Wisconsin–River Falls Falcons

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University of Wisconsin–River Falls Falcons
University University of Wisconsin–River Falls
Conference Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
NCAA Division III
Athletic director Crystal Lanning
Location River Falls, WI
Varsity teams 16
Football stadium Ramer Field
Basketball arena Karges Center
Other arenas Hunt Arena
Mascot Freddy Falcon
Nickname Falcons
Colors Red and White
Website www.uwrfsports.com

The University of Wisconsin–River Falls Falcons (or UWRF Falcons) compete as members of the NCAA Division III. The athletic program has men's teams in football, basketball, ice hockey, indoor and outdoor track and field, cross country, and swimming and diving. There are women's teams in basketball, ice hockey, indoor and outdoor track and field, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, and volleyball. The Falcons on-campus facilities include Ramer Field, the Karges Center, and Hunt Arena. They compete in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) in all sports except men's and women's ice hockey, which competes in the Northern Collegiate Hockey Association. The athletic director is Crystal Lanning. The Falcons team colors are red and white, and the team mascot is named "Freddy Falcon."


The University of Wisconsin-River Falls football program began in 1895. The Falcons compete in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference,[1] one of the most competitive Division three conferences in the United States. In the WIAC they have won 18 conference championships (1915, 1916, 1924, 1925, 1926 1933, 1938, 1947, 1958, 1975 1976, 1979, 1980, 1984, 1985 1986, 1987, 1998).[2] Ramer Field where the Falcons play, is the former host of the Kansas City Chiefs training camp (1992–2008).


Men's basketball[edit]

UWRF Falcon men's basketball competes in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. They are coached by Jeff Berkhof and home games are played at the Robert P. Knowles Center. If you wish to be part of the team, you need to fill out an application on the university web site on the Men's Basketball home page. The Prospective Student-Athlete Form is found under the Recruit Questionnaire (http://www.uwrfsports.com/sb_output.aspx?form=3&&tab=4) be prepared with information such as your previous high school and some brief descriptions of your sports career. Students of all academic years (freshmen included) are on the team and come from many surrounding areas near by cities such as Hudson WI, Maplewood MN and even some as far away as Bakersfield CA and Chandler AZ.[3]

Women's basketball[edit]

UWRF Falcon women's basketball began competing in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference in 1979, which is considered by most to be one of the toughest Division 3 conferences. They won the WIAC conference championship in 1985, 1988, and 1989.[4] They are currently head coached by Cindy Holbrook,who has been coaching the Falcons for 14 seasons. Assistant coaches include: Kathy Holbrook, Mike Babler, and Janet Ellinger. Their home games are played at the Karges building, which is located on the University of Wisconsin River Falls Campus on Cascade Ave. The building was actually named after a basketball coach names Dr. R.A. Karges, who coached during 1910-1912. The building was built in 1959. The team also has their own blog,[5] where they keep updated stories of the many different teams throughout the years.

Ice hockey[edit]

Men's Hockey[edit]

UWRF men's hockey team has won three National Championships (1983, 1988, 1994), three Northern collegiate Hockey Association titles (1988, 1996, 2007), and 14 Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championships (1982–1988, 1999, 2001, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2012).[6] Steve Freeman is the current coach for the Falcons ice hockey team and has been the coach for the past 17 years, the Falcons assistant coach Bob Ritzer is also returning for his 18th year.[7] Freeman has won 305 games with the UWRF Falcons since he started coaching in 1995.[8] The hockey team(s),men and women, play at the W.H. Hunt Arena which was built specifically for the hockey program in 1973. The arena is also used for open skate during the season which is free for UWRF students and only costs a few dollars for the general public.[9]

Women's Hockey[edit]

Since the Women's Hockey team was established in 1999, the Falcons have been coached by Joe Cranston. The team has participated in the NCAA playoffs in 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012. The team won the regular season NCHA title in 2009, 2011, and 2012. They also won the NCHA playoff championships in 2009, 2010, and 2012.[10] The Falcon's play their home hockey games at Hunt Arena.

Track and Field[edit]

Women's Track and Field[edit]

The UWRF Falcon's Women's Track and Field team competes at a Division III level in the WIAC. The head coach for the women's team is Matthew Cole. Assistant coaches include Scott Sekelsky (Distance), James Walrath (Throws), and Jason Briggs(Pole Vault).[11]

Men's Track and Field[edit]

The UWRF Falcon's Men's Track and Field team also competes at a Division III level in the WIAC. The head coach for the men's team is Matthew Cole. Assistant coaches include Scott Sekelsky (Distance), Ben Wolf (Throws), and Jason Briggs (Pole Vault).[12]

Cross Country[edit]

Women's Cross Country[edit]

The UWRF Falcon's Women's Cross Country team competes at a Division III level in the WIAC. The women's team is coached by Scott Sekelsky & Matthew Cole[13]

Men's Cross Country[edit]

The UWRF Falcon's Men's Cross Country team also competes at a Division III level in the WIAC. The men's team is coached by Scott Sekelsky & Matthew Cole.[14]

Swimming and Diving[edit]

The Falcons swimming and diving team competes at the Division III athletics level in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC). The Falcons are coached by Michael Bollinger and practice and hold meets at the River Falls High School Natatorium.

Women's Softball[edit]

UWRF Falcon's softball competes in the WIAC as a Division III team.[15] The Falcon's have had a women's softball team since 1983.[16] In 2011 and 2012 the lady Falcon's won the WIAC playoff championship.[17] 2014 will mark Coach Faye Perkin's 21st year of coaching the UWRF Softball team, even though it has not been 21 straight years.[18] From 2007 to 2011, Perkins was the interim dean of the UWRF College of Education and Professional studies.[19] Perkins, as well as the rest of the UWRF softball coaching staff, was named the NFCA Great Lakes Regional Coach Staff of the Year in 2012.[20] On April 12, 2013, Perkins won her 400th game at UWRF after defeating Bethel University[21] Though there is a Women's Softball varsity team and Intramural Softball team, there is no Women's Club Softball team.

Women's Volleyball[edit]

UWRF Falcons Volleyball team competes in the WIAC as a Division III team. The Falcons have had a Women's Volleyball team since 1973. When at home their games take place at the Karges Center in Hagestad Building. Tickets are $4 for Senior Citizens (60+) and Children, $6 for regular tickets and free for Students. The team has continually participated in the WIAC Volleyball To Support Breast Cancer for the four years that it has been running. The University of Wisconsin teams have raised over $60,648 for Breast Cancer[22]

Patti Ford has been the Falcons Volleyball Coach since 1992. She has led the team to 495 wins and 277 losses. She has led the team to 4 WIAC Championships. Ford has been the WIAC Coach of the Year three times; in 1995, 1999 and 2002. Ford currently ranks 5th in the WIAC all-time career wins and second among active WIAC coaches. She has coached 55 athletes to the All-WIAC honors, 28 athletes to the AVCA All-Midwest Region, and 14 athletes to the All-American status. Prior to her coaching career at UWRF she earned her undergraduate from Mount Marty College, South Dakota in 1983 in health, physical education and recreation. In 1994 she earned her master's degree at NDSU in education/physical education.[23]

Patti Ford also hosts a Freshman/JV/Varsity Team Camp for grades 9-12. The camp is for teams to further develop themselves as a group. The price for Resident Campers is $175 including room and board or $75 Commuter (no meals), and a $50 deposit is required. Enrollment is limited to 14 teams. Some of the camps highlights are the quality of staff, the teams are grouped by age and ability and the camp fee includes all instruction, T-shirt, Prizes and Awards.[24]

UWRF also has a club volleyball team. The team competes in the WIAC as a Division III team under the clubs. The President of the club is Shelly Kearns. The Vice President is Amanda Untiedt. The treasurer of the club is Elizabeth Edd. They practice twice a week for two hours a night at the Academy in town. Kelsey Knewtsen is the head coach of the team with the help of Damon Liberatore as the assistant coach.

Women's Tennis[edit]

The University of Wisconsin-River Falls women's tennis program competes in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.[25] The coach for the women's tennis team is Paul Mitchell[26] Home matches are played on the UWRF outdoor tennis courts.


The UWRF Equestrian Team competes in Zone 7-Region 3 of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association.[27] The Falcons have two separate teams of western and English disciplines. The western coach is Janie Hout and the English coach is Rachel Walker. The Falcons compete in Wisconsin, Minnesota and North Dakota. Both Teams have had tremendous success, with riders advancing to regionals, zones, semi-finals and nationals.[28]

Club sports[edit]

UW-RF also fields a number of Club Sports, which are: Badminton, Dance Team, Jiu Jitsu, Men's and Women's Lacrosse, Nordic Skiing, Paintball, Rock Climbing, Wisconsin-River Falls Men's R's and Women's Rugby, Men's and Women's Volleyball, and Wrestling.[29]


UWRF also has a number of intramural sports that rotate seasonally. In the fall, UWRF's intramurals include flag football, volleyball, soccer, and women's broomball, and in the spring they have 5 on 5 basketball, softball, Ultimate Frisbee, and men's broomball.

National championships[edit]

To date, the University of Wisconsin–River Falls has won three national championships:

See also[edit]


External links[edit]