Janet Larson wins 10th title as area pitchers compete at Minnesota State Horseshoe Tournament

Larson has now won eight straight championships as she won the Women's Class A field with a perfect 7-0 record this year. A total of 13 pitchers from the Alexandria and Eagles Horseshow Leagues took part in the tournament as Gary Kirckof (Elder's Class C) and Marshal Swenson (Junior Class A) also won their classes.

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Janet Larson
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GENOLA, MINN. — The Minnesota State Horseshoe Tournament wrapped up in early September, and 13 local pitchers from the Alexandria and Eagles Horseshoe Leagues took part.

The tournament was held in Genola where five divisions competed — Men’s, Women’s, Elder’s (men over the age of 70 or men that have a medical exemption), Juniors (age 13-18) and Cadets (up to 12 years of age). Preliminary play consists of various classes with approximately eight pitchers in each class within each division.

The top four pitchers from the Men’s, Women’s and Elder’s Divisions were all seeded in the championship rounds. Four more pitchers with the highest ringer percentage through the preliminary rounds move up to join them in the championship rounds that were played on Labor Day. All junior pitchers were seeded in either an A or B class.

Janet Larson of the Alexandria Horseshoe League led the way among local pitchers.

Larson, the defending champion, earned the first seed in the Women’s Class A field. She won her 10th state title, and eighth straight, by going 7-0 overall in this year’s tournament, finishing with a ringer percentage of 53.87% and a high-game percentage of 61.76%.


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Gary Kirckof

Gary Kirckof of the Eagles Horseshoe Club took first place in the Elder’s C Class. Kirckof went 5-0 in the tournament, with a ringer percentage of 25% and a high game of 32.50%.

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Marshal Swenson

Marshal Swenson also had a first-place finish by winning the Junior Class A field. Swenson went 6-0 with a 32.50 ringer percentage and high game of 40%. This is Swenson’s third state title (two Junior titles, one Cadet title).


EAGLES HORSESHOE LEAGUE PITCHERS - Gary Kirckof - Elder’s Class C - 1st place, 5-0; Ringer percentage - 25%; High game - 32.50%; Jeff Thompson - Men’s Class H - third place, 4.5-2.5; Ringer percentage - 17.14%; High game - 25%; James Syverson - Elder’s Class B - fifth place, 4-3; Ringer percentage - 46.07%; High game - 52.5% x3

ALEXANDRIA HORSESHOE LEAGUE PITCHERS - Chuck Betterman - Elder’s Class D - fifth place, 1-4; Ringer percentage - 13%; High game - 17.50%; Randy Werk - Men’s Class F - eighth place, 0-7; Ringer percentage - 12.50%; High game - 22.50%; Tina Matter - Women’s Class D - fourth place, 2-3; Ringer percentage - 9.50%; High game - 17.50%; Bruce Swenson - Men’s Class G - fourth place (3-way tie for second), 5-2; Ringer percentage - 14.29%; High game - 27.50%; Marshal Swenson - Junior Class A - first place, 6-0; Ringer percentage - 32.50%; High game - 40%; Thomas Kremer - Junior Class A - fourth place, 1-5; Ringer percentage - 14.17%; High game - 20%; Jordan Reese - Junior Class B - third place, 2-4; Ringer percentage - 7.5%; High game - 10%; Jerry Werk - Men’s Class B - second place, 5.5-1.5; Ringer percentage - 36.07%; High game - 47.50%; Gary Boots - Men’s Class B - sixth place, 2-5; Ringer percentage - 31.43%; High game - 37.5% x 2; Janet Larson - Women’s Class A - first place, 7-0; Ringer percentage - 53.87%; High game - 61.76%

Eric Morken is a sports and outdoor editor at the Echo Press Newspaper in Alexandria, Minnesota, a property of the Forum News Service. Morken covers a variety of stories throughout the Douglas County area, as well as statewide outdoor issues.
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