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 hockey team feels it had an argument to secure a top five seed at the Class A state tournament that starts Wednesday at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. The Cardinals have a 14-12-1 record, but two of those wins came against teams that are seeded among the top five at state in fourth-seeded Mound Westonka and third-seeded Warroad.
The West Central Area boys basketball team dropped its fourth straight game as Morris Area-Chokio-Alberta shot 50 percent in a 71-50 win on Monday night. The Tigers (13-10) hit 27-of-54 shots, including 8-of-18 threes. They also held a 35-24 advantage on the glass. Sophomore guard Camden Arndt led the way with 26 points on 9-of-11 shooting, including 3-of-3 from three. Senior guard Lukas Manska also added 17 for the Tigers.
BOYS BASKETBALL Parkers Prairie vs. BBE, 7:30 p.m. Alexandria at Willmar, 7:30 p.m. Osakis at Swanville, 7:30 p.m. WCA at Hancock, 7:30 p.m. GIRLS BASKETBALL Alexandria vs. Willmar, 7:30 p.m. Osakis vs. Parkers Prairie 7:30 p.m.
The governing body for competitive cycling in the United States has opened an independent investigation into claims made earlier this year by Alexandria native and six-time American cycling national champion Missy Erickson that she was sexualy abused. That's according to an article posted on Feb. 17 at bicycling.com written by Caitlin Giddings. Giddings wrote that USA Cycling wouldn't discuss details of the case while it was ongoing.
By law, ice fishing houses have to be off lakes in the area by March 6 this year, but Mother Nature forced many anglers to make an early exit with their houses this past weekend. Temperatures topped 50 degrees and were expected to stay in the mid-50s through Tuesday, with rain mixed in there. That left a lot of anglers deciding to play it safe and get their houses to solid ground as ice around accesses continues to deteriorate.
The Underwood girls basketball team created a race for the Little Eight Conference last Thursday night as the Rockets pulled into a tie in the loss column with Parkers Prairie. The Rockets (18-6) lost to the Panthers (18-5) 44-39 on Jan. 12 but avenged that with a 43-41 win on Thursday. That moved them to 11-1 in league play, while Parkers Prairie sits at 10-1. Underwood led by one at the break and got 10 points from senior center Taylor Leitch in the second half. Leitch had a game-high 13 overall, while junior guard Brenna Tinjum added 12.
The Brandon-Evansville girls basketball team snapped a three-game losing streak last Thursday by beating Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley 75-48. The Chargers (15-7) fell behind 13-7 early but went on a 23-4 run to go into the break up 30-17. "Kind of a slow start, but then we kind of got rolling," B-E head coach Dick Simpson said. "A lot of kids scored, and we hit 10 threes. That helps." Twelve Chargers scored in all as Carrigan Okerlund and Shyanna Behrens each led the way with 16. That's a season high for Behrens.
The Brandon-Evansville boys basketball team was on a four-game winning streak after taking care of Underwood 56-40 last Friday night. The Chargers (14-8, 8-4 Little Eight Conference) won the game at the free throw line, knocking down 23-of-33 shots. The Rockets (4-18, 2-9 LEC) were just 9-of-15 from the stripe. Underwood scored the first nine points of the game, but the Chargers went on a 19-0 run from there to help take control of the game. "We were active that stretch defensively and rebounded pretty well," B-E head coach John Holsten said.
The Alexandria girls hockey team will get a prime time slot for its Class A state tournament opener, but it will come against the state’s top seed. The Cardinals (14-12-1) weren’t seeded among the top five when the bracket was announced on Saturday morning. They will take on a top-seeded Blake School that is 24-2-1 at 6 p.m. at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul on Wednesday.
BLIZZARD HOCKEY Breezy Point at Alexandria, 7:10 p.m. GYMNASTICS Alexandria at section meet in Perham, 8 a.m. WRESTLING Alexandria at 8-3A team meet in Sartell, 11 a.m.