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Go West Young Mules - enthusiastic alum helps make football team's Cal Lutheran match-up a reality
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Richard was one of about 80 players, coaches and support personnel who flew out of Newark Airport on Thursday, Sept. 6. After a night of rest, the team spent Friday afternoon roaming the pier in Santa Monica before heading to Cal Lutheran for an evening practice.

As for the game itself, Cal Lutheran pulled away from a seven-point halftime lead to win, 44-20, but the Mules will get a chance to exact revenge when the Kingsmen fly east

next year for the rematch. After a stop for dinner, the travel party flew out of Los Angeles that night, arriving back on campus at 8 a.m. on Sunday.

Although the game resulted in a Muhlenberg loss, the trip was an overall success, in ways that could impact the program in years to come. "I think if you're 18 to 22 years old and you get the chance to travel on an overnight trip to go to California, it's just a lot of excitement," Donnelly said. "It's certainly going to help us in recruiting and I'd like to see us be able to do more of the same in the future, whether it's to California or some of the other places where there are schools similar to Muhlenberg."

Photo of football game
Captains from Muhlenberg and California Lutheran shake hands before kickoff at the Lutheran Brotherhood Kickoff Classic.
The players also appreciated the unique (for a Division III program) opportunity to travel cross-country for a game. "The farthest west I had ever been was to Penn State," said senior linebacker Doug Folger, a team captain who made 15 tackles in the game. "To be able to come out here with people I consider my family and play football, it was just an amazing experience."

It also was an amazing experience for Richard, who prowled the sidelines as an honorary coach during the game. "It just feels great to be able to give back," he said "It's great being around the guys again. It really makes me realize how much Muhlenberg has meant to me these last five years."

MULES ON THE GO
Football wasn't the only Muhlenberg varsity sports team to make a recent long trip. In August, the women's basketball, men's golf and women's soccer teams also put on their traveling shoes.

*One of the reasons Ron Rohn jumped from Division I Colgate to Division III Muhlenberg was because the shorter road trips would allow him to spend more time with his family. His first road trip as head women's basketball coach was to Paris. Little more than a month after his hiring, Rohn took 10 of his new players for a 10-day tour of France that had been arranged prior to his hiring. Playing for the first time under their new coach, the Mules won one of three games against club teams.

"To get on a plane and spend 10 days with 35 people [including relatives] you never met before, and I was supposed to be in charge-that was very interesting!" said Rohn, who did have a handful of practices with the team before the trip. "I got to learn about them and they got to learn about me. They picked up everything very quickly."

*The men's golf team took its first overseas trip ever this summer and played on some well-known courses in the British Isles: Royal Lytham, Royal Birkdale and Turnberry (the British Open courses in 2001, 1998 and 1994, respectively), Hillside (an Open qualifying course) and Gleneagles (site of the 2001 Scottish PGA championship).

*The women's soccer team opened its 2001 season with a trip to Texas, mixing a trip to the Alamo and a walk along the San Antonio River with games against Trinity University and Schreiner University.

Photo of Coach Rohn and the women's basketball team in France
Ironically Ron Rohn decided to take on the job of women's head basketball coach because he didn't want to travel as much as he had in his previous position -- so of course this summer Rohn and the team spent 10 days in France!

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