Covers Willmar and area high schools and Ridgewater College, plus amateur baseball, stock car racing and fitness events in summer. Writes weekly column since 1980. Began working in radio and at weekly newspaper in Munising, Michigan, in 1972. Started parttime at West Central Daily Tribune Sept. 1974. Fulltime beginning Feb. 1979. Married to Tribune news clerk Donna (Miller) Middleton, formerly of Kerkhoven. 2 grown children.
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WILLMAR -- The Brainerd Warriors scored 26 straight points in the first half and went on to beat the Willmar Cardinals 32-18 on a damp Friday night at Hodapp Field. The outcome is hardly a surprise.
Vermilion (0-2) at Ridgewater (0-2) Today at 3 p.m. at Hodapp Field VERMILION?OVERVIEW: In the home opener for Ridgewater, Vermilion visits Willmar looking to bounce back from a 42-7 loss at Ely to Rochester. That followed a 35-13 setback to Minnesota West at the Kickoff Classic. That's a tougher schedule than Ridgewater's played so far, but the Ironmen still have to be concerned that the defense is allowing 465 yards per game. Middle linebacker Ethan Washek was so busy against the Yellowjackets that his 19 tackles earned Defensive Player of the Week honors in the MCAC North.
Ex-Willmar Rail Steve Wetterling batted designated hitter for the Midway Snurdbirds, who won the Class C title in dramatic fashion over the Moorhead Brewers on Monday. The Birds had a nice turnout of fans at Bill Taunton Stadium trail them down from the Menahga area. They helped celebrate the first title for Midway, nine miles west of Menahga, in 16 state trips. Wetterling played for the Cardinals and Legion Post 167, graduating in 2001, He played for the Rails most of the decade.
Week 2 BRAINERD WARRIORS (1-0) at WILLMAR CARDINALS (0-1) Friday, 7 p.m. at Hodapp Field A LOOK AT BRAINERD: The Warriors (4-2, 8-4) reached the Class AAAAA semifinals for the second time in three years last season. Last Friday at Cold Spring, the Warriors scored 35 first-half points and cruised to a 35-17 opening night victory over Rocori.
MESABI OVERVIEW: The Norsemen piled up 396 yards in a 33-12 victory over Fergus Falls last Saturday. Avery Walker rushed for 124 yards and three touchdowns in 16 carries. Quarterback Howard Anthony passed for 127 yards and a touchdown. The defense gave up 182 rushing but allowed the Spartans less than 50 yards in the air. Every indication is that Mesabi is more potent than the Itasca team that Ridgewater met in last week's opener. RIDGEWATER OVERVIEW: The Warriors will be looking for their first points at Virginia after falling 7-0 to the Vikings at the Kick-off Classic in St. Cloud.
At the end of October on the football field in Hutchinson, the Cardinals varsity football team seemed beaten coming off the bus. The Tigers were huge, obviously more muscular and determined to uphold their tradition of playoff success against. To the delight of the home-town crowd, the Tigers marched through the Cardinals like pugnacious fifth-graders playing the cherubic third-graders at recess. That ended Jon Konold's first year as head coach.
WILLMAR CARDINALS (0-0) at ALEXANDRIA CARDINALS (0-0) Friday, 7 p.m. ALEXANDRIA OVERVIEW: The Cardinals went 9-2 last year in their second year under head coach Mike Empting. That team had 17 seniors. In 2008, Empting's first year, those juniors got pushed around and the squad ended up with just two wins. This fall, a big offensive line is being remodeled around center Andy Werk, the lone returning starter in the trench. Senior Cole Ellison moves in at quarterback after a year as an understudy to Colin Erickson, one of five all-Central Lakes Conference choices to graduate.
Volleyball COACH Terrin DeBoer ASSISTANT COACH Amanda Norby (JV1), Jana Peterson (JV2), Kristian Rosendahl (freshmen) LOOKING BACK Central Lakes Conference: 9-3, third place Overall: 18-11 Post-Season: Lost to Prior Lake in the first round KEY DATES Season opener: Today at Minnetonka, 7 p.m. CLC/home opener: Sept. 7 vs. Alexandria, 7 p.m. Willmar Invitational: Oct 2 (Bemidji, Benson, Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart, Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa, Central Minnesota Christian, New London-Spicer, Renville County West), 8 a.m. Section Tournament: Starts Oct.