Eric Morken is the sports and outdoor editor at the Echo Press and Osakis Review newspapers in Douglas County, MN. Follow him on Twitter at echo_sports.
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The Alexandria boys basketball team had the Central Lakes Conference champions on the Cardinals’ home court on Thursday and couldn’t keep up in a 67-35 loss to St. Cloud Tech. The Tigers (21-5, 14-2 CLC), a Class 4A program, have won four straight after holding Alexandria (18-7, 10-6 CLC) to 28 percent shooting (13-of-46) on the night. The Cardinals shot just 1-of-15 from three-point range.
The opening round matchup between the four and five seeds in a subsection tournament is supposed to be close, but it didn’t look like this one would be halfway through the night in Brandon.
The West Central Area-Ashby-Brandon-Evansville wrestling team started off its day at the Class A team state tournament with a 30-29 win over Pipestone Area that came down to the last match. Unfortunately for the Knights, that momentum came to a halt as WCA-A-B-E finished fourth with a 35-21 loss to Pierz in the semifinals and a 40-18 loss to Frazee in the third-place match. Frazee could have phoned it in. The top-seeded Hornets had already lost in the semifinals at the Xcel Energy Center.
Pollinators have a friend in pheasants when it comes to getting habitat on the ground, with Pheasants Forever helping to make sure of that.
The West Central Area-Ashby-Brandon-Evansville wrestling team started off its day at the Class A team state tournament with a 30-29 win over Pipestone Area that came down to the last match. The Knights trailed 29-27 entering the heavyweight bout between junior Mason Nibbe and Pipestone junior Dylan Arndt. The winner of this one gave his team the win, and Nibbe got the job done in a 10-6 final.
BOYS BASKETBALL Alexandria vs. St. Cloud Tech, 7:30 p.m. Osakis at Upsala, 7:30 p.m. GIRLS BASKETBALL Osakis vs. LPGE, Section 6AA quarterfinals, 7 p.m. WCA at Parkers Prairie, 6A-South, 7 p.m. Brandon-Evansville vs. Ortonville, 6A-South, 7 p.m. WRESTLING
The 11th annual Runestone Spiel hosted by the Vikingland Curling Club is set for this Friday and Saturday at the Runestone Community with a former Olympian taking part in the event. Duluth's John Landsteiner, who competed for team USA during the 2014 winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, is fresh off winning a national title in curling with four USA teammates in John Shuster, Tyler George, Matt Hamilton and Joe Polo at the 2017 USA Curling National Championships in Everett, Wash. on Feb. 18.
The Brandon-Evansville boys basketball team couldn't find its shooting touch on Tuesday night as the Chargers had a five-game winning streak snapped by Bertha-Hewitt in a 47-41 game. The Bears (7-16) got a game-high 18 points from junior forward Luke Follmer as he led his team to the win. "He was able to get to the basket a little too easily and was 4-for-4 from the free-throw line when we needed to foul," B-E head coach John Holsten said.
The Osakis boys basketball team came into the season believing it could compete for a Prairie Conference title. On Tuesday, the Silverstreaks made it happen. Osakis clinched a share of that league championship with Browerville-Eagle Valley after rolling past Upsala 66-47. Both the Tigers (22-4) and the Silverstreaks (20-5) finished with 11-1 Prairie Conference records after beating each other on their home courts.
BOYS BASKETBALL Alexandria at Rocori, 7:30 p.m. Brandon-Evansville at Bertha-Hewitt, 7:30 p.m. WCA vs. Park Christian, 7:30 p.m. Ashby vs. Henning, 7 p.m. GIRLS BASKETBALL Alexandria vs. Little Falls, Section 8-3A quarterfinals, 7 p.m.