Staff Writer for the Pineandlakes Echo Journal weekly newspaper
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Adelaide Hubbard swept the girls hurdles event and won the triple jump to lead the Pequot Lakes Patriots girls to first place in the Frostbite Invitational Tuesday, April 24. To begin the week of competition. "There is always some adversity at this point in the year with fighting through some hurts and cold weather but performances continue to show improvement and we can build on that as we move into warmer temperatures," girls coach Jamie Wagner said.
Both sides said discussions were productive, but a contract agreement was not reached between the Pequot Lakes School District and Education Minnesota Pequot Lakes (EMPL) in an open-to-the-public negotiations meeting Monday, April 23.
Vanessa Lane has had a track and field career filled with accomplishments. With roughly one month left in that career, she hopes to add a few more accomplishments to her resume. The South Dakota State University senior is wrapping her final season of competitive track and field, but plans to enjoy her final season of a "physically, emotionally and mentally challenging" sport that she has loved since childhood.
Bailey Wynn earned two separate most valuable player awards at the Pine River-Backus Tiger volleyball teams banquet on Monday, April 9. Wynn was named the Tigers' postseason MVP and earned co-defensive MVP honors with Gabby Rainwater. The pair led the team in digs, with Wynn tallying 359 and Rainwater picking up 347 for a team that went 24-8 on the season and earned a state tournament berth. Offensive MVP honors went to Alyssa Semmler, who led the team with 419 kills. She was also the team leader in blocks with 110.
The Pequot Lakes School Board voted to approve a secondary staffing modification for the 2018-19 school year, replacing a paraprofessional position with another full-time licensed teacher. The current paraprofessional oversees the high school's online "Odyssey" learning. That position will be replaced with a teacher - whose work day would begin later in the morning and end later in the afternoon - in charge of overseeing after-school credit recovery programs.
Senior guard Nick Ackerman was named Most Valuable Player for the Pine River-Backus boys basketball team at its season-end banquet on Thursday, April 12. "Nick is the best leader and captain I have ever coached," coach John Riewer said. "I mean that ... Because of that leadership, we won the games we were supposed to win. I have learned a lot from him, and I hope he has learned a lot from me." Ackerman led the team in scoring, rebounds and steals en route to a 15-13 overall record and a 7-7 conference record. He was also the lone all-conference athlete for the Tigers.
The Pequot Lakes Patriot girls track and field team led the pack of 29 teams to claim first place at the Beaver Relays indoor meet at Bemidji State University on Thursday, April 12. They scored 91.5 points overall. The Patriot boys team finished third overall with a score of 51, led by senior Reid Pierzinski's four first-place finishes. The Pine River-Backus boys team finished 24th overall at the meet.
Twelve Pequot Lakes Patriot athletes signed letters of intent on Wednesday, April 11, to take part in college athletics beginning in the fall. Those 12 make up the largest group of senior committees in school history. Sisters Kristin and Karli Skog will both be competing at the next level. Karli has committed to play basketball for Jamestown College in Jamestown, N.D. Coaches already sent her workout programs to help her better prepare for the increased competition.
Last year around this time, I wrote an editorial claiming that spring is an overrated season, and I stand by that sentiment. Sure, the snow melts and the temperatures rise, but we have to deal with mud, weather peaks and valleys, allergies and taxes. Absolutely none of that is particularly enjoyable.
The Pequot Lakes Patriots boys basketball team hosted its year-end banquet on Tuesday, April 3, where senior forward Zach Sjoblad was named team MVP. Sjoblad finished with 397 points (16.5 points per game), 156 rebounds (6.5), 60 assists (2.5) and 48 steals (2.0). He shot 63.7 percent (156-253) from the field and 68 percent (84-124) from the line for a Patriots team that finished 17-11 overall, ending with a defeat at the hands of Barnum in the Section 7-2A quarterfinals.