My career at the Brainerd Dispatch began May 11, 1999 after graduating from North Dakota State University.
My areas of emphasis includes local high school sports, Central Lakes College, the lakes area golf mecca and once a year I dabble in the NHRA when the Lucas Oil Nationals come to Brainerd International Raceway.
- Member for
- 5 years 6 months
Reilly Peterson loves her mother — she just doesn’t like her very much right now. Nor do her Brainerd Warriors teammates, who mustered what energy they had left to beat the Melrose Dutchmen 105-81 Thursday at Brainerd High School. Kris Peterson is the wellness coordinator at the Brainerd Family YMCA. This season she’s coordinated a dry-land workout regiment for Brainerd swimmers that has the girls feeling the burn.
T here is an unmistakable noise in the Verndale High School gym this fall. This sound electrifies the student body and has powered the Verndale Pirates volleyball team to a 7-4-1 record. The sound? A pounding echo of a well-hit ball ricocheting off the floor after Shania Glenz pulverized it. The freshman posted 10 kills, five digs and two ace serves during the Pirates’ 3-0 drubbing of Eagle Valley Sept. 16. Despite losing 3-1 to Park Region Conference foe Bertha-Hewitt Sept. 19, Glenz still managed 13 kills, 19 digs and three blocks.
T yler Millner suffered through an injury plagued junior season. This season, opposing defenses are suffering. A healthy Millner is a fast Millner and that means big plays for the Pierz Pioneers football team. Miller turned on the burners Sept. 20 as he gouged Kimball for touchdown runs of 21 and 69 yards en route to 167 yards on just 12 carries. The senior running back also intercepted a pass and returned it 20 yards for the game’s first score. That helped Pierz to a 41-19 Central Minnesota Conference win.
Rocori head coach Ted Faber may need to set his team’s alarm clock earlier. Despite slow starts in Game One and Game Two, the Rocori Spartans rattled off a 3-0 Central Lakes Conference sweep of the Brainerd Warriors Tuesday at Brainerd High School. The Spartans fell behind 14-10 before Rocori’s Maggie Young put down six solid serves and helped the Spartans build a 17-14 edge.
Don’t let Jalen Wuchko’s size fool you. The Little Falls Flyers senior running back can just as easily run by you or through you. At 5-foot-11, 230 pounds Wuchko is a beast with a football, but he’s hurting defenses in more ways then one.
Added responsibility hasn’t weighed Megan Felthous down. The junior for the Pine River-Backus Tigers volleyball team added captain to her resume this season. The added work load hasn’t prevented her from rising over blocks and putting down kills. In fact, it may be helping her. “I have more confidence,” said Felthous. “Before I didn’t want to hit the ball because I was afraid of what might happen so I would just tip it. I didn’t like the what ifs. This year, I just go up and whatever happens — happens. I’m fairly confident when it comes to attacking.”
There will be no rest for the weary or the winners Friday morning. By the time most people read this story, the Brainerd Warriors will be running up and down a large hill by the Brainerd High School. They’ll be climbing the hill less than 12 hours after pulling off one of the program’s biggest wins in the last five years as they beat perennial power Sartell 93.5-92.5 Thursday.
Sara Wennerstrand and Caitlin Steffen made it look easy — too easy. Despite matching 6-0, 6-0 victories at the top two singles spots, both girls worked hard to improve for their next match. The strategy will hopefully pay off, but as for Tuesday, the duo did their part in the Brainerd Warriors’ 6-1 Central Lakes Conference win over the St. Cloud Apollo/Sauk Rapids/St. Cloud Cathedral Storming Eagles at Brainerd High School. Wennerstrand angled her way toward her second straight 6-0, 6-0 win. The senior isn’t one to rest on her past success, though.
Mike Mahlen has never shied away from change. The Verndale Pirates’ head football coach has adapted his offense depending on the talents of his players. Enter Dillon Card, Verndale’s three-year starting quarterback. The three-sport athlete stands 6-foot-4, 210 pounds. He’s a state-placing wrestler and a 4.0 student. The combination of size, strength, experience and intelligence has made it difficult for opposing teams to stop the Pirates so far this season.
Someone check Bridget Bednar’s birth certificate. The senior is playing at a level that has helped the Pierz Pioneers volleyball team to an 8-1 start. Even Bednar’s own coach believes she is playing at a higher level. “She’s probably more like a college player than a high school player,” said Pierz head coach Sandy Tautges. “She understands the game and what kind of attack we want to do. She knows where to hit. She has good knowledge so she’s probably playing at a freshman in college level.”