- Member for
- 2 years 9 months
Celebrating senior night at The Ath before the game on Monday, Red Wing had reason to celebrate again later on. Desperately needing a clutch hit from anyone in the lineup, senior Bear Blaney came to bat in the bottom of the eighth with runners on first and second base. With two hits already in the game, facing a new pitcher didn't faze Blaney. "I knew I was going to get a hit," Blaney said. "I knew I was going to get on base at least. All I had to do was put the ball in play."
With bragging rights on the line and another yearly score to be etched on a plaque, Saturday’s game between Randolph and Cannon Falls lived up to its moniker. Originally scheduled to play at Jack Ruhr Field in Miesville, wet conditions forced the 2019 Battle of Byllesby to John Burch Park in Cannon Falls. The location change did little to subdue the intensity in either dugout as the two teams played in a postseason primer.
With sights already set on next year, Lake City's Nathan Heise has a big season ahead of him. Heise, the Republican Eagle boys' basketball Player of the Year, wants to take the team further than he did previously. He also has a decision to make: where to attend college. "I want to go where I can make an impact right away," he said.
For Sophia Yoemans and Leah Herzog, the spotlight is still on them after the two shot a 63 and 66 respectively in the state meet last season. As seniors, the two aren't shooting for more records though. "We always go over goals for each person on our team. Both of our goals were the same," Herzog said. "It's our last (season) and we want to make the most of it. (We) don't want to get caught up in all of the pressure, expectations or anything like that."
In a record-setting season for the Red Wing Wingers, the team relied on a rotation of eight or nine players on any given night. No matter who led the team in scoring, one player gave the team the boost it needed night-in and night-out: Lindsay Reps. Reps, the 2018-19 Republican Eagle Player of the Year, had a rather auspicious start to her basketball career as a five-year-old.
Nearly the entire 2018 starting lineup returns this season for the Red Wing softball team Coming off a 9-6 win over Austin—the team that ended the Wingers' season last year in sections—in its home-opener on April 5, the Wingers improved to 2-0 overall. In that win, the Wingers showed quite a bit of what is to come this spring. Hitting and solid fundamental softball. Red Wing head coach Jon Bohmbach said a lot of improvements were made last year. This season, with everyone back, there's a different feeling among the players. They are ready to win.
After graduating 12 seniors in each of the last two classes, the Red Wing baseball got much younger in a hurry. The team also lost a lot of experienced players. "We're starting three sophomores, we're starting a combination of juniors and we're starting a couple seniors who have never played at this level too," said Red Wing head coach Paul Hartmann. "It's a process for these guys to figure out."
In Red Wing's home-opener, facing the team that ended its season on a game-winning grand slam last year, there were discussions all week in practice about it. Winger Justine Swenning, who gave up the grand slam to Austin in the Section 1AAA playoffs, had more conviction behind her fastball on Friday. Swenning struck out 10 batters and went 2-for-3 at the plate in a 9-6 win over the Packers.
During a time trial event against Zumbrota-Mazeppa, the Red Wing boys' and girls' track teams competed in its first outdoor events of the season. For coaches Jesse Nelson and Tony Casci, the placements are less important than the times and distances as the time trial serves as a benchmark for where the roster is at. "We have some great athletes that can really put together some great track and field performances," Nelson, the girls' head coach, said. "It's all about building and trying to figure out what's our best lineup as we get into the meets in May."
Brick by brick, from the ground up. Like any solid foundation, the Goodhue girls' basketball program starts at the ground floor and finishes at the top. Only in the team's case, they're painting their bricks. Now a 10-year-old tradition, the girls of Goodhue paint a brick purple in the locker room after every win. As the team gathered for its final meeting after finishing runner-up in the Class A state tournament, the two seniors, Kate Opsahl and Lexie Lodermeier, each painted a brick; one for each win in the tournament.