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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Combine these two facts: The New Richmond football team played its best defensive game of the season last week, and the Tigers didn't suffer any new injuries during Friday's game at Durand. Those two factors give the Tigers faith that they can produce their first win of the season this Friday when they play at home against Prescott. Prescott has also gone without a win thus far in the 2007 season. Last Friday the Tigers played at Durand and were defeated by a 21-7 score.
After Friday's game between Somerset and Ellsworth, one football team will stand alone as the leader in the Middle Border Conference. Somerset and Ellsworth are both 3-0 in the MBC. The winner of Friday's game will not only be the outright leader in the conference standings, they will also be assured of a place in the 2007 WIAA football playoffs. Ellsworth comes into the game after beating Amery 20-14 last Friday.
For several years the St. Croix Central volleyball program has been trying to get re-established as a force in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference. In their two D-SC matches last week, the Panthers may have accomplished that goal. Last Tuesday the Panthers went to Boyceville, which has been a tough place to win for most D-SC teams in this decade. The Panthers won Tuesday's match and they did it decisively, winning in three games. That was followed by a home match on Thursday against Glenwood City. The Panthers had to overcome adversity all through the night.
The unbeaten New Richmond boys soccer team made it nine in a row on Monday, winning at Osceola 3-1. Osceola was carrying a seven-game winning streak into this game. The Chieftains hadn't lost since New Richmond had posted a 7-0 win over Osceola early in the season. This time around, Osceola proved to be a much more worthy opponent for the Tigers. Osceola has a short field, which made it difficult for the Tigers to use long lead passes to utilize their team speed. The Tigers did get their first goal off an opportunity like that.
The New Richmond boys soccer team earned its first-ever win over Amery last Tuesday, raising the Tigers' season record to 7-0. On Thursday the Tigers extended their winning streak to start the 2007 season to eight games with a 4-0 win over Barron. The Tigers beat Amery by a 3-1 score on Tuesday. The game was scoreless through the first half. As in recent games, the Tigers did their scoring in the second half. Twelve of the Tigers' last 13 goals have been scored in the second half of games. The first goal of the game was scored by New Richmond junior Jordan Anderson.
The New Richmond football team had its crowd buzzing at halftime of Friday's Homecoming game against Baldwin-Woodville. The Tigers trailed 26-24 at halftime, exchanging scores throughout the half with a potent B-W offense. The Tigers' hopes of getting a win for the large Homecoming crowd were sunk by turnovers in the second half. The turnovers allowed B-W to score four times in just over six minutes in the third quarter. The game ended with the Tigers suffering a 61-24 loss. New Richmond entered the game with numerous injuries and the list grew substantially during the game.
There were several Middle Border Conference football teams that put together overpowering efforts in the second half of their games last Friday. No team changed the complexion of their game in the second half more than the Somerset Spartans. Osceola was ahead of Somerset 14-8 at halftime of Friday's game. The Spartans then outscored Osceola 30-0 in the second half to record a 38-14 win. With the win, the Spartans are 2-0 in MBC action and 4-0 overall. The Spartans will be playing at home this Friday in hopes of bringing their record to 5-0.
The New Richmond girls tennis team is closing in on winning the 2007 Middle Border Conference dual meet championship. The Tigers defeated Durand 6-1 on Monday to take a commanding lead in the conference race. The Tigers were scheduled to wrap up the MBC dual meet season with matches Tuesday against Unity and Thursday at Amery. The next stop for the Tigers would then be the Middle Border Conference tournament. This year's tournament will be played next Tuesday at Osceola. Durand came into Monday's match with a 4-1 conference record and a reputation for having a strong singles lineup.
A preliminary tax levy of $7.8 million was approved by Somerset School District residents at the District's 2007 annual meeting, held on Sept. 10. In a meeting that lasted just over 40 minutes, approximately 20 people were in attendance. Nearly all those attending the meeting were District employees or school Board members. The entire school District budget for the 2007-08 school year is projected at $14.8 million. The tax levy will be finalized at a district Board meeting in late October.
Osceola's vaunted running game lit up New Richmond's defense like a Christmas tree during last Friday's 41-13 Tiger loss at Osceola. Osceola's standout tandem of running backs, Jerrod Tarman and Tyler Traynor, rushed for more than 400 yards in destroying the Tigers. Tarman and Traynor combined for six touchdowns, five of them coming from 42 yards or longer. The Tigers will try to rebound this Friday when they play their Homecoming game. Baldwin-Woodville will be the opponent in this year's Homecoming game, which begins at 7 p.m.