Archive for General

Funeral notice: Georgia ‘Dot’ Berchtold, 89, formerly of Delano

DELANO, MN – Georgia “Dot” Berchtold, 89, formerly of Delano, passed away Friday, April 19, 2019, at the Sandstone Health Care Center. A memorial service is planned on Saturday, May 18 at 11 a.m. at St. Peter Catholic Church in Delano, with visitation one hour prior to the service at the church. Burial will be at the Calvary Cemetery in Delano. Arrangements are with Methven Funeral and Cremation Services of Sandstone; www.methvenfuneralhome.com.

Boys golf takes 13th in opener at Pebble Creek

By BRAD SALMEN

Sports Editor

BECKER – The DC boys golf team opened the 2019 season at the difficult Becker Invitational at Pebble Creek Golf Course Monday, finishing tied for 13th place out of 19 teams.

Waconia won the meet with a team score of 292, 22 strokes ahead of second place Buffalo.

Brett Reid of Community Christian School of Willmar was the meet medalist, carding a five-under 65.

Jackson Bakeberg was the low scorer for the Chargers, carding an 8-over 78.

Alex Peterson (80), Cade Ortquist (86), and Dylan Johnson (100) rounded out the scoring for DC. It was the first varsity meet for Johnson, along with Kaden Johnson (104) and Nathan Clark (109).

DC’s next scheduled action is Tuesday at Southbrook Golf Course in Annandale in a WCC West meet. There were two WCC West foes at Pebble Creek; the Chargers finished behind New London-Spicer, but ahead of Annandale.

 

BECKER INVITATIONAL

at Pebble Creek GC

Team Results

1. Waconia, 292

2. Buffalo, 314

3. Detroit Lakes, 315

4. Orono, 316

5. Rogers, 321

6. St. Cloud Cathedral, 327

6. CC of Willmar, 327

8. Mound, 331

9. Albany, 332

10. Delano, 334

11. New London-Spicer, 339

12. Monticello, 342

13. DC, 344

13. Becker, 344

15. Hutchinson, 352

16. Little Falls, 373

17. Willmar, 378

18. Heritage Christian Academy, 389

19. Annandale, 393

 

Individual Results

Meet Medalist

1. Brett Reid, CC of Willmar, 65

DC Finishers

Jackson Bakeberg, 78

Alex Peterson, 80

Cade Ortquist, 86

Dylan Johnson, 100

Kaden Johnson, 104

Nathan Clark, 109

A peek at next year’s DCHS sports sections

By BRAD SALMEN

Sports Editor

Every two years, the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) redraws the sections and classes for all high school sports.

This year, the MSHSL’s alignment meant five DCHS sports (football, boys and girls baskeball, baseball, and softball) will be moved down a class (see related story).

Outside of those five teams, three teams saw their sections get a little bit easier.

The DC wrestling team will have an easier go in Section 6AA, as 13-time section champion Foley was moved to a new section, along with powerhouse Litchfield.

Te DC boys golf team will welcome the removal of perennial section champion Holy Family to a new section.

In addition, the boys swimming & diving team will no longer have to contend with section champion Sauk Rapids-Rice.

Below is a look at the sections for all DCHS teams for next season, as determined by the MSHSL.

 

FOOTBALL

Section 2AAA

Teams

• Belle Plaine

• Dassel-Cokato

• Glencoe-Silver Lake

• Holy Family

• Litchfield

• Providence Academy

• Watertown-Mayer

What this means: The DC football team will be in a brand new class (AAA) and section for next season, dropping down from Class AAA.

“We will be playing teams we’ve played in the regular season in the playoffs (GSL, Holy Family, Litchfield),” said DC head coach Ryan Weinandt. “It is a very tough section, but I do like that we are playing schools more like us.”

 

BOYS BASKETBALL

Section 3AA

Teams

• Blake

• Breck

• Brooklyn Center

• DC

• Holy Family

• HLWW

• Litchfield

• Maranatha

• Minneapolis North

• PACT

• Providence Academy

• Rockford

• Southwest Christian

• International School

• Watertown-Mayer

What this means: The Charger boys will drop from Class AAA to Class AA. And while overall it’s a good thing for the program, coach Dave Chvojicek said the new section will still be very tough.

“In some cases I think the AAA teams might have more depth than the AA teams,” he said. “That being said, the skill level, coaching and synergy the AA teams have is higher than it’s ever been.”

 

GIRLS BASKETBALL

Section 5AA

Teams

• Annandale

• Blake

• Breck

• Brooklyn Center

• Dassel-Cokato

• FAIR School

• Holy Family

• HLWW

• Maple Lake

• Maranatha

• Metro Schools College Prep

• Minneapolis North

• Minneapolis Henry

• Providence Academy

• Rockford

• Southwest Christian

• International School

• Watertown-Mayer

What this means: While overall the drop to Class AA is beneficial, the Chargers will face an uphill battle, as Section 5AA is perhaps the toughest section in Class AA.

Instead of eight teams in their previoius section, Section 5AA has 18 teams, including a number of strong teams.

 

BASEBALL

Section 5AA

Teams

• Blake

• Breck

• Brooklyn Center

• DC

• Glencoe-Silver Lake

• Holy Family

• HLWW

• Litchfield

• Maple Lake

• Minneapolis Henry

• Norwood Young America

• Providence Academy

• Rockford

• Southwest Christian

• Watertown-Mayer

What this means: While there are more teams in Section 5AA than 5AAA, DC head coach Cole Flick said the drop in class is very beneficial for his team.

 

SOFTBALL

Section 3AA

Teams

• Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City

• DC

• Jackson County Central

• Litchfield

• Luverne

• Minneota/Canby

• Minnewaska

• Montevideo

• Morris/Chokio-Alberta

• New London-Spicer

• Pipestone

• Redwood Valley

• St. James

• Tracy-Milroy-Balaton

• Windom

What this means: A brand new section and class for coach Wendy Runquist means more equal competition, but more travel.

Section 3AA is spread throughout the West and Southwest half of the state.

 

WRESTLING

Section 6AA

Teams

• Albany

• Annandale/Maple Lake

• Becker

• Big Lake

• Dassel-Cokato

• Monticello

• Rockford

• Rocori

• Sartell-St. Stephen

• Spectrum

• St. Cloud Apollo

• Zimmerman

Teams lost: Foley, Litchfield

New teams: Rockford, Rocori, Sartell-St. Stephen, Spectrum, St. Cloud Apollo

What this means: DC wrestling made out like bandits.

For the first time in 13 years, the Section 6AA champion will be a team not named Foley. In addition, Litchfield – a perennially strong team – will not be in the section.

This means that the top two teams from last year’s section are Becker and DC, who met in the Section semifinals, are now the favorites.

“The updated Section 6AA will look very different without Foley and Litchfield next season. Foley has been the top team for the last decade, and we will have a new representative coming out next year,” said DC head coach Bryan Clemen. “We still have several solid programs that have a chance to represent our section next season. Development in the off-season will be key for any program that is looking to take that top spot.”

 

BOYS GOLF

Section 5AA

Teams

• Annandale

• Breck School

• Dassel-Cokato

• Delano

• Fridley

• Howard Lake-W-W

• Maple Lake

• Maranatha

• Mayer Lutheran

• MPLS Patrick Henry

• Mound Westonka

• Providence Academy

• Rockford

• Spectrum Charter

• Southwest Christian

• Watertown-Mayer

• Zimmerman

Teams lost: Holy Family

New teams: Maranatha, Mayer Lutheran

What this means: Big news for Section 5AA, with the removal of Holy Family.

Holy Family has dominated Section 5AA boys golf for a number of years. DC head coach Brian Johnson said the move will make competition for the section trophy wide open.

“I think this will bring a more competitive feel to our section,” Johnson said. “As I look to next year, there could be a variety of schools who could compete for the title. In the previous years of Sectoin 5AA, it was usually Holy Family who would run away with the title.”

 

CROSS COUNTRY

Section 2AA

Teams

• Buffalo

• Chanhassen

• Chaska

• Dassel-Cokato

• Delano

• Hutchinson

• Jordan

• Mankato East

• Mankato West

• Marshall

• Mound Westonka

• New Prague

• Orono

• Shakopee

• St. Peter

• Waconia

• Worthington

Teams lost: Willmar

New teams: Jordan, St. Peter

What this means: Section 2AA just got a little more wide open, as Willmar was a perennial section contender.

 

GYMNASTICS

Section 6A

Teams

• Annandale

• Benson-KMS-Mont

• Dassel-Cokato

• HLWW

• Litchfield

• New London-Spicer

• Paynesville/EVW

• Willmar

 

Teams lost: Melrose, Maple Lake

New teams: None.

What this means: Section 6A just got a whole lot easier with the removal of Melrose, a team that has perpetually dominated the section.

 

GIRLS GOLF

Section 5AA

Teams

• Annandale

• Breck School

• Dassel-Cokato

• Delano

• Fridley

• Holy Family Catholic

• Howard Lake-W-W

• Maple Lake

• Maranatha

• Mayer Lutheran

• Mound Westonka

• Providence Academy

• Rockford

• Watertown-Mayer

• Spectrum

Teams lost: Minneapolis Henry, Southwest Christian

New teams: Maranatha, Mayer Lutheran

What this means: Little to no

 

BOYS SWIMMING

 & DIVING

Section 3A

Teams

• DC/L

• Hutchinson

• Montevideo

• Monticello

• Princeton

• Rocori

• St. Cloud Apollo

• Willmar

Teams lost: Sauk Rapids-Rice, Zimmerman

New teams: None

What this means: The Chargers will have a much easier time making it to state after the removal of Sauk Rapids-Rice, a team that took first in the section last season.

 

VOLLEYBALL

Section 6AA

Teams

• Albany

• Annandale

• Dassel-Cokato

• Foley

• Holdingford

• Howard Lake-W-W

• Maple Lake

• Maranatha

• Melrose Area

• Milaca

• PACT

• Rocori

• Royalton

• Sauk Centre

• Spectrum

• St. Cloud Cathedral

• Zimmerman

Teams lost: Little Falls, Pierz

New teams: Albany, Maranatha, PACT, Royalton

What this means: Little change to the section.

 

TRACK & FIELD

Section 2AA

Teams

• Buffalo

• Chanhassen

• Chaska

• Dassel-Cokato

• Delano

• Hutchinson

• Jordan

• Mankato East

• Mankato West

• Marshall

• Mound Westonka

• New Prague

• New Ulm

• Shakopee

• St. Peter

• Waconia

• Waseca

• Worthington

New teams: Jordan, St. Peter.

What this means: The section just got a little bit harder with the addition of two new teams, and no losses.

 

BOYS HOCKEY

Section 3A

Teams

• Hutchinson

• Willmar

• Fairmont

• LDC

• Marshall

• New Ulm

• Redwood Valley

• Windom

• Worthington

• Luverne

No Change.

 

GIRLS HOCKEY

Section 2A

Teams

• Hutchinson

• Delano/Rockford

• LDC

• Minnesota River

• Mound Westonka

• New Ulm

No Change.

 

GIRLS SWIMMING

& DIVING

Section 3A

Teams

• Dassel-Cokato

• Delano

• Hutchinson

• Litchfield

• Orono

• Waconia

• Willmar

• Marshall

• Montevideo/Dawson-Boyd

• Mound Westonka/HF

• WM/ML/SW Christian

No Change.

 

 

 

Waverly man injured in crash involving semi

MAPLE LAKE TOWNSHIP, MN – A crash involving a semi injured a Waverly man Wednesday.

According to the Minnesota State Patrol, a 2015 Hyundai Sonata driven by Cory Lyons, 30, was traveling on Highway 55 in Maple Lake Township around 3:55 p.m. when it rear-ended a semi that was stopped and waiting to turn onto Wright County Road 138.

Lyons was transported to Buffalo Hospital with noncritical injuries.

The driver of the semi, 42-year-old Jered Davis, of St. Francis, was not injured.

Both drivers were wearing seat belts and alcohol was not a factor in the crash, according to the State Patrol.

Allina Ambulance, the Wright County Sheriff’s Office, and Buffalo Fire Department assisted at the scene.

A goal to remember: Rookie Joel L’Esperance scores first NHL goal in front of DC family and friends

By BRAD SALMEN

Sports Editor

Dallas Stars rookie forward Joel L’Esperance’s second-period goal against the Minnesota Wild on March 14 was a big one, for a number of reasons.

For one, it gave Dallas an insurmountable 3-0 lead against the Wild, helping push the Stars further ahead in the playoff race in the NHL’s Western Conference.

For another, it was the first goal of L’Esperance’s NHL career.

And for another, that first NHL goal came in front of a large number of family and friends at the Xcel Energy Center.

The family, in this case, was his wife Liana’s.

Liana L’Esperance, nee Haataja, is a 2014 Dassel-Cokato graduate, and the daughter of Steve and Laura Haataja of Cokato.

Liana and Joel were married in 2017, before Joel’s senior season at Michigan Tech University. On Christmas Eve, the couple were blessed with their first child, daughter Lyla.

Joel, a native of Brighton, Mich., had a solid four-year career for the MTU Huskies, finishing with at least 26 points in his last three seasons.

Following the 2017-18 college season, Joel signed with the Texas Stars, the minor-league American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate of the Dallas club, for their final nine games of the regular season and playoffs.

His numbers last season for Texas were by no means overwhelming. Joel had just two points in nine regular season games, and four points in 22 playoff games.

This season, however, something clicked.

L’Esperance came out of the gate red-hot for the Texas Stars, scoring a league-high 27 goals in 49 games, and making the AHL All-Star game.

Following that hot start, L’Esperance got the call every hockey player dreams of: an invitation to play in the NHL.

Joel made his NHL debut Feb. 16 against Carolina. Though coaches and writers agreed he played well in his first few appearances – well enough to be moved up to the second line – L’Esperance remained scoreless through his first 10 NHL games.

But in his 11th, in St. Paul, Joel finally broke through, redirecting a Jamie Benn pass over the shoulder of Minnesota goaltender Devan Dubnyk.

That goal elicited loud cheers from a collection of fans from Dassel-Cokato who would normally be rooting for the Wild, but for this night, were fans of Joel L’Esperance.

Gymnastics 2018-19 Year in Review

By BRAD SALMEN

Sports Editor

The 2018-19 DC gymastics season was an up-and-down affair.

The Chargers entered their second season under head coach Alex Halonen (nee Wente) with high hopes after a 2017-18 campaign that had no senior graduates.

Unfortunately, the team was bitten by the injury bug all season, impeding their team progress and scores.

However, a number of younger gymnasts stepped up to gain valuable varsity experience, which bodes well for future seasons.

The Chargers will graduate two seniors this season, in Marianna Aho and Megan Nelson.

DC will especially have a tough time filling the spot of Nelson, a four-year starter on varsity.

Nelson was the highest all-around finisher at the section tournament, finishing in 12th place. She also finished tops on the team in two individual events.

Nelson and eighth-grader Lauren Abfalter were both named All-Conference for the Wright County Conference.

The team also received the Section 6A Gold Award for the third straight year.

Wente provided the following comments for the 2017-18 season.

Season record: 4-6 in regular season. Placed 7th at sections out of 10.

We were pleased with this finish, as there was a wide spread of points between each place.

Seniors:

• Marianna Aho – will be continuing her education at Gustavus Aldolphus, where she will study to be a nurse. We will miss her free spirit in the gym, and we thank her for her years of commitment to DC Charger Gymnastics.

• Megan Nelson – will be continuing her education at Southwest Minnesota State, where she will study social work, as well as continue her diving career. We are grateful for her time competing as a DC Charger, and will miss her contagious energy!

Highlights this past season:

Overall the team had great depth on each event. The girls all added more difficulty into their routines and also satisfied more routine requirements.

Although our goal of breaking the team record was not accomplished, there was  a lot of improvement made this year in routines and performance. When adding harder skills in routines and fulfilling requirements to earn a higher start value, you also open the door for more deductions.

Letterwinners:

• Marianna Aho

• Megan Nelson

• Madeline Pokornowski

• Lauren Abfalter

• Randi Bayerl

• Kianna Anderson

Award Winners:

• All-Conference: Megan Nelson, Lauren Abfalter

• Section 6A Gold Academic Award (team)

Captains:

• Megan Nelson

• Marianna Aho

Captains Next Season:

• Kianna Anderson

• Randi Bayerl

• Madeline Pokornowski

Looking Ahead to Next Year: Next season we hope to start off strong and come into the gym prepared. We will have the same goal as last year, beating the team record. We are hopeful that injuries will not be as prominent next year as they were this year. We are all  excited for what we can accomplish with out veteran gymnasts  and our first year competitors!

Final thoughts: We are very excited to continue adding difficulty into our routines on all events. We are also very pleased with the participants with DC Tumblers (our community ed program) and hope to continue to grow and make our DC Chargers as competitive  as they can be!