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GOODHUE – Serving is an exercise in risk and reward. Just popping the ball over the net requires little skill and allows the defense an easy opportunity to settle into its offense. Adding some spin or velocity, or both, naturally give a chance to pick up a point by ace. It can also cause a serve receive to go awry and scuttle an offense before it even gets started. But missing on those aggressive tactics can backfire. Goodhue's 11 ace serves on Tuesday were a good thing. But the nine service errors in the first set, and 18 total in the match, were decidedly not.
The Red Wing boys’ and girls’ cross-country teams are gearing up for the first meet of the season, going through two weeks of practice before heading to the Wabasha-Kellogg Invitational on Monday. Both teams are accustomed to winning, but 2016’s definition of success might mean different things for the teams. The girls, reigning Big Nine Conference and Section 1AA champions, are coming off a sixth-place finish at the Class 2A meet. The team is not returning whole, as All-State selection Kianna Stewart graduated to the college ranks to run for the University of South Dakota.
For the first time in a long time, the Red Wing volleyball team is coming off a section championship game appearance. But the Wingers also are missing Sydney Book, as well as fellow graduates McKenzie Cota, Taylor Steger, and Sara Kelly.
Implementing a new system takes time, expecting things to come together in the first game of the season would be foolish. And when the first opponent is a fast, skilled team coming off a section title-game appearance, the wise approach is to look for improvement anywhere you can. That's exactly what David Thurston and the Red Wing girls soccer team did on Thursday.
With a week of practice in the books, and its first match coming early next week, the Red Wing girls’ tennis team will get to see where it stands in the Big Nine Conference. Perhaps more importantly for new coach Patty Otteson, the girls will get to see where their games are at.
CANNON FALLS – With its ace on the mound, Cannon Falls had a great chance early during Saturday's opening-round game in the Region 4C tournament. The fifth-seeded Bears had the bases loaded, but came away with just one run against second-seeded Wells. It was not the start that Cannon Falls manager Ryan Brintnall wanted. But it turned out to be a nonissue as the Bears came away with a 4-0 victory at John Burch Park. After the Wildcats escaped that threat, the sense of a missed opportunity did not permeate the Cannon Falls dugout.
Seven Red Wing sports will have new head coaches this year, and volleyball is one of them. On Thursday, Red Wing High School Principal Todd Herber named Dave Lyons as the new head of that program. “He's a community member and a parent. He has an extensive background in volleyball. And he has agreed to work with our program for the next couple years,” Herber said. Usually, there are not timetables for high school coaching hires. But Herber is looking toward the future after losing Jackie Braithwaite after just two seasons.
On Thursday, Red Wing High School Principal Todd Herber announced through a press release that John Miller, a teacher at Sherman Middle School in Madison, Wis., will be the Wingers next activities director.
For the second straight year, Kenyon-Wanamingo’s playoff game did not go as planned. The fact that it was just a single game adds to the sting of what was a sudden end to a stellar season. The Knights lost just twice before the Hiawatha Valley League championship game, but dropped that contest to Cannon Falls before Blue Earth sent K-W home for the season. None of the Knights were happy about the sudden turn of events, and Gavin Roosen, the Republican Eagle Player of the Year, was more than disappointed.
And here I am. Broke, unemployed, luckless, loveless, sitting in an airport lobby at one in the morning, a couple T-shirts and my baseball glove stuffed into a backpack on the bench next to me. It took me 15 hours to get from Denver to Minneapolis yesterday, going from my sister’s basement where I had been staying to my parents’ where all my stuff is, to hastily pack my bag. Five more hours and I was in Sioux Falls, rubbing sleep out of my eyes, way too early at the airport.