A scene from St. Paul School of Agriculture, 1950s

A scene from St. Paul School of Agriculture, 1950s
The late Ralph E. Williams, UMM music founder, directs choral musicians at the St. Paul campus of the U of M in the 1950s.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Groundhog Day: halftime lead but loss to Melrose

Melrose 56, Tigers 45
So, how did we get to play the Melrose Dutchmen twice in a short timespan? Melrose has been a steamroller type of BBB team this season. Man, how they rack up the wins. They racked up their win No. 22 at the expense of our Morris Area Chokio Alberta Tigers. So they're 22-0! Can anyone stop this I-94 gang?
The MACA Tigers were left with a 10-10 record. The final score: 56-45.
It must have seemed like Groundhog Day - playing the Dutchmen yet again and coming up shy. Oh, but we also led at halftime of both games! In the most recent showdown we were up 27-26 at the halfway mark. The second half was when Melrose revved up their engines. Melrose outscored MACA 30-18 in the second half. 
The game was played on Tuesday, Feb. 14 (yes, Valentine's Day) at Melrose.
Dillon Haider is a primary talent for the Dutchmen this season. He poured in 22 points to lead his team. Brady Birch was the other double figures scorer with 12. Here's the rest of the Melrose scoring cast: Francisco Cervantes (7), Hunter Rieland (6), Traeton Keaveny (6), Damon Van Beck (2) and Justin Middendorf (1). Haider connected four times from three-point range, while Keaveny and Cervantes each made one long-ranger. 
Haider and Birch each had four rebounds. Haider dished out six assists. Cervantes stole the ball three times. 
For the MACA Tigers, Jaret Johnson connected three times from three-point land. Lukus Manska and Jacob Zosel each made one long-ranger. Those Johnson three-pointers elevated him to team-best status in scoring with 16 points. Zosel was second-best with 12 points. Other Tigers who scored: Camden Arndt (8), Tate Nelson (4), Manska (3) and Tim Travis (2). Johnson led in rebounds with five. Zosel was tops in assists with five. Manska and Connor Koebernick each had two steals.
Looking at local papers
I'm writing this post at SCMC. A family member is dealing with some health issues and I strive to always be optimistic of course. I took a break earlier today to visit our public library (one of the chief assets of Morris) and there once again I saw how big and thick the Elbow Lake newspaper is, compared to our rather pathetic Morris paper. 
A library staffer told me we shouldn't be surprised, given that the Morris paper became a "chain paper." It is not locally or independently owned. Is it true that Forum Communications didn't even have the balls to tell us who to vote for, for president? They have had no problem advising us in other years. So they decided we could be trusted to make the right decision? I hope we didn't blow it. 
The Morris paper runs large photos with a lot of fluff articles that just take up space. Anyone who says they like the Morris paper, ask them what they've been smoking. At the very least the Morris paper ought to be acquired free of charge. Senior Perspective has far more value and it's free. 
It's totally hypocritical for the Morris paper to advise us in occasional editorials about how we ought to shop in Morris. If it is nothing else, the Morris paper is a vehicle for promoting those big businesses in Alexandria. 
The Elbow Lake area is sparsely populated with towns remindful of Mayberry. Not that that isn't charming. But we don't expect to see a far more vibrant newspaper serving that area. That's what we get, though. Morris needn't shrug off the current state of affairs. A concerted effort to ignore the Morris paper could force that company to depart, whereupon some sort of new venture could get going, on an independent basis to truly serve Stevens County. It's time for us to become proactive.
- Brian Williams - morris mn minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

MBA hockey shines on Worthington ice

MBA hockey got an infusion of optimism on February 4 with wins by both the boys and girls over Worthington. The score was the same in both games: 3-0. The MBA skaters made the trip to southern Minnesota.
The boys got their first win of the season by scoring one goal in the second period and two in the third. Our defense with Tony Bruns in goal slammed the door on Worthington. Dylan DeToy achieved our first goal, of the power play kind, at 4:05 of the second period. Shaun Aarhus assisted. DeToy put us up 2-0 with a goal at 2:22 of the third. Then it was Aarhus putting the puck in the net at 8:15, assisted by Kolby Goff.
Bruns racked up 25 saves in goal. His rival was Carter Ponto whose save total was 20.
The Morris Benson Area girls team dominated the second period en route to their win. All three of our goals came in the second, starting with Rachel Berens getting the puck in the net at 2:41. Megan Kirkeide and Nicole Berens assisted. It was Hallie Watzke scoring at 3:09 with an assist from Taryn Picht. We wrapped up our scoring with a Leah Thompson goal at 7:09. Watzke assisted.
Our winning goaltender was Abbey Hoffman with a save total of ten. Bailey Kruse achieved 32 saves as the Worthington goalie.
Coach Abby Daly was quoted in the media: "The girls played a good first and third periods but their second period performance is what took them to the top. They all worked together as a team and got a lot of opportunities in front of the net. They capitalized in the second period but they just couldn't get it in the net during the first and third periods. Overall it was a great day."
Girls basketball: Litchfield 59, Tigers 53
Playing on the road was not a piece of cake for the MACA girls at Litchfield, home of the Dragons. Litch entered the night with ten wins and came out with eleven, as they bounded past our Tigers 59-53. The Dragons seized the advantage in the first half when they outscored the orange and black 28-14. We outscored the Dragons 39-31 in the second half.
With the loss we still had a record of just over .500.
Macy Huhner put in 20 points for the green-clad Dragons. Savanna Peter was second-best in scoring with ten points. Kyndra Beavers and Hallie Euerle each put in seven points. The list continues: Brynne Wahl (6), Sydney McCann (4), Laney Huhner (3) and Maddy Shoultz (2). Macy Huhner was dead-on from three-point range three times. These three Dragons each connected once from three-point range: Laney Huhner, Wahl and Euerle.
and Pater each collected seven rebounds. Wahl and Euerle each performed three assists. Beavers was the top Dragon in steals with three.
Two Tigers stood out on our scoring list: Ashley Solvie with 18 points and Correy Hickman with 14. Hickman made two 3-point shots. Maddie Carrington, Malory Anderson and Riley Decker each made one shot from three-point land. Nicole Solvie scored six points. Carrington and Anderson each scored five. Decker posted three points and Jenna Howden scored two.
A suspicious Super Bowl
The 2017 Super Bowl could not have been scripted better. And that's the whole problem. I would never suggest that this showcase would be "scripted." It's not like pro wrestling. But in a sense it may be. My theory is that the embattled NFL absolutely must have a game with some drama. A ton of money is poured into this thing. Money can cause all sorts of lines to be crossed.
So my theory is this: whichever team is leading at any point in the game, adopts a style of defense that might open the door for the trailing team to close the gap. Atlanta's collapse was too sudden and extreme to seem believable. Reality TV shows are scripted, right?
I don't care that much either way. Football is under siege as a sport, deservedly so. The head injury issue should influence all of us to turn away, the sooner the better. We'll never miss this "drug" known as NFL football. Getting along without football will be easier than we now suspect. I have discovered that.
The University of Minnesota has succumbed to the siren song of football's appeal, permitting an obscene amount of financial largesse in its athletic department. How ridiculous. Wake up and smell the roses.
- Brian Williams - morris mn minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Gage Wevley takes 220-pound championship in WCC

MACA had a champion in the West Central Conference wrestling tournament. However, I'm discouraged to note that we had many vacant weight classes. This is a puzzle. The WCC tournament is a big deal, or it was in an earlier time.
I was eager to sift through the results but was mystified at seeing the word "open" next to so many weights. Was this a case of some Tigers needing to stay below a certain number of bouts for the season? Maybe it is, but the average fan might not be aware of this background. It's a reason why the sport of wrestling can alienate some fans. You pay to see a match and then find there are "forfeits."
I went out of my way to give recognition to wrestling in my commercial media career. It's nice to see when the sport puts its best foot forward.. Anyway, our champion in the 2017 WCC tourney was Gage Wevley at 220 pounds. Jared Rohloff took second in the 138-pound class. Brady Cardwell had the runner-up distinction at 152 pounds.
Chase Metzger carved out a third place showing at 145. Bain Laine was the third place achiever at 195. Matt McNeill took fourth at 170 pounds. The fifth place achievers were Ben Travis at 120 pounds and Dakota Luepke at 160.
Here are the weight classes where we saw the word "open": 106, 113, 126, 132, 182 and 285. When a team vacates so many spots, it takes some luster from the event. Anyway, congrats to the Tigers who had good showings.
Girls basketball: Wheaton-H-N 66, Tigers 43
It looks a little like the good old days being replayed today for Wheaton girls basketball. Those good old days had the Warriors thrilling massive fan turnouts at the UMM P.E. Center. The Warriors climbed high in front of their fans dressed in generous red color.
Today the Warriors are undefeated. They defeated our quality MACA girls team by a margin of 23 points. MACA was down by six at halftime, 29-23. WHN surged to outscore the orange and black 37-20 in the second half. The final score was 66-43. WHN achieved its 18th win against no losses. The Tigers were left with a 9-7 record.
Correy Hickman made two 3-point shots for MACA. Maddie Carrington made one. Jenna Howden led in rebounds with six. Hickman was the top assist producer with five; Ashley Solvie was our top scorer with 13 points. The list continues as follows: Hickman (8), Carrington (7), Malory Anderson (6), Nicole Solvie (4), Howden (3) and Riley Decker (2).
Boys hoops: ACGC 72, Togers 52
It was a grim night for the MACA boys basketball team vs. Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City. The Falcons took off in the first half with a 35-22 scoring advantage. They cruised in the second half with a seven-point edge, 37-30, so the final score was 72-52.
Three Falcons led in scoring with their double-digit totals: Gabe Eisenbacher (18), Erik Belgum (17) and Adam Johnson (13). Michael Dallmann put in eight points. The rest of the list: Payton Kinzler (5), Elliot Gratz (3), Calvin VanDerPol (3), Brendan Hedtke (2), Kobe Holtz (2) and Jaren Kaddatz (1). Three Falcons each made one three-pointer: Belgum, Kinzler and Dallman. Belgum led in rebounds with ten followed by Johnson with nine. Dallmann and Eisenbacher each had five assists. Belgum stole the ball three times.
Girls: BOLD 62, Tigers 59
MACA kept pace with the BOLD Warriors but got edged in the 62-59 final. BOLD scored 31 points in each of the halves. We trailed by one at halftime, 31-30.
Three Tigers each made a three-point shot: Maddie Carrington, Malory Anderson and Correy Hickman. Hickman was a proficient scorer with her 17 points. Two other Tigers scored in double figures: Ashley Solvie (12) and Nicole Solvie (10). The list continues: Carrington (9), Anderson (7), Riley Decker (2) and Jenna Howden (2). Hickman was a dynamic contributor with her eight rebounds, four assists and seven steals, all team-leading figures.
- Brian Williams - morris mn minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Overtime tilts toward Tigers again in win vs. 'Waska

The MACA boys came on strong for their Saturday and Tuesday games. We cruised through the Saturday affair, crushing the YME Sting 72-37. The Tuesday game was no cruising affair as we went into overtime vs. the Lakers of Minnewaska Area. It was a happy outcome as the orange and black prevailed 53-51.
Remember, last year we lost steam at the most critical time against those Lakers. We beat them in the first matchup, played them to the last shot in the second, but then got crushed in the post-season. That's not the kind of pattern we want. We'd like one of our basketball teams, boys or girls, to advance to Southwest State University in Marshall this time around.
Of course, I can remember when post-season games were played right here in Morris at the P.E. Center. That would be the best arrangement - no late-night driving required. But we have to accept reality: drive south.
Tigers 53, Minnewaska Area 51 (OT)
Early in this home game, Minnewaska carved out an advantage revealed in a 29-23 halftime score. 'Waska came here with a winning record. The Tigers have been slightly below .500 and they aim to remedy that. Our Tuesday win was our seventh.
Minnewaska outscored us 24-18 in the second half. The 47-all score set the stage for overtime. Camden Arndt was the hero at the end. (The Tuesday Willmar paper spelled his name "Camren.") On Tuesday, Camden put in a buzzer-beating layup vs. the Lakers. Arndt had the game-high scoring total of 17.
scored the dramatic game-winner after getting a pass from Jacob Zosel who drove the length of the court. Just prior to that, Jackson Johnsrud of the Lakers scored on a put-back to tie the score. The Tigers had to answer and they showed the poise to do that within the final ticks of the clock. The fans tucked away some more special memories.
The Tigers are getting rather accustomed to playing overtime games. We beat Montevideo in triple OT recently. Our won-lost record now: 7-8. Three Tigers each scored ten points to follow Arndt on the scoring list. Those three: Tate Nelson, Zosel and Lukus Manska. (The Willmar paper spelled the name "Lukas.")
Tim Travis put in four points vs. the Lakers, and Jaret Johnson added two points to the mix. Nelson made three 3-pointers while Manska connected for two. Arndt led in rebounds with seven. Zosel was tops in assists with six. Nelson led in steals with three.
Jake Peters was the top point producer for 'Waska with 15. Dennis VanDyke scored eleven points and Matt Gruber had nine. Garrett Jensen scored five points followed by Collin Richards, Ryan Christianson and Jaeger Jergenson each with three. Jackson Johnsrud added two points to the mix.
Tigers 72, Yellow Medicine East 37
The Sting of YME showed no sting in their Saturday contest against our Tigers, who surged forward with a 72-37 win. Action was at our "big floor" of UMM. Too bad more prep games can't be played there.
Camden Arndt burned the nets for 26 points. We shot out to a 37-12 halftime lead.
Arndt and Christian Thielke each made two 3-pointers to help build the blow-out. Lukus Manska made one long-ranger. Arndt had eight rebounds and Kyle Staebler grabbed four. Jacob Zosel passed crisply to accumulate ten assists. Tim Travis stole the ball four times.
team-leading 26 points was followed by: Zosel (11), Thielke (7), Manska (7), Jaret Johnson (6), Andrew Anderson (5), Travis (4), Taylor Carrington (4) and Kyle Staebler (2).
Another 18-page Morris paper
We have seen two straight 18-page (minimal) Morris newspapers. When I saw the first one, I thought it might be an aberration. We continue to see 16-page Canary publications. That's minimal too.
Here's the danger for the paper business: the longer these minimal products continue, the more the public (their customers) will get out of the habit of looking for (or supporting) the larger versions. We indeed may have reached a tipping point. All the predictions about how important community information will migrate to online are maybe coming true.
It takes time for these trends to take root. The paper in Elbow Lake is significantly more viable than the Morris paper. This continues to be a puzzle.
I'm a mere rube, I guess
I got a postcard announcing an upcoming lecture at UMM. It's set for Monday, Feb. 6, at 7:30 p.m. at the HFA recital hall. It's free and open to the public. That is all well and fine, but what is the lecture about? It's titled "Speaking Truth as Indigenization: academia and reconciliation." We learn that the presenter, Julie Pellatier, is a "cultural anthropologist specializing in indigenous studies with a particular interest in the indigenization of the academy, the politics of representation and identity, and economic development as self-determination."
I'm sorry but I cannot comprehend any of this. The talk may well be stimulating, once I can get some focus on what it's about. The lecture is named for the late Bert Ahern, a long-time neighbor of mine.
Ahern was skeptical about the Kensington Runestone and used a little prop to share this view in a light way. I thought it was also a condescending way, rather disrespectful toward those who might want to seriously discuss the subject, as many well-educated people do. Today I don't think Ahern's approach to this would be appreciated at UMM, as the institution seeks to cultivate support from the Alexandria area. It's fine to be skeptical but in a dry and objective way. I forget the name of his prop.
Final note: my spell-check tells me there's no such word as "indigenization." Final note No. 2: Am I a cultural anthropologist? Maybe I am and I don't know it. Anyway, maybe there's something for us folks of Mayberry to learn in that lecture.
- Brian Williams - morris mn minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Our MN state capitol needn't focus on Civil War

Our Sam Smith "running rifleman" statue at Summit Cemetery, Morris MN
"Free State of Jones" begins with a standard Civil War battle scene. The Confederates march forward toward a prepared Union position. This is done with full knowledge that many in their ranks are going to be felled.
Civil War battle tactics seemed outdated. Progress in war tech made the weapons so lethal, beyond the smoothbore muskets used previously. The "rifled gun" came on the scene for the Civil War. So did the early repeating rifles. Repeating rifles enabled John Buford's cavalry to hold off the advancing graycoats on Day 1 at Gettysburg. The Union artillery chief felt he could have held off Pickett's Charge with artillery alone. Imagine marching directly toward those belching cannons. Imagine the "grape and canister" too. So inhumane all the way around.
Why couldn't we in America find harmony with the tremendous resources this continent was affording us? Indeed, Civil War "buffs" speculate endlessly on what possessed us to sacrifice so many lives, in painful spasms, in a political conflict.
Our town of Morris MN has surprising connections to Civil War memory, considering how far to the West we are. We were founded six years after the end of the war. But there is a statue at our local cemetery (the public one, not the Catholic anti-abortion one). The statue is of Samuel Smith, running just like the pose of the official monument to the First Minnesota Regiment at Gettysburg. Mr. Smith was present for several of the famous engagements in the Eastern theater. He was assigned to the ambulance corps for the Battle of Gettysburg. His descendants continue to be well-known in the Morris area.
Why did the young men of that era put their lives on the line? Perhaps more intriguing: Why were they sacrificed in such large numbers amidst tactics that seemed so brutal and futile? There is a book about Cold Harbor called "Not War But Murder." In that case it was the Union that employed the sad mass assault approach vs. fortifications. The movie "Cold Mountain" showed Union forces being chewed up.
Debate over public art at MN capitol
We reflect on this troubling chapter of U.S. history when we consider State Capitol art. There was a totally needless dust-up recently when our governor appeared to make a reasoned judgment. We no longer need such focus on the Civil War conflict at our state capitol via art. Because he is a Democrat, the other party was bound to take issue with the judgment.
It seems hard for Democrats to assert themselves these days. Republicans seem to have the default political position that people favor. We get disgruntled about government. The Republican Party feeds into that. Things change when Republicans finally get enough power to impose their positions. So now the "repeal" of "Obamacare" looms, for real, and suddenly the realities of that are beginning to scare people.
If you didn't know what Republicans truly stood for in the past, you may well find out now. Republicans are always trying to undo the New Deal. Other advanced industrial nations around the globe have decided that health care is a right. It would seem to be the Christian position. The U.S. to this point is an outlier. I wonder if it's because of racism, because there is a perception among political conservatives and reactionaries that non-white people make disproportionate use of government assistance. Of course race should be out of the equation. Our whole population is aging to where people of all races are living well beyond their productive years. Politics will catch up to them, or maybe we already saw this with the massive turnout for Bernie Sanders rallies (under-covered by the media).
The U.S. Civil War was a dispute over whether non-white people should be treated as property. The Confederacy was a spasm of reactionary anger that was never destined to succeed. It was, as the North pointed out, a "rebellion." Like the political tea party of our recent past?
So now we come down to the question: Should the old paintings at our state capitol stay as conspicuous as they have been for the last century? The obvious answer would seem to be "no." It is exciting to ponder what kind of historical artwork might be exhibited to replace the old stuff. The art could in fact be rotating, refreshed from time to time.
Governor Dayton is wholly right in asserting that Minnesota has been through a long and interesting history since we sent troops for the Civil War.
The Civil War was unlike other wars in that we were fighting our own brethren, our own countrymen. Efforts at reconciliation were strong after the war. Captured battle flags were returned. Minnesota still has one, only because of an oversight. The state of Virginia cannot make a formal request for its return. Southern governments of today cannot take actions bestowing respect on what the Confederacy represented. There is a private re-enactors group in Virginia that has made requests for return of our flag. In the most famous snub of that, Governor Jesse Ventura spoke for Minnesota. "We won" or something like that. I really wouldn't care if the flag were to be returned. The Southern cause died eons ago. "The South will rise again!" is just a cute comment you'll find in souvenir gift shops in the South.
Some veterans have felt the need to defend the conspicuous Civil War art at our capitol, using the knee-jerk pronouncements about how those sacrifices need to be remembered. Why not display paintings from the other wars where our adversaries were truly from outside? Minnesotans have made countless dedicated sacrifices. But the Civil War was fought against a civilization with which we would reconcile.
Regardless, we will never forget the U.S. Civil War. Go out to our cemetery and appreciate that Sam Smith statue. Think of the resolve. I wish there was a wider open space around the statue, maybe even a small park area. I'm really not a fan of cemeteries anymore. But the Smith statue has meaning that transcends the normal cemetery plot purpose.

Fame achieved by First Minnesota
The men of the First Minnesota are most remembered for their actions on July 2, 1863, during the second day's fighting at Gettysburg. Our regiment prevented the rebels from pushing the Federals off of Cemetery Ridge, a position that was to be crucial in the battle. General Hancock ordered the First Minnesota to assault a much larger enemy force. The battle cry was "take those colors." Thus, "Take Those Colors" is the name of a song I decided to write about the gallant First Minnesota. I don't know if I'll have it recorded.
I invite you to read the lyrics. The song has a verse/climb/chorus structure. The tempo is upbeat with strategic pauses here and there.
"Take Those Colors"
by Brian Williams
The sun was getting low
There along Plum Run
A night of destiny
There for men with guns
The men of Minnesota
Ready for the fray
The men of Alabama
Wearing Southern gray
Would we be two nations
Or would we be one?
Would it be decided at Plum Run?
Take those colors
The Minnesotans charged
So outnumbered
Still they bet the farm
Just for buying time
Good men had to die
That Minnesota charge
The gray line aimed and fired
Hoping to break through
The noise was thunderous
As the conflict grew
The Southern flag unfurled
In its brilliant red
Renewing all their passion
As they fought and bled
But the Minnesotans
Made it mighty clear
They were moving forward with no fear
(repeat chorus)
The screaming minie-balls
Made the danger great
The Union had to fear
Canister and grape
The creek bed was a magnet
Turning into hell
There was no time for grieving
When a comrade fell
Men in blue so certain
They could get it done
Letting loose their volley at Plum Run
(repeat chorus)
They plunged into that swale
Knowing it was grim
They knew it had to be
If they were to win
They had a resolution
Not to give one inch
So they could guard an asset:
Cemetery Ridge
Lumberjacks and farmers
From so far away
Showed their love of Union in that place
(repeat chorus, then repeat last line of chorus)
© 2016 Brian R. Williams

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Lukus Manska puts on 3-point shooting clinic in win

Boys hoops: Tigers 65, Benson 49
MACA shot out to a 35-21 halftime lead and ended up defeating Benson 65-49 Friday at Benson. We cruised through the second half. Lukus Manska was a cog with 20 points scored. (The Willmar paper spelled his name "Kukas.") Jacob Zosel contributed ten points to the winning effort. The list continues with Jaret Johnson (9), Tim Travis (8), Camden Arndt (7), Kyle Staebler (5), Tate Nelson (3), Denner Dougherty (2) and Connor Koebernick (1).
Manska was dead-on in three-point shooting, connecting six times from beyond the arc. These Tigers each made one 3-pointer: Travis, Nelson, Arndt and Johsnon. Koebernick was tops in rebounds with five followed by Arndt and Johnson each with four. Staebler and Zosel each contributed two assists. Nelson stole the ball three times.
Let's take a look at the Benson stats. Here we see Layton Connelly and Max Peterson each with 13 points. Then we have Ty Hedman with eight points. The list continues: Justin Goossen (6), Zack Sonnabend (4), Sam Lundebrek (3) and Chris Ebnet (2). Connelly made two 3-pointers while Hedman made one. Sonnabend snared six rebounds while Connelly had four. Sonnabend dished out four assists.
Girls: Tigers 49, ACGC 44
Rebounding was a big strength for the MACA girls in their exciting home win over Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City. Cheers from the home crowd grew in volume as MACA mounted a second half comeback. We were down by eight points at halftime, 27-19. A grim night? Not at all, as the Tigers showed renewed determination in the second half. We outscored the Falcons 30-17. We breezed past the stunned Falcons to win in the 49-44 final. The game was played on Monday, Jan. 9, at home.
How important was the rebounding? We vacuumed the boards for 38 rebounds. Out skill in the paint began overwhelming the Falcons. Jenna Howden led that effort on the boards with eight rebounds, while Malory Anderson and Correy Hickman each collected six. Hickman was the assist leader with five. Anderson was tops in steals with three.
Anderson made the Tigers' only three-point shot. She was one of two Tigers scoring in double figures as she posted 13 points. Ashley Solvie put in ten points. Correy Hickman contributed nine points to the winning effort. Howden and Nicole Solvie each scored six points. Maddie Carrington scored three while Riley Decker had two.
ACGC had a balanced but not overwhelming scoring effort. Madison Denton led with the modest output of eight points. There were four Falcons each scoring seven points: Anna Grimsgard, Maree Lee, Kendra Miller and Lindsey Minnick. Addison Bernstein scored six points and Pailey Wilner put in two. Lee and Miller each sank a three-point shot.
Minnick and Bernstein co-led in rebounds with five. Lee dished out five assists. Miller stole the ball three times and Grimsgard had two steals.
This was a West Central Conference game.
Girls: Sauk Centre 83, Tigers 57
The Tigers of GBB got humbled by the Sauk Centre Streeters Friday night. The Streeters showed a hot hand from the outset, burning the nets for 49 points in the first half. The second half developed into a stalemate but the first half ended up making the difference in this 83-57 Sauk Centre win.
Riley Decker succeeded three times from three-point range for Morris Area Chokio Alberta. Maddie Carrington had two long-range makes.
It was Ashley Solvie leading the Tigers in scoring with 19 points. Decker was No. 2 with eleven points. Carrington and Malory Anderson each scored six points, and Nicole Solvie scored five. Jenna Howden scored four points, and Carly Wohlers and Correy Hickman each scored three.
Ashley Solvie pulled down eight rebounds. Decker had six assists and Hickman had five. Hickman stole the ball three times. We did outscore the Streeters 35-34 in the second half.
- Brian Williams - morris mn Minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Sisseton shows steady "mo" in defeating Tigers

Morris Area Chokio Alberta was humbled on the basketball court Friday night (Jan. 6). The boys' story was a 60-40 setback at the hands of Sisseton SD. Sisseton asserted itself in the first half, gaining a 27-17 lead. Nothing changed in the second half as Sisseton outscored the Tigers 33-23. Sisseton had the momentum.
Just one Tiger reached double figures and just barely: Tim Travis with ten points. Jaret Johnson put in nine points. Then came Jacob Zosel whose total was eight. The rest of the list: Camden Arndt (5), Lukus Manska (3), Tate Nelson (2), Andrew Anderson (2) and Kyle Staebler (1). Travis connected once from three-point range. Zosel, Manska and Johnson each made one three-pointer.
Arndt and Travis each collected four rebounds. Zosel contributed three assists, and Nelson stole the ball twice.
Girls: Minnewaska Area 61, Tigers 47
Laker country of Minnewaska Area wasn't kind to our MACA girls hoops Tigers Friday, as we were dealt a 61-47 defeat. Carley Stewart brought a lot of cheers from her home crowd. This Laker made two 3-pointers as part of 24 points scored. Bayley Pooler made three 3-pointers for the "Waska cause, and Emma Thorfinnson like Stewart had two.
We were in the game at halftime as we trailed by just three points, 27-24. But 'Waska owned the second half with a 34-23 advantage.
Ellie Danielson put in 12 points for the Lakers. Pooler's output was eleven. Taylor Amundson and Thorfinnson each had six points, and Ashlyn Guggisberg scored two. Stewart led in rebounds as well as in scoring. In rebounds her stat was eight, and she was followed by Danielson and Abby VerStteg each with five. Stewart led in assists and was co-leader in steals, so she deserved quite the praise over her caliber of play. She had five assists followed by VerSteeg with four. She along with Guggisberg and Bailey Stewart all had two steals.
The Solvie girls for MACA each scored eleven points: Ashley and Nicole. Riley Decker followed with ten points. Then came Correy Hickman (5), Maddie Carrington (4), Malory Anderson (4) and Jenna Howden (2). Decker made two 3-pointers and Hickman made one.
Howden snared eight rebounds and Anderson collected seven. Hickman led in assists with four. Carrington and Hickman each had two steals.
An area newspaper folds
Years ago the Herman and Hoffman communities each had its own little newspaper. I remember what each looked like. Those were nice little papers but they reached the end of the road. A newspaper was created that aimed to serve both communities, even though it seemed they shared few interests. The paper sustained itself for a time. I was skeptical what kind of footing it would achieve, so sure enough it has now been absorbed by the Grant County Herald.
The Morris senior center got a complimentary copy of the new paper last week. I'm not sure Elbow Lake shares a lot of interests with Herman and Hoffman. Yet in theory, the new paper is going to serve these disparate small-ish towns. Small they are, nevertheless the Grant County Herald by itself showed vitality that seemed superior to the paper in Morris. To examine it, you'd assume that Elbow Lake was a more thriving and prosperous community than Morris. But Elbow Lake has no assets comparable to our UMM.
The Morris paper has gone through steady steps of downsizing, especially since I left the staff. It would have been painful to try to stay there. It was getting painful as it was. The Morris paper staff has taken over the full operation of the Hancock paper, and the Hancock office was taken out of Hancock, moved into Morris, several years ago.
You'd have to speculate that the Hancock paper will eventually just be absorbed into the Morris paper, perhaps with a "Hancock page." It was my understanding that Hancock had to have a stand-alone paper in order to be in the "Peach" advertising group. But things may have changed in the last ten years. Could the Peach and Canary merge?
The Canary has had some very small issues lately, as small as 12 pages. Maybe those big auto dealers are adjusting to a more online-oriented world. It looks like Jim Gesswein hasn't gotten the memo yet. We have been showered by those big car dealer ads through the years. Morris lost a major dealer: Morris Auto Plaza.
I personally don't see how the Grant County paper can keep going as good as it is. It has a full staff with lots of specialization. I just can't see it.
Most of us are relying less on papers as time goes by, slowly so we're hardly aware of it. We much prefer our new world. We are empowered. Frankly we don't need those old media "gatekeepers," people who decide what we should be reading. We control our own world, and it's vastly preferable even if those gatekeepers are well-intentioned. The Grant County Herald is well-intentioned.
But I'll repeat: I just can't see it.
- Brian Williams - morris mn Minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com