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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Somerset's wrestlers were able to take down one of the traditional powers in the area last week, but the Spartans took their lumps from another of the area's top teams. In their season opener last Tuesday, the Spartan wrestlers rolled over Spring Valley 45-15. But in the Middle Border Conference opening round last Thursday, the Spartans were handed a 59-16 loss by Ellsworth. The Spartans had several big wins against Spring Valley, but none was bigger than the win produced by Andy Nash at 152 pounds. Nash was facing R.J. Deutsch, who reached the WIAA state tournament last year.
The St. Croix Central girls showed they are ready to compete with the best in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference. The Panthers might have lost to Boyceville 48-47 on Saturday. But by playing the undefeated Bulldogs so closely, the Panthers showed they are continuing to improve. The loss leaves the Panthers at 3-2, tied for third place in the D-SC standings. Central coach Shannon Berg said her players are excited about the progress they've been making. "They came so ready to play, I couldn't ask for a better effort," Berg said.
Getting the first win out of the way was important for a team as young as the St. Croix Central boys basketball team. The Panthers took care of that piece of business on Friday, winning at Elmwood 44-33. With only two returning varsity players, Central coach Mike Fern has had to prioritize the skills he is teaching the Panthers. He said his main focus in practices thus far has been defense. "Defense is always number one with me, defense wins games.
A year ago they might have wilted. When Elmwood made it's charge and took a 1-point lead in the third quarter against St. Croix Central last Tuesday, it was a make-or-break point for Central's girls. This year, the Panther girls took Elmwood's charge as a challenge. The Panthers took control of the game in the final two minutes of the third quarter, rolling to a 55-46 win over Elmwood. With the win the Panthers are now 2-1 in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference.
Four seniors from the New Richmond volleyball team that placed second in the Middle Border Conference were chosen as members of the 2003 all-conference team. Somerset also had two players earn their way onto the all-MBC team for 2003. New Richmond's Jessica Mitchell and Shannon Timm were named to the all-MBC first team. Somerset's Mariah Belisle and Ashley Riedesel were also named to the all-conference first team.
Fifty-two people made the point for Special Olympics at New Richmond High School on Nov. 3. "Make The Point for Special Olympics" is a new national fund-raising effort done to benefit Special Olympics this year. More than $2,400 was raised in the New Richmond effort, one of the highest totals in the state. New Richmond was one of 11 school districts in the state that took part in the event. Girls basketball coach Eric Russell coordinated the effort in New Richmond. A total of 52 people took part in the New Richmond effort.
Somerset's dreams of winning a second straight WIAA State Football Championship were trampled when the Spartans played at Ladysmith on Saturday. In level 3 of the WIAA Division 5 state playoffs, Ladysmith was able to run through Somerset's defense and pass over the Spartan defense. Ladysmith delivered a crushing 41-6 setback to the Spartans. Somerset had beaten Ladysmith 35-16 last year in level 3 of state playoffs. Ladysmith will now face Brillion in the WIAA Division 5 state semifinals this weekend. Poynette and Kenosha St.
The Somerset football team has another date with Ladysmith. The Spartans beat Cadott 46-21 in the second round of WIAA Division 5 football playoff action on Saturday. With that win, the Spartans will play at Ladysmith at 1 p.m. on Saturday in the third level of WIAA tournament play. Ladysmith is undefeated this season while Somerset carries a 10-1 record. When Somerset and Ladysmith clashed in level three of the playoffs last season, Somerset won on its home field 35-16.
Curt Mitchell of New Richmond has scored his first win on the Amateur Bowlers Tour. Mitchell has been competing on the tour for nearly three years. He earned $3,000 in prize money for his title, which was won the weekend of Sept. 27-28 at AMF Maplewood. He was ranked as the number two player out of 101 entries on the first day of the tournament and came back on Sunday to make the final cut. He placed at the top of the five entries in the step-ladder finals system. He finished the tournament by outbowling his opponent in the championship match 207 to 190.
In facing the defending state champion, and strong favorite to repeat as champions, the New Richmond girls tennis team was a huge underdog in playing at the WIAA Division 2 Girls Team State Tennis Tournament last Saturday in Madison. The Tigers were facing Green Bay Notre Dame, which has become the dominant Division 2 tennis program in the state. The Tigers were beaten in the state tournament semifinal, 7-0, but gave the Tritons an excellent battle.