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Bees Streak to CCAC Baseball Crown

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The St. Ambrose baseball team celebrates winning the CCAC post-season tournament title.

May 2017

OIn April 18, the St. Ambrose University Fighting Bees baseball team was 14-23, and a berth in the NAIA National Tournament hardly seemed likely. Except, perhaps,  to veteran Head Coach Jim Callahan, who purposely had front-loaded his team's early season schedule with trips to Ohio, Kentucky and Georgia. 

The idea was to be ready for the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference schedule.

"The pitching is getting so good in this league, we were going to have problems if I didn't challenge our guys early," Callahan said. "I put some of the best teams in the country on the schedule. And I knew coming out of that, we'd be better as a team."

Callahan's Bees reeled off a 14-game winning streak, culminating in a championship in the CCAC postseason tournament in early May. The tournament title earned the Bees a berth in the NAIA National Tournament, the program's first since 2008. The Bees took a 28-23 record to Oklahoma, but were swept out of the double-elimination opening round.

Read about the Bees season in the QC Times and Dispatch Argus.

Also last week, Coach Jeff Griebel's golf squad hosted and participated in the NAIA Nationals for a fifth time in six years at TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Ill. The Bees would have had a berth in the 24 team field as host squad but actually played their way in by finishing second in the CCAC meet at Deere Run earlier in May. The tournament battled a week's worth of rain and was forced to cut its field to the top 17 teams after two rounds instead of three. The unlucky Bees finished 18th. Individually, senior Paul Burd finished 43rd while junior Andrew Tichler finished 88th. Read and view more at

The spring sports season continues as representatives of the men's and women's track and field teams compete in the NAIA National Outdoors meet May 25-27 in Gulf Shores, Ala. Paced by seniors Michael Ohioze and Molly Smith, each named their gender's CCAC Track Athlete of the Year, the men and women's squads each logged runner-up finishes at the conference meet May 5-6.

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