I’ll treat this like a warrior’

Robert McField

Football player continues fight with cancer | Michael Bauer Sports editor | Robert McField knew something wasn’t right. It was a January morning and the junior tight end from St. Louis, Mo., noticed that he didn’t have any feeling in his right arm. After going to Via Christi hospital in Pittsburg, McField went to the emergency room in Joplin, Mo., fearing that it could be horrible. It was then that the nightmare truly began: He was diagnosed with cancer. “I cried immediately after the diagnosis,” McField, who majors in recreation, said. “I don’t think I’ve cried so hard in my life. They told me in Joplin and when they walked in with five doctors and…

Preparing for MSU-Moorhead NCAA first round

| Michael Bauer sports editor | Sophomore Josiah Gustafson didn’t have to cancel his spring break plans this year. Neither did the rest of his teammates. When the 2014-15 season began, they fully expected to be playing in the NCAA Division II Tournament. “I never had any spring break plans,” Gustafson said. “That was the goal coming into this season: to win the conference tournament and if you win the conference tournament, you’re going to be in the regional tournament. Nobody on the team had any spring break plans. We’re all focused and ready to go.” That’s the PSU men’s basketball team’s idea for the perfect spring break, which will start on Saturday, March 14,…

Men fall to Rockhurst

| Michael Bauer sports editor | The Pittsburg State baseball team could not find a way to end its four-game losing skid, falling to the Rockhurst Hawks 12-5 at home on Wednesday, March 11. With the loss, the Gorillas fell to 3-10 for the season. Much of the damage was done in the first inning, when the Hawks scored six runs off of three errors. Patrick Burns opened up the scoring on an error off a failed pickoff attempt. Tim Mahoney was walked for an RBI and Matt Stacks scored a run to double the lead. Chase Leavy singled to left center field and Blake Petersen scored from an unearned run. Mahoney and Leavy both…

ESU tops Pitt State again, 67-53

| Michael Bauer sports editor | Give credit to the Emporia State Hornets. They have Pitt State’s number. Playing against the No. 2-seeded Hornets for the third time this season, the No. 3 Gorilla women’s basketball team could not avenge its previous losses, as the team fell 67-53 in the semi-final of the MIAA Tournament on Saturday, March 7, at Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City, Mo. “They’re a good basketball team,” said Lane Lord, head coach. “They’re well-coached and their kids came out and performed well. I was proud of our effort. We’ve got a great group of players. Tonight was tough because they played so well defensively and we struggled to score.” Trying to…

MIAA Tournament: Men Capture title

The Pittsburg State men's basketball team poses for photos after they won the MIAA Championship against Missouri Southern at The Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City, Missouri Sunday, Mar. 8th.

| Michael Bauer sports editor | T ough defense, a strong team effort and the explosiveness of junior Trey Starks was the combination to the Pittsburg State men’s basketball team beating Missouri Southern 91-65 on Sunday, March 8, in Kansas City, Mo., for the school’s first ever MIAA Conference Tournament. Playing at Municipal Auditorium, the fifth-seeded Gorillas became the lowest seed to win the MIAA Tournament and posted the widest championship margin in history. Pitt State (20-11) scored 24 points off of turnovers and Starks scored a game-high of 24 points, garnering the tournament’s Outstanding Player award. This was Starks’ 11th appearance for the Gorillas. “I didn’t see myself being here (at the start of…

Jeronimus, Gafford, Brugman earn All-MIAA Honors

| Michael Bauer Sports Editor | Senior Lizzy Jeronimus, and juniors Cathy Brugman and Kylie Gafford received All-MIAA honors for the 2014-15 season. For the fourth year in a row Jeronimus was named to the All-MIAA First Team after leading the Gorilla women’s basketball team in scoring with 571 points (averaging 19 points per game). She is also third in the league. Jeronimus is first on the team and ninth in the league in rebounding with 204, as well as second in the league in free-throw shooting by percentage with 86 percent. Gafford was named to the All-MIAA Third Team, putting up 317 points (10.6 per game) and led the team in blocks with 50….

PSU women overcome 16-point deficit in 77-68 win

| Michael Bauer sports editor | Trailing by 16 points in the first half, the women’s basketball team erased its deficit to nab a 77-68 win over the Washburn Ichabods to close out the regular season on Saturday, Feb. 28, in Topeka. PSU improved to 25-5 overall and 15-4 in the MIAA. It ended a two-game losing skid. “We have had such a great year,” Pitt State head coach Lane Lord said in an interview with KKOW. “We had a really sour taste in our mouths after the last two games. We really needed to win this game for our psyche.” PSU went on a 17-4 run at the start of the second half and…

Men fend off NSU, face LU in MIAA

| Michael Bauer sports editor | After losing its last three regular-season games and the bye-round of the MIAA Tournament, the Gorilla men’s basketball team recovered triumphantly against the RiverHawks of Northeastern State University on Monday, March 2, at John Lance Arena. Pitt State entered the competition as a fifth seed. The Gorillas outscored the RiverHawks 22-11 in the final six minutes of the game, expanding to a 4-point lead, which led to a 15-point win. With the victory, Pitt State advances to the quarterfinals. “I think they are pretty excited,” said Kevin Muff, head coach. “This is what we wanted. We made the tournament and then we wanted to get to Kansas City. As…