STILLWATER—Area teams came up big in the Minnesota Coaches Association state True Team Track and Field Championships at Pony Stadium on the Stillwater High School campus on Saturday. The Willmar boys won their fourth-straight Class AA state championship, the Willmar girls finally broke through to earn their first Class AA state title after three-straight runner-up finishes, and the Minnewaska girls team won the Class A state championship. The Morris/Chokio-Alberta boys team placed fifth in the 12-team Class A field.
SARTELL - Jayden Dierenfeld got the win and Bryan Weidemann picked up the save as Willmar defeated Sartell 3-1 on Saturday. Dierenfeld allowed a run on seven hits and struck out four in six innings. Weidemann worked a scoreless seventh. The Cardinals took the lead in the third when Ashton Gregory and Andy Schultz singled and came around to score on Drey Dirksen's double. Willmar added an insurance run in the seventh when Zach Courtney doubled, took third on a balk and scored on Caleb Owens' sacrifice fly. Willmar 3, Sartell 1
WILLMAR—Erica Schramm and Drey Dirksen are Willmar High School's 2019 Lions Award winners, presented each year to the Cardinals' top senior athletes of the year. The awards were presented during WHS' annual Senior Athletic Awards Program on Sunday. In addition to the Lions Award, Schramm and Dirksen received $500 Hedloff Memorial Scholarship. Schramm is a 14-time varsity letterwinner and a nine-time state qualifier. She returned from a severe neck injury as a junior to earn state spots in both swimming and diving and gymnastics.
LITCHFIELD - When Owen Boerema has a bat in his hand, great things happen. And in Friday's 10-2 win over Kimball, Boerema's bat set a new state record. Boerema got a hit in his 34th consecutive game, breaking Deer River's Tim Gullickson's record of 33 set from 1981-83, according to the Minnesota State High School Baseball Coaches Association. Boerema's record streak includes all 26 games of his junior season and the Dragons' eight games this spring.
WILLMAR - The Ridgewater softball team limited Riverland to eight hits and four runs in a sweep of a doubleheader on Wednesday at Ridgewater College. The Warriors won Game 2 10-2 and took Game 1 11-2. Both games were halted by the eight-run rule after five innings. In Game 2, Ridgewater's Rylie Wilner was 3-for-3 with a triple, three RBIs, three runs scored and two stolen bases. The Warriors' Miranda Scherer had two hits, including an in-the-park home run, and she drove in two runs and scored twice.
WILLMAR—Former Minnesota Twin LaTroy Hawkins will be the Willmar Stingers' opening night guest to commemorate the start of the team's 10th anniversary season. Hawkins will throw out the ceremonial first pitch for the 2019 home opener against Mankato at 7:05 p.m. on Wednesday, May 29, at Bill Taunton Stadium. Fans will have an opportunity to meet Hawkins, take photos and get his autograph when gates open at 6 p.m. The first 500 fans through the gates will also receive a 2019 magnet schedule and there is a post-game fireworks show.
ORTONVILLE—Lac qui Parle Valley had four golfers shoot 83 or better and won the Ortonville Invitational on Wednesday. LQPV shot 322 to outdistance second-place Minnewaska (339). Morris/Chokio-Alberta was third at 346. Montevideo's Seth Olson shot 76 to take medalist honors, and LQPV's Harrison Patzer shot 77 to tie Minneota's Nolan Boerboom for second. Ortonville Invite At Ortonville Golf Club Team scoring
COLLEGEVILLE - A four-run sixth inning propelled Montevideo to an 8-5 win over Pipeston on Saturday at St. John's University. The Thunder Hawks held a one-run lead through five innings but broke the game open in the bottom of the sixth. Pipestone scored two in the seventh before Monte squelched the rally. The T-Hawks' Colby Buseman had two hits and drove in three runs, Jackson Snell had two hits and two RBIs and Seth Kuno had three hits, including a double, and scored two runs. Montevideo 8, Pipestone 5
HUTCHINSON—The Willmar tennis team had two competitive matches but rolled in the other five and defeated Hutchinson 7-0 on Saturday at the indoor courts at the MeLeod County Fairgrounds. Will Fischer needed a third set to defeat Hutchinson's Blake Schmidt at No. 1 singles. The Cardinals' No. 3 doubles team of Cole Helfinstine and Ethan Rekedal dropped their first set but won the second in a tiebreaker and won 10-5 in a third pro set.
One area golf course is already open, another opens today and several others are expected to be ready for play next week, weather permitting. The Oakdale course in Buffalo Lake opened April 2 and Valley Golf in Willmar is expected to open today. Other area courses have tentative opening dates but there is a chance of rain in the area on Saturday and Sunday, and with frost still working out of the ground, the following dates could change. • Eagle Creek Golf Club in Willmar has an April 15 start date.