UM Sports Trivia | Week of Sept 16

By CHRIS WALTERSKIRCHEN

Last Saturday Missoula lost one of its greatest baseball fans when Dan Wachsmuth passed away at the age of 80. A lot of people say they are the ultimate baseball fan, but they all pale in comparison to Dan the Baseball Man. Wachsmuth helped establish Peewee baseball in Kalispell and coached youth baseball there as well as in Missoula. His calling in baseball was with the Missoula Mavericks Legion baseball program where for 3 decades he was part of the fabric of the program. Dan helped in the construction of Lindborg-Cregg Field. For a generation of Mavericks Dan Wachsmuth was a mentor confidante and most importantly a good friend.

With the appearance of Panhandle State of Oklahoma at Washington Grizzly Stadium now teams from 33 of the 50 states have come to the Griz home field since it opened in 1986. Teams from far away locations such as: Alabama, Mississssippi, Maine, New Hampshire, New York and Massachusetts have come to play the Griz at WGS. Some states that have never had a team play at Washington Grizzly stadium include Michigan, Florida, and Missouri.

The Panhandle State and its fans might be warned the Griz do not overlook non-Division 1 opponents–especially in Missoula. Montana has won its last 33 home games against D-II or all other non-DI classifications. The last time the Griz lost at home to a D-II program was against Portland State in 1987, when the Vikings–under the leadership of Pokey Allen–were second ranked among D-II schools.

The 55 points the Griz scored Saturday at North Dakota was the most they have scored on the road since pummeling NAU 59-21 at the Skydome in 2003. The last time the Griz scored more than 50 in a road game was in a 53-21 rout of Northern Colorado in 2006.

Montana State coach Rob Ash reached a milestone of sorts in Saturday’s 26-0 win over Mesa State. The victory was Ash’s 52nd  as Bobcat head coach, making him the third winningest coach among Grizzly and Bobcat head coaches. Among coaches from Montana Division I schools only Don Read and Bobby Huack have won more than Ash, Read 85 in 10 seasons and Huack 80 in seven seasons. Ash is in his seventh season in Bozeman.

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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.