Archive for Kip Kovar

PREP SOFTBALL: Section 5AA softball seeds announced

WINSTED – Believe it or not, the Section 5AA softball tournament begins next week. The seeds for the Section 5AA tournament were released Wednesday afternoon. Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted got the No. 12 seed, and will play at No. 5 Spectrum. Watertown-Mayer is the No. 9 seed, and will play at No. 8 SW Christian. Both games will be played Monday, May 21 at 4:30 p.m. Below is a look at all of the seeds and matchups for the first round.

SECTION 5AA SOFTBALL SEEDS

1. Maple Lake

2. NYA

3. Litchfield

4. Rockford

5. Spectrum

6. Providence Academy

7. Glencoe-Silver Lake

8. SW Christian

9. Watertown-Mayer

10. Blake

11. Maranatha Christian

12. HLWW

13. Holy Family

14. Brooklyn Center

15. Minneapolis Henry

16. Breck

SECTION 5AA MATCHUPS: MONDAY, MAY 21

(9) W-M at (8) SW Christian

(10) Blake at (7) G-SL

(11) Maranatha Christian at (6) Providence Academy

(12) HLWW at (5) Spectrum

(13) Holy Family at (4) Rockford

(14) Brooklyn Center at (3) Litchfield

(15) Mpls. Henry at (2) NYA

(1) Maple Lake – BYE

Follow Kip Kovar on Twitter to stay up to date with all things related to the Section 5AA softball tournament.

Twitter: @Kovar_HJSports

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AMATEUR BASEBALL: Orphans blank Stingers to open NSL season

HOWARD LAKE – In their first North Star League game of the season, the Howard Lake Orphans were in control from the start. The Orphans used four different pitchers as they held the Stingers’ bats in control all game long in a 10-0 victory Sunday evening at Memorial Park.

Jared Koch got the start on the mound, and gave the Orphans four strong innings. He allowed just two hits, while retiring the first eight batters of the game he faced.

Howard Lake's Jared Koch got the Orphans off to a great start in their first North Star League game of the season. Koch retired the first eight batters he faced and pitched four strong innings for the Orphans in their 10-0 victory.

Howard Lake’s Jared Koch got the Orphans off to a great start in their first North Star League game of the season. Koch retired the first eight batters he faced and pitched four strong innings for the Orphans in their 10-0 victory.

After a slow start offensively in which the Orphans stranded four runners on base in the first three innings, the Orphans took advantage of a costly error by the Stingers to get things rolling. Zach Kuefler drew a leadoff walk to get things started, and Mitch Baumann kept it rolling with a perfect bunt that he was able to beat out of an infield single.

After a fielder’s choice put runners on second and third with one out, it looked as if the Orphans were going to leave more runners on base. Instead, the Orphans broke through, scoring two runs a throwing error. Following the error, Matt Streich delivered with a clutch two-out hit to bring in two more runs, and just like that, the Orphans had a 4-0 lead.

Look for the rest of the story, as well as more HJ sports coverage, in the Friday, May 18 edition of the Herald Journal. Click here for subscription information.

Follow Kip Kovar on Twitter.

@Kovar_HJSports 

KOVAR: What a difference 2 years makes

It’s amazing what can happen in two years. Come May 23, it will be officially two years that I have been writing for the Herald Journal. Two years. 730 days. 104 weeks. A lot can change in that amount of time.

When I came here, the Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted boys track and field team had just punched their first trip ever to the Class A State True Team Meet. Being relatively new to the area, I wasn’t 100 percent sure of the whole story and what surrounded the team.

Flash forward to last Tuesday afternoon at HLWW High School, and the story comes full circle. I didn’t really know the circumstances that surrounded HLWW’s section title two years ago. They lost one of their best sprinters, and even more importantly, one of their friends, just days before the section meet. Gavin Krtizeck was seriously injured in a car accident just days before the True Team meet two years ago. Devastated by the news, the Lakers rallied around each other, and accomplished something no other team in school history had done.

Gavin Kritzeck was back as he helped lead the Lakers to their second Section True Team title in three years.

Gavin Kritzeck was back as he helped lead the Lakers to their second Section True Team title in three years.

“Honestly, that was one of the most special meets I’ll probably ever have in my career,” Lakers coach Andy Hertwig said in an earlier interview. “The emotions of Monday’s practice, where kids were crying, only to come back Tuesday and have personal bests after personal bests. It was honestly so special. There’s no other way to put it. It was so exciting. Not only the team, but the community. Everyone was wearing the orange Team Gavin shirts. It was something I’ll never forget.”

Two years later, the Lakers looked to claim the Section 4A title once again, but this time, all together.

Although limited, Kritzeck was there with his teammates and brothers as the Lakers won their second Section 4A True Team title in three years.

After getting to know Kritzeck for a story I did last season on him working himself back to where he was at before the accident, I became inspired by him. Doctors thought that he might not ever walk again. Well, Gavin Krtizeck is unbreakable, and there’s a special family surrounding the HLWW track and field team.

Knowing everything Kritzeck and his teammates have gone through the past two years, there was nothing but a smile on my face as Kritzeck, along with his teammates, swarmed their head coach after being announced as champions. It’s one of the moments where you just have to stop and take it all in.

I stood there waiting to take a team picture, when I looked at Kritzeck. He was kneeling there, front and center, holding on to the Section True Team championship trophy with a big smile. In that moment, there was pure joy.

It’s coming up on two years since I’ve joined the great team at Herald Journal. I’ve learned more and more each day. There’s been state championships, and incredible individual performances, but that’s not my favorite part. It’s the people.

It’s seeing athletes around town who wave at me. It’s athletes asking me to tweet at them or put them on Twitter. It’s the special relationships I’ve been able to develop with them, and being able to be there to capture moments and tell stories that mean so much to them and their family.

It’s a pretty good gig, if you ask me. Yeah, there’s long days and late nights, but that’s nothing compared to being able to see what I saw Tuesday evening when Kritzeck and his teammates were crowned section champions once again. It was a surreal feeling, a feeling that this time, they were able to celebrate all together.

ALL TOGETHER NOW: HLWW boys headed back to state with dominant performance

HOWARD LAKE – It was a feeling that’s been felt before, but yet, it was still different. The Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted boys track and field team is headed back to the Class A True Team State Meet for the second time in three years, but this time, it’s a little different, and in a good way. This time, it’s all together.

Two years ago, the Lakers united as one in support of their teammate Gavin Krtizeck, who was seriously injured in a car accident just days before the Section True Team Meet. With Krtizeck heavily on their minds, several Lakers set new personal bests as the Lakers punched their ticket to the Class A True Team State Meet for the first time in school history. After winning the section title for the first time ever, several members of the team took the trophy to Kritzeck’s hospital room to celebrate with their teammate and friend.

The HLWW boys track and field team hoists their trophy after winning the Section 4A True Team Meet Tuesday evening.

The HLWW boys track and field team hoists their trophy after winning the Section 4A True Team Meet Tuesday evening.

Flash forward to Tuesday afternoon at HLWW High School, and Kritzeck was right along with his teammates and friends as they swarmed HLWW coach Andy Hertwig after being announced as Section 4A True Team Champions for the second time in three years.

“It was a pretty special moment to watch Gavin cross the finish line in that 4×100 relay,” Hertwig said. “I ran up and gave him a hug after and just said what a difference two years makes. The fun piece about True Team is that it truly is a team event. It takes every individual competing to do their best to help the team place as high as possible. This team understands that concept, and rally around each other. So, when you can accomplish what we did, everyone can enjoy the success.”

What makes what the Lakers accomplished even more impressive is the fact they won the meet despite missing their top distance runner in Noah Bundrock. Bundrock was held out with a broken collarbone, but that didn’t stop the Lakers from doing something they’ve done before, and quite well. The Lakers rallied around each other once again to make up for Bundrock’s absence by stepping up and on the big stage.

“We talked as a team right after Noah went down, about how everyone, not just our distance crew, is going to have to pick up the slack,” Hertwig said. “Gerrick Prine had a monster day running a 4:52 mile and 11:15  two-mile. Seventh grader Collin Boese stepped up and ran the open 400 and 4×400 for us. He ran 58 seconds in the open 400-meter dash, which is flying for a seventh grade boy. I could go on and on about the individuals that really stepped up.”

With everything that the Lakers have dealt with this season, including injuries and a late start to the season, Hertwig can’t help but smile when he sees all the hard work his kids put in pay off on their home track.

The HLWW track and field team gathers together at midfield for a group photo. The boys will be headed to the Class A State Meet, while the girls will wait and see if they get a wild card berth.

The HLWW track and field team gathers together at midfield for a group photo. The boys will be headed to the Class A State Meet, while the girls will wait and see if they get a wild card berth.

“I am extremely proud,” Hertwig said. “We knew we had some young, unproven talent mixed with some strong returning upperclassmen, but were not quite sure how the pieces would fall. Everyone worked hard and kept their focus during those brutal workouts indoors, or out in the snow, knowing this was the end goal is sight. I am just really proud of the hard work and sacrifice this group has demonstrated. With Noah out and Gavin limited, we had to shuffle some athletes around and they did so without complaint. They knew that if it would help benefit the team, they were for it. Even Noah tried endlessly to convince me to let him run.”

The Lakers will take part in the Class A True Team State Meet Saturday, May 19 at Stillwater High School.

HLWW GIRLS 

The HLWW boys weren’t the only team that found success at the Section 4A True Team Meet. The HLWW girls also turned in a second-place finish, and will wait and hope for a wildcard berth in the Class A State Meet, just like they did a season ago. The Lakers finished in second place with a team score of 970.50, which was just 20.50 points behind a really good Maple Lake squad.

“I believe Maple Lake is the best team in the State from the results I have seen, so to be within striking distance is nice to see,” Hertwig said. “From the research I have already done, I believe we have a good shot of getting in again. It would be quite the year to send both the boys’ and girls’ team to the state meet. We talked about being mentally tough Monday before practice. Weather not affecting us, wind not affecting us, a bad event not affecting our later performances, and I felt we handled ourselves very well. The athletes knew we were competing for a shot at the state meet, and that is a lot of pressure. (It was) so fun to see their excitement when they ran, jumped,  and threw so well.”

Several Lakers had impressive performances throughout the day on their home track. Senior Jenna Benson continued to be one of the top athletes in the area with several performances worthy of top-five finishes. On the day, in four events, Benson earned 144 points for her team while placing first in long jump, third in the 100-meter dash, and fifth in the 200-meter dash. She was also part of the 4×200 relay which took second place with a time of 1 minute and 56 seconds.

“At big moments, your best athletes have to perform, and she did that again,” Hertwig said. “Her long jump of 16 feet 8 inches is pushing the state qualifying standard already. Everyone knows she is a better 100-meter runner than a 200-meter, but she unselfishly runs the 4×200 because she knows it is the best for the team.”

While the senior had a big day for the Lakers in one of the most competitive meets of the season, the Lakers also got a huge performance from eighth-grader Brooke Baumann. On a busy day, Baumann still managed to turn in top-10 finishes in all three of her events. She took ninth place in the 400-meter dash with a time of 1 minute and 7 seconds. She also placed fifth in 3200-meter run, while helping the Lakers take third in the 4×800 relay.

HLWW’s Brooke Baumann zones in before her 400-meter dash. Baumann was a big part of the Lakers’ success at the Section 4A True Team meet, earning three top-10 finishes as an eighth grader. Baumann and the Lakers finished in second place, and will have to wait and see if they earn a wild card to get to the state meet.

HLWW’s Brooke Baumann zones in before her 400-meter dash. Baumann was a big part of the Lakers’ success at the Section 4A True Team meet, earning three top-10 finishes as an eighth grader. Baumann and the Lakers finished in second place, and will have to wait and see if they earn a wild card to get to the state meet.

“Her lineup for True Team is something most humans cannot do,” Hertwig said. “(Doing the) 4×800, open 400, and 3200m is a combination many coaches would never even let their athletes attempt. Brooke proved to us earlier in the year she could not only pull this off, but still run really fast times. She gutted out a fantastic time in the 3200-meter run, when we needed her the most.”

Gracie Mallak earned two top-five finishes for the Lakers in the 800-meter run and the 1600-meter run. Mallak took third in the 800-meter run with a time of 2 minutes and 31 seconds, while also taking second in the mile with a time of 5 minutes and 38 seconds.

LP/HT Girls

For the LP/HT girls, several athletes turned in some impressive performances.

Emilie Berry was one Bulldog who earned a new personal best. In the 400-meter dash, Berry turned in a time of 1 minute and 10 seconds, which was good enough for 16th place overall.

The team of Jayden Gray, Lily Dietrich, Clara Leverich, and Paige Heimerl also had a nice race in the 4×200 relay. The four runners helped the Bulldogs to a sixth-place finish with a time of two minutes even.

Sophia Cruz cracked the top-15 in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 21.57 seconds. Clara Leverich also took 10th in long jump with a jump of 14 feet, 5 inches, and 11th place in the triple jump.

LP/HT Boys

Logan Groff led the way for the Bulldogs at the Section True Team Meet. In high jump, Groff took fourth place clearing 5 feet, 8 inches. Groff helped lead the Bulldogs to a 10th-place finish in the 4×400 with a time of 3 minutes and 55 seconds. Groff’s impressive performances helped the Bulldogs finish in 14th place overall as a team.

LP/HT’s 4×200 relay team of Simon Mendoza, Tallon Schwantes, Hunter Lemke, and Groff also set a new personal best with a time of 1 minute and 41 seconds.

Mayer Lutheran Girls

The Mayer Lutheran girls team finished in 12th place at the Section True Team Meet. Leading the way for the Crusaders was Paige Stahlke.

Stahlke got the Crusaders off to a good start, finishing in fifth place out of 16 runners in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 18.45 seconds. Stahlke wasn’t done there, though. She also took 13th in the 300-meter hurdles, and 14th in the triple jump.

Taylor Dutcher also had a nice day for Mayer Lutheran. She took fourth in the shot put with a throw of 31 feet, 6 inches. She also took fifth in discus, finishing with a best throw of 88 feet, 1 inch.

Mayer Lutheran Boys

While shorthanded a bit, the Mayer Lutheran boys still managed to post some impressive times. The boys finished in sixth place overall with a team score of 677.50.

Leading the way for Mayer Lutheran was Joey Switch and Alex Stuedeman. Switch had a heck of day for the Crusaders to help them earn a top-10 finish. He took third place in the 400-meter dash, while also helping the Crusaders take third place in the 4×400 relay with a time of 3 minutes and 45 seconds. If that wasn’t enough, Switch also took fourth in the long jump, and seventh in the triple jump.

In high jump, junior Baden Noennig matched a season-best clearing 6 feet to finish in third place. Graham Friske took fourth in shot put, while Kaleb Winter took fifth in discus with a toss of 110 feet, 2 inches.

Section 4A True Team Meet

Tuesday, May 8
at HLWW High School

Girls Team Results: 1. Maple Lake 991, 2. HLWW 970.50, 3. Concordia Academy 945.50, 4. Spectrum 797.50, 5. SW Christian 690, 6. Trinity School at River Ridge 580, 7. Mounds Park Academy 517.50, 8. Nova Classical Academy 425.50, 9. Math and Science Academy 424, 10. Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity 410, 11. New Life Academy 396, 12. Mayer Lutheran 376, 13. CHOF 372, 14. North Lakes Academy 367, 15. Legacy Christian 346.50, 16. Northwest Nighthawks 243

Boys Team Results: 1. HLWW 847, 2. Spectrum 793.50, 3. Concordia Academy 757, 4. CHOF 718, 5. Maple Lake 686.50, 6. Mayer Lutheran 677.50, 6. Nova Classical Academy 677.50, 8. Mounds Park Academy 614.50, 9. SW Christian 604, 10. Math and Science Academy 542.50, 11. Trinity School at River Ridge 44.50, 12. Legacy Christian 408, 13. New Life Academy 382, 14. Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity 356, 15. North Lakes Academy 263.50, 16. Northwest Nighthawks 178.

Individual Girls Results

100-Meter Dash

1. Grace Scott (SW Christian), 13.19

3. Jenna Benson (HLWW), 13.53

11. Alysha Grow (HLWW), 14.31

16. Katelyn Cooper (ML), 14.73

21. Kiya Aurich (ML), 15.30

26. Shelby Litzau (LP/HT), 16.32

28. Anna Litzau (LP/HT), 16.51

200-Meter Dash

1. Grace Scott (SW Christian), 27.79

5. Jenna Benson (HLWW), 28.98

17. Madison Severson (HLWW), 30.59

22. Jayden Gray (LP/HT), 31.82

26. Brooke Heimerl (LP/HT), 32.70

27. Olivia Shimanski (ML), 32.86

30. Julia Lauseng (ML), 33.36

400-Meter Dash

1. Izzy Quam (MPA), 1:04.11

9. Brooke Baumann (HLWW), 1:07.70

10. Heather Leukuma (HLWW), 1:07.93

16. Emilie Berry (LP/HT), 1:10.69

19. Olivia Shimanski (ML), 1:13.24

23. Josie Tonn (LP/HT), 1:17.86

800-Meter Run

1. Maria Streed (SW Christian), 2:29.43

3. Gracie Mallak (HLWW), 2:31.66

8. Erin Brabec (HLWW), 2:43.45

18. Zoe Eullund (LP/HT), 2:50.80

25. Sydney Sheehan (LP/HT), 3:05.57

1600-Meter Run

1. Sophia Pribyl (Maple Lake), 5:31.94

2. Gracie Mallak (HLWW), 5:38.72

6. Gwen Helgeson (HLWW), 5:59.15

21. Zoe Eullund (LP/HT), 6:52.07

3200-Meter Run 

1. Tierney Wolfgram (MSA), 10:37.18

5. Brooke Baumann (HLWW), 12:45.00

10. Ivy Fasching (HLWW), 13:50.61

16. Grace Dietrich (LP/HT), 16:09.77

110-Meter Hurdles

1. Brynn Paumen (Maple Lake), 16.27

5. Paige Stahlke (ML), 18.45

10. Mikayla Scherping (HLWW), 19.58

13. Sophia Cruz (LP/HT), 21.57

16. Julia Lauseng (ML), 25.02

300-Meter Hurdles

1. Gracie Elsenpeter (Maple Lake), 49.06

2. Katelyn Routhier (HLWW), 49.69

8. Mikayla Scherping (HLWW), 53.93

11. Delanie Lundgren (ML), 54.97

13. Paige Stahlke (ML), 56.08

20. Sophia Cruz (LP/HT), 1:0.69

4×100 relay

1. SW Christian, 52.27

2. HLWW, 54.43.

8. Mayer Lutheran, 57.87

11. Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity, 1:03.29

4×200 relay

1. Nova Classical Academy, 1:55.18

2. HLWW, 1:56.75

6. Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity, 2:00.74

4×400 relay

1. Spectrum, 4:19.55

4. HLWW, 4:27.36

9. Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity, 4:43.82

4×800 relay

1. Maple Lake, 10:12.88

3. HLWW, 10:47.25

12. Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity, 12:00.69

Long jump

1. Jenna Benson (HLWW), 16-08.50

5. Heather Leukuma (HLWW), 16-00.75

10. Clara Leverich (LP/HT), 14-05.25

11. Delanie Lundgren (ML), 14-05.00

18. Paige Heimerl (LP/HT), 13-03.00

20. Delaney Boehlke (ML), 12-11.25

Triple Jump

1. Maggie Larson (Maple Lake), 35-03.50

3. Heather Leukuma (HLWW), 33-06.50

5. Raquel Scherping (HLWW), 31-00.00

11. Clara Leverich (LP/HT), 29-06.00

14. Paige Stahlke (ML), 28-09.50

15. Paige Heimerl (LP/HT), 28-08.00

18. Delaney Boehlke (ML), 26-08.75

High Jump

1. Arika Robinson (Concordia), 5-02

4. Mikayla Scherping (HLWW), 4-10

5. Isabelle Roufs (HLWW), 4-10

Pole Vault

1. Rachel TerHaar (Concordia), 10-09

5. Heather Leukuma (HLWW), 7-09

7. Mikayla Thorson (HLWW), 7-03

Shot put

1. Catie Fobbe (Maple Lake), 35-11.50

2. Bethany Groos (HLWW), 33-07.75

4. Taylor Dutcher (ML), 31-06.75

5. Courtney Long (HLWW), 30-07.75

9. Lydia Parrish (ML), 28-07.00

16. Rebecca Fasching (LP/HT), 23-08.25

24. Peighton Ruzicka (LP/HT), 20-10.25

Discus

1. Catie Fobbe (Maple Lake), 108-11

2. Courtney Long (HLWW), 103-03

4. Alysha Grow (HLWW), 91-07

5. Taylor Dutcher (ML), 88-01

10. Lydia Parrish (ML), 79-01

18. Peighton Ruzicka (LP/HT), 62-09

26. Rebecca Fasching (LP/HT), 50-07

Individual Boys Results

100-Meter Dash

1. Zach Ertel (SW Christian), 11.60

8. Baden Noennig (ML), 12.30

10. AJ Gatz (HLWW), 12.40

11. Ben Paulson (HLWW), 12.45

17. Simon Mendoza (LP/HT),

22. Kaleb Winter (ML), 12.75

30. Beau Schmidt (LP/HT), 14.08

200-Meter Dash

1. Zach Ertel (SW Christian), 23.98

2. Tommy Horn (HLWW), 24.74

6. Baden Noennig (ML), 25.03

12. Logan Groff (LP/HT), 25.61

16. Cole Hagen (ML), 25.73

20. Garrett Grimler (HLWW), 26.03

400-Meter Dash

1. Dare Akinmusire (Nova), 52.51

2. Tommy Horn (HLWW), 53.06

3. Joey Switch (ML), 53.78

10. Collin Boese (HLWW), 58.37

25. Chris Woestehoff (ML), 1:03.52

28. Andrew Mendoza (LP/HT), 1:09.19

800-Meter Run

1. Jebadiah Merkle (SWC), 2:00.76

16. Jackson Workman (HLWW), 2:20.25

18. Spencer Lade (HLWW), 2:23.48

24. Micah Loder (ML), 2:31.92

27. Zach Zebell (LP/HT), 2:36.75

28. Collin Manley (ML), 2:44.14

1600-Meter Run

1. Declan Dahlberg (MPA), 4:34.35

7. Gerrick Prine (HLWW), 4:53.33

12. Cole Leukuma (HLWW), 5:11.19

13. Andrew Jackson (LP/HT), 5:15.83

26. Zach Zebell (LP/HT), 5:58.21

3200-Meter Run 

1. Declan Dahlberg (MPA), 9:53.03

8. Nick Czanstkowski (HLWW), 10:57.95

10. Gerrick Prine (HLWW), 11:21.17

20. Sam Olsen (ML), 12:09.63

26. Eli Salonek (ML), 12:50.44

27. Rodrigo Medina (LP/HT), 13:34.81

110-Meter Hurdles

1. Adrian Peterson (Spectrum), 16.73

2. Caden Zillmer (HLWW), 16.85

7. Alex Stuedeman (ML), 18.20

10. Spencer Lade (HLWW), 19.49

18. Liam Schulz (ML), 23.79

300-Meter Hurdles

1. Daryn Strub (Maple Lake), 43.53

2. Alex Stuedeman (ML), 43.81

3. Caden Zillmer (HLWW), 44.05

11. Brennan Barth (HLWW), 48.44

18. Matthew Mendiola (LP/HT), 53.36

19. Liam Schulz (ML), 55.33

23. Kobe Sanders (LP/HT), 59.22

4×100 relay

1. Southwest Christian, 43.78

3. HLWW, 47.93

9. Mayer Lutheran, 49.71

4×200 relay

1. CHOF, 1:39.24

4. HLWW, 1:39.97

5. Mayer Lutheran, 1:40.46

6. Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity, 1:41.00

4×400 relay

1. Nova Classical Academy, 3:39.08

3. Mayer Lutheran, 3:45.93

8. HLWW, 3:52.84

10. Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity, 3:55.12

4×800 relay

1. Math and Science Academy, 8:17.97

4. HLWW, 8:56.18

12. Mayer Lutheran, 10:09.02

Long jump

1. Alexander DuMoulin (SWC), 20-08.00

4. Joey Switch (ML), 19-08.00

5. Cole Hagen (ML), 19-05.25

7. Remington Albright (HLWW), 18-09.00

10. Ben Paulson (HLWW), 18-04.00

23. Andrew Jackson (LP/HT), 16-05.75

25. Beau Schmidt (LP/HT), 15-00.75

Triple Jump

1. Alexander DuMoulin (SWC),41-05.50

5. Joe Welk (ML), 38-10.50

7. Joey Switch (ML), 38-08.00

12. Tommy Horn (HLWW), 37-00.00

14. AJ Gatz (HLWW), 36-09.50

17. Andrew Jackson (LP/HT), 34-08.50

21. Matthew Mendiola (LP/HT), 31-04.00

High Jump

1. Yahya Madar (MPA), 6-05

3. Baden Noennig (ML), 6-00

4. Logan Groff (LP/HT), 5-08

6. Spencer Lade (HLWW), 5-08

12. Mitchell Thiesfeld (ML), 5-06

16. Ben Paulson (HLWW), 5-04

Pole Vault

1. Jonathan Boll (Concordia), 11-09

3. Adam Martinson (HLWW), 10-09

6. Parker Helmbrecht (HLWW), 10-03

11. Hunter Lemke (LP/HT), 7-09

16. Eli Salonek (ML), 6-03

Shot put

1. Quinn Mathison (HLWW), 41-01.75

4. Graham Friske (ML), 38-04.50

6. Elijah Riemer (HLWW), 37-07.75

10. Johnny Erdmann (ML), 36-00.50

13. Matthew Faching (LP/HT), 33-01.75

15. Joseph Mochinski (LP/HT), 32-08.75

Discus

1. Quinn Mathison (HLWW), 137-04

5. Kaleb Winter (ML), 110-02

6. Brennan Barth (HLWW), 107-06

7. Johnny Erdmann (ML), 106-03

22. Beau Teubert (LP/HT), 76-01

23. Joseph Mochinski (LP/HT), 73-06

PREP SOFTBALL: Lakers left searching for clutch hits in pair of losses to Paynesville

HOWARD LAKE – The Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted softball team did just what they wanted. They just couldn’t capitalize on it. In two games, the Lakers stranded 18 runners on base as they fell short in both games against Paynesville by a score of 7-2 and 5-1 Thursday night on their home field.

“Getting those hits that you need to is just part of that mental game of being a batter,” HLWW coach Carol Meyerson said. “It’s just getting that timely hit when we have runners on and we have that advantage. We have to take advantage of it.”

HLWW's Haley Wiegert has continued to carry the load for the Lakers in the circle this season.

HLWW’s Haley Wiegert has continued to carry the load for the Lakers in the circle this season.

Despite falling short in both games, the Lakers had plenty of things they can build off of. They led 2-0 over the Bulldogs headed into the sixth inning, but not capitalizing on opportunities earlier in the game allowed Paynesville to stay within striking distance. The Bulldogs scored two runs in the top of the sixth inning to tie the game, and then blew open the game in the top of the seventh with five runs to steal Game 1 away from the Lakers.

In Game 2, it was the same story for the Lakers who had multiple chances to put up a big inning, yet were held to just one run. The Lakers left two or more runners on base in four of the six innings, including leaving the bases loaded after Paynesville gave them a golden chance with back-to-back errors.

“We could have capitalized,” Meyerson said. “They were making errors at different times. Putting the ball in play, good things will always happen, and putting the ball in play at the right time is critical.”

Look for the rest of the story, as well as more HJ sports coverage, in the Friday, March 2 edition of the Herald Journal. Click here for subscription information.

For more photos of the HLWW softball team, click here.

Follow Kip Kovar on Twitter.

@Kovar_HJSports 

PREP SOFTBALL: Speed, defense helps Bulldogs continue hot start to season

LESTER PRAIRIE – When you throw strikes, make plays, and put the ball in play, good things tend to happen. That’s just what the Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity softball team has been doing as they completed a sweep of the PACT Charter Panthers Monday afternoon 11-0 and 14-6 at Lester Prairie Bulldog Field. Despite losing all of their pitching, and arguably one of the best hitters in program history, the Bulldogs are a perfect 3-0 to start the season.

“I really am,” LP/HT coach Bill Neubarth said about how happy his team has started off the season. “Southwest (Christian) is a really good team. This team is up and coming. I think what we did was worked on our pitching a lot. We’re not as overpowering, but if we can throw strikes, I’m happy.”

Freshman Alexis Langenfeld gave the Bulldogs some strong pitching in relief in LP/HT's 15-5 in Game 2 to sweep PACT Charter Monday night.

Freshman Alexis Langenfeld gave the Bulldogs some strong pitching in relief in LP/HT’s 15-5 win in Game 2 to sweep PACT Charter Monday night.

Along with getting solid pitching from Jenna Dolezal and Alexis Langenfeld, the Bulldogs’ defense has been almost as good as you could ask for so far this season.

“Our defense has played solid,” Neubarth said. “I mean, we’ve had three errors in three games. I’ll take that.”

While the defense has been dependable to start, that gives the Dolezal, Langenfeld, and Maddie Guggemos confidence in the circle knowing there are players ready to make plays behind them.

“Let them make the plays,” Neubarth said. “That’s what we got to do. This is probably one of my best defensive teams. It’s a good team with a good outfield and good team speed. I think that’s what has helped us.”

Look for the rest of the story, as well as more HJ sports coverage, in the Friday, March 2 edition of the Herald Journal. Click here for subscription information.

For more photos of the LP/HT softball team, click here.

Follow Kip Kovar on Twitter.

@Kovar_HJSports