Joe Brown is the sports editor for the Red Wing Republican Eagle. Previously, he worked at the Marshall Independent and the St. Cloud Times. For updates on local sports, follow Joe on Twitter at @RE_JBrown.
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WEST ST. PAUL - In Friday's Section 4AAA championship game, a Cannon Falls quarterback led his team to a state berth. That quarterback wasn't in the Cannon Falls huddle. It was St. Croix Lutheran senior signal-caller Lincoln Hochmuth. Although his family lives just four blocks away from Cannon Falls High School, Hochmuth followed in the path of his father and uncle, going to St. Paul's Lutheran School in Cannon Falls before going to St. Croix Lutheran High School.
With a roster full of players that have been in three state tournaments, Red Wing girls hockey coach Scott Haley thinks the novelty of going to state is gone. After a fourth-place showing in the Class 1A state tournament, the Wingers hope to leave a lasting impression on the 2012-13 season. "Now they want to try and make their mark," Haley said.
Getting ready for the Section 4AAA finals on Friday, Cannon Falls head football coach Josh Hofstedt admits that maybe his team is a little too hyped up. The only team left between the Bombers and their first state trip since 1996 is St. Croix Lutheran, the defending Class 3A state champions.
No team in Class 3A has been as explosive offensively as Lake City. Heading into Friday's Section 1AAA championship game, the Tigers led the state in points per game (45.1) and point differential (27.2). But facing top-ranked Rochester Lourdes in the section final, Lake City head coach Trevor Narum is prepared for a long, grueling game with a trip to state on the line. "We have to be really patient. We're not going to put 40 points on them in a half," Narum said. "It's going to be a punch-counter punch type of game." Lourdes and Lake City are set for a 7 p.m.
ROCHESTER - Leading for just three points in Saturday's Section 1A-East sub-section semifinal against No.
ROCHESTER - In so many ways, taking on No. 3-ranked Stewartville is a tall task for any team. There's a starting lineup that stands at an average of 5-foot-10. There is Hall of Fame head coach John Dzubay. There are twin sisters Hannah and Paige Tapp, who are both headed to the University of Minnesota to play volleyball. After playing tough with the Tigers earlier this year, the Cannon Falls Bombers believed that they could go toe-to-toe with Stewartville in the Section 1AA-West semifinals.
LAKE CITY - Those with heart conditions should not ride roller coasters or watch the Lake City football team in the Section 1AAA playoffs. In the quarterfinals against No. 7-seeded La Crescent, the No. 2-seeded and No. 7-ranked Tigers saw their 24-0 lead evaporate before coming away with a 24-21 victory. Then in Saturday's section semifinals against sixth-seeded Winona Cotter, Lake City looked like it was in cruise control with a 20-0 lead in the first quarter.
MINNEAPOLIS - In her time as a Lake City tennis player, the coaches wanted to change several things about Amy Orthaus' tennis game. "The lob game, the swinging volleys, my serve, I kind of scrunch my body," Orthaus said.
MINNEAPOLIS - For Lake City senior tennis players Allison Harvey and Katie Wallerich, their Class 1A state tournament got out of hand in a hurry. After losing 6-0, 6-1 in the first round to Park Rapids Area's Christina Smith and Julia Renner, the Tigers duo took on St. James' Michaela Nordby and Acacia Foss in the consolation playoffs. Harvey and Wallerich won the first set 6-4, but in the second set, Nordby and Foss got hot quickly. And before Harvey and Wallerich knew it, the St.
CANNON FALLS - Although it came in as a favorite against Triton on Thursday, No. 3-seeded Cannon Falls had a chip on its shoulder. A year ago in the Section 1A-West playoffs, the Bombers fell in four sets to the Cobras. "Last year, we lost to them in the first round of the playoffs and we really wanted to avenge that this year," said Cannon Falls freshman Hailey Huseth. "We've never gotten the third seed ever before in campus history. We had to keep our momentum up because we were going to win.