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The Insider: Let the games begin ... maybe

Let the games begin … maybe

Barring more foul weather, the Willmar Cardinals will open the long-delayed spring sports season today hosting a tennis match at 5 p.m. vs. Central Lakes Conference rival Brainerd. The track team is scheduled for Sartell, a quadrangular. Baseball and softball with Rocori have been rescheduled.

On Friday, the track and field team heads to the Monticello Invite while the tennis team hosts Sartell. Baseball and softball with Sartell are rescheduled. On Saturday the softball team will attempt to open the season at Monticello while the tennis team travels to Alexandria, possibly a triangular.

Activities director Ryan Blahosky claims that so far in April 72 high school events have been postponed or cancelled.

Smith has two-hit game in Mudcats win

Fighting through an early-season slump, Jordan Smith, the Cleveland Indians’ Class A minor league outfielder from Willmar, had his second multi-hit game of the young season as the Carolina Mudcats (8-10) spilled the Potomac Nationals 7-1 in Zebulon, N.C., on Tuesday. That raised the clean-up hitter’s average to .172. Smith also threw out a base runner at the plate in the eighth inning trying to score on a sac fly.

Ruter wins against strong field

Brendan Ruter was named one of Hamline University’s Athletes of the Week. The former New London-Spicer athlete won the 1,500-meter race at last week’s Central College Open in 4-minutes, 03.69 seconds, edging out a talented field that included several NCAA Division II runners. It was the senior’s best effort of the spring and moved him in the top 10 in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.

Hancock grad named top Class A wrestling coach

Joel Viss, a 1979 Hancock High School graduate, has been named Minnesota Class A State Wrestling Coach of the Year. Viss’ Chatfield team finished 32-2 and placed third in this year’s Minnesota State Class A Wrestling Tournament.

Viss’ father, Paul, is expected to accept the award for his son at the Minnesota Wrestling Coaches Association State Awards and Hall of Fame Banquet Saturday at The Country Inn and Suites in Benson.

Joel Viss is closing in on 350 wins during his 28 years as Chatfield head coach. He will miss the banquet to coach wrestlers at the Norsky Open Tournament this weekend at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa.

— Associated Press/Staff reports