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Give the Minnesota Vikings some credit - they have had a beneficial season -- not a Super Bowl season, not a playoff season, not even a respectable season, but the kind of season that can really help a team. What have Minnesota fans wanted for 51 years? That's right - a Super Bowl victory. They have tracked it like a Scud missile tracking a jet and they have been close, very close. Last Saturday's 33-26 victory over Washington broke a six-game losing streak but that is about all it did. When you are angling for a top college draft choice, victories are the last thing you really want.
The Verndale Pirates evened their Park Region Conference slate at 1-1 Thursday by topping Menahga 67-52 at Verndale. Dallas Ehrmantraut sparked the Pirates with 20 points and was tough at the line canning 11 of 13 free throw attempts. Aaron Denny pumped in 15 points and matched his offensive output with a whopping 17 rebounds and four blocked shots. Free throws dominated the up tempo game with the Pirates sinking 22 of 39 foul shots and the Braves hitting 18 of 35 attempts. The Pirates take a 2-5 record into the Christmas break. Jordan Hinkle's club will return to action Jan.
Freshman Jeremiah Hanson broke open a tight game by sinking five of six technical free throws Wednesday as the Maranatha Academy Mustangs edged Wadena-Deer Creek 69-64 in the Otter Holiday Classic. "I chirped to the ref one time, then Ryan (Redfield) said something and then Jeremy (Sherman)," said WDC Head Coach Tom VanErp. "I don't think it was a poorly officiated game, I think there was one poor official." VanErp said the reason the protests were lodged had to do with the way the officials were calling fouls under the basket.
Lizzi Schieldt scored a hat trick and dished out one assist for a four-point game Wednesday to lead Middleton (Wis.) Metro to a 7-1 victory over Long Prairie-Grey Eagle/Wadena-Deer Creek in the Schwan Cup Tournament at Blaine, Minn. The Green Division loss to the Lynx dropped the Blue Devils into the tournament's consolation bracket and gave them a 1-7 season mark. Schieldt scored twice in the first period with her second goal coming on the power play. She completed her hat trick at the 15:27 mark of the third period.
The Wadena-Deer Creek volleyball team followed up their 2010 Class AA state championship season with their fourth straight trip to the state tournament in St. Paul. Sue Volkmann's volleyers placed fourth in the eight-team tournament - defeating Visitation 3-2 in the opening round before falling to top-ranked Marshall 3-1 and Jordan 3-0. The Wolverines ended the season with a 27-6 record. WDC junior middle hitter Emily Miron was named to the all-state tournament team.
Carlson Highland presented a 2011 financial audit to the Verndale School Board Dec. 19 that indicated the fund balance will continue to grow. The report showed a growth of $350,919 in the general fund and $24,981 in the food service fund. The increases were partially offset by a $19,796 drop in the debt service balance fund and a $1,719 decrease in the community education fund.
Ice fishing has been a difficult sport for some this winter as unusually mild temperatures prevail in west central Minnesota. Houses have already gone down on Otter Tail County lakes like Buchanan and Dead. The Grant County Sheriff's Office reported that five fish houses went down Tuesday - one day after a terrific wind and temperatures near 50 degrees. There are several ways to turn your fish house into the Titanic during a warm Minnesota winter. One of the best ways is to pretend that no problem exists.
Art Schluttner's Pirates took third place in the Verndale Christmas Tournament Tuesday with 66-20 trouncing of Pillager. The Huskies shot an icy 21 percent from the field. Teresa Moenkedick led the Pirates with 28 points while Kristen Korfe added 10. The victory ended a five-game slide by the Pirates.
Wadena-Deer Creek's Mitch Steffens took third and Sam Waln claimed sixth Saturday at the Big Bear Tournament in Cass Lake. Steffens decisioned Willmar's Nate Mittag 7-4 in the 113-pound third place match. Waln lost a 5-3 overtime decision to Willmar's Austin Miles at 120. The Wolverines placed 24th in the 32-team wrestling extravaganza with 52 team points.
Five Wadena Golden Glovers won their bouts Saturday night before a packed house at the Wadena National Guard Armory. Neil Janson and Cole Cottrell at 120 and 165. Janson out-punched Detroit Lakes' Jesus Guayardo for a second round RSC and Cottrell used his left to pummel Detroit Lakes' David Misheski for a first round RSC. Wadena's John Johnson went three rounds with St. Cloud's Jordan Lemieur to gain a decision. Albert Boldt tangled with White Earth's Lee Bower and both boxers landed solid punches. Boldt won by decision.