|Tuesday, May 25, 2004|
|Craigs Corner 05/24/04 - 05/30/04|
|Friday, May 28, 2004|
Fergus Falls High School graduate Rolf Eisinger, now at Colorado University, Boulder, competed in the Trek Bikes Collegiate Road National Championships in Madison, Wisconsin this past weekend. Rolf was in two races, one on Friday and one on Saturday.
In the Division One TIAA Cref Criterion race on Friday, he was 17th with a time of thirty-two minutes and fifty-six seconds. If I'm reading the times correctly, that was six seconds behind the winning time turned in by Bryan Smith, a native of Madison, Wisconsin. The story on this race wasn't too specific as to what the course layout was so I can't really share much else.
The other race was the Qdoba Road Race, a 15 mile loop which the cyclists complete five times for a total of 75 miles. Rolf's time was 3 hours, 10 minutes, thirty-eight seconds, 27 seconds behind the winning time of 3:10.11 turned in by Marc Collard of California-Davis.
Rolf has really made a great impact in this sport in a short period of time. We'll keep you posted of any future races we hear about.
Remember, the Pepsi Pitch, Hit & Run competition has been rescheduled for this Saturday at American Legion Field at DeLagoon Park in Fergus Falls. The event for boys and girls, ages 7 to 14, is sponsored by the Fergus Falls Jaycees and the Fergus Falls Hurricanes amateur baseball team. It was postponed last weekend due to rain. Registration is set for ten o'clock Saturday morning with the competition slated to begin at 10:30 a.m.
The third annual 'Remember Romie Gail' fundraiser is set for Saturday, June 5 at the Balmoral Golf Course from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Call ahead for a tee time and plan to stay at the course for burgers and a day of reminiscing. Even you aren't planning to golf, you are invited to attend. There will be food and prizes for everybody. The fundraiser will be held on Sunday, June 6 if there is bad weather on Saturday. All proceeds will be given to an outstanding Fergus Falls High School senior. If you are not able to attend but would still like to donate, donations can be made at the Community First Bank to the Roman Gail scholarship fund.
Tuesday, May 25, 2004
Tuesday's Fergus Falls girls softball game with Thief River Falls was postponed until Wednesday. Coach Renee Erickson's girls will host the Prowlers at 4:30 p.m. at DeLagoon Park and it sounds like the weather will cooperate!
That game wasn't the only one postponed. The Hillcrest baseball game with Brandon-Evansville was potponed to Thursday. The varsity game will begin at 5:00 p.m. in Evansville. The junior varsity will play in Millerville.
After a delay of one day due to inclement weather, the Fergus Falls boys tennis team won the North Sub-section title for the seventh time in the last eight years. Since Derek Abrahams became coach, the Otters have played in eight straight championship matches in the sub-section. They don't know their opponent in the Section championship match next Tuesday, but it looks like St. Cloud Tech is once again too tough for any of the other teams in the South half of the section.
Former Otter Tyler Gagner is doing well with his recovery from surgery on his leg. He is home now and going to be coaching T-ball, Toss and another youth team this summer. He won't be able to play baseball until October. Gagner is a freshman at NDSU. Had he been healthy he would have been eligible for another year of American Legion baseball.
Kellen Shebeck, former Underwood standout athlete and former Spartan baseball catcher, is back for another year as head coach of VFW Post 612. Shebeck held tryouts on Sunday and has selected his 18-player team. You can check out their roster on the VFW baseball pages of www.craigolsonsports.com
Kellen's father, Ron Shebeck, currently coaching the Fergus Falls ninth-grade baseball team, coached a combination of Underwood and Ashby players at the American Legion level for several years in the 90's. His teams enjoyed several trips out west for one week trips which included lots of baseball and some sightseeing. Some great memories for a lot of those guys. Ron has helped Kellen work out a trip to Montana for this year's team. They will be taking the trip to Big Sky Country June 5 through June 10. They will play two games each day June 6 through June 9. Battle Lake High School graduate Jon Dehler is now coaching a team in Billings, Montana and helped organize the games. He also played third base and was a pitcher for Ron when the Underwood/Battle Lake Legion team played in the state tournament and is also a former Spartan. Kellen is recovering from a broken foot and will be unable to play any baseball this summer. He has been playing for the Fergus Falls Hurricanes the past few summers.
Kent Bothwell, the Region 13 and District Coach of the Year in Community College baseball, has just returned from the NJCAA Division III World Series with his team. Bothwell's guys started the season in March with a trip to Florida and made the trek to New York for the school's first ever national tournament appearance the past week. What a tremendous experience for them. Only four members of the team or sophomores, so the majority of the players who experienced this very memorable season, will be returning next year. Bothwell is hoping to take his team back to Florida for their spring trip. He has also taken teams to California in previous years. Kent and his assistant Kyle Johnston, have done a marvelous job with the program through the years. Bothwell is finishing up his ninth year as Spartan head coach. I had a great time traveling with the team, covering their games, and talking a lot of baseball with the coach! I love baseball! Eight trips to the Hall of Fame? I am blessed.
|Sunday, May 23, 2004|
|Craigs Corner 05/17/04 - 05/23/04|
|Sunday, May 23, 2004 (2nd entry)|
Well, it's over. The rain stopped long enough for the Spartans to play their second game of the NJCAA Division III World Series in Batavia, New York. They played a better game than they did in their first game of the tournament but fell to the second ranked team in the country, Gloucester County College of Sewell, New Jersey, 12-4.
Shortstop Nate Meissner was named second team All-American. He had an outstanding season and was 3-for-6 in the tournament with a single, double and a triple. Meissner will be one of the key players returning next season, along with another .400-plus hitter, Brandon Veches. They were our two Quality Players of the Game during the radio broadcasts this weekend. The Spartans lose just four sophomores and return the rest of their tournament team who were in their freshman year at MSCTC. The four they will lose will be missed greatly as Ryan Hendrickson, Mick Hanan, Chris Shea and Dustin Biniek are all graduating. Hendrickson is headed for UND, Hanan to SDSU, Shea to Mayville State.
The team will hit the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown on Monday before starting the 20-plus hour bus ride home. It's been a real treat to be traveling and staying with the team. Thanks to Coaches Kent Bothwell and Kyle Johnston, along with my roomie, Wade Reichmann. I'll write more when we get back and I'll hopefully get caught up on everything I've missed while on this trip!
Sunday, May 23, 2004
Rain, rain go away ... The last thing the NJCAA Division III World Series needed was rain, especially the torrential downpour we received late Saturday and through the night. The Spartans are scheduled to play an elimination game today ... don't count on it.
The final game of the first round was suspended in the third inning last night and was to be resumed at eight o'clock this morning. That didn't happen because there has been no let up in the rain and the forecast calls for more rain possibly through Tuesday. A decision will be made late this morning on the status of the tournament.
MSCTC will take the field against Gloucester County College of Sewell, New Jersey, following the completion of the suspended game, whenever that game resumes. So, listen in to AM 1250, KBRF for more information on the tournament schedule or check Craig's Corner. Internet availability is sporadic at best, but I'll try to get everything relayed as soon as possible.
If today's games are postponed the Spartans are planning a trip to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. It's about three hours away from Batavia and would give the guys about four hours (not nearly enough!) to enjoy the Hall and the various baseball shops in the village. I am really blessed in that I have now been to the Hall of Fame seven times and soon to be eight! I was there on my birthday with the Spartan Men's basketball team in 1998 and if we make the trip today I will be there on my brother's birthday! Happy Birthday Jim! Wish you were here. I'll call from the Hall!
Friday, May 21, 2004
What a week! District 544 Senior Recognition and Hall of Fame Banquet on Monday night, following a busy weekend of Region 13 Baseball Tournament action and then a quick departure Tuesday for New York with the Spartan baseball team! It's about time to catch up on things.
After the Spartans recorded three consecutive wins in the Region 13 tournament in Fergus Falls over the weekend to earn their first ever appearance in the NJCAA Division III Community College Baseball World Series, Lakes Radio made the decision to cover the tournament on Tuesday morning. With that, I boarded the bus to Batavia, New York on Tuesday afternoon at two o'clock and am traveling with the Spartan baseball team.
Upon arrival on Wednesday afternoon around 4:00 p.m., the Spartans held a practice at the Genesee Community College field and practiced again on Thursday morning before heading to Niagara Falls for a relaxing day of sightseeing and hiking. Their morning practice scheduled for today was rained out as we had quite a downpour last night. There is some rain in the forecast for the next couple of days but hopefully it won't hinder the start of the tournament on Saturday morning at nine o'clock Eastern time ... that's eight o'clock Central time! That means a 7:45 a.m. or 7:50 a.m. pregame show on AM 1250, KBRF on Saturday and first pitch at 8:00 a.m. Tyler Knott, who is participating in his second national tournament this school year, will be the starting pitcher in game one against Massasoit, a team from Brockton, Massachusetts. Knott was a member of the Region XIII champion Men's Basketball team which went to Delhi in March. In fact, we dropped him off on the way back in Chicago so he could catch a flight to Florida where the baseball team was on their spring trip. Talk about an exciting first year of college! Tyler is a veteran by now.
Tonight there is a pre-tournament banquet and four first round games are schedule for Saturday. The other teams in the same bracket as MSCTC are the top ranked team in the country, Richland from Eastview, Texas, and Gloucester County College from Sewell, New Jersey, who have been ranked among the top five teams in the nation all season. The other two games feaature Montgomery College of Germantown, Maryland against Ulster College and Jamestown Community College of New York against Joliet, Illinois.
Massasoit has a record of 31-12-1 and the Spartans are 27-15 coming into the tournament. Remember, all Spartan games will be broadcast live on AM 1250, KBRF. I'll do my best to get timely scores and game information posted to the website, although my internet availability is somewhat limited out here!
Babe Ruth League tryouts will be held at 6:30 PM on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 25 & 26, at the Community College baseball field in Fergus Falls. One of the coaches is Ryan Hendrickson, who is a member of the Spartans, but Buzz Anderson, who is coordinating the tryouts and helping to organize the league and schedule the games assures me they can handle the tryouts without him! It's best that Hendy keeps pitching and hitting for MSCTC!
A former Spartan, Kellen Shebeck, will once again be coaching the VFW Post 612 baseball team in Fergus Falls. They will be holding tryouts on Sunday, May 23 at 6:00 p.m. at the Minnesota State Community and Technical College baseball field.
Remember, this Sunday in the Pepsi Pitch, Hit & Run competition, sponsored by the Fergus Falls Jaycees and the Fergus Falls Hurricanes amateur baseball team. The competition will be held on Sunday, May 23 at American Legion Field at DeLagoon Park in Fergus Falls. Registration is set for 1:00 p.m. and competition begins at 1:30 p.m. For more information contact Kris Wilke at 736-7596. The event is free for kids ages 7 to 14.
|Monday, May 10, 2004|
|Craigs Corner 05/10/04 - 05/16/04|
|WEDNESDAY, MAY 12, 2004|
A couple of early season aces at Pebble Lake Golf Club!! Hole #8, a 171 yard, par 3 was aced twice this week. John Hatling used an 8-iron and his hole-in-one was witnessed by Grant Collinge. Troy Meyer also used an 8-iron and his ace was witnessed by Mike Hastings and Chris Styve.
The third annual Roman Gail memorial golf tournament is scheduled for Saturday, June 5 at Balmoral. The annual tournament is a fundraiser for the Roman Gail Scholarship. Everyone is welcome to play golf at Balmoral and join the Gail family and friends for food and reminiscing. Hard to believe Roman has been gone over three years. He was such a great supporter of youth in athletics and loved his refereeing!!
Dave and Sue Arneson are planning a bus trip to Quad Cities, Iowa to see The Swing of Quad Cities, a Twins Class A minor league baseball team, which their son, Justin Arneson plays for. The former Otter and Spartan standout athlete is back in the lineup after spending time on the disabled list. He pulled a quadriceps muscle in the second game of the season. He struggled when he first got into the lineup but today he singled, walked twice, was hit by a pitch and scored three runs. He's hitting just under .200 but he'll get that average up over .300 before too long. If Arne can stay healthy he'll have a big year. He has a tremendous work ethic and the Twins organization is high on him. If you'd like to go on the bus trip you can call the Arneson's at 736-3418 to sign up. Here are the particulars. The dates of the trip are Friday, June 11 through Sunday June 13. The bus will load at 7:00 a.m. at Ottertail-MinDakota Coaches and will leave at 7:30 a.m. After watching the Friday night game they'll stay in Iowa and catch the Saturday night game before returning home. The bus will travel through the night and arrive back in Fergus Falls early Sunday morning. The cost, including bus fare, one night in the hotel and game tickets is $148.00 ($74.00 each) for two people sharing a room, or if you want to travel and stay alone, it's $98.00 single occupancy.
MONDAY, MAY 10, 2004
A bad break for Mitch McLeod's NDSU baseball team. The selection committee for the Division II Regional Tournaments left them out. I certainly think they deserve a trip after winning 6 of their last 7 games and five straight in the NCC Tournament this past weekend, including impressive wins over UND and Minnesota State, Mankato (twice).
UND received a bid and will be seeded fourth in the Central Regional at Warrensburg, Missouri. They open play against the host team and defending National champions, Central Missouri State. The Sioux are making their first appearance in the NCAA Division II Regionals in eleven years and are going despite a poor showing in the NCC Tournament.
Former Otter Troy Wasiloski is a member of the UND baseball team and he has had a magnificent season. Troy leads the Sioux with 68 hits, 11 homers, 50 runs batted in, 122 total bases and a .652 slugging percentage. He is second on the squad with a .364 batting average and third in runs scored with 38 and doubles with 19.
Fergus Falls native Brandon Goltz certainly did his part for the Bison in their NCC title run. Goltz won the opening game of the tournament, beating Minnesota State, Mankato 9-2 on Thursday afternoon. He pitched seven solid innings, his longest stint of the season. Goltz allowed only four hits, walked two batters and struck out five. The win put Brandon at 5-2 on the season.
Former Spartan Jarrod Asmus was the winning pitcher in the championship game victory over Minnesota State, Mankato, pitching five-and-one-third innings and improving his record to 5-7 in his final year of collegiate baseball. Asmus is from Morris.
Bethel College freshman centerfielder Kirby Carr from Fergus Falls, was named MIAC Player of the Week for the week ending May 3. Carr hit .571 for the week and led Bethel to a split with league-leading St. Thomas and a sweep of Hamline. In Bethel's 9-6 win over St. Thomas, Carr went 3-4 with three RBI's. Carr's seventh homerun of the season in the bottom of the sixth inning, a three-run shot over the right field fence, put Bethel in front 8-6. In Bethel's 7-1 win over Hamline, Carr went 2 for 3 with one RBI. In the Royals 8-7 win over Hamline in the series finale, Carr went 3 for 4 with one RBI and scored 2 runs. His triple in the top of the sixth inning tied the score at 7 and he later scored the winning run. Stats for the week: 8 for 14 (.571 average) 3 runs scored 5 RBI 1 homerun 1 triple 1 double 10 Putouts 0 Errors.
Carr ended the season with a .391 batting average (45-for-115), led the team in homeruns with 7, walks with 21 and slugging percentage at .696. He was also second in steals with 7, RBI with 35, and runs scored with 36. He tied his high school teammate, Mike Gaustad for the team lead in doubles with 10. Gaustad hit .406, scored 29 runs, drove in 22, walked 19 times and had three stolen bases.
The two freshmen from Fergus Falls were among several first and second year players who made quite an impact for the Royals, who posted their best record in the history of the program (29-11). Unfortunately, they finished 12-8 in the conference, in fifth place. The top four conference teams qualify for the MIAC post season tournament. Despite winning their last 8 games, 9 of their last 10 and 10 of their last 12, Bethel will be on the outside looking in, during the playoffs. St. Thomas won the conference regular season title with a 17-3 record, followed by Concordia at 14-6. Gustavus and St. Olaf were both 13-7.
Speaking of Bethel College ... I spoke with Underwood Rockets 3 sport athlete Liz Glesne at the Hank Emmel Invitational on Thursday. Liz is going to attend Bethel and play volleyball and basketball for the Lady Royals. Bethel is getting a hard working individual in Glesne. She puts everything she has into everything she does and will be a great addition to their women's athletic program. Liz's older sister Jen Glesne is just finishing her second year at Carthage College in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Jen is pursuing a Double major in business administration and marketing. She was named to the Carthage deanís list three times and is a two-semester member of the Carthage athletic directorís honor roll.
Former Otters Josh Mohagen and Mitch Leifert have made their college decisions. Mohagen will stay close to home and play for Dave Retzlaff's Spartans at Minnesota State Community and Technical College, Fergus Falls. Mohagen averaged 13.2 points per game, 4.9 rebounds per game, hit 79% of his free throws and 47% of his 3-point field goal attempts as he helped the Otters to the Section 8AAA title and a state tournament appearance. Leifert has decided to attend Mesa State College in Grand Junction, Colorado. He had considered MSCTC but decided to head west. Leifert shot just under 59% from the field and averaged 17 points and 8 rebounds per game.
|Wednesday, May 5, 2004|
|Craigs Corner 05/03/04 - 05/09/04|
|Wednesday, May 5, 2004|
The Lady Spartans have captured the Southern Division Title of the MCCC in their first year in the South and the Spartan baseball team has won 14 of their last 18 games. Both teams are headed into post season tournament play this weekend in Austin.
The Lady Spartans have put together a division record of 17 wins and 3 defeats, unfortunately, five of those wins were by forfeit. Rochester forfeited the second game of their double header last Friday after MSCTC came from six runs down in the seventh to win the opener 15-14. Apparently the Yellowjackets had only nine players on the trip and one of their girls was injured during the first game and couldn't continue so they decided to forfeit. The other forfeits came in games on the road at Riverland and the scheduled double header at home this past Saturday with Riverland.
On Friday at four o'clock in Austin, the Lady Spartans open play in NJCAA Division III Region 13A Softball tournament. Their first round opponent is Rochester, a team they have won 2-of-3 games from, along with the recent forfeit. Ridgewater of Willmar and Dawson of Montana will square off in the other first round game at four p.m. The two winners will play each other and the two losers will play each other at 6:00 p.m. Friday in this double elimination event. Saturday's play begins at 10:00 a.m. with the winner of the loser out game going up against the loser of the semi-final game. The championship game is set for noon with a second game at two o'clock if necessary. All games will be played at Todd Park in Austin.
The Spartan baseball team will participate in the MCCC State Tournament at Marcusson Field and Riverland Complex in Austin. MSCTC will face Minnesota West from Worthington in their first round action at 1:00 p.m. Friday at Marcusson Field. A loss will put them in the consolation round loser out game at 4:00 p.m. Friday at Riverland Complex. A victory moves them into the championship bracket semifinals at 10:00 a.m. Saturday at Riverland Complex.
On Friday, May 14 and Saturday, May 15, the Spartans will host the Region 13 Tournament in Fergus Falls. First round games will be played at both Minnesota State Community and Technical College and American Legion Field at DeLagoon Park. All other tournament games will be played at the college field. For the Spartans to qualify for this tournament they need to be one of the top two finishing teams at the State Tournament this weekend, other than regular season division winners Itasca and Ridgewater. The Vikings, Warriors, top two teams other than them from the state tourney, Dawson, Montana and a Wisconsin team, will be involved in the Region 13 Tournament next weekend.
It was fun to see Jess Holicky and Luke Hansen get the Student Athletes of the Year Awards at Tuesday's Spartan All Sports Honors Night. What a privilege it has been to cover both of them throughout their high school and community college careers. They are both exceptional students, outstanding athletes and very nice young adults. Luke will go on to Bethel College where he will fit in nicely into their football program as a receiver. Luke is blessed with great speed and tremendous hands. It will be fun to follow him in the MIAC. I know he will be successful because he has a work ethic that will help him improve and excel and an attitude that will lead him to success in whatever he undertakes in the future. Last I heard from Jess she was planning on going to UND and may play softball or even try to walk-on for basketball. I've got to think that Jess can play softball for sure at that level and I really believe she could be a positive contributor to the women's basketball program, too. She is a very unselfish player who led the team in 3-point field goals, hitting well over 40% from behind the arc, but also had four-plus assists per game, leading the team with 104 this season. That's an unusual combination. To see someone who leads your team in scoring also be your assist leader says a lot about that individual as a player and a teammate. Jess is definitely one of those players that makes everyone around her better and who is capable of turning a game around just by her presence on the court. What I love about her game is that she never gives up. NEVER. Good luck to both of them and to all of the sophomores who are seeing their stay at MSCTC come to an end. How many times have the coaches wished this were a four-year institution! It's hard to say good-bye after only two years to such quality young people. The coaches continue to do a tremendous job of recruiting well-rounded solid citizens as student-athletes and they are to be commended for that.