Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.
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"We're still fighting the fight." That was River Falls' activities director Rollie Hall's assessment after the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Board of Control voted in support of a statewide football-only conference realignment plan from the Wisconsin Football Coaches Association at its monthly meeting March 1.
Six St. Croix Valley Fusion girls' hockey players landed on the 2018-19 All-Big Rivers Conference team with four also named to the Wisconsin Hockey Coaches Association All-State squad. Senior defenseman Anna Albrightson and junior goalie Sydney Seeley were named to the All-BRC First Team by the conference coaches and junior Lilly Accola and twin sisters Abbie and Amber DeLong were named to the second team while junior Madyson Shew received honorable mention.
The St. Croix Valley Fusion had a win and a tie against Hudson in their two Big Rivers Conference games this season, but Hudson got the win that counted last Tuesday night, Feb. 19. The Raiders battled back from a 2-0 first period deficit to post a 5-3 victory over the Fusion in a WIAA sectional semifinal on their home ice at Gornick Arena.
The Hudson girls’ hockey team picked a good time to get its first win this season against the St. Croix Valley Fusion. The Raiders battled back from a 2-0 deficit at the end of the first period to post a 5-3 victory over the Fusion in a WIAA sectional semifinal Tuesday night, Feb. 19, at Gornick Arena.
The third-seeded St. Croix Valley Fusion dominated No. 6 seed Chippewa Falls from the opening face-off on their way to a 4-1 victory in a WIAA girls hockey regional final Friday, Feb. 15, in Baldwin. The Fusion move on to meet No. 2 seed Hudson in a sectional semifinal Tuesday, Feb. 19, in Hudson. St. Croix Valley went 1-0-1 against the Raiders this season, earning a 5-3 victory Dec. 13 in Hudson and playing to a 1-1 tie Jan. 17 in River Falls.
It looks like the River Falls football team will be putting on a lot of miles beginning with the 2020 season, and head coach David Crail isn't happy about it. The Wisconsin Football Coaches Association released its final recommendation for a football-only conference realignment plan last week that would move the Wildcats out of the Big Rivers Conference and into the Mississippi Valley Conference beginning with the 2020 season. The WIAA Board of Control is expected to approve the plan at its March 1 meeting.
There will be no Big Rivers Conference championship for the St. Croix Valley Fusion this year. The sixth-ranked Fusion saw their title hopes dashed with a 3-2 overtime loss to the fourth-ranked Eau Claire Area Stars Friday night, Feb. 1, in Eau Claire.
Falcon men push WIAC's best Four days after dropping a one-point decision at 25th-ranked UW-La Crosse, the UW-River Falls men's basketball team gave No. 4 UW-Oshkosh all it could handle in an 80-69 defeat Saturday, Jan. 26, at Don Page Arena. UWRF trailed the Titans by just four, 67-63, with five minutes remaining before Oshkosh closed the game on a 13-6 run with eight of those points coming from the free throw line.
The seventh-ranked St. Croix Valley Fusion played three games in three days last week and when the dust settled they were tied for first place in the Big Rivers Conference, had a shutout win over the eighth-ranked team in the state, and lost a nonconference game on the other side of the river. The Fusion blanked Chippewa Falls 4-0 Thursday, Jan. 24, to move into a tie for first place in the BRC with Hudson before beating No. 8 ranked University School of Milwaukee 2-0 Friday night. They ran out of steam less than 24 hours later and suffered a 5-1 loss to St. Paul North/Tartan.
When Don Johnson collapsed on the alley after leaving the 10-pin standing to finish with a 299 in the finals of the 1970 Firestone Tournament of Champions, Dick Ritger was there to pick him up. "I just felt so bad for him," Ritger said from his River Falls home last week. That match, televised live on ABC's "Wide World of Sports" from Riviera Lanes in Akron, Ohio on April 4, 1970, was recently voted the No. 1 moment in the Professional Bowlers Association's 60 Greatest Moments as the PBA celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2018.