Curt Hogg and Jake Schultz
ST. CLOUD — The winning ways keep on rolling for the Willmar boys basketball team. Noah Slagter scored 33 points and grabbed 14 rebounds and the Cardinals improved to 6-0 with a 80-59 win over reigning Central Lakes Conference champion St. Cloud Tech. Willmar wore down the Tigers over the course of the second half, just as it has done with each opponent this season. The Cardinals trailed by one point at the half, but outscored Tech 53-31 over the final 18 minutes. Drey Dirksen added a double-double with 13 points and 13 rebounds for Willmar.
WILLMAR—To christen its new gymnasium, Willmar promoted its meet with New London-Spicer on Friday night—the first ever gymnastics meet on the senior high school's campus—as "Pack the Gym" night. The gym was packed so much that it was bursting at the seams with spectators. The Cardinals put on an impressive show for the crowded audience, downing the Wildcats 145.475-134.525. Considering the atmosphere and her team's performance, the evening couldn't have gone much better for Willmar head coach Jodi Mottinger.
BENSON — A terroristic threat led to the abrupt cancellation of the Case IH boys basketball tournament on Friday at the Benson High School. A release from Benson Chief of Police Ian Hodge stated that an individual made "direct terroristic threats" against the Benson High School, which was the host site for the two-day boys tournament with games scheduled at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. on Friday Breckenridge and MACCRAY were in the second half of the tournament's first game when Benson Activities Director Shannon Schmidt learned of the threats and announced the evacuation.
BIRD ISLAND - The BOLD Warriors wants to push the pace on the offensive end. They did just that on Thursday night. The Warriors scored 53 second-half points to pull away from New Ulm Cathedral in a 88-60 win to improve to 5-1 on the year. Carter Henry scored 21 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead BOLD, and Gavin Vosika posted another near-triple-double with 16 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists.
BROOTEN — Noah Kannegiesser took the inbounds pass immediately following a timeout and hobbled his way up the court, doing his best to keep as much pressure as possible off the right knee he had tweaked minutes before. His team tied at 37-37 with Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa on Monday night following a sluggish, slow start to the second half, Kannegiesser came around a double screen at the top of the key. A superb athlete, he could have put the ball on the deck and gone to the basket for a layup, but his knee suggested otherwise.
KERKHOVEN — Alex Swenson came around the screen and popped into the corner, taking the pass from Colton Husby. The Dawson-Boyd senior point guard pulled up from behind the arc and found the bottom of the net. Then, on the next possession, Swenson it all over again—just from the opposite corner. Seconds later, Romell Horton spotted up in transition from the wing and let go of another triple. Bang.
CLARA CITY — MACCRAY awoke from a slumber toward the end of the first half and carried that play through to the end for a 54-46 win over Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg on Thursday night. Sage Mecker scored a game-high 21 points while shooting 6-for-18 from 3-point range to lead MACCRAY to a 3-1 record on the year. The Wolverines rattled off a 14-4 run over the final 7:52 of the first half that proved to be the difference in the game. A feisty zone from the Saints had given MACCRAY problems until that point, including sparking a 10-2 KMS run to open the game.
WILLMAR — The new basketball season has brought with it a new look for the Willmar boys basketball team. And with that, so far, has come newfound success. The Cardinals turned up the tempo and came away with a 76-44 win over Dassel-Cokato, improving to 2-0 on the young season. Three days after breaking the Willmar school record for boys scoring, Noah Slagter led the way with 21 points on an efficient 10-for-15 shooting clip and grabbed 12 rebounds for his first of many double-doubles to come.
WILLMAR - Allie Cornelius scored all four goals at the St. Cloud Icebreakers downed Willmar 4-1 on Tuesday at the Willmar Civic Center. After nearly two scoreless periods, Cornelius broke through with the first goal of the game at 15:34 of the second. Willmar's Natasha Turrubiates tied the game with a goal at 16:51 on an assist from Mya Monson. But Cornelius scored twice in the first 10 minutes of the third period, then added an empty netter to close out the game. Willmar goalie Savana Knutson faced 26 shots and made 23 saves.
WILLMAR — Willmar boys soccer's win over Big Lake to open Section 6A play may not have been as dominant as head coach Jeff Winter would have wanted, but he was in no position to have any complaints. "We looked up and down throughout the match," Winter said. "But you look back and see the six goals, a good job defensively and a win. A win's a win and you can't be upset about that." The No. 3 Cardinals advanced to the quarterfinals, where they will meet No. 6 Holy Family Catholic on Thursday at the Kennedy School field.