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
- 4 years 1 month
Collin Eckman is seizing his opportunity. The junior shortstop was thrust into the No. 2 spot in the Little Falls Flyers’ baseball lineup. He’s done nothing but produce since then. Eckman went 5-for-5 with two doubles in the Flyers’ 15-3 win over Perham April 14. He followed that up by going 2-4 with a triple, RBI and a run scored in the Flyers’ 2-1 Granite Ridge Conference win over Princeton April 17. That victory improved Little Falls to 6-0 on the season. And despite going 2-4, Eckman’s batting average dropped.
Vanessa Lane is fast. But there is more to this sophomore phenom then just natural speed. There is her work ethic, strength and a desire to go faster. Pequot Lakes head girls track and field coach Brian Kazmierczak called Lane the hardest-working athlete he’s been around. “She works harder than anyone else,” said the coach. “Overall, she’s such a great example to our other kids because she puts the time in to get better.”
Wesley DeLong knows where he’s going. It’s just a matter of how fast he will get there. The Pillager Huskies’ senior will likely become a member of the North Dakota State University track and field team next season. So this year he’s hoping to leave his mark as a member of a successful Huskies team.
NISSWA — Cru is courageous. Cru is cozy. Cru is many things, but the key to its early success might be collaboration. Grand View Lodge’s representative in the lakes area fine dining scene will enter its second spring with a brand new menu. The brain child of Chef de Cuisine Paul Fitzpatrick was supported by GVL’s Executive Chef Mike Manders, who hired the 2000 Brainerd High School graduate to run with the concept of unique. So what’s on the new menu?
The Brainerd Warriors showed Tuesday they can win ugly. Six errors and two passed balls still couldn’t keep the Warriors from a W as they dispatched the Alexandria Cardinals 9-3 at Adamson Field. Brainerd’s Nikki Anderson struck out 15 and got enough offensive support to open the Central Lakes Conference season with a victory. The senior fireballer found herself down early after Alexandria’s Sarah Bruzek reached on an error and Emily Kuennen was hit by a pitch. Both players later scored for a 2-0 Cardinal lead after the top of the second.
For the past four seasons there were two questions Bruce Thompson didn’t have to worry about. This season, Thompson’s 16th, the Brainerd Warriors head boys tennis coach will have to make a few decisions. At the top of Thompson’s to-do list will be determining who the No. 1 and No. 2 singles players are this season. For the past two seasons it was Cole Sundquist and Jordan Shiltz. The three years before that it was Devin Larson and Morgan Salo. So far those two positions are still up for grabs.
Any offensive questions the Brainerd Warriors had this season were quickly answered Tuesday. The Warriors jumped out to an 8-0 first-inning lead in Game One of their non-conference doubleheader with the Moorhead Spuds. All nine Warriors reached base on their first at bat, helping Brainerd to a 13-0 victory. The Warriors completed the sweep with a 7-0 Game Two win at Adamson Field in Brainerd.
It only happened five times this season. Out of 29 games, Pierz’s Caleb Janson didn’t record a double-double in just five games. All five times Pierz was victorious, but rare was the game when the Pioneers didn’t need Janson’s season averages of 18.2 points and 15 rebounds a game. Because of those numbers, and the career numbers the three-year varsity produced, the senior forward was named the 2011-12 Brainerd Dispatch Player of the Year.
It’s in the Ps. Pequot Lakes, Pierz and Pillager each landed two players on the 2012 Brainerd Dispatch All-Area Team. Brainerd, Crosby-Ironton, Little Falls, Pine River-Backus, Verndale and Wadena-Deer Creek are represented, as well, in a season where there were no standout teams, but plenty of talented players. Players for the all-area team are nominated by their coaches and then selected by the Dispatch sports staff. All-area team Jack Sauer, Brainerd Junior, guard
Brock Larson understands the point of view of those that oppose his occupation. The Brainerd High School graduate is aware of recent events that have given Mixed Martial Arts fighting, especially in the Brainerd lakes area, a black eye. But Larson, who owns the Warriors Alliance in Brainerd and is part of CFX promotions, will continue with his Saturday card at the Brainerd Armory that was scheduled before an alleged assault on March 18 that involved a member of another local MMA group.