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 52nd annual running of the Stan Barr Relays will be held on Friday at the New Richmond High School track. With the addition of lights at the high school track, it has allowed for a later start to the Relays this year. The schedule for this year's meet has been pushed back 30 minutes from its traditional time schedule. The track will open for warmups at 3 p.m., with the coaches meeting at 3:30 p.m. Field events will begin at 4 p.m. Opening ceremonies will be held at 4:55 p.m., with the first running events scheduled for 5 p.m.
The event wins have been plentiful for the New Richmond boys track team this season. Now the boys have a new target, and they are hoping to make their presence known this Friday at the 52nd running of the Stan Barr New Richmond Relays. The new goal for the Tiger boys is to make their mark on team history. "These guys are thinking school records. That's the mentality," said New Richmond boys coach Roger Reuvers.
Weather cancellations chopped up the April portion of the schedule for the New Richmond girls soccer team. The start of May will decide whether the Tigers can win the 2018 Middle Border Conference championship. That begins this Tuesday when the Tigers host Hayward. Hayward was the only thing that stood between the Tigers and a perfect regular season last season. Hayward played the Tigers to an 0-0 tie early last May. The Tigers have been looking forward to the chance to correct that result ever since.
The growth is beginning to show. The New Richmond tennis team appeared to be in trouble when the Tigers lost the first set in five of the seven matches in their home Middle Border Conference match last Thursday against Amery. The Tigers were able to climb back, winning two of those matches, along with the two where they led after the first set. That gave the Tigers a 4-3 win and their first MBC victory of the season.
Having three track meets in three days might be a bad thing most seasons. But because of the weather this spring, getting to participate in three meets between last Tuesday and Thursday paid big dividends for the St. Croix Central track teams. The Panthers split their squad last Tuesday. The sprinters and a few others went to a meet at Baldwin-Woodville, while the rest of the team went to the Osceola Invitational. The full Panther squad competed at the Rice Lake Invitational last Thursday.
New Richmond Thursday, May 3 Boys Tennis: Ellsworth at New Richmond, 4:15 p.m. Girls Soccer: Spooner at New Richmond, 4:30 p.m. Baseball: Ellsworth at New Richmond, 5 p.m. Softball: New Richmond at Somerset, 5 p.m.
The Middle Border Conference track meet won't happen until May 15, but it is already at the top of the thoughts of the Somerset boys track team. After several years of being an afterthought in the MBC meet, the Spartans are fully expecting to be a factor in this year's meet. That confidence was bolstered by the Spartans' performances last week, including a second place finish at the seven-team Ellsworth Invitational last Thursday.
The whole season might have been saved for the Somerset baseball team by the Spartans' performance in the seventh inning in Friday's game at New Richmond. The Spartans trailed 10-1 heading into the seventh inning. The Spartans showed some grit in that inning, rallying for nine runs to send the game into extra innings. New Richmond scored a run in the bottom of the eighth inning to win 11-10. Somerset coach Zac Eichten said the comeback was more important than the final outcome for the Spartans in Friday's game.
The compressed nature of this spring's season doesn't leave much time to recover from injuries. The Somerset girls soccer team worked through a number of injuries last week to earn wins against Amery and Arcadia. The Spartans won a home non-conference game with Amery on Tuesday, 3-1. The Spartans then made the two-hour trip to Arcadia on Thursday, scoring a 5-0 win.
Two of Somerset's most successful and storied graduates will make up the first class of the Somerset High School Hall of Fame. The idea of forming an SHS Hall of Fame has been in the works for several years and has become a reality.