"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)

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Come to the UMM band concert on Sunday!

The temperature could be mighty spring-like by the end of this coming weekend. You'll be tempted to be outside but I'd like to suggest you consider a Sunday indoor event.
I assume you'll be at church! Besides that, I wish to encourage you to attend the band concert at UMM.
I show my age in using the term "band." These days it's "symphonic winds" or "wind ensemble." Anyway it's the group with the trumpets and trombones - good music.
Simon Tillier's UMM symphonic winds will perform at 3 p.m. Sunday, April 28, at the HFA recital hall. Therese Sutula will be featured at the piano.
This concert is dedicated to the memory of Ralph Williams, founder of the UMM music program. Ralph had the reins by himself when it started. His office was at the old and historic building which is now used as the Multi-Ethnic center.
UMM was truly fledgling. It took over from the West Central School of Agriculture which had a long run. Ag schools were being phased out and our campus was re-purposed. The community was very concerned as the 1950s drew to a close, about whether the campus could be kept going. Our prestigious U of M came forward like a knight in shining armor.
Was it really 53 years ago? I remember being struck by the "circle drive" when first getting here with my parents, Ralph and Martha. I hung around the music building and Edson Auditorium sometimes. Previously we had lived in St. Paul.
I wasn't sure how this little town in the country would work out. No more shopping at Applebaum's. We'd get to know Willie Martin at Willie's Friendly Super Valu!
I'd go to the upper level of the music building and watch football on P.E. Miller Field. Basketball was at the P.E. Annex - remember that building?
UMM got up on its legs quite fine.
So, fast-forward to the present. I'd appreciate you all giving consideration to attending the concert this Sunday, April 28, at the HFA. Rumor has it there will be treats and refreshments afterward. You might even chat with me afterward.
Come listen to the music of George Gershwin, Gustav Holst, W.A. Mozart and Robert Russell Bennett. I'm also told there will be a new interpretation or arrangement of Ralph's own "UMM Hymn."
You'll have plenty of time to enjoy the spring weather in the coming week. I sure will!
UMM softball vies under dome
A post about UMM should give some attention to students. We'll fill the bill here. I did a lot of writing about UMM sports during my 26-year career in the print media. There was no true UMM sports information department during much of that time.
I'm assuming my work filled a need even though I could never be all things to all people.
Let's focus on softball for this post. An indoor facility came to the rescue for UMM during the April portion of the schedule. That was quite necessary given the uncooperative spring we've had. The venue was the Vadnais Heights Dome.
The opponent was Northland for April 21 action. The Cougars and Northland split a twin bill.
It was Northland taking game #1 in commanding style with a 12-1 win. The complexion then changed as the Cougars took game #2 in a 9-4 final.
Kelsey Draper helped set the tone in that Cougar win, socking a three-run home run in the first. Mandy Allman hit a solo homer to put the lead at four. Kristy Hoge scored the Cougars' fifth run. Meanwhile it was Draper getting the job done from the pitching rubber. She allowed no hits through the first three innings.
Northland broke through to score one run in the fourth. But the Cougars took ownership of this game in the fifth with a major rally. A walk was followed by three singles, the last of which, off the bat of Sam Hanson, brought Brooke Decker and Alex Anderson across home plate. Molly Olson was able to score on an error. A Mackenzie Weatherly ground ball brought Hanson in to score.
UMM now led 9-1 and would go on to win 9-4.
A sweep vs. Crown College
The next day, April 22, brought nothing but success for the UMM women at the Vadnais Heights Dome. On this day they squared off vs. Crown.
Game #1 was a 7-4 victory. Much of the momentum was gained in the second inning. Singles resounded off the bats of Sam Hanson and Mandy Allman. The bases became loaded with a walk to Laura Lhotka. Shelby Peterson drove in a run with a ground ball to shortstop. Kali Grote connected for a homer blast to left, barely in fair territory, but fair it was, and three runs came in. So the score is 4-0.
Sam Hanson homered in the third to make the score 5-0.
Crown was able to fight back some, thanks in part to Cougar errors. Crown got within one run.
Hanson helped give UMM a little breathing room, hitting another home run. Molly Olson connected for an RBI double as a pinch-hitter in the sixth. That RBI put the score at 7-4 which is how the game would end.
It was Hanson pitching the whole way in efficient style - just 84 pitches in the seven innings.
The Cougars won game #2 in a 16-8 final. Their bats were sizzling in the bottom of the first, good for five runs. Draper tripled to score Olson (who had walked) and Anderson (on via bunt). A hit-by-pitch and walk loaded the bases. Shelby Peterson took advantage, doubling to left-center and clearing the bases.
The Cougars batted around in the third, recording five runs to take command. Hanson hit a two-run double.
Crown showed a fair amount of offense too. But UMM moved forward again with a two-run fifth that had Grote doubling to score Draper.
The sixth inning saw Molly Olson make the last big decisive statement for UMM with a home run to left. The Cougars could savor this 16-8 win over Crown.
Viva University of Minnesota-Morris softball for the (chilly) spring of 2013!
- Brian Williams - morris mn minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

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