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 girls basketball team will be a senior-dominated group in the winter of 2017, and the Cardinals are looked upon around Minnesota as a program capable of making a state tournament. That's why they were one of eight Class 3A programs that accepted an invitation to play in the Minnesota Breakdown Summer State Tournament on July 17. Joining them were teams from Winona, Kasson-Mantorville, Grand Rapids, Northfield, Waconia, Hutchinson and Chisago Lakes.
The widely-held assumption among Minnesota sports fans this past year was that Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor wouldn't go after the best coach on the open market. Interim head coach Sam Mitchell took over the Timberwolves in a tough situation after the death of Flip Saunders, and led them to 13 more wins than the 2014-15 season. That, coupled with the fact that he has a long history with the franchise, left fans worried that Mitchell would get handed the keys to one of the best young rosters in the NBA despite someone like Tom Thibodeau being there for the taking.
Alexandria's Maurine Hamelau had the attention of the entire pontoon as she battled a fish that had a little more fight to it than the bluegills the anglers had boated previously on Lake Darling last Tuesday. Hamelau, 86, fought the bass out of the weeds and up to the edge of the boat. Alexandria's Tom Honkomp helped out by hoisting it over the edge as Hamelau broke into a smile.
The high school baseball season quickly turned to Legion ball this summer, but with the season over for Osakis the Silverstreaks were finally able to hold their season-ending awards banquet from the spring season. Osakis handed out eight awards, with graduated senior Michael Herringshaw taking home two of them. Herringshaw earned the MVP Award and the Silverstreak Slugger Award after hitting a team-leading .369 in 65 at-bats.
The West Douglas County Post 188 Legion baseball had its season come to an end on Sunday after fighting all the way to the sub-district championship game. That's where they met up with top-seeded Glenwood-Lowry as the team comprised of mainly Minnewaska High School players won a 2-0 game.
The Alexandria Black Sox had left eight men on base through the first four innings in Sunday's second game of a doubleheader against Sauk Centre, so they weren't going to take any chances in the fifth. In a 2-2 game, Casey Hammerback reached on an error to lead off the inning. After a Parker Revering single and a Cody McLaughlin sacrifice, he was standing at third with one out. Alexandria player/coach Alex Harste went through a series of signs from the third-base coach's box with Chris Leary at the plate.
The Alexandria Area Tennis Association (AATA) has postponed its Middle School Tennis Jamboree that was set for July 21-22 at the Alexandria High School Tennis Complex because of the forecasted...
The Viking Speedway races this weekend were forced to cancel after rains came through at about the time that action was scheduled to get going at 6:45 on Saturday night...
Legendary Minnesota Vikings coach Bud Grant has been through Alexandria many times through his travels across Minnesota. He has friends in towns nearby — Glenwood and Fergus Falls, and a son's cabin on Battle Lake. On July 22, he'll make a full stop to greet fans and sign autographs in conjunction with the Broadway's Party in the Street festivities that day. It's a rare chance for fans to see Grant these days. Now 89 years old with 19 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren, he often has family and friends that he chooses to spend his time with in his retirement.
The scrapes and rubs were still there in plain sight despite the green growth of mid-summer that surrounded the forest floor. It was about this time last summer; the time when my mind starts fully shifting toward bow hunting season that is now only a couple months away. July means hanging stands — some in the same spots from the year before; others that take some new scouting.