Area athletes shine in state tournament competitions

Many accol ades are due to a rea athletes who have finished the school year in a big way.

Some of those worthy of note are the members of the Tartan boys track and field team.

The Titans had several notable firsts when they ran away from the field — and in particular Woodbury and Stillwater — in the Section 3AA championships.

The Titans had all six seniors on their squad qualify for state meet competitions.

At the state meet — first contested back in 1923 — Tartan team members placed in four events and finished in ninth place out of a field of 67 schools.

Individuals gaining points for the Titans were Andrew Duitsman, who finished eighth in the 110 meter hurdles in 16.30, and James Kalimu, who placed eighth in the 200 meter dash with a time of 23.18.

In the 4x800 meter relay, the Tartan squad of Matt Boumeester, Justin Jerek, Sahr Matturi and Pat Jager, teamed up with a time of 7:55.99, good for fifth place and five points.

In the finals of the 4x100 meter relay, Titans Kevin Wagner, James Kalimu, Jordan Johnson and Zach Mast were clocked at an identical time as the Park Center squad in 42.53, but were awarded the number two spot and 10 points.

The squad of Jordan Johnson, Wagner, Boumeester and Jager were clocked at 3:22.93 in the 4x400 meter relay and added six more points for their second place finish.

The North Polars compiled 22 points, good for a 12th place tie in the meet.

Garnering honors for North were Nick Herold, Justin Wegwerth, Brad Yorkovich and Travis Jackson, who placed second in the 4x200 meter relay and picked up 10 points.

Herold added four more points to the North total with a time of 22.99, good for sixth place in the finals of the 200 meter dash.

Hill-Murray senior B.J. Otto gained seven points for the Pioneers when he gained fifth place and five points in the long jump with a distance of 21-9 1/2. Otto also picked up two points in the triple jump with an eighth place finish on a distance of 44-4 1/2.

Others qualifying for the finals were; North’s Tyler Salkey in the triple jump event and Hill-Murray’s Nate Lutz, who was 10th in the discus throw.

In the girls track and field competitions, Tartan’s Angela McGehee, a sophomore, cleared the bar at 10-0 in the pole vault. Her height was a Tartan school record and put her in a tie for seventh in the state classic. She earned two points for the Titans in the state meet.

Hill-Murray junior Erin Sprangers was ninth in the 800 meter run with a time of 2:21.32. Her time earned the only point for the Pioneers in the girls competitions.

In other state competitions, Hill-Murray senior golfer Tom Atchinson qualified for the Class AA tournament and carded scores of 80-82 for a 162 total.

Also from Hill-Murray, freshman tennis player Patrick Hobersten was the first Pioneer shot maker to make it to state competition in recent years. Hobersten went as an individual in Class A competition.

Another tennis ace, Ben Tomasek of North, made a rare appearance at the state classic when he earned individual honors in Class AA.

The North softball nine went to "State" for second year running

The North Polars softball nine, led by senior pitcher Kallie Samuelson, gained the girls Class AAA consolation title at the recently held state tournament in Mankato.

In three tournament games for the Polars, Samuelson went the distance and pitched a total of 32 innings, gave up just one run on 14 hits, and struck out 38.

The North state tournament roster consisted of Sheila Bothwell, Anna Brozak, Katie Brozak, Kyley Crotty, Caitlin Hogan, Molly Holder. Nicole Kelley, Nicole Larson, Nicole Marien, Raschael Mauer, Cassie O’Shea, Kelly Quinn, Kelly Rivers, Kallie Samuelson, Sara Sbragia, Courtney Schanks, Erin Shepherd and Allie Thunstrom.

During this spring prep sports season, there were other notable feats worth mentioning, such as Hill-Murray senior shortstop Colleen Conway, along with Samuelson, being named to the Pioneer Press All-State softball first team. Both are Athena Award winners for their respective schools.

Along with Connelly and Samuelson, kudos were earned by North junior catcher Caitlin Hogan, Tartan pitcher Amanda Tucci, outfielder Emily Theno and catcher Christle Ledo, who were named to the All-State Honorable Mention nine.

There are many other athletes who deserve recognition, but time and space are pressing. To all who have filled this spring season with memorable occasions, many thanx!

And for those moving on to new venues and ventures, best wishes!

Quick takeoffs

He was in on the ground floor of Polar Arena and spent some 21 years as head coach of the NORTH boys hockey six. BILL HALBREHDER — who compiled an impressive 305-167-16 record — will return behind the bench — this time as head coach of the NORTH girls hockey team — when the 2005-06 season rolls around. HALBREHDER will have as assistants to guide the Polars a couple of well-known names, in the persons of JODIE HENDRICKSON and BRENDA SELANDER . . . The ski jumping world was saddened to learn of the recent deaths of a couple of prominent members — both from ISHPEMING, MI — WILBERT RASMUSSEN, a former U.S. Team member and fearless competitor lost a battle to cancer. BURT BOYUM, a driving force and founder of the U.S. Ski Hall of Fame Museum — located in ISHPEMING — was 86 when he succumbed at a nursing home. Sympathies to all who miss the pair . . . Congrats to NORTH softball coach SEAN HALL and TARTAN softball coach TOM NEMO, who were selected to guide a team at the annual Girls All-Star Tournament — held the day following the state tournament — in MANKATO. On the team for HALL and NEMO were TARTAN All-Stars NATALIE MAST (headed to CONCORDIA), AMANDA TUCCI and CHRISTLE LEDO (HAMLINE), and from NORTH, KALLIE SAMUELSON (U of ST. THOMAS). HILL-MURRAY’s ace shortstop COLLEEN CONWAY (U of M) also played in the series . . . Nationally recognized 2004 Division III NCAA Men’s Hockey Champion ST. NORBERT — De PERE, WI — is the choice for NORTH grad RYAN PETERSEN to peddle his many hockey talents next season. Good going and good luck PETEY! . . . Congrats to TARTAN grad JAKE SCHMIDT who has been selected to play for the Metro East baseball nine in the 31st Annual LION’s All-Star Baseball Tournament that will be held June 24-25 in CHASKA . . . June 4-6, an All-Girls Ski Jumping Training Clinic will be held at the ST. PAUL Ski Club’s Carver’s Lake Nordic Area. For info go to: . . . A drastic increase in dues is the most cited reason for the defection of some 14 members from historic TOWN and COUNTRY GC in ST. PAUL, to SOUTHVIEW Country Club. "Besides," one prominent member who has transferred, stated, "that kid (SOUTHVIEW MGA professional RAY VENNEWITZ) and his staff are absolutely terrific!" . . . What a great honor earned by former HILL-MURRAY teacher/coach TERRY SKRYPEK! Now head men’s hockey coach at the U of ST. THOMAS, SKRYPEK was recently named NCAA Division III Coach of the Year. Great going TERRY! . . . From the "Rumor Mill" comes word that legendary former boys hockey and golf coach at PARK — MARV JORDE — will be married on June 26. Hey "Coach," congratulations! . . . Now that it takes a little longer to get "in shape," here’s a reminder that it’s time to start preparing for the 29th Annual Old Timers Fastpitch Softball Game that will be played Aug. 4 at Dunning Field. A "tryout" practice session will be held July 21 at Front Playground. Call VINCENT DETERS at 651-484-4964 for details . . . Hey RUTH, you hang in there!

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