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Park Rapids' Jake Waggoner, Zach Eystad, Connor Smythe and Ben Kading entered last Saturday's finals of the Section 5A boys swimming meet at Bemidji confident of securing trips to the state Class A meet. All four were in perfect position to earn state berths after solid performances during last Friday's preliminaries. All four delivered in the finals by breaking three school records and qualifying for state in five events. Waggoner qualified in two individual events by placing fourth in the 200-yard freestyle and second in the 500-yard freestyle.
United North Central's Jake Malone, Max Pajari and Taylor Carlson and Nevis' Collin Huckbody qualified for the state Class A wrestling tournament at last Saturday's Section 8A meet at Glyndon. Malone won the section title at 126 pounds, Pajari was the runner-up at 138 pounds, Huckbody won the title at 182 pounds and Carlson claimed the title at 220 pounds. Malone, the No.
Katie Klein and Charity Ridlon hit two free throws apiece in the final 18 seconds as the Park Rapids girls basketball team held off a late rally by Northland for a 68-64 victory Monday night at the Area High School gym. The Panthers led 64-52 with 3:51 to play before Northland went on a 10-0 run to slice the gap to 64-62 with 34 seconds left.
Clutch free-throw shooting down the stretch sparked a 26-12 run as the Park Rapids boys basketball team rallied for a 70-61 win at Menahga Tuesday night. The Panthers trailed 49-44 with 7:47 to play before a 9-2 run provided a 53-51 lead with 2:55 to play.
Todd Fritze couldn't have asked for a better Section 5A meet from the Park Rapids boys swimming and diving team. In addition to having every swimmer clock a lifetime best during Friday's preliminaries or Saturday's finals at Bemidji, the Panthers set three school record and qualified four individuals in five events for the state Class A meet. Park Rapids also finished third in the team standings with 313 points to trail only Alexandria's 450.50 and Fergus Falls' 360 in this seven-team meet. "You can't ask for anything more than lifetime bests across the board," said Fritze.
John Kyllonen's success during the regular season set him up to qualify for his first state Class AA wrestling tournament. Kyllonen, who went 21-16 and finished fifth at last year's Section 8AA meet, entered this year's section meet in a perfect position to advance to state as the No.
Warroad continued its dominance over the Park Rapids-Menahga-Nevis-Walker-Hackensack-Akeley boys hockey team Thursday night. The Warriors held a 44-7 advantage in shots on goal en route to an 11-0 win in a Section 8A quarterfinal game at Warroad. Park Rapids hasn't scored a goal in five career games against the Warriors.
The Park Rapids girls basketball team received the No. 6 seed in the North and will open the Section 8AA playoffs at No. 3 Crosby-Ironton Thursday night at 6. Crosby-Ironton defeated the Panthers 66-28 and 69-51 during the regular season. C-I has a 19-5 record while the Panthers a 6-18. In Thursday night's other North quarterfinal games, No. 2 Pequot Lakes (17-9) hosts No. 7 Roseau (5-19) and No. 4 Warroad (13-11) hosts No. 5 Bagley (13-13). The North semifinals will be held at Bemidji State University Saturday night with the Warroad vs. Bagley winner playing No.
Menahga received the No. 4 seed in the West and will host No. 5 Browerville in a Section 5A girls basketball tournament game Thursday night at 7. The Braves defeated Browerville 60-49 on Feb. 14. The winner of that game will most likely play Upsala, the No. 1 seed in the West, Saturday night at 6 at Wadena. Menahga ended the regular season with an 11-13 record. In the other half of the bracket, No. 3 Sebeka hosts No. 6 Nevis and No. 2 Verndale hosts No. 7 Bertha-Hewitt Thursday night at 7. The winners of those games meet Saturday night at 7:45 at Wadena.
Tanner Schwartz led the Menahga boys basketball team in scoring as the Braves split games with Parkers Prairie and Bertha-Hewitt. Schwartz scored 31 points in the Braves' 85-73 loss at Parkers Prairie last Friday night and scored 28 points in leading the Braves to a 64-48 Park Region Conference win over Bertha-Hewitt Tuesday night. Menahga improved to 7-4 in the conference and 12-9 overall with the split. Parkers Prairie defeats Braves In addition to leading the team in scoring, Tanner Schwartz had nine rebounds, three assists and three steals in the loss to Parkers Prairie. Austen S