"You'll never get ahead if you don't take care of what you have." - Doris Waddell, RIP

A historic building on our U of M-Morris campus - morris mn

A historic building on our U of M-Morris campus - morris mn
The multi-ethnic building was the original home of the music department at UMM. (B.W. photo)

Monday, January 3, 2011

Laid-back holidays? Not for the MBA boys

Storm 5, Red Lake Falls 4
MBA seized a 2-1 advantage in the first period and skated to a 5-4 win over Red Lake Falls on Monday, Dec. 27. The MBA Storm boys played three opponents total in the Northern Lakes Tournament.
It was a demanding holidaytime regimen for Morris Benson Area - one that the fans enjoyed fully.
The 5-4 win was in the Storm's debut game there. They outscored the foe 3-2 in the second period to get a two-goal cushion which proved decisive. Red Lake Falls scored the only goal of the third period.
Andrew Fath was key for the Storm preserving the late advantage. Fath, working in goal where he's quite at home, stopped ten shots of the eleven total that the Eagles flung at him in the third.
Dylan Zutz of the Eagles scored the game's first goal at 3:00 of the first. The score got knotted when the Storm's Isaac Berens sent the puck into the net at 5:41. Tyler Hansen assisted. Tanner Picht then lifted the MBA boys to a 2-1 lead with a goal at 5:59, assisted by Mac Beyer and Hansen.
The Storm and Eagles flew up and down the Pequot Lakes ice as the game continued into period #2. Beyer scored at 1:07 with an assist from Picht. Beyer showed the touch to score the next goal as well: he put the Storm up 4-1 with his goal at 2:03 that had assists from Picht and Jake Huston.
The Eagles showed they had fight left in them as they scored the next two goals. These were by Max Martocq at 2:13 and Garrett Schmitz unassisted. So the Storm had to keep their focus to try to maintain what had become a slim advantage.
Brody Gimberlin's goal at 13:31 gave the Storm a renewed sense of confidence and momentum. Ethan Ratliff-Crain and Kelly Enquist supplied assists on the clutch Gimberlin goal.
Zutz of the Eagles scored the only third period goal, assisted by Andy Jahnke and Garrett Schmitz.
The duel of goaltenders featured Fath vs. Wyatt Casavan of the Eagles. Fath's save total for the game was 22. Casavan's was 12. The Storm were outshot 26-17.
The Northern Lakes Tournament was a three-day round robin affair.
I have always considered the area around Pequot Lakes to be God's country. It's a long drive but worth it for anyone.

The blades keep streaking
The Storm were humbled in their second game. Mac Beyer scored the first goal but MBA then succumbed to an onslaught by the opponent. The Northern Lakes skaters put in six straight goals. When the three periods were done, Northern Lakes was the 10-4 victor.
In addition to Beyer, the MBA skaters scoring goals were Luke Schwarz, Jordan Staples and Kelly Enquist.
The Storm found the winning groove for their third game in the Invite, downing Bagley-Fosston 4-2. I notice that Gary Hansen has a thorough review posted, of the Storm's games in this tournament. His writing is part of the MBA Storm website, which has a new look for 2010-2011.
Morris Benson hockey is getting in front of the public in an ever more dynamic way.
Gary has long been an enthusiastic chronicler of MBA hockey. I encourage fans to read about the Bagley-Fosston game, and the other two, by clicking on the link below:

http://www.mbastorm.com/news_article/show/73394?referrer_id=217802-morris-benson-area-storm-hockey-news

On the Minnesota Vikings beat:
I had to do a little extra shoveling in our driveway Sunday, which pushed back our schedule some. We attended late church and got to the DeToy's Restaurant buffet late (but the chicken was still great).
The upshot is that we weren't perched by the TV to catch the start of the Minnesota Vikings game. We actually missed most of the first half.
It turns out there were many preferable things to do Sunday, to watching the Vikings play their finale in this calamitous season.
I paid only passing attention to the second half. As the game wound down, I was in fact visiting someone at West Wind Village and we had the TV on there. Not the most riveting entertainment.
The stagnation of the Vikings hardly surprised me. It would have been nice to see Joe Webb build his stock further as the Vikes' QB. But after we heard coach Leslie Frazier say during the week that his preference was for Brett Favre, how could we really be that enthusiastic about Webb calling the signals again?
I know that rookie quarterbacks can thrill you and then break your heart. We went through that with Tommy Kramer. But it was nice to hold out hope that Webb could build on what he did in the Philadelphia game. Webb had engineered a win over Michael Vick and the Eagles, at Philadelphia, in a prime time game that meant a lot to the Eagles.
And yet we're subsequently told by coach Frazier that "Favre gives us the best chance to win."
Maybe Webb took the field in Detroit Sunday thinking "what's the use?"
So the Vikes stumbled to the finish line, losing to Detroit and ending up in last place in the division, and after all that, we're subjected to TV images of Favre speaking dramatically into the microphones about his career apparently ending.
We have to emphasize "apparently." He'll be sitting by the phone come summer, I'm sure. Maybe he'll play for Miami. Meanwhile he leaves behind a trainwreck of a situation in Minnesota.
The collapsed Dome is symbolic. The Vikings will have to try to find a way to build up their organization again without obsessing on No. 4. It won't be easy.
We have been drawn into that spell for two years.
No one can rule out the Vikings making the adjustments to win again. But you can say that about any NFL team. I wouldn't bet on the Vikings snapping back to respectable form so quickly.
I read long ago that a sign of a losing franchise is for a coach to be fired at midseason, whereupon there's a bit of a honeymoon with a promoted assistant, leading the organization to think the assistant can become the permanent solution.
Until things fall apart under that guy. Whereupon the scenario gets played out again.
Are you familiar with this, Mr. Wilf?
We don't know much about chronic losing here in purple country. But there's a first time for everything.
-Brian Williams - morris mn Minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

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