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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In the first game under new coach Jeff Kanewischer, the New Richmond varsity girls basketball team gave an encouraging performance at River Falls last Tuesday. The game was close the entire way, before River Falls pulled away in the final two minutes to score a 54-44 win over the Tigers. The Tigers started the game well, leading for most of the first quarter. They took a 13-11 lead into the second quarter. In the second quarter the Tiger offense struggled a bit and the Tigers fell behind 24-18 by halftime.
The Somerset girls basketball team has set quite high expectations for the 2006-07 season. In their season opener last Tuesday against a feisty Spooner team, the Spartans needed a fourth-quarter rally to earn a 48-38 win over the Rails. Somerset coach Bill Powers is not hesitant to air the Spartans' goals for the season. "Our expectations are to be conference champions," Powers said.
Very few things can change a basketball game as effectively as well-executed full-court pressure. Just ask the St. Croix Central girls team. The Panthers looked to be in command of last Monday's game against Plum City, leading 16-8 in the second quarter. Plum City then turned to a harassing full-court press.
Somerset native Sam Lofquist has committed to play college hockey for the University of Minnesota Gophers. Lofquist committed to play for the Gophers last week. Lofquist is currently in tenth grade and will join the Gophers in the fall of 2008. He is taking an accelerated program at the National Team Development Program in Michigan so he can graduate a year early. The NTDP is becoming the preeminent showcase of high school hockey talent in the nation. Lofquist joined the NTDP program after playing at Shattuck-St. Mary in Faribault, Minn. last year as a freshman on their U-16 team.
Meghan Erickson of Somerset has been honored as one of five national recipients of a fellowship sponsored by Olympic skier Lindsey Kildow. Erickson, 11, is one of five female athletes with physical disabilities who are recipients of the Paralympic Alpine Skiing Scholarship. By receiving this scholarship, Erickson has been invited to ski in the 19th annual Hartford Ski Spectacular, on Dec. 3-10, in Breckenridge, Colo. The scholarship program was created after Kildow, the two-time Olympic alpine skier and winner of the 2006 U.S.
The onset of the 2006-07 season came on too quickly for the St. Croix Central girls basketball team. With only the minimum number of practices under their belts, the Dunn-St. Croix Conference girls hoops teams started their seasons last week. Central's girls played a pair of close games, but came out on the losing side in close calls with Elk Mound and Elmwood. The Panthers feel that with a little time, they can be one of the most athletic teams in the Dunn-St. Croix.
When the Somerset School District started an alternative school, the vision was more than just getting the students a diploma. The vision was to prepare these students for life after high school. This year is the first time that an alternative school is being offered at Somerset High School. And from everyone involved, the new program is receiving high grades. An alternative school is a program for high school students who are credit deficient and would not be eligible to graduate. This program is a second chance for students to earn a high school diploma.
The Somerset Board of Education is looking at the future, and it raises the concern of the board members. In a meeting of the school board's facilities committee on Nov. 6, with six board members present, the subject of future space needs in the district was again raised. District administrator Randy Rosburg told the board members he thought it was prudent to bring up the subject. He said the current enrollment in the district is just over 1,500 students. He said the option of moving the junior kindergarten class would offer a temporary fix by freeing up two classrooms.
A new walk-on landing is being constructed as a third public access to Cedar Lake. The access is located approximately a quarter-mile west of Meister's Bar on County Highway H. It is 100 yards west of the existing winter drive-on access. The new landing is a cooperative effort made possible by many groups. Leading the effort are the Town of Star Prairie, the Cedar Lake Protection and Rehabilitation District, the Star Prairie Land Preservation Trust and the St.
Seniors Lyndsey Ihrke and Dani Brown have been named to the 2006 Dunn-St. Croix Conference Volleyball Team. Ihrke was a first team all-DSC selection. Brown was named to the all-DSC honorable mention team. Ihrke earned her way onto the all-conference team as one of the premier hitters in the DSC. She was not only a powerful hitter, but she put a large percentage of her hits in play. Brown again was the Panthers' setter this season.