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's not what the other Middle Border Conference teams want to hear, but the New Richmond softball team is starting to roll. The Tigers, two-time defending MBC champions, are now 3-0 after beating Somerset 11-1 at Hatfield Park. New Richmond took care of this game early. The Tigers scored five runs in the first inning, then added four more runs in the second frame against the young Somerset team. The Tigers hit the ball with authority in the game, starting from their first batter. Paige Spaulding led off the bottom of the first inning with a triple to deep rightfield.
After last Thursday's game, you can never question the toughness of the girls on the Somerset soccer team. The Spartans didn't want to delay their season opener any more, so they decided to play last Thursday in nearly white-out conditions. The game was started at the height of the storm, with heavy, wet snow and a whipping wind creating unimaginable conditions. Those conditions didn't stop the Spartans. Playing on their home field, Somerset's girls scored twice in the first 15 minutes of the game.
The depth of how much people cared for Monica Jensen was shown on Saturday, when more than 300 runners and walkers braved some of the worst conditions imaginable to take part in the second annual Monica Jensen Scholarship Run. Jensen, the former New Richmond High School standout athlete, died after battling Melanoma for several years. Saturday's race was held on the one-year anniversary of her death. Through the efforts of all of those who took part, and others who donated funds, more than $10,000 was raised.
New Richmond's girls soccer team finally got to play its 2008 season opener on Tuesday. The Tigers made it a successful debut, beating Osceola 2-1. Senior forward Brianna Richter scored twice in the first period for the Tigers. Osceola scored its goal late in the second half. Richter leads a strong group of returning players for the Tigers. She is one of four returning all-Middle Border Conference players for the Tigers. Lea LeMire, Tasia Kelley and Danica Alvarez are also returning first team all-MBC selections. The Tigers are constructed with a defense-first attitude.
According to Phip LaVenture, Gene L'Allier and other seventh and eighth grade boys at St. Mary's School in 1948, the rowdy reputation of football great Johnny (Blood) McNally isn't completely justified. LaVenture, L'Allier and their teammates should know another side of McNally. McNally volunteered to start a football team at St.
The Somerset Board of Education may have been still stunned at the enormous margin that the $35 million school referendum failed by on the April 1 ballot.
Both of the New Richmond track teams were second place finishers at an indoor meet at UW-Stout in Menomonie last Tuesday. And that was a pretty good place to be. The Tigers finished second to Menomonie in both halves of the meet. The Tigers were a bit short-handed, especially on the girls team, because the meet conflicted with an FBLA competition. New Richmond's boys are starting to get healthy and they received good news on the injury front. The knee injury suffered by senior Brian Figueroa was diagnosed as a deeply bruised patella and an inflamed meniscus.
Somerset senior Jeff Burke has been selected to play for Team Wisconsin in the upcoming Chicago Showcase. The Chicago Showcase is perhaps the most prestigious tournament a high school hockey player can take part in. Scouts from colleges, junior teams and professional teams flock to this tournament to get a look at many of the top high school seniors in the country. The tournament will be played from April 16-20 in Bensenville, a suburb of Chicago.
It's often difficult for kids to put into words the way they feel about their parents. When Josh Leavens wrote an essay about his mom, Kim Pederstuen, it earned her the honor of being one of the 10 finalists in the Red Baron Hockey Moms contest, sponsored by Red Baron Pizza and CUB Foods. By being a finalist, Pederstuen received $1,000 to donate in her name to the New Richmond Youth Hockey Association and a full day of luxurious spa treatments at Jewel Spa in Minneapolis. She also received a limo ride to the Xcel Energy Center for a dinner for the presentation of the award.
The Somerset track teams both made a substantial impact in a four-team meet at the UW-River Falls indoor facility last Thursday. The Spartan girls earned the victory in the meet and Somerset's boys took second place in last Thursday's meet. Competing against Osceola, River Falls and Baldwin-Woodville, the Spartan girls didn't think they'd performed that well until the final results were announced. "I was shocked we won," said Spartan girls coach Dave Praschak. The girls team has several standout athletes and the team is quickly building depth.