With temperatures challenging records over Winter Break, some Ball State athletes were challenging — and breaking — records themselves.

Ball State’s gymnastics, men’s and women’s basketball and men’s volleyball teams all competed over the break. Here’s what you missed.

Women’s basketball

Senior guard Nathalie Fontaine’s hot hands matched the unusually warm winter weather — she set a new school record with 43 points scored in the Cardinals’ 73-53 win at the University of Evansville on Dec. 21.

Former Cardinal Tamara Bowie (2000-03) held the previous record of 40 points, set against Eastern Michigan on Jan. 27, 2001, and tied on March 23, 2003, against Indiana State.

Fontaine has also increased her career point total to 1,818 to move into third-place on Ball State’s all-time leaderboard.

Overall, the women’s basketball team went 4-1 over break with wins against Evansville, St. Louis University, the University of Toledo and Miami University. Its lone loss was against Ohio University, 70-43, in Athens, Ohio.

The Cardinals improved to 10-4 and began Mid-American Conference play 2-1. The next home game is Jan. 13 against Buffalo at 7 p.m.

Men’s basketball

The Cardinals sandwiched a three-game home winning streak between a pair of road losses over break, putting them at 10-5 (1-1 MAC) on the season.

Ball State dropped a road game at Indiana State before beating Alabama A&M, Chicago State and Toledo in Worthen Arena. On Jan. 9, like the women a few days earlier, the Cardinals lost in Athens.

Senior forward Bo Calhoun was the most consistent Cardinal, posting at least 10 points and six rebounds in each of the five games. Several others, however, flashed their potential.

Redshirt junior Ryan Weber scored 21 points and hauled in seven rebounds against Toledo in the Cardinals’ conference opener on Jan. 6. Sophomore guard Francis Kiapway scored 21 points at Ohio, but it was not enough to overcome the 79-73 deficit.

Men’s basketball returns to Worthen Arena on Jan. 16 against Kent State at 2 p.m.


Ball State gymnasts traveled to Lexington, Ky., to take on the 24th-ranked University of Kentucky Wildcats on Jan. 8. Though the Cardinals lost 194.825-191.650, there were several strong individual performances.

In the floor exercise, two-time defending Mid-American Conference champion Denasiha Christian took second place with a score of 9.850. Fellow senior Erin Patchey finished fourth with a score of 9.775.

Patchey and sophomore Jordyn Penny tied for third on the vault with a mark of 9.800, tying Patchey’s career high and setting a new top mark for Penny.

Sophomore Baylee Bell finished tied for third on the balance beam with a score of 9.750

The Cardinals will host Towson University at 7 p.m. Jan.17.

Men’s volleyball

Men’s volleyball started its season on the wrong foot with a 3-0 loss to No. 12 Stanford in Worthen Arena on Jan. 8. The next day, however, Ball State bounced back with a sweep of its own against Alderson Broaddus University.

Senior outside attacker Marcin Niemczewski recorded 12 kills against Stanford, and senior outside attacker Jack Lesure totaled 11 against Alderson Broaddus.

Ball State will host Sacred Heart on Jan. 14 and Harvard on Jan. 15, both at 7:30 p.m. in Worthen Arena.

Swim and dive

Both the men’s and women’s teams competed in a co-ed double-dual meet against IUPUI and Xavier University on Jan. 8.

The men lost to Xavier 170.5-116.5 and to IUPUI 201-96, but a handful of Cardinals finished atop the leaderboards.

Junior Tanner Barton finished with the fastest time in the 200-yard butterfly at 1:52.60. Bradley Ridge, also a junior, finished second with a time of 1:55.18.

In the 100-yard fly, however, it was Ridge who finished with the top time of 50.51. Barton finished with a time of 50.64, good for second against IUPUI and third against Xavier.

Sophomore Nate Slack’s 53.88 100-yard backstroke placed first against Xavier and second against IUPUI.

The women also dropped both matchups, 159-134 against Xavier and 150.5-148.5 versus IUPUI, but again some individual success shined through.

Junior Jessica Extine took first place in the 50-yard free with a time of 24.43 and the 100-yard free with a time of 53.81.

Extine, sophomore Amanda Kedzierski, freshman Lauren Elston and freshman Liz Madison combined for a time of 3:36.92 in the 400-yard freestyle relay, good for first against Xavier and second against IUPUI.

Kedzierski also finished first in the 100-yard breast stroke with a time of 1:06.28.

Junior Katie Horn won the 200-yard butterfly with a time of 2:06.88, and sophomore Andrea Richter's 58.39 100-yard freestyle narrowly topped Horn's 58.88 for a 1-2 finish.

Senior diver Madie Zirzow finished first in the one-meter dive with a score of 258.83.

The men's swim and dive team's next home meet will be against Eastern Michigan at 1 p.m. Jan. 16 at the Lewellen Aquatic Center

The women's swim and dive team will host Toledo for its final home meet at 1 p.m. Jan. 23 at the Lewellen Aquatic Center.

Track and field

Ball State took third out of five at the Bowling Green Opener on Jan. 9, but as with the gymnastics and swim and dive teams, individual efforts stood out.

Freshman sprinter Peyton Stewart posted a career-best time of 7.61 60m dash, the fastest time for a Cardinal sprinter since Amber Williams ran a 7.44 to win the 2009 MAC Indoor Track & Field championships.

Stewart finished second in the sprint but her time was fast enough to automatically qualify her for the MAC Indoor Championship on Feb. 27-28 in Akron, Ohio.

In the 60m hurdles, freshman Jazmin Smith finished first with a career-best time of 8.82.

Senior Danielle Dahl set another career-best time in the 600m run with a time of 1:34.28, as she stayed undefeated in the event this year.

Ball State track and field will not have an event in Muncie until the Ball State Tune-Up on Feb. 19. On Jan. 22-23, however, they will be in Bloomington, Ind., for the Gladstein Invitational.