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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With four senior letter winners returning to the team, there is a sense of optimism around the Somerset girls golf team to start the 2011 season. Long-time Spartan coach Bill Powers isn't someone prone to making bold statements about his team. He changed his ways for this team. "We might be the second best team in the conference," Powers projected. The Spartans return three of the top 18 players in the Middle Border Conference from last season. Sammi Wolff ranked 11th in conference points last season, Carley Seibel ranked 14th and Andrea Passe ranked 18th.
New Richmond's Josh Calleja has embarked on a professional hockey career. Calleja flew out Tuesday, bound for France, where he will be playing hockey this year. With this opportunity, Calleja becomes the first player from the New Richmond Youth Hockey Association to play the sport professionally. Calleja got the opportunity on the recommendation of former college teammate Tyler Czuba. Czuba and Calleja played together for one year on the UW-River Falls hockey team, during the 2009-10 season. They were put on a line together after Christmas and the combination was magical.
Five years ago T.J. Wink was a tall, skinny left-handed pitcher with terrible mechanics. But he had one thing working in his favor. He had a hunger to learn and the willingness to change to make himself a better ballplayer. That willingness carried him from Glenwood City High School to the New Richmond Millers to UW-Superior. This year, it has earned him a professional baseball contract. Wink has been pitching quite well during his first taste of pro ball. He is pitching for the Pittsfield (Mass.) Colonials in the independent Canadian-American League.
The wall-to-wall restructuring of the kitchen at the Somerset Middle School was scheduled to be completed last Wednesday. The project began right after the 2010-11 school year was completed. Much of the equipment replaced in the middle school was equipment from when the building was constructed in 1975, according to middle school Principal Sara Eichten. "Almost all of it was original," Eichten said. "The cooler and freezer were and the ventilation and the shelving were original.
Sue Bonte Lee is a diehard Milwaukee Brewers fan. On Saturday, in front of more than 44,000 fans, she got to show it. Bonte Lee, the owner of the Agate Inn in New Richmond, was selected to represent the Tavern League of Wisconsin by throwing out the first pitch of Saturday's game at Miller Park in Milwaukee between the Brewers and the Houston Astros. Two days after taking the mound at Miller Park, Bonte Lee was still giddy over the experience. She was one of four people throwing out first pitches at the game. They took the honorees onto the field 25 minutes beforehand.
It was a season of extremes for the New Richmond Millers, but it ultimately ended in disappointment. The Millers finished the St. Croix Valley League last Wednesday, getting drilled in Menomonie 19-1. The Millers barely missed out on making the Wisconsin State Baseball playoffs. The Millers finished at 7-9 in the SCVL and they needed to finish above the .500 level to get into the playoffs. At times the Millers were awe inspiring and at times they were yawn inspiring. The Millers finished 6-2 in home games in the SCVL, but they were a brutal 1-7 on the road.
Dave Gerberding is the new person handling the financial affairs of the Somerset School District. Gerberding took over as the business manager for the school district on July 1. He previously had served in that role for one year in the Phillips School District. Gerberding was hired last March, but was given time to complete the school year in Phillips before starting in Somerset.
"Sprechen sie Deutsch?" That's a question Brooke Donohoe can expect to hear quite often over the next year. The question, which translates to "do you speak the German language," will be asked because Donohoe will be spending the next year living in Germany. Donohoe, who is scheduled to be a senior at Somerset High School, will instead spend her senior year living with host families in Germany.
The whirlwind of activity at the Somerset Middle School every summer is the result of the hundreds of students who spend much of their June and July attending the Somerset summer school program. This summer nearly 900 students will be attending classes through the summer school program. With more than 100 classes to choose from, any kid can find something that will match their interests. Brad and Sandy Nemec have been coordinating summer school in Somerset for more than two decades. The summer school offerings continue to grow, sparked by the interests of the teachers.
Holly Spoo is the past, present and future of women's basketball in Wisconsin. Spoo is the leading scorer in New Richmond girls basketball history. She was a Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Player of the Year and a national champion at UW-Oshkosh. Her work with young basketball players is making the future brighter for girls basketball players all around the state.