Miller has been with the Grand Forks Herald sports department for the past 13 years. He's also a Grand Forks native and UND graduate.
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When it comes to predicting the potential of UND junior Molli Detloff, Fighting Hawks throwing coach Drew Jones has learned to never say never. "Every time I set a goal and say this is what I think we can accomplish and this is the end game, she goes beyond that," Jones said. Detloff will continue to push the limits this weekend at the Big Sky Conference Outdoor Championships in Moscow, Idaho. The events will begin Thursday for Detloff, beginning with the hammer throw at 10 a.m.
UND sophomore softball player Angel Love's biggest adjustment when she made the move from her hometown of Las Vegas to Grand Forks wasn't, surprisingly, the cold weather. She knew UND would have access indoors at the High Performance Center, after all. Instead, it was that businesses weren't open 24 hours like Sin City. "That was a culture shock," Love said. "Freshman year, I called my mom crying. Everything closed at 9. I got over it."
Grand Forks has gone nearly 20 years without a summer collegiate baseball team operating out of Kraft Field. Steve Wagner wants to end that streak. Wagner is president of the Rapid City, S.D.-based Expedition League, an eight-team conference set to launch its first season later this month. The Expedition League, already home to two North Dakota franchises (Minot and Dickinson), would like to expand into Grand Forks. Other Expedition league teams are in South Dakota (Aberdeen, Pierre, Spearfish), Nebraska (Hastings and Gering) and Wyoming (Casper).
The outcome of a split Friday in UND softball's doubleheader against Idaho State at Apollo Park provided significant program milestones. UND's 4-1 win in Game 1 meant the Fighting Hawks tied a school record for wins in a season (25) and qualified for the Big Sky Conference tournament for the second year in a row. But the Bengals' 3-1 victory in Game 2 spoiled any joyous postgame mood for the team's first and last series at its true home park this season.
Softball has always been No. 1 for UND senior Taylor Nadler. The Fighting Hawks' left fielder ran track growing up to stay in shape for softball. At one point, she played on five softball teams and people told her it was like she never left the field. As the kinesiology major's playing days at UND wind down, she's also eyeing a Division I softball coaching career. First, though, Nadler and her teammates are going to try to make sure this isn't the last weekend of her college career.
Roughly 13 months ago, the UND athletic department made a controversial decision to drop women's hockey along with men's and women's swimming and diving—an effort meant to strengthen the athletic department's financial picture amid reductions in state funding. A look at UND athletics' budget after the cuts to three sports provides a glimpse at the department's slimmed-down future.
UND men's basketball assistant coach Jeff Horner has had his name thrown around the rumor mill for a variety of coaching gigs this offseason. On Tuesday, Horner's exit from Grand Forks became official. Horner has been hired as the head coach at NCAA Division II Truman State, in Kirksville, Mo. Horner, a former standout point guard at Iowa (2002-06), started as UND's director of basketball operations (2014-15) before three years as an assistant coach (2015-18).
Former UND safety Cole Reyes isn't putting any expectations on the NFL Draft, which begins Thursday night and runs through Saturday in Arlington, Texas. The All-American and 2016 Big Sky Conference Defensive Player of the Year will be in his hometown near Chicago with family, trying to keep his mind off the process. "I'll be at my brother's house hanging out," Reyes said. "Every year I watch it, seeing who goes first. But when you're in this situation, it's a little different.
As former UND football star Dave Osborn describes what he likes to do best in his retirement years, you certainly don't picture a 75-year-old with two artificial knees who endured a 12-year NFL career. "I work out every day," Osborn said. "I never miss a day. Seven days a week I walk four or five miles. I'm not supposed to run with these knees. I try to stay in shape and exercise. Hopefully, that keeps you young."
UND men's basketball assistant coach Jeff Horner is one of four finalists for the head job at NCAA Division II Minnesota Duluth. Horner is joined as a finalist with Duluth assistant Matt Hockett, Ohio Dominican (DII) head coach Dan Evans and Minnesota State-Moorhead assistant Justin Wieck. Horner has been at UND for four years, with the first season holding the title of director of operations. Horner, as well as Wieck, played collegiately at Iowa. Horner also played professionally in Belgium, France and with the Iowa Energy of the NBA Development League.