UM Sports Trivia

By CHRIS WALTERSKIRCHEN

For the first time in over 40 years the University of Hawaii mens basketball will take on the Montana Grizzlies at Dahlberg Arena.   Montana was in Hawaii in 1997 for a tournament. This will be the Grizzlies’ first home game in the Bracketbuster event since 2007 when they lost to Pacific.  Last year the Griz lost at Long Beach State but avenged the loss this past November inMissoula.

Dahlberg Arena has a special niche in University of Hawaii Athletics history, in 1990 the Hawaii Women picked up the school’s first NCAA tournament win with an upset of the Montana Lady Griz ending a 21- game Montana winning streak. A win Saturday would give the Grizzlies their third consecutive 20-win season something that hasn’t happened since a run of four 20-win seasons from 1994-97. Hawaii coach Gib Arnold was in second grade in Provo when the Grizzlies came to town to face BYU coached at the time by Arnold’s father Frank. The Griz downed the Cougars as Charlie Yankas had a career night.

Our Friends, the MSU Bobcat Mens basketball team is having a tough time winning in February and March. The Cats have lost 14 of their last 16 in February and March. In comparison the Grizzly men have gone 10-6 over the same span in February and March.

In the Chinese calendar this is the Year of the Dragon, and not surprising Division I’s only set of dragons are doing quite well. The Drexel Dragons of the Colonial Athletic Association are 13-1 thus far in 2012. The CAA Conference includes among others, Old dominion, George Mason and Virginia Commonwealth.

The newest NCAA sanctioned sport is women’s Sand Volleyball. Play in Sand Volleyball will begin this spring, UCLA, Long Beach State and the University of Hawaii top the pre-season power ratings.

Until the mid 1950’s skiers from the northeast dominated U.S Skiing. When Californian Jill Kinmont won the U.S. National championship in the slalom she became an immediate sensation. Kinmont’s skiing career came to a shattering end in January of 1955 when she suffered severe spinal injury in a skiing accident. Kinmont would never walk again, but would go onto a career in education and was renowned expert in the field of education for low income and disabled children. Within a few days of Kinmont accident several major news services prepared obituaries with the expectations she would not survive very long. Last Thursday at the age of 75 Jill Kinmont Boothe passed away. Jill Kinmont Booth Obituary.

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Chris Walterskirchen has been an observer of Montana sports for nearly half a century. A Kalispell native, Chris has worked in various capacities for professional and college sports organization of at various times: ranging from announcing and statistical work to the concessions and even a stint as a costumedmascot.

Chris has academic degrees in communications and elementary education. His style of sports trivia involves more than just who won and who lost, but also focuses on the obscure or human side of sports. In this blog you will learn things like the Grizzly football team has won 210 games over the 19 seasons since they have had Monte as their mascot or that UNLV is the only school that both the Griz and Lady Griz have both faced in the NCAA basketball tournament

When not following sports Chris enjoys taking care of animals of all kinds (a peacock rescue?) and reading to pre-schoolers.