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
- 7 years 2 months
Pierz Legion What: Central Plains Division II Regional Invitational tournament Where: Wahpeton, N.D. When: Thursday through Sunday First game: Pierz vs. West Salem, Wis. 4 p.m. Thursday Radio: KFML 94.1 Stream: fallsradio.com or sfmsports.net For Pierz baseball, it's one last stand together. For four more days, one of the most accomplished area baseball teams will battle for yet another title.
Craig Venske wanted to be different. Mission accomplished for the head chef and owner of Chameleon Cafe, north of Baxter on Highway 371 near Brainerd International Raceway. Like the reptile it's named after, the restaurant is about change. Unlike a change in appearance, Venske wanted to change the lakes area's dining experience. With healthy food items and a minimalist approach to service and decor, Chameleon Cafe isn't your normal quick food stop. It's quick, but the menu and atmosphere provide more than what you might expect.
Alan Hills was learning to coach before he realized it. The son of a former head basketball and football coach, Hills would watch game tape with his dad, Greg Hills, who is the current football offensive coordinator at Crosby-Ironton. When the opportunity to be an assistant football came arrived six years ago at his alma mater, Hills jumped at the chance. At a June 30 special meeting, the Aitkin School Board unanimously approved Hills as the new head coach for the Aitkin Gobblers football team. Hills takes over for Tom Sanford, who resigned.
Practice doesn't start until Aug. 1, but Noah Gindorff isn't wasting time becoming acquainted with his new surroundings. Sept. 2 will be the first game of the season for the North Dakota State University Bison. It marks the first step in the team's return to FCS National Championship glory. NDSU will host Mississippi Valley State at the Fargodome. Whether Gindorff makes the field or not is still in question. The freshman's future hasn't been decided yet. What he does know is he has a locker. His number will be 46 and he will do whatever is necessary to help his new team win.
Tied for 23rd. It's how one of the winningest prep boys golfers finished his high school career. It wasn't a happy ending for Andrew Israelson, but big picture, it wasn't an ending at all. It was the spark that ignited the Staples-Motley High School graduate's redefinition.
CROSBY—Bryan Syrstad will have large shoes to fill this fall. The new head coach for the Crosby-Ironton Rangers football team will take over for Mike Gindorff, who resigned following last season so he can watch his son Noah play college football this fall at North Dakota State University. Aside from Gindorff, the rest of the Ranger coaching staff remains, which should create a seamless transition.
Iron Range Eatery Where: Downtown Crosby What: 3 Cheers Hospitality's third area restaurant Menu: Pizzas, build your own bruschetta and burgers, upscale dishes and cocktails CROSBY—It's time to dust off those "fancy" shoes and head to Crosby. The newest addition to Crosby's ever-changing downtown landscape is Iron Range Eatery, located by the bike park in what used to be a bakery. It's the third restaurant owned and operated by 3 Cheers Hospitality—better known as the Prairie Bay guys.
It's been a crazy week for Matt Tautges. The Pierz Pioneers senior was part of the school's all-time winningest baseball team that finished second in the Class 2A state tournament with Monday's 6-4 loss to Minnehaha Academy in Monday's championship game at Target Field in Minneapolis. The sting of defeat was deadened slightly as Tautges was named the Minnesota State High School Baseball Coaches' Association Class 2A Player of the Year Thursday night at its end of year banquet.
As Olivia Lane enters her junior year of high school, her future path will already be paved. Lane, a 6-foot-1 post player for the Pequot Lakes Patriots, verbally committed to play basketball at the University of North Dakota. That won't happen for two years, but it's one less decision Lane will have to worry about for the future. "With Division I, a lot of (high school) juniors commit early on because (schools are) looking at a lot of different players," said Lane. "I just loved everything about UND and I felt it was a perfect fit for me so that's why I committed early."
Jim Blocker took his first selfie. It required a special occasion and Blocker's Father's Day was just that. At 7:30 a.m. Sunday, Blocker was on the No. 2 tee box at Emily Greens Golf Course. Blocker took out his 6 iron for the 132-yard par 3 and watched as he recorded his first hole-in-one.