MELROSE -- Melrose took the top spot in the West Central North boys basketball standings alone by dumping New London-Spicer, 60-49, Friday. The Dutchmen (6-1, 10-2) controlled the first half, taking a 38-26 advantage at the break, then cruised in the second half. The Wildcats (5-2, 9-4) didn't fare as well in the second half, scoring just 21 points. Curt Bertram and Seth Gieske scored 16 and 12 points, respectively, for Melrose. Chris Tengwall netted a season-high 13 points and Wade Powers added 11 points for NLS. Melrose 60, NLS 49 NL-Spicer (5-2, 9-4) 26 21 -- 49 Melrose (6-1, 10-2)
The Ridgewater College men's and women's basketball teams travel to Fergus Falls today for MCCC Southern Division games with MSCTC-Fergus Falls. The Lady Warriors play at 1 p.m. and the Warriors at approximately 3 p.m.
MONTEVIDEO -- Lac qui Parle Valley overcame a four-point halftime deficit to stay in the lead of the West Central South Conference girls basketball race with a 45-35 win over Montevideo Thursday. The Eagles (6-1, 10-5) trailed 20-16 at halftime. Montevideo (3-4, 7-6), which shot 42 percent in the first half, went cold in the second, making just 21 percent of its shots. It was the fifth straight win for LQPV. Kayla Rheingans paced the Eagles with 13 points. Madeline Gail followed with 10 points and nine rebounds.
The Willmar Cardinals boys basketball team (6-2, 11-3) travels to Sauk Rapids (1-7, 1-12) for a Central Lakes Conference game tonight.
Funeral services are this morning at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Granite Falls for former coach and athletic director Phil Minelli, who died Monday at age 93. He coached a short-lived Granite Falls hockey team in the mid-1940s and football from 1944-54, posting three unbeaten, untied seasons. He also served as athletic director and coached gymnastics and track. A teacher and guidance counselor, he retired in 1975.
Pre-registations are at 145 for Saturday's 2nd annual Frozen 5K Run/Walk set for 9 a.m. Saturday at Saulsbury Beach in Spicer. Promotor Dave Baker predicts the field will exceed the 200 who ran last year. The race is the opening event of the 2007 Glacial Lakes Championship Running Series. Register at www.greenlaketri.com or on site starting at 8 a.m.
WILLMAR -- Willmar's third-period woes continued as St. Cloud Tech scored three times down the stretch to whip the Cardinals 5-2 in Central Lakes Conference boys hockey on Thursday at the Civic Center. Willmar had tied the game 2-2 and seemed to be playing well when the Tigers took over. Tech led 1-0 after one period and went up 2-0 on the first of two goals by Alex Coulter at 1:51 in the second period. Tech was controlling the puck when Willmar got a man-advantage late in the period.
ALEXANDRIA -- If rules from a couple of years ago were still in force, the Willmar girls basketball team would have held Alexandria scoreless in the first quarter. But this is the second year of the 18-minute halves, so Willmar held its Central Lakes Conference opponent without a point for the first 9½ minutes of their game Thursday, en route to a 54-46 victory. In that time, Willmar took a 15-0 lead, then finished the half with a 25-13 advantage. The win dropped Alexandria (6-3, 7-6) from the top of the conference.
ST. CLOUD -- Three players scored in double figures for St. Cloud Cathedral as the Crusaders held off New London-Spicer 45-44 Thursday in the West Central North Conference. The loss dropped the Wildcats two games behind front-running Albany in the conference race. The Crusaders, led by Emily Schmidt's game-high 15 points, pulled ahead with around 30 seconds remaining. The Wildcats got a shot off, but St. Cloud Cathedral grabbed the rebound off the miss to seal the win. New London-Spicer junior Renae Henjum, the area's leading scorer, was held to 14 points, six below her season average.
LITCHFIELD -- Emily Davis had 19 points and two other players scored in double figures for Litchfield as the Dragons drubbed Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City 61-51 Thursday in the first-ever regular-season meeting between the two teams that are separated by only nine miles. The Dragons (7-6) opened a big lead early and never looked back as they shot 56 percent from the field.