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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The WIAA Division 3 track sectional couldn't have gone more difficultly for the St. Croix Central squad. The Panthers had several near misses, but they won't have anybody qualifying for state from the boys or girls team after the WIAA sectional meet in Marathon last Thursday. Most of the near misses for the Panthers came from the Kooiman family. Jordan just missed qualifying for state in two events for the boys and Casey narrowly missed in one event for the girls. To qualify for state, athletes have to finish in the top four in their events at the sectional level.
St. Croix Central boys qualify in D3 The New Richmond boys golf team took a horse racing approach to the WIAA Amery Division 2 regional tournament last Tuesday. The Tigers know if they could "win, place or show," meaning they needed to finish in the top three, they would advance to the Hayward Division 2 sectional tournament that was scheduled to be played on Tuesday. The ability the Tigers have shown this season to be successful in 18-hole meets bore out again in the regional.
The New Richmond softball team reached the WIAA sectionals for the first time in 10 years by upending top-seeded Altoona 6-3 on Thursday. The Tigers will now face Rice Lake in the WIAA Division 2 sectional tournament. That game will be played at 2:30 p.m. next Tuesday in Altoona, the site for the sectional tournament. The winner of that game will advance to the sectional championship, which will be held later Tuesday in Altoona. The victory in the regional championship ended with a dramatic finish.
The St. Croix Central baseball team ends its 2005 season with a 9-10 record after a 7-0 loss to Colfax in the opening round of WIAA Division 3 regionals last Thursday. The Panthers had been the fifth seed in the regional while Colfax was the fourth-seeded team in the regional bracket. Central simply couldn't muster any offense against Colfax in the regional game. The Panthers were held to two hits in the game.
There were smiles all-around when the New Richmond Millers earned their first win of the 2005 season, a wild 13-11 win at Spring Valley on Sunday. After a disastrous start to the 2004 season which the Millers never recovered from, the win early in this season was a huge relief for the Millers. The Millers had started their season on Friday night at Osceola. The Millers played well, but came out with a 4-0 loss to the Braves. The win over Spring Valley was a wild offensive battle with a number of lead changes.
The New Richmond girls are 2005 Middle Border Conference track champions and they could not have come up with more of a storybook ending to lock up their championship. The Tiger girls won the meet championship with 169 points, three more points than second place Amery. New Richmond's boys also had an outstanding meet, finishing in second place behind Osceola. The conference championship is the first for the New Richmond girls team since 1997.
The St. Croix Central softball team is the champion of the 2005 Dunn-St. Croix Conference large school division. The Panthers locked up the conference championship last Tuesday by beating Elk Mound 3-2. The Panthers and Mounders had battled for the conference lead throughout the season. It was the steady improvement of the Central squad that got the Panthers in position to win the conference title. Elk Mound got an early jump on the Panthers in the conference standings.
Two second place finishes in the Baldwin-Woodville Track Invitational last Tuesday showed that the St. Croix Central track teams had geared up well for this Tuesday's Dunn-St. Croix Conference Meet, which was scheduled to be run in Elk Mound. The Panther boys rolled up their highest point total of the season in taking second place at Baldwin. One of the most promising aspects of the Panthers' performance was their distribution of points. They placed in nearly every event and they had multiple point-winners in many of the events.
Monday's conditions were far from ideal for baseball, but the rain and wet field didn't dampen the performance of the St. Croix Central boys one bit. The Panthers ripped through Mondovi's team, winning 15-1 in five innings on Monday. The win raises Central's overall season record to 8-8 and leaves the Panthers 6-7 in Dunn-St. Croix Conference games. Pitching was the difference in Monday's game. Mondovi's pitchers struggled with the wet conditions, giving up 11 walks.
New Richmond's softball team moved within one win of getting a share of the Middle Border Conference championship last Wednesday by beating Durand 3-0. Then came a prolonged wait to see if the Tigers would indeed get a share of the conference title. The Tigers were supposed to play Osceola last Thursday, but that game was rained out. So was the original makeup date of last Friday.