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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GIRLS HOCKEY Alexandria at East Grand Forks, 6 p.m.
Alexandria senior Rachel Kriese finished 26th out of 32 divers during the Class A state tournament prelims on Wednesday at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center. Kriese had a prelims score of 125.65. Sophomore Saylor Hawkins of Breck had the top prelims score of 193.10 before posting a 298.40 through the semifinals. The top 20 divers after the prelims advanced to the semis.
Alexandria's Rachel Kriese didn't know where she was going to end up placing among some talented divers in the Section 6A field, but she knew she was going to enjoy Saturday's competition in her home pool at Discovery Middle School. This could have been her last meet. That hit her during practice last week, and she was determined to enjoy every bit of it.
The initial harvest numbers through the first two days of the Minnesota firearms deer hunting season were down 3 percent, but that doesn't mean nice bucks didn't fall. There are always plenty across the state and in this area. For a few younger hunters, this fall proved to be especially lucky.
Alexandria senior Hannah Eklund wanted a section title in the 100 breaststroke on Saturday afternoon at the Discovery Middle School pool.
The firearms deer hunting season is a sacred holiday for many of the hunters who don blaze orange and take to the woods for a season that just wrapped up this past Sunday.
The Alexandria Blizzard has settled into an early-season groove after winning its fifth straight game with a sweep of a 0-16 Chicago Bulldogs team and a 10-1 win over Willmar this past weekend. Alexandria (10-6, 20 points) dominated both weekend games in Chicago, winning 12-1 on Sunday after a 6-0 win on Saturday. The story of both games is on full display in the shot disparity between the two teams: On Sunday, it was Blizzard 81, Bulldogs 18. Saturday was much of the same as Alexandria outshot Chicago 88-12.
The number of deer registered through the opening weekend of firearms season Nov. 12-13 was down 3 percent from a year ago. The Minnesota DNR released its initial harvest numbers last week, with firearms hunters registering 68,958 deer during the first two days of firearms season. Of the deer harvested, 67 percent were bucks, compared to 68 percent of the first weekend harvest of 2015.
Alexandria swim coach Kathy Walker had a lot on her mind as she walked her dog early Saturday morning. The Cardinals were hosting the Section 6A meet at Discovery Middle School later that day, and she was running through her mind where her team might finish. They had taken seventh a year before, so fifth would be a nice jump, she thought.
The Alexandria football team saw first hand on Saturday what all the fuss was about with top-ranked Elk River. The Elks (11-0) came into the game averaging 455 rushing yards per contest. They had 370 at the half as Elk River grabbed a 39-8 advantage and never wavered in a 60-36 win in the Class 5A quarterfinals at St. Cloud State University.