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Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Former Otters to Run Basketball Camp

Three former Otter basketball players will be running the summer basketball camp at Fergus Falls High School this summer.  Jason Retzlaff, Matt Johnson and Josh Mohagen, all tremendous players for FFHS, will be involved with the camp from June 4 through June 15.

 

First, second and third-graders will have their camp from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m., June 4 through June 8 and fourth and fifth-graders will go from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m., June 11 through June 15.  The cost for those sessions are $45.00 per student.

 

Sixth and seventh-graders will run from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. beginning June 4 and ending June 15, while eighth and ninth-graders will meet from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., June 4 through June 15.  The cost will be $65.00 per student for the two-week sessions.

 

All camps will be held in the Fergus Falls High School gymnasium.  If you have any questions, please contact Activities Director Gary Schuler at 998-0544, extension 2504.
 
The Pebble Lake Golf Club hosted a 4-Player Scramble on Saturday, May 26.  In the Gross Division, the team of Erik Johnson, Lance Anderson, Asko Rajaniemi and Ben Jurgens took first place, winning on the first sudden death playoff hole over Jere Hansen, Brian Shuck, John Hagge and John Schwankl.  The winning score was 59.  Second place went to the team of Dan Elton, Wayne Elton, Ryan Elton and Dwayne Siverson with a score of 60.
 
In the Net Division, Hansen, Shuck, Hagge and Schwankl placed first with a score of 58.6.  The team of Lance Walvatne, Dan Walvatne, Ben Olson and Grant Colling was second with a 59.9. 
 
Ben Jurgens won two of the hole contests, including closest to the pin on number two and longest drive on number five.  Snook Harworth had the longest putt on number eighteen.

 

Posted By Craig Olson
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Registration Deadlines Approaching
Registration deadlines are approaching for several upcoming area opportunities.  The Shada 3-on-3 basketball tournament, Hillcrest boys and girls basketball camps, the Half Marathon/5K Run and the Hoost Lake Triathlon are all popular events in the lakes area. 
 
The Shada 3-on-3 basketball tournament will be held on June 15, 16 and 17 with divisions for third-graders to seniors in high school, along with adult divisions that include post high school, college and 35-plus divisions.  The tournament is open to all male and female basketball enthusiasts.  For information and registration you can log on to www.shada3on3.com, e-mail director Doug Bruggeman at brugdoug@loretel.net or call him at 218-863-4388.
 
This is the 14th annual Shada.  Friday night is elementary night with grade level and experience based on the grade or level of play that players were prior to June 1st of the current year.  Divisions for the elementary include both boys and girls in grades three through six.  The elementary tournament starts at 2:00 p.m. and us usually over by 10:00 p.m..  The tournament typically consists of between fifty and sixty teams.
 
When it comes to the "upper divisions", the Shada breaks the tournament into two parts.  On Saturday, June 16th, teams compete in a round-robin format to determine what their seed will be for Championship Sunday's single elimination tournament on June 17th.
 
Entries must be postmarked by Thursday, May 31st.  The cost is $40 for elementary teams and $60 for the upper divisions. 
 
Do you like basketball?  Are you looking to improve your game while having fun? Then Hillcrest Lutheran Academy has a camp for you.  You are invited to join Comets Head Coach Gregg Preston who will work with campers to develop their skills through drills, contests, and game competition.  You will also learn how to display your faith on the court.  The Summer Girls Basketball Camp is for girls entering grades 9 through 12 and will be held from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. June 4th through June 6th.  The Summer Boys Basketball Camp is for boys entering grades four through seven and will be held the same dates from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon.  The cost of each camp is $30 per person and both camps will be held at the Hillcrest Activities Center.  Registration money should be sent to Gregg Preston, 610 Hillcrest Drive, Fergus Falls, MN 56537 by June 1st.
 
Saturday, June 2nd, the Fergus Falls Area Family YMCA will be holding the Half Marathon/5K Run.  All ages are welcome.  Run the 5K (3.1 miles) or Half Marathon (13.1 miles).  The route takes you through the scenic areas of Fergus Falls.  The race begins at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday at the YMCA.  Registration must be made by Wednesday, May 30th.  The cost is $30 for Adults and $10 for age 14 and under.  Trophies will be presented to the top Male and Female in each race, plus medals for the top three winners in each age bracket. 
 
The Hoot Lake Triathlon is scheduled for Sunday, July 29th.  This event consists of a quarter mile swim, a 15.7 mile bike ride and a 3.3 mile run.  Start time is 8:00 a.m. at the Hoot Lake Public Access.  Dinner and packet/chip timing picup will be held the night before at the Fergus Falls Area Family YMCA from 6 to 9 p.m.  You can register as a single participant or as a member of a relay team.  Registration closes on July 21st.  If you register by June 3rd the cost is $60 for a single and $78 for a relay.  All registrations after that date are $65 for a single and $90 for a relay.  In order to register you must go to www.active.com.
 
Volunteers are wanted for the 2007 Hoot Lake Triathlon Event.  Over 250-300 participants copete in this event from all over.  Volunteers are needed to assist with packet stuffing, health and fitness expo, pasta feed, course set-up, water stations, traffic control, start line, finish line, clean-up and more.  All volunteers will receive a free t-shirt, will get the satisfaction of helping others and will have a great time!  For more information you can contact program director Tim Jensen at 218-739-4489 or timffymca@prtel.com.
 
The first hole-in-one of the season at Pebble Lake Golf Course has been reported.  On Tuesday, May 22, John Hagge of Fergus Falls aced the par-3, 176 yard eighth hole using an 8-iron.  Witnesses included Lynn Schultz, Chuck Lundeen, Lincoln Kalenberg and Adam Kalenberg.
Posted By Craig Olson
Sunday, May 20, 2007
Schuler Announces Changes in Coaching Ranks
Fergus Falls High School Activities Director Gary Schuler has reported several changes in the varsity coaching ranks for the Otters.  Three head coaches have resigned and one new coach has been hired.
 
Keith Pearson has resigned as head boys basketball coach.  Pearson was head coach for the last three years, succeeding Schuler in the position after having served as a varsity assistant coach under Schuler and previous head boys basketball coach Bob Bjorklund.  Pearson indicated he would pursue other professional opportunities and spend more time with his family.
 
Head girls hockey coach Jim Conrad has also resigned his position.  Conrad, who was hired prior to last season, has accepted a teaching and coaching position in Long Prairie.
 
Eric Van Sickle has resigned as head girls soccer coach.  He and his family are moving to St. Cloud.
 
District 544 has hired FFHS graduate Karoline Brause as their new head girls soccer coach.  Brause will graduate from South Dakota State University in December with a major in Health Promotions.  She played four years of varsity soccer for the Jackrabbits at the Division I level and prior to that played varsity soccer for the Otters and came up through the Fergus Falls Youth Soccer Association. 
 
"She comes highly recommended by soccer personnel in the Brookings, South Dakota area," said Schuler.
 
The search will begin immediately for replacements for Pearson and Conrad.
Posted By Craig Olson
Sunday, May 6, 2007
Hall of Famers, Baseball
Monday, May 14th is the annual Senior Awards and District 544 Hall of Fame Induction banquet at the Bigwood Events Center.  This is a very special evening to celebrate the senior class and a bit of the history of District 544.  This year, Chuck Weiss will be inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame and Don Stueve will be honored in the Distinguished Service category.
 
Weiss was described as the "brawn and gusts" of athletics at Fergus Falls High School in the 1950's, particularly during his senior year of 1956-57.  As a senior running back, he led the football team to an undefeated season.  He was Most Valuable Player in basketball in 1957, when the Otters were third in the state tournament.  The combined record of the football and basketball teams that year was an incredible 35 wins and 1 loss.  Weiss played football at the University of Colorado in Boulder, where a 1960 game day program described him as "the best fullback in the Big Eight."  As a senior, he was Colorado's leading rushing.  Following college, he was drafted by Denver, but an injury ended his chances for a pro career.  Weiss was self-employed for many hears in material handling equipment.
 
For more than three decades, Don Stueve's name was synonymous with Fergus Falls High School football.  Stueve was head Otter football coach and a teacher in the district for 31 years.  He was also an assistant coach for baseball and track.  He taught both elementary and secondary physical education, as well as American and world history and health, and he coordinated a student work experience program.  Stueve was a football coach for a total of 38 years, coaching and teaching in Breckenridge, Pelican Rapids and Montevideo before coming to Fergus Falls.  He earned his undergraduate degree at the University of North Dakota and his master's degree at North Dakota State University.  Stueve is a member of the Fergus Falls Sports Hall of Fame and the UND Sports Hall of Fame, and he is a past president of Minnesota's Football Coaches Association.
 
Other inductees include Mike Heikes, a Distinguished Alumni, Judith Miller Ranheim as an inductee into the Arts Hall of Fame, and Lance Johnson, also a Distinguished Alumni.
 
The first two dates on the Fergus Falls Hurricanes Amateur Baseball schedule were rained out.  The Saturday game against the Moorhead Brewers will not be rescheduled, and the Sunday game with Bluffton will be made up on Wednesday, June 27th at 7:30 p.m. in New York Mills.
 
Coach Dave Johnson has another talented team in 2007.  Last year the 'Canes were 24-7 overall and 13-3 in the Countryside League as they finished as regular season and playoff champs.  They were Region 16C runners-up to Wolf Lake and lost in the first round of the Class C State Tournament to eventual state champion Blue Earth by a score of 7-6.  This year the 'Canes will be looking for their twelvth state tournament appearance in nineteen years.
 
Returning from last year are second baseman Aaron Olson (.443, 9 2B, 5 HR, 29 RBI, 27 R), center fielder Tim Erickson (.439, 5 2B, 2 HR, 15 RBI, 21 R), shortstop Ben Brimhall (.348, 4 2B, 24 RBI, 35 R), infielder-outfielders Jarrod Asmus (.323, 6 2B, 1 HR, 19 RBI, 21 R) and Mike Gaustad (.415, 4 2B, 15 RBI, 8 R), pitcher-infielder Casey Kowalski (.352, 2 HR, 22 RBI, 6-3 pitching record, 2.75 ERA, 80 K) and Tyler Gagner (5-1, 41 K, 1.34 ERA), and pitchers Casey Bovkoon (6-0, 40 K, 3.57 ERA) and Eric Anderson (1-1, 1.50 ERA, 28 K, 3 S). 
 
Brandon Carr will not be with the Hurricanes this summer and he will be missed.  Brandon hit .439 with six doubles, 14 steals, 20 runs scored and 8 RBI last season. 
 
Justin Arneson, recently released from the Minnesota Twins organization, will be back with the Hurricanes unless he hooks on with another organization.  Arneson provides some great versatility for Johnson as he can play anywhere.
 
The Hurricanes will be working alongside the Fergus Falls Jaycees on Saturday, May 12th as they host a free Pitch, Hit and Run competition for area youth at American Legion Field at DeLagoon Park in Fergus Falls.  Registration will begin at 9:30 a.m. with the competition to follow at ten o'clock.
 
Pitch, Hit and Run is the Official Skills Competition of Major League Baseball.  This grassroots program is designed to provide youngsters with an opportunity to compete, free of charge, in a competition that recognizes individual excellence in core baseball skills.
 
Competitors are divided into four age divisions, 7/8, 9/10, 11/12, 13/14.  The individual Pitching, Hitting and Running Champions, along with the All-Around Champion in each age group at the local competition will be awarded and advance to the Sectional Level of competition.
 
For questions concerning the competition, please contact Paul Lundeen at (218) 736-5433.
 
Youth baseball players in Fergus Falls and the surrounding area should mark down May 19th and 20th for the Lakes Area Baseball Camp.  Former Fergus Falls Otters and current Bethel Royals baseball players Mike Gaustad, Kirby Carr, Brandon Carr and Jared Bangs, will be conducting the camp along with some of their teammates and coaches. 
 
The camp will be for ages 10 to 18 and will run from 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday and from 12:00 noon to 3:30 p.m. on Sunday.  This will be an instructional and developmental camp with nine different skills stations being presented.  An opportunity to get live game action will be given on Sunday.  The cost is $100.00 per person and pre-registration is requested.  You can do so at the Parks and Recreation Office on South Peck Street in Fergus Falls or by calling (218) 736-4089 or (218) 205-7407.  Information sheets were sent home with students and are available at the Parks and Recreation Office and at 20/20 Optical in the Fergus Falls Medical Group.
Posted By Craig Olson
Athletic Republic - Fergus Falls
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