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 Willmar Cardinals play host today to the Central Lakes Conference meet held at the Eagle Creek Golf Club. Six races are scheduled with the focus on boys varsity (4:15 p.m. start) and girls varsity (4:40 p.m.). Junior Varsity runs start at 3:25 p.m. Middle schools races follow varsity. The races will be on the back nine holes. Fans may use the Eagle Creek pro shop parking lot. The Willmar boys have been runners-up the past two seasons -- to Alexandria last year and to Brainerd in 2007.
WILLMAR -- Rochester came from behind at halftime to tame upset-minded Ridgewater 20-7 on Saturday at Hodapp Field. The Warriors held a 7-0 lead at halftime on a 97-yard run by Patrick Cincinatus. But aided by four Warriors turnovers, the unbeaten Yellowjackets scored four times while blanking the hosts over the last 30 minutes. The Warriors' defense limited the Yellowjackets to just 193 total yards.
It's 40 years since interscholastic girls sports wedged their way into the male-dominant arena. The going was slow -- a little gymnastics and some swimming late in the 1960s; tennis, basketball and volleyball in the mid-'70s and, still later, cross country. Now, in fall alone, a girl may choose from the following activities menu: tennis, swimming, volleyball, soccer, cross country and dance line. Judy Aagesen came here in 1964 with her husband, Jim. She had graduated in 1954 from Shanley High School in Fargo where she had "a couple of dates" with Rudy Maris, Roger's older brother.
WILLMAR - The Northwoods League made it official Wednesday afternoon at a news conference at the Holiday Inn Convention Center -- a summer collegiate baseball team will play 34 games at Bill Taunton Stadium starting in 2010. A contest will determine the new team's nickname. Willmar becomes the 15th team in the wood bat league, which plays a 68-game schedule, plus playoffs, from early June to the middle of August. Ryan Voz and Marc Jerzak, who have a combined 20 years of Northwoods experience, are co-owners and will handle day-to-day operations. Former administrators for the St.
Willmar Cardinals (3-3) at Rocori Spartans (3-3) Today, 7 p.m. ROCORI OVERVIEW: Like Willmar, the Spartans also are under a first-year coach -- Bob Rowe a former assistant at Minot College and St. Cloud State University. Also, similar to the Cardinals, Rocori operates out of a shotgun spread. Senior quarterback Derek Leiser threw for 279 yards and ran for 70 more in his first varsity start, a 35-14 win over St. Cloud Apollo in Week 1. He will use five or six different receivers. Spencer Schulte, a 6-2, 175-pound senior is the principle rusher.
WILLMAR -- This was the match Willmar had been building up for an entire month after losing in five games at Alexandria on Sept. 8. "We were so excited," said senior setter Jennie Mattison.
Ridgewater (1-1, 2-4) at Fond du Lac (1-1, 2-4) 1:30 pm. Today at Cloquet FOND DU LAC OVERVIEW: The third-year program has wins over Minnesota West (25-0) in Week 3 and Itasca (24-14, OT) in Week 5. Quarterback Rumea Carlton (900 yards, 9 INT, 7 TD) of Ft. Meade, Fla., leads an explosive offense, with wideout Branden Peterson (Apple Valley, Eastview) the leading receiver 19 catches for 412 yards and two TDs. Running back March Jones (Montgomery, Ala.) has rushed for 349 yards, the most in the North Division.
Willmar Cardinals (3-2) at Sauk Rapids Storm (4-1) Friday, 7 p.m. WILLMAR OVERVIEW: The Cardinals are in the rebound-mode for the second time this season. They struck back from the Brainerd loss by overtaking Little Falls in last 10 minutes. The Flyers, by the way, got a rare win Friday over St. Cloud Tech, 9-8, their first win at Clark Field in 18 years. The Cardinals lost to the Storm last year, 35-14 at Hodapp, but got the "W" last time on the Storm field (45-20 in 2007).
Robert Johnson is stout with muscular arms and a thick neck, but you need to lean in to hear him. His gentle voice and kind manner belies the rugged game he plays. The 6-foot-1 280-pound Twin Cities native plays defensive tackle for the Ridgewater Warriors. Since graduating in 2007 from Apple Valley High School, he's seen more adversity than most athletes deal with in a lifetime. He started college at Southwest Minnesota State intending to play Mustang football. But an old basketball injury hadn't completely healed and required surgery.