Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
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It is now a four-game season for the New Richmond football team. If the Tigers can win three of those four games, they can assure themselves a spot in the WIAA playoffs.
There was a rare trifecta accomplished by the St. Croix Central football team on Friday that shows how well the Panthers are currently playing. The Panthers improved to 5-0 for the season and 3-0 in the Middle Border Conference with a 56-14 win at Baldwin-Woodville. The trifecta was performed by halfback Keagen Berg, quarterback Austin Kopacz and fullback Ryan Larson. All three rushed for more than 100 yards in the victory.
Put all the pomp aside about the Larsons coaching against each other in this Friday's titanic football clash between Somerset and New Richmond. Somerset coach Bruce Larson has genuine concerns heading into this Friday's game at New Richmond.
The Middle Border Conference is loaded with talented volleyball teams and that was reflected in the close matches that were played all around the MBC on Thursday. The marquee match was in Hammond, where defending MBC champion St. Croix Central took on Ellsworth, another of the teams expected to be a title contender. This went five sets, with Central winning the final set, 17-15.
All this season, the New Richmond and Somerset football varsity head coaches have lived under the same roof. To say the teams will be prepared for each other this Friday in New Richmond's Homecoming game is a grand understatement. Reggie Larson, the new varsity coach at New Richmond, is the son of long-time Somerset coach Bruce Larson. Reggie was living at home this summer while looking for a job. When he was hired at New Richmond to be the football coach and high school physical education teacher, it was just easiest for him to continue living at his parents' home.
St. Croix Central graduate Kevin Bloom will be honored for his college football exploits this Friday. North Dakota State University will induct six individuals into the Bison Athletic Hall of Fame on Friday, Sept. 21. The 47th annual induction class will bring the number of individuals enshrined to 290.
An injury-riddled St. Croix Central volleyball team took on a young Somerset squad in the Middle Border Conference opening match for both teams last Thursday. Central had two new injuries to deal with last week, but the Panthers were able to hold off Somerset's strong early effort to win all three sets, 25-21, 25-12 and 25-13.
Major improvement by the fifth runners is one of the reasons why the Somerset cross country teams are pushing their way up in the team results in recent meets. That was clearly apparent in last Tuesday’s Rice Lake Invitational. The Somerset boys put together one of their strong performances in years by placing sixth among 29 teams in the meet held at the UW-Barron County campus. The Spartan girls finished in the middle of the pack at the meet.
There's very little that can match the drama of a five-set volleyball match, filled with momentum swings and powerful plays. So, even when the New Richmond volleyball team came away on the losing side of last Friday's five-set match against Osceola, Tiger coach Al Getschel gushed over the play of both teams. "It was a classic battle," Getschel said. "It was a fun match. It was classic how the momentum changes so many times in a match."
Defending corner kicks is becoming problematic for the New Richmond boys soccer team. Thankfully, the Tigers still have the majority of the season in front of them to get this corrected. The Tigers lost at River Falls, 5-3, last Friday. In the game, the Tigers gave up two goals off corner kicks, while scoring all three of their goals off free kicks.