Pete's Point: Short spring season has had special moments
Because of the cold, wet spring conditions the past two years in Northern Minnesota, the high school sports season outside has been compressed into less than a two-month sprint.
Again this spring, a packed schedule of activities results in many great athletic accomplishments being overshadowed. Let’s take a minute to look at some of those special moments for Pequot Lakes and Pine River-Backus athletes:
Memorable track meet
Pequot Lakes High School hosted the TDS Invitational track and field meet on Friday, May 16. Before the athletic competition began, it was impressive to look around and appreciate all the work that went into the remodeled track facility. It was also neat to see the local and corporate staff from TDS helping at the meet. As for the athletes, it was impressive to see the depth of the Patriots as they contended for top honors in almost every boys and girls events, which helped them win both titles. There were many admirable individual performances by Pequot Lakes and Pine River-Backus athletes as they combined to win 18 events. Double winners, not including relays, were the Patriots’ Vanessa Lane, Chase Blaeser and Tyler Tappe and the Tigers’ Megan Porta.
Area fans have one more chance to watch the Patriots and Tigers compete in Pequot Lakes with the Subsection 8AA meet on Thursday, May 22.
Big day for Patriot golfer
Pequot Lakes golfer Ethan Nitzke has emerged as a top golfer this spring. He recently outplayed a talented field to capture medalist honors at Deacon’s Lodge. One interesting twist at that meet was that Nitzke edged out Brainerd Warrior golfer Tommy Stoxen for medalist honors. Stoxen’s dad, Steve, is the head coach for the Patriots.
Speaking of golf, the Pequot Lakes girls are warming up just in time for the postseason. The Patriots, won the Menahga Invitational on May 13, are hoping to defend their Section 6AA title.
Conference softball champs
The PR-B and Pequot Lakes eams both recently clinched conference titles. The Tigers were unbeaten in Mississippi River play while the Patriots continued to dominate the Mid-State Conference with just one loss in the past three seasons. Pitching is the key in softball, and the Patriots have one of the most talented hurdlers in the state in senior Katie White. Meanwhile, the Tigers continue to compile a nice record with a talented, young squad.
Milestone win for Tigers
The Pine River-Backus baseball team made one of the biggest comebacks in recent team history when they rallied from an 11-2 deficit in the final two innings to 10-run Crosby-Ironton 21-11 on Monday, May 19.
Speaking of the PR-B team, congratulations to head coach Steve Snavely, who earned his 100th career coaching win earlier this season.
Schroeder on target for PL
Pequot Lakes and PR-B were split into two trapshooting teams this spring, but that hasn’t hindered their success. The Patriots are leading their conference, sparked by freshman David Schroeder who earned the weekly Top Gun team award, three times in five weeks. He shared the honor last Sunday, May 18, with Christian Burnett.
Meanwhile, the Tigers were third in their conference after four weeks.