Panther pride! Another 2016-2017 athletic season has been completed. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate our panther basketball teams on their great season.
Schools are not very often able to send one of their athletic teams to the Minnesota State High School League Tournaments, let alone send two teams, one week apart.
Both the Panther girls’ and boys’ basketball teams had a great season and earned the right to participate in the state tournament this year. The girls’ basketball team finished their season 27-6 while the boys’ basketball team compiled a record of 30-3.
Despite losing their first games at the state tournament, the two Panther basketball teams didn’t let their loss defeat them as they fought back and came back and won their next two games and brought home Class AA state consolation titles.
Along with claiming those titles they were able to claim a few more accolades.
All five of the NRHEG starting players on the girls’ team scored in double figures in their final game of the season. Betsy Schoenrock had 20 points, Maddie Wagner and Marie Wagner each had 15 points, Kayley Camerer added 12 points and Rachel Collins added 11.
It was also announced that the girls’ team also set a new record in the state tournament this year as they scored 38 points in the first half of their last game.
The boys’ basketball team earned their first ever trip to the state basketball tournament this year. They also finished their season with a 30-3 record, which set a new record for the NRHEG school district.
Oakley Baker ended his high school basketball career with a total of 2,003 points while playing varsity basketball. Oakley scored 40 points in the consolation championship game on Friday night, which was the second highest number of points he had ever scored in a single game.
He also came home with a perfect 21-for-21 from the free-throw line, which surpassed the previous state record of 20-for-20 which had been set back in 1976.
The Panther girls’ Class AA consolation championship basketball team will graduate six seniors, Kayley Camerer, Rachel Collins, Grace Johns, Gretchen Ramaker, Maddie Wagner and Marnie Warner.
The Panther boys’ Class AA Consolation Championship basketball team will also lose a large number to graduation as well, as they lose seven seniors from this championship team, Chad Agrimson, Baker, Carter Fischer, Jason Jongbloedt, Sam Prigge, Tyler Raimann and Jack Schultz.
The championship celebrations are a source of lifelong memories and a gathering of many of the most passionate supporters of education-based athletic and fine arts activities.
Education and leadership for a lifetime is the Minnesota State High School League slogan, yet it is also their purpose and their calling. Each competition provides students with opportunities to develop teamwork skills, compete with integrity, and learn together.
The Minnesota State High School League acknowledges that girls’ basketball is the fourth-most popular girls’ sport with 12,012 students participating and boys’ basketball is the third most popular sport with 13,515 students.
The Panther basketball teams have now been listed as part of the Minnesota state basketball consolation champions this year for the 525 member schools, 232,000-plus student athletes and 38 state tournaments in our state, but then they were champions to us even before they played at the state tournament.
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Birthdays and anniversaries:
• Thursday, March 30th: Gretchen Jensen Ray, Darrell Hanson, Leah Brittan Morstad, Kim Roberts Sletten, Aiden Michael Berg, Matthew Cornelius, Fern Robertson Sommers
• Friday, March 31st: Carson LaShawn Ray, his 11th; Hannah Haroldson, Jinny Nielsen, Melissa Collins, Jill Anderson, David Hemingway, Ross Johnson
• Saturday, April 1st, April Fools’ Day; Madison Hanson. Irene Paulson
• Sunday, April 2nd: Harold Wayne, Leanna Burns, Deb Nelson, Luke Miller, Joyce Tufte Sorenson, Sonja Larson, Teresa Jensen, Kaleb Smith, Dwight Schewe, Greg Nelson, Matthew Halla, Genevieve Wayne, Bill & Pat Draayer, David & Shelly Mangskau, Brian & Lois Nelson
• Monday, April 3rd: Solvieg Sorenson, Linda Goodnature, Mikayla Moon, Joanne Christensen, Randy Kronberg, Patty Slater, Jase Dean Knudson, Kevin Born
• Tuesday, April 4th: Erin Elaine Peterson, Jena Richards Thompson, Daryl Paulsen, Erik Smith, Rachel Nicole Roades, Nathan Spande, Theresa Kasper, Danny Larson, Don Larson, Anne Michelle Larson, Amber & Daryl Jacobson, Diane & Dave Broskoff
• Wednesday, April 5th: LaVada Jensen, Colette Bauers, Samuel Thompson, Alyssa Haried, Brian Schultz, Duane Nelson, Mike Johnson, Gary & Sue Hunnicutt, Dale & Nancy Kelly
• Thursday, April 6th: Skip Cromwell, Spencer Kubat, Lauie Wayne, Chris Philips Carlson, Eric Crabtree, Duane Lembke, Dean Westrum, Andrew Haried, Paul Underland and Paul Highum
• Friday, April 7th: Janice Jensen Skovera, Jayne Villarreal, Lou Hanson-Vu, Katie Lembke, Michael & Kari Ingvaldson, Gary & Sonja Peterson
Where ever this year takes you, may you find happiness along the way.