- Member for
- 5 years 1 month
Senior Gavin Mickelson and juniors Luke Wurdock and Hailey Usher will be looking to lead the United North Central boys and girls golf teams this spring. All three golfers qualified for last year’s Section 8AA tournament and are determined to repeat that feat this spring.
The return of 12 varsity golfers has Walt Harrison expecting another successful season from the Park Rapids girls golf team. Last season, the Panthers averaged a 404.1 in eight 18-hole meets, carding rounds under 400 four times. Park Rapids also dominated play in the Northern Pines Conference and qualified for the Section 8AA tournament. Mariena Dearstyne capped off the season by qualifying for the state Class AA tournament. Harrison is expecting even a better season this spring.
Jeff Anderson is counting on his experience as a PGA professional to help the Park Rapids boys golf team put a competitive group on the course this season. Anderson, who takes over as the Panthers’ head coach, has been a golf pro since 1989. His main goals this season are to see his players improve and enjoy the game. “We have some good golfers and some kids with potential,” said Anderson. “The biggest part of high school golf is for the kids to have fun, learn the game and enjoy it as a lifetime sport.”
Steve Schreiber knew the work ethic of his young Menahga girls basketball team would produce a successful season. The Braves featured a young lineup with senior Jen Stifter and Dani Novak; junior Lindsay Hendrickson; sophomore Leah Schwartz; and freshmen Alyssa Peterson, Aimee Lake, Cierra Ahlf and Megan Hendrickson leading the way. That group led Menahga to a share of fourth place in the Park Region Conference standings and a 14-14 overall record.
Charlie Dormanen is hoping the Menahga baseball team can take advantage of a revised four-class system and contend for a trip to the state Class A tournament. Menahga moves from Section 6A to Section 5A, joining Hill City, Nevis, Northland, Pillager, Pine River-Backus, Sebeka and Walker-Hackensack-Akeley in the West. The teams in Section 5A East are Barnum, Braham, East Central, Hinckley-Finlayson, Isle, McGregor, Ogilvie and Onamia.
After graduating 11 seniors who led the way to a 36-13 record the last two springs, Bill Dent is expecting a rebuilding season from a young Nevis baseball team. The Tigers have to replace seven starters from a team that won the Northland Conference title for the first time in school history with an 11-1 record and finished with a 17-6 overall mark last spring.
Replacing six starters is going to be a challenge for the Park Rapids boys tennis team this season. However, head coach Mike Baumgartner has 18 players out this spring, making that transition a little easier. Graduation left the Panthers without Jeff Dickinson, Nick Lopez, Ben Baumgartner, Alex Boyd, Jackson Kimball and Jaden Olson.
A pair of runner-up finishes led the Park Rapids girls track and field team to seventh place at Tuesday’s Little Amik Invitational at Bemidji State University. Lydia Kantonen, Tori Hilmanowski, Whitney Steffel and Megan Olson clocked a runner-up time of 10:42.71 in the 4 x 800-meter relay while Jaiden McCollum took second in the shot put with a distance of 35 feet, 5 inches as the Panthers compiled 47 points. International Falls led the 21-team field with 82.50 points.
Finishing second in the Northwoods Conference standings and peaking at the end of the season highlighted a successful season for the Nevis girls basketball team. The Tigers went 10-4 in conference play to trail only Clearbrook-Gonvick’s 14-0 record. Nevis ended the regular season by going 5-2 in the final seven games to earn the No. 5 seed in the North for the Section 5A playoffs. A 71-63 loss to No. 4 Menahga in the first round ended a 13-13 season.
It’s going to be a challenge for the Park Rapids boys track and field team to follow the success of the last three seasons. In 2013, the Panthers placed third at the Section 8A meet with 71 points, qualified for the state Class A meet in seven events and brought home one state medal while scoring 4 points. In 2014, the Panthers again placed third at the section meet with 72 points and qualified for state in six events, bringing home two medals and scoring 16 points.