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 was good, old-fashioned hard-nosed football. The St. Croix Central team opened its season with a top-quality team effort, beating Ellsworth 24-8 last Thursday. The game was part of the annual Gridiron Classic played on the artificial turf at UW-Stout. This year's Panthers are a team that prides itself on playing tough, basic football. To do that, the Panthers need to execute better than their opponents. That was the case against Ellsworth.
Winning four of their five matches in the Spring Valley Invitational on Saturday gave an indication of the firepower the Somerset volleyball team brings into the 2005 season. The Spartans scored wins over Boyceville, Clear Lake, Hudson and Colfax in the tournament, with their only loss coming against Spring Valley. The first opponent of the day was Boyceville. The Spartans lost the opening game 26-24, but then came back to get the final two games 25-21 and 15-6.
If Jim Baillargeon had been blessed with a great singing voice or the ability to play the piano, he would have given a benefit concert to raise money for the restoration of the Somerset Town Hall, but Baillargeon was given the ability to run and that's what he's done for the past 40 years. That's what he did to raise money for this community project. Starting at 8 a.m. last Saturday, Baillargeon and three other local runners circled a one-kilometer course behind St. Anne School for 24 hours. Baillargeon secured pledges for each mile he completed and by 8 a.m.
Youth Fun Day, sponsored by the New Richmond Area Youth Sports Association, will be held at Hatfield Park Saturday, Aug. 20. The event will be held from 1-4 p.m. . The NRAYSA is a collective association for the New Richmond youth programs in football, soccer, baseball and girls softball. Each of these sports groups will be holding events at the Youth Fun Day.
The inaugural New Richmond boys varsity soccer team will have a coach who has played and coached in one of the elite programs in Minnesota. Pete Malloy will be the first varsity boys soccer coach in New Richmond. Malloy spent the past five seasons as the JV coach at St. Paul Academy. Malloy is also an SPA graduate. He was an all-state player at SPA, a team that has been a fixture at the Minnesota state tournament. It seems like Malloy has been involved with soccer his whole life. He started playing youth soccer in Hudson.
Somerset voters will go to the polls next Tuesday to decide whether the Somerset School District should add 69.05 acres of land to its current campus. This would nearly double the size of the Somerset School District campus, which currently covers 70 acres. The referendum is asking for $1.455 million. This covers the price of the land and the government program subsidies that would need to be paid.
The drama in New Richmond's two sectional baseball games on Friday was done quickly. The Tigers dazzled Grantsburg with six runs in the second inning of the sectional semifinal. The Tigers kept steady pressure on the Pirate pitchers, rolling to a 12-4 victory. That put the Tigers into the championship game of the Baldwin-Woodville sectional against Ashland, the top seed. This game was decided just as abruptly as the first game. Ashland scored seven runs in the first two innings and beat up the Tigers 16-1 to win the sectional championship.
The Somerset baseball team looked well on its way to a victory after scoring six times in the third inning to take a 6-0 lead on Webster in last Friday's WIAA regional game. But that feeling didn't last long. Webster came back with five runs in the top of the fourth inning and Somerset's margin for error was gone. The Spartans didn't need any more scoring however, as the pitching of senior Corey Hehling dominated the rest of the game, giving the Spartans the 6-5 victory. The win put the Spartans into Tuesday's regional final against New Richmond.
Nearly all the matches from the 2005 New Richmond Tennis Open have now completed. The tournament was held Fun Fest weekend, but several matches could not be completed that weekend. Here is a rundown of the winners in each bracket. Boys 10-13 Singles 1: Grant Nelson. 2: Max Hawksford. Cons. champ: Nicholas Bradish. Boys 14-17 Singles 1: Tyler Howard. 2: Chad Weaver: Cons. champ: Jake Kleiner. Men 18-39 Singles 1: Justin Howard. 2: Geoff Basham. Cons.
The New Richmond baseball team solidified its hold on the Middle Border Conference lead with an 8-1 win in Somerset last Thursday. With a win Somerset could have pulled into a tie in the loss column with the Tigers atop the MBC. New Richmond raises its conference record to 8-2 with the win, while Somerset tumbles to 5-4. The Spartans struggled defensively in the early innings, in a game played under an ominous gray sky and winds that gusted up to 40 miles per hour. The defensive problems finally caught up to the Spartans in the fourth inning, when the Tigers scored six runs.