In sweeping the Midwest Collegiate Conference regular season titles, the St. Ambrose men's and women's basketball teams already have accomplished something done only three times before.
This weekend at Lee Lohman Arena, they will try and win twin MCC postseason tournament titles for the first time since the conference was formed in 1978.
The men (22-7 overall, 10-2 in the league) will host an MCC tournament semifinal at 7 p.m. on Friday night and, should they win, they would play for their seventh MCC tournament title since 1994 at 6 p.m. Sunday.
After completing their MCC regular season with a perfect 12-0 record, the women (24-5) will ride an 18-game winning streak into semifinal action at 2 p.m. on Saturday. They would vie for their seventh MCC postseason crown as well, at 7 p.m. on Monday.
Berths in the NAIA Nationals await both MCC tournament winners. Coach Krista Van Hauen's No. 13 Queen Bees likely could count on an at-large berth should they fail to secure the automatic entry. Coach Ray Shovlain's men would be strong candidates for an at-large berth in the men's tourney, too.
The strong winter by both teams on the hardwood only was part of an outstanding overall run in winter athletics at SAU.
The women's indoor track team finished atop the field at the MCC Conference meet on Feb. 15 for a second straight year while the men's squad took second. The entire SAU women's team, a pair of men's relay squads and men's high jump and triple jump representatives will compete at the NAIA Indoor National Meet March 6-8 in Geneva, Ohio.
The men's and women's bowling teams each earned an Intercollegiate Team Championships sectional tourney berth for a fifth straight year. They will travel to Smyrna, Tenn., in mid-March to bid for spots in the national tournament field.
The men's volleyball team is ranked in the top 10 in the nation and in the thick of the battle in the rugged NAIA North Conference.
Meanwhile, the men's lacrosse squad will officially launch its inaugural season Friday at Missouri State in Springfield, Mo.; the women's softball season began with a third annual WinterDome Tournament at the AmbroseDome last weekend; and the men's baseball team launched its season with a four-game weekend set in Atchison, Kan.