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The accolades keep coming for the NRHEG boys’ basketball team.
It has been announced that Panthers head coach Pat Churchill was voted Section 2AA Coach of the Year for the 2016-17 season.
It certainly is a deserving honor.
Churchill guided the Panthers to a 30-3 record — the most wins in a single season in school history — along with the Gopher Conference co-championship and of course Section 2AA title and state tournament berth, where the Panthers captured the consolation championship.
Churchill couldn’t be reached for comment, but if he was he’d probably tell you he could not have done it alone, and it took a special group of players to achieve their success.
Churchill, an assisant coach for boys’ golf, has been NRHEG’s head boys’ basketball coach for six seasons.
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After falling to No. 1 Roseau in state quarterfinals, Panthers defeat Esko, Rochester Lourdes
They brought home the hardware.
The NRHEG girls’ basketball team, underdogs in the section tournament and unseeded at state, took the consolation title in the 2016-17 state tournament last week.
NRHEG 73, Rochester Lourdes 57
The Panthers didn’t just win the consolation championship game of the state girls’ basketball tournament.
They dominated it.
NRHEG routed Rochester Lourdes 73-57 Friday afternoon at Concordia University of St. Paul.
It was close for the first 12 minutes, with Marnie Wagner hitting three three-pointers for NRHEG, which led 24-20 after a Maddie Wagner free throw at about the 10-minute mark. The Panthers went on to finish the first half on a 14-4 run behind five points by Betsy Schoenrock, threes by Rachel Collins and Kayley Camerer, and a traditional three-point play by Maddie Wagner. It was 38-29 NRHEG at halftime.
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The 2016-17 season was completed for the NRHEG wrestling team Saturday, Feb. 25 with the Section 2A Individual Tournament at Blue Earth.
As far as coach Shawn Larson was concerned, it ended a week early.
The young Panthers did not have a wrestler qualify for the state tournament, a rarity at NRHEG.
“It is unfortunate that the season came to an end for us without an individual qualifier for the state tournament, but we did have some good individual efforts,” said Larson.
The best effort was from junior Cole Staloch, who came home with third place at 152 pounds, missing state by one place.