Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Al Rose
Moose Lake Star-Gazette 

Springing forward into retirement


January 11, 2018

Editor's note: Al has a lot to say about reporting on local sports for the last 17 years. Here is part two of two.

Yes it is true. I retired, effective Friday, December 22, from the position of Moose Lake Star-Gazette sports reporter.

The following is a compilation of spring sports, beginning in alphabetical order of activities and communities:

BOYS BASEBALL - Barnum - 2004, under head coach Dave Duesler, lefty Jake Lambert uses his 85 mph-plus fastball and his wicked, sharp curve and posts a .600-plus batting average to help propel the Bombers to the championship game of Section 7A. Barnum finishes in second place (lost a heartbreaker on a walk and a double in last innings); 2016 Bombers finish in third place in Section; 2016 - Christopher Carlson among All-Star selections; 2017 - Colton Ziegler named to All-Star team. MLWR - 2006-09 Rebels, under head coach Lyle Halverson, win three consecutive outright Polar League titles and one shared title with Esko. 2009 - Nate Zuk pitches all nine innings with about 120 pitches and coach Halverson calls for steal of home and succeeds to seal the deal on Esko’s home field. 2016 - Wyatt Lampel leads the Rebels with .441 batting average and is third in the area and named to Polar League All-Star team along with Rex Janke; 2015-16 - Outlaws American Legion team, under Dr. Jim Ryan and Steve Whited, wins back-to-back Region 8, Division II titles to earn trips to state. In 2016 championship game, Charlie Adamczak hits two-run homer, Lampel hits a solo homer (his first ever high school round-tripper) and Rex Janke gets just enough of one for a walk-off homer as Outlaws come back from a four-run deficit to beat Proctor for second title in a row; 2017 - Lampel selected and Brendon Fogelberg plays in Polar League All-Star game.

BOYS GOLF - MLWR - Ross Prachar is medalist at Section 7A in early 2000s, Grant and Gabe Douglas qualify for state tournament in late 2000s; 2015 Rebels win Polar Cup; 2015 Section 7A champs and state participant, Great River Conference title. 2016 - Don Otwell, a former pro on the circuit and then teaching pro, comes on board to assist head coach Brad Hubred; Hunter Klund finishes 12th at Great River Conference championships and is honored as All-Conference.

GIRLS GOLF - Barnum - 2013 Section 7A second place, 2013-15 win Polar League Cup, 2014 Great River Conference champs, 2014 Section champs and state participant. MLWR - girls win Great River Conference in 2015 and Polar Cup in 2016, 2015 - Future-Hope Vang All-Conference; 2016 - Ruby Mohelsky and Maren Mesojedec and Vang qualify for Section tournament, 2017 - Mesojedec places second at GRC, Mohelsky places third and Adre Dobosesnki places eighth; girls win GRC team title. MLWR girls win four out of five of their matches and usually by 30 or more strokes.

GIRLS SOFTBALL - Barnum, under 300-plus win head coach Randy Myhre, 2000 Class A Consolation champs; 2001 Section 7A second place; 2002 Section 7A champs; 2002 Class A third place; 2008 Section 5A Sub-section champs; 2008 Section 5A second place; 2009 Section 5A second place; 2010 Section 5A champs and state participant; 2010 State Class A second place; 2011 Section 5A second place. 2017 - Meghan Kapszak and Lea Peterson named to Polar League All-Star team; Peterson second in the area at over .600 batting average and among area leaders in runs scored and steals consistently in the upper ranges in three area stats; Kapszak among area leaders in RBIs and triples. MLWR, under head coach Kelly Goeb and assistant coach Tonya Benzie, 2015 team posts .321 batting average and 18-6 record; Ally Bode hits for .582 batting average, Suzy Grutkoski steals 14 bases, Bode near top of area with 246 strikeouts, seven shut-outs and 1.28 ERA with 16-6 record; 2016 team posts .360 batting average; Bode hits for .564 average, strikeouts 144 with .241 ERA with record of 20-6. Rebels finish in second place in Section 7AA to tie for best finish since 1996. 2017 team posts .360 batting average for second consecutive season. Lauren Pederson hits state-leading nine home runs and has five triples and 10 steals; Bode caps off high school career with a .531 batting average, .680 on-base percentage, .914 slugging percentage with only five strikeouts and team-leading 16 walks with four home runs and six triples, pitches for record of 9-8 with 72 strikeouts and 3.42 ERA, Jamie Benzie ties Grutkoski’s 2015 accomplishment of 14 steals. Marissa Mikrot hits five home runs, with .397 batting average and only five strikeouts, Nicole Newham hits five home runs and has largest batting average improvement of the team with a .117 increase to .359. Bode, Mikrot and Newham chosen as All-Conference, Bode and Pederson named to All-Section team, Pederson selected as Honorable Mention All-State (state leader in home runs with nine), Bode named to second team All-State for third year in a row and plays on State AA All-Star team for second consecutive season; career ranks in MN history: first in triples (18); second in RBIs (148); third in doubles (45); fourth in hits (196) and fourth in runs scored (149). 2017 - North States Crane & Hoist Arrowhead 16/18 and Under Fastpitch League, under head coach Tonya Benzie, improves from a couple of wins and a couple of ties in 2016 to turn it around with only two loses and one tie and to beat Tyler Korby’s MN Blast 18s in last at-bat to claim gold championship medals.

BOYS TRACK AND FIELD - Barnum - 2001 - 800-meter relay Noah Jurek, D. Peterson, S. Genereau, P. Genereau 1:34.0; 2002 - 800-meter run Shawn Genereau 2:02.3; 2003 - Shot Put Jake Davis 53-7, Section 7A Sub-section second place. 2004 - 400-meter dash Shawn Genereau :52.3; 3,200-meter relay S. Genereau, R. Schoepp, Josh Willour, J. Zerwas 8:32.6. 2007 - 100-meter and 200-meter dashes Kris Loney-Adams 11.25, :22.80, respectively; 400-meter relay J. Williams, J. Schwoch, Kyle Grimm, Loney-Adam 45.61. 2008 - long jump Ray Jobe 20-2. Cromwell - 2011 Jordan Suhonen breaks two-minute barrier in 800-meter run. MLWR - 2006 - Aaron Zuk sets new standard for discus with fling of 173-6. (stood as Section 7A record until 2010). 2012 - Tony Andres takes over helm of Rebels track and field team and is honored as Boys’ Track and Field Coach of the Year; MLWR boys beat Esko for section title in 2012 (first time in recent memory); Rebels take contingent of seven boys to State Meet and just miss earning a third place plaque by less than a handful of points. 200-meter dash Jake Disterhaupt 22.43; 400-meter dash Josh Cisar 49.40; 800-meter run Ben Moonen 1:58.38; 800-meter relay Michael Pender, Isaac Coil, Disterhaupt, Cisar 1:31.6; 1,600-meter relay Coil, Disterhaupt, Ben Moonen, Cisar 3:27.05. 2013-16 boys earn four consecutive True Team titles; 2013 - 300-meter intermediate hurdles Pender 41.40; team earns Section 7A second place; 2013 Coach Andres recognized as Boys’ Track and Field Coach of the Year for second time. 2014-16 Sam Coil goes to state three times in a row in shot put and finishes fifth in 2014 and third in 2016. 2014 - Polar League team title; team earns Section 7A Sub-section second place; team earns Section 7A second place; Jon Evenson breaks Mike Erwin’s 1962 long jump record by leaping 21-5; David Moonen clears 9-11 for a new pole vault record. 2015 - Ethan Olson, the eventual school record holder in the 1,600-meter run at 4:29.21, goes to state for his first time as a sophomore. 2016 - Olson, the school record holder in the 3,200-meter run at 9:45.80, places eighth at state; 2017 Coil crushes Kevin Tomczak’s shot put record with a heave of 57-00. Coil goes to state in discus after a personal best of 156-6; Olson competes in 1,600 meter run at state and places 12th.

GIRLS TRACK AND FIELD - Barnum - 2000 - 100-meter and 300-meter hurdles Emily Fisher 16.46 and 48.13, respectively; 2002 - Leah Nordvall goes to State Meet as freshman in four events and places in two of the events; 400-meter dash Nordvall :59.31. 2003 - Section 7A sub-section second place; Jenna Halverson breaks long-standing Section 7A record in 100-meter dash at 12.62 (Halverson’s section record stands until 2011); 200-meter dash Halverson :26.10; 400-meter relay L.Likeness, J. Jurek, Liz Charboneau :53.7. 2006 - 800-meter run Halverson 2:14.90; 800-meter relay Halverson, Paige Lopeman, Darian Bushey, Nordvall 1:52,96; shot put Jenna Sunnarborg 36-6.25. 2012 - 3,200-meter run Janna Madden 12:27. Cromwell 2000-16, under head girls coach Lori Wester, frequently sends middle distance and long distance relays to state; 2016 - Shaeley Hakimaki qualifies for state in triple jump with third place effort. MLWR - 2011 - 3,200-meter relay Hayley Johnson, Katie Ring, Haley Radel, Mackenzi Louzek 9:57.31. 2013 - Section 7A Sub-section second place; 1,600 and 3,200 meter runs Nicole Tekippe 5:20.11 and 11:35.15, respectively; Hannah Race clears 6-2 for new pole vault record. 2014 team earns Section 7A championship; 400-meter relay Kenndy Bryant, Kiersten Evenson, Race, Karina Cisar: 53.87; 100-meter dash Cisar 12.71; 400-meter dash Cisar :59.72; long jump Cisar 16-7. 2014-2017 Bryant goes to state from seventh grade through sophomore season in long jump and wins Section 7A title in 2017; 2017 triple jump Bryant 36-2 for new school record and second in Section 7A to earn first time to state in the event.

Here are some nostalgic and personal reflections as a 17-year very rewarding sports writing career comes to a close. In the series finale of my favorite show, M*A*S*H, titled “Goodbye, Farewell, Amen,” B. J. and Hawkeye are trying to come to grips with saying, “Goodbye.” Hawkeye somewhat firmly confronts B.J. with not being able to say “Goodbye.” As Hawkeye lifts off and begins to fly away, he looks back and down toward the helicopter pad and B.J. has spelled out “GOODBYE” in large rocks painted white. My final thoughts can be similarly summarized. It is hard to say “Goodbye.” I used to stay up late to watch “The Johnny Carson Show.” The late, great Mr. Carson closed his 30-year career with, “It has been an honor and pleasure to come into your homes all these years; with that, I bid you a very, very heartfelt fond farewell.”

CORRECTIONS from Part 1: Nicole Tekippe qualified for the state cross country meet in 2012 and 2013. Scott Hendricks' name was mispelled. Ethan Olson breaks Polar League record in 2016 and wins Section 7A and places fifth at state meet. Olson placed third at section meet in 2017 and placed 11th at state meet.


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