The University of Minnesota fastpitch softball team last weekend captured its first conference tournament championship in 15 years with some help from an Arden Hills native.
Erica Meyer scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning as the Golden Gophers defeated Michigan 3-2 in the championship game of the Big Ten tournament on Saturday in Evanston, Illinois. The victory not only gives Minnesota its first conference tournament title since 1999, it also sends the Gophers to next week’s NCAA tournament.
A pair of Roseville Area High School graduates will have their college baseball seasons extended by at least a few more days. Ben Podobinski and Austin Colvard are set to play in the NCAA Division III tournament starting this week.
Podobinski and Colvard are starting outfielders for the University of St. Thomas and the College of St. Scholastica baseball teams, respectively. Both teams won their respective conference tournaments last weekend to clinch automatic berths into the national tournament.
Track and field teams from Roseville Area High School and Concordia Academy last week went after berths in the state true-team meet, but came up short. Roseville’s girls team and Concordia’s boys squad finished runner-up in their respective sections.
The Hill-Murray Pioneers have high hopes of repeating as the Classic Suburban Conference boys golf champions, but head coach Kris Oftedahl knows there are plenty of others waiting in the wings to put up better scores.
The veteran head golf tutor said recently, “We are looking for good things. Especially from the four players we have returning from last year’s conference championship team.
The North High boys golf team has returned to links this season with many inexperienced players on its roster.
“I hope the youngsters we have work hard on their game to improve,” North head coach Jim Pearson said. “Playing against other schools will show them they have to work on their game to have success. The attitudes of our team members are great.”
The College of St. Scholastica men’s track and field team went in search of its third consecutive conference championship on Saturday but trailed by 10 points with two events remaining. That’s when a St. Anthony Village High School graduate started the comeback.
Chris Lawson, a 2012 St. Anthony graduate, won the 5,000 meters to help the Saints rally and clinch the title. His win helped turn the 10-point deficit into an eight-point victory.
The St. Anthony Village High School fastpitch softball team started five seniors in the state tournament last June. With a number of new faces in the lineup this season, the Huskies are going through some growing pains.
St. Anthony reached the midway point of the regular season last week and enters this week with a record of 7-4. Not a bad first half, but head coach Lamar Brendemuehl is waiting for his squad to put all the pieces together at the same time.
The Mustangs have had trouble putting up wins so far this season but they’ll have plenty of chances this week. While not quite as bad as a year ago, doubleheaders are becoming common again this season.
Mounds View played a doubleheader last week and has three more on the schedule through the end of the regular season.
Despite not playing a game in more than a week, the Knights had a successful weekend. The Irondale girls softball team won an eight-team tournament to pick up some momentum heading into the final two weeks of the regular season.
When Irondale stepped on the field in Lakeville on Friday, it was playing for the first time since April 23. Rust wasn’t a factor as the Knights beat Visitation, Wayzata and Duluth Denfeld to win the Black bracket of the Lakeville North tournament.
The Rochester Century Panthers were shorthanded going into the Saturday, May 3, girls lacrosse match against the Titans of Tartan.
After their 9-7 road loss to the scrappy Titans, Century head coach told his players, “You did a nice job today. I’m proud of you. ... Our defense really stepped up and did well.”