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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Increasing enrollment and plunging property values led to funding changes that were announced Monday night at the 2010 Somerset School District annual meeting. The 12 district residents in the audience, all school staff members and school board members, approved an increase in the school district tax levy. This is a preliminary vote. The final vote on the tax levy will cast by the school board members at the board's Oct. 25 meeting. An increase of 3.78 percent was given approval at the annual meeting, raising the levy to $8.354 million.
The New Richmond football team prepped for this Friday's showdown with Somerset by going to Prescott last Friday and recording a 28-0 win over the Cardinals. This Friday New Richmond hosts Somerset in the Tigers' Homecoming game. This game has much more riding on it than Homecoming glory. If the Tigers want to win a Middle Border Conference championship, this is a must-win game.
The only thing that could stop the Somerset offense last Friday was the game clock. Somerset scored on its first nine possessions and the clock ran out during the Spartans' 10th possession.
Winning never gets old for the New Richmond girls tennis team. The Tigers wrapped up their fourth straight Middle Border Conference dual meet championship by sweeping Amery last Friday, 7-0. The conference championship is especially sweet for the Tiger seniors. Chelsea Anderson and Jenny Hudalla have been in the varsity lineup since their freshman year and have been part of all four titles. This is the third full year that Meghan Frank has been in the varsity lineup.
With the Middle Border Conference already wrapped up, the New Richmond girls golf team was playing for pride in the 2010 MBC tournament at Pheasant Hills Golf Course on Monday. The Tigers have plenty of reasons to be proud. By winning Monday's tournament, the Tigers have completed an unbeaten conference season. Sweeping the titles through an entire season is a rare feat in MBC golf history. The Tiger varsity players took five of the top seven places in the all-conference honors for the season. Hannah Wheeler, Caitlynn Singerhouse and Alex Wheeler are first team All-MBC players.
The most dramatic win for the Somerset boys soccer team in its two years as a varsity program came last Thursday when the Spartans beat Cumberland 2-1 in overtime. This is Somerset's third win of the season, eclipsing the two wins the Spartans had in their first year of varsity play. Cumberland is a solid program. The Beavers' season includes one-goal losses to Amery and Hayward, two of the upper echelon programs in the Middle Border Conference. Neither team could score in the soggy conditions on the Somerset field until well into the second half. Somerset scored first.
Wins over New Richmond and Ellsworth last week raised the Somerset volleyball team's record to 3-0 in Middle Border Conference matches. The Spartans got a good test when they faced a hard-hitting Ellsworth team last Tuesday. Somerset captured the first game 25-14, but Ellsworth came right back to take the second game 25-18. The third game pivoted on serving. The Spartans were scuffling early in the game, trailing 8-5. Laura Wells was inserted to serve and she rang up several straight points that got the Spartans playing sharply again.
Watching the New Richmond varsity volleyball team play causes you to see the possibilities in the team. And the frustrations. The Tigers dropped to 0-3 in the Middle Border Conference standings with losses to Prescott and Somerset last week. In last Tuesday's match at Prescott the Tigers may have put together their best opening game of the season. Instead of digging a hole for themselves in the early going, the Tigers were the aggressors. They used hard, accurate serves to keep Prescott on its heels. That set up the Tigers for easier passes to handle, which led to better hitting chances.
Because the Eau Claire high schools are so much larger than the other schools in western Wisconsin, they are a natural measuring stick for smaller schools. So you can imagine there was quite a bit of excitement when the New Richmond boys soccer team went to Eau Claire North last Friday and beat the Huskies 3-2 in North's Parents Night game. The Tigers have been playing more established soccer programs like North, St. Paul Academy and Hastings to get prepared for the upcoming WIAA Division 1 tournaments.
The St. Croix Central football airshow took full flight on Friday, to the delight of the Panthers' Homecoming faithful. The Panthers ran their season record to 4-1 by overwhelming Glenwood City 43-14 in the Panthers' 2010 Homecoming game on Friday. In the opening minutes of the game the Panthers looked as if they were going to rout the Hilltoppers. Central drove the length of the field in its first possession, completing the march with a 4-yard touchdown pass from Kyle Cress to Cody Nyhagen. After stopping the Toppers on downs, the Panthers forced the first of many turnovers in the game.