"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, March 21, 2016

New London-Spicer girls runner-up in MN 'AA'

PEM 72, NL-Spicer 42
The headline in the Willmar paper was "NLS falls hard in title game." The subhead was: "Wildcats have more turnovers than field goals in 30-point loss to No. 1 Plainview-Elgin-Millville."
I would not have been so blunt writing this material. The New London-Spicer girls basketball team made the state championship game. It's the stratosphere, the truly elite level. Morris Area Chokio Alberta fans needn't be concerned about how they're perceived at that level. The Tigers cash in their chips pretty early in the post-season.
Congratulations to the Wildcats of New London-Spicer, coached by Mike Dreier, now basking in the position of runner-up in state. Granted, their last game saw them fade. We're asking a lot of these student-athletes. The Wildcats won a very close game vs. Sauk Centre the day before in the semis.
The Willmar paper article's first sentence today (Monday) said that PEM "hammered" New London-Spicer. I think some of my critics in Morris would not have appreciated such language if I were covering the Tigers this way.
The Bulldogs of PEM are deservedly in the No. 1 spot in Minnesota AA. The Bulldogs came out of the starting chute strong with the game's first ten points. The score stood 16-3 at one point. Halftime arrived with the score 39-14. The final score: 72-42.
Emmaline Polson, junior center for the Bulldogs, scored 22 points and grabbed ten rebounds, and according to the West Central Tribune, "equaled the Wildcats' 14 halftime points by herself." My, such detailed analysis. Let's keep rubbing it in, guys.
New London-Spicer made just three of 17 shot tries from 3-point range. Alyssa Fredrick had all three makes.
Coach Dreier said of the foe: "They have size, they're physical, they've got an (NCAA) Division I point guard running their offense from the high post, and they also have shooting everywhere." That guard of note is Sarah Hart who's headed to St. Bonaventure University. She's a finalist for the Ms. Basketball award in Minnesota. She had 13 points in the Saturday game.
Jason Melbostad was Dreier's coaching opponent. Melbostad saw Hart as the key for overcoming an NL-Spicer zone defense that was so effective in previous state games. Hart had the savvy to get the ball inside where PEM could score.
It's quite logical to think the Wildcats were drained some by having to play a game so soon after the Sauk Centre game. Coach Dreier saw fatigue, indeed, as a likely factor. Dreier was in his 16th state tournament appearance.
"For a team that finished third in our conference, this is amazing," the coach commented to the media. "My mood isn't any worse because of this loss."
PEM finishes the season 31-1 while NL-Spicer can look back on 25-7 numbers.
Megan Thorson finished with 13 points in the title game. The NL-S scoring list continues as follows: Alyssa Fredrick (9), Brooke Beuning (6), Erin Tebben (4), Morgan Swenson (4), Shea Oman (2), Kabrie Weber (2) and Michelle Johnson (2). Tebben and Swenson each had seven rebounds, followed by Thorson with six. Weber had one assist, and Thorson had one steal.
Hart was not the leading PEM scorer - that distinction went to Polson with her 22 points. Hart scored 13 points and Hayley Dessner ten. Then we have Chloe Holtz (7), Tessa Hubbard (6), Baighley Standinger (5), Morgan Shindelar (4), Heidi Wolf (3) and Jalysa Cutting (2).
Three Bulldogs each made one 3-pointer: Hubbard, Standinger and Hart. Polson had ten rebounds followed by Dessner with six and Hart with five. Hart dished out seven assists.
We're in Easter season
I associated Easter with the Easter Bunny and chocolate bunnies when I was a child.
I remember an editorial cartoon that had Ken Starr, harasser of Bill Clinton, listening through a door as Clinton spoke affectionately in a way that made Starr think another tryst was happening. "Bunny!" Clinton intoned. But this was no young friend, rather it was Bill's chocolate bunny for Easter! Willie's Super Valu has a good supply of chocolate bunnies available, I'm sure.
Of course, when we go to church leading up to Easter, the tone is not so innocent and fun. We hear the awful details of how Christ was treated leading up to the (alleged) crucifixion. How do we know this wasn't some tall tale built up through the years, maybe fashioned to promote some political ends? What? Politics as a basis for embellishment or fabrication? I'm astounded (not really).
The sheer misery and gruesome details begin chafing on me. Does it matter that Christ was tortured first? Why the emphasis on this in Lent services? Even if it happened, why the emphasis? Why not just dwell on the final (alleged) act: the murder of God's (alleged) son. Did you know that the story of the virgin birth came about because of a bad translation?
I know I'm sounding like an atheist and maybe that's because I am. I sure wouldn't mind a chocolate bunny or two, though.
I am puzzled why the Lutherans of this community are expected to go to the Catholic church for the Good Friday service. This is a church that has a policy of not offering communion to non-Catholics at funerals. At least this was their policy in the past. There was a controversy at the time of the funeral for Rit Eul: someone was turned away for communion. There were letters to the editor in the paper. I'm sure Rit would never have wanted any unpleasantness in connection with his funeral.
And now, the Catholics want us all to come over? I think it's strange.
The Catholics can have their own services, since they promote such exclusivity. I have no objection to Catholic bingo. We had a priest here not that long ago who was into child porn. The Catholics have also given us that "baby" tombstone at the cemetery - not the sort of thing Lutherans would agree to.
Again, let's all just enjoy our chocolate bunnies!
- Brian Williams - morris minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

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