Author: Sam Ali

Wilderness Fall at Home to Minot

Jacob Herter and Mikol Sartor would each score goals.

CLOQUET, Minn. – Jacob Herter and Mikol Sartor would each score goals, but it wouldn’t be enough as Minot picks up the road win over the Minnesota Wilderness 6-2 Friday night at the Northwoods Credit Union Arena. Categories: College, Friday Night Frenzy, Sports

UWS Softball Split Doubleheader with Northwestern

The Yellowjackets improve to 8-6 on the season.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – After an 8-3 loss in the first game of the doubleheader, the UW-Superior softball team got a walk-off single off the bat of Hailee Halgeorge that gave the Yellowjackets a 5-4 win Friday at the NBC Spartan Sports Complex. The Yellowjackets improve to 8-6 on the season. Next up is a series Sunday at home against Northland…

Duluth Native Brett Larson Leads St. Cloud State to First-Ever National Title Game

The Denfeld alum graduated from UMD, and even won two national titles with the Bulldogs as a member of Scott Sandelin's coaching staff.

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Despite UMD’s loss in the Frozen Four, there will be some Northland representation in Saturday’s national championship game as St. Cloud state will play in its their first ever title game, led by head coach and Duluth native Brett Larson. The Denfeld alum graduated from UMD, and even won two national titles with the Bulldogs as Scott…

UMD Men’s Hockey Fall in Overtime to UMass in Frozen Four Semi-Finals

Tanner Laderoute and Cole Koepke each scored for the Bulldogs, as they lost their first overtime playoff game since March of 1984.

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Minnesota native Garrett Wait scored the game-winning goal in overtime as UMass held on for the 3-2 win over the UMD men’s hockey team in the Frozen Four national semi-finals. Tanner Laderoute and Cole Koepke each scored for the Bulldogs, as they lost their first overtime playoff game since March of 1984. UMD’s season ends with an…

UMD Dance Team to Compete at Nationals Virtually

And since they won't be travelling down to nationals, the team will be able to record their video in front of their own fans.

DULUTH, Minn. – The UMD dance team will be competing at nationals for the sixth straight year. But instead of heading down to Orlando, Florida, the team will work on their routine back at home. The Bulldogs usually start their season with summer camps, but those were cancelled due to the pandemic. They finally got the green light in January…

Wendy Sandelin, Wife of UMD Coach Scott Sandelin, Talks Hectic Week at Frozen Four

She will have a rooting interest in both semi-final games as her husband Scott is the head coach at UMD and her son Ryan plays for Minnesota State Mankato.

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – For this week’s Frozen Four, one person will have a rooting interest in both semi-final games. That person is Wendy Sandelin, the wife of UMD men’s hockey head coach Scott Sandelin and the mother of Minnesota State Mankato forward Ryan Sandelin. “You realize it’s a possibility. And then you start to realize no it’s really a possibility….

UMD Men’s Hockey to Face Shorthanded UMass in Frozen Four Semi-Finals

Puck drop between the Bulldogs and the Minutemen is set for 8 p.m.

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – We are less than 24 hours away from the national semi-final showdown between the UMD men’s hockey team and the University of Massachusetts. But 24 hours ago, the Minutemen were hit with a massive bombshell. UMass announced that four players, including their leading goal-scorer and their starting goalie, will be out for Thursday’s game due to COVID-19…

Duluth East’s Aili Hietala Signs NLI to Join University of Montana Tennis Team

She played six years as the #1 singles for the Greyhounds and will look to carry over her success to the college level.

DULUTH, Minn. – Duluth East’s Aili Hietala dominated the competition in her high school tennis career, finishing with a 145-18 overall record. And now she’s taking her talents to the Big Sky Country. Monday, Hietala signed her National Letter of Intent to play Division I tennis at the University of Montana. She played six years as the #1 singles for…

Six Hermantown Hockey Players to Take Part in Frozen Four

Koepke, Jacques, Sandelin and Aamodt were all teammates at Hermantown when the Hawks won their first of back to back state titles in 2016.

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Thursday’s Frozen Four will feature a lot of representation from the state of Minnesota. Nearly 40% of the players are from the state of hockey, more than the other 49 states combined. And the largest local group comes from Hermantown. Six former Hawks are taking part in the Frozen Four: UMD’s Cole Koepke, Jesse Jacques, Blake Biondi…

UWS Volleyball Team Withdraws from UMAC Tournament

The Yellowjackets were scheduled to face St. Scholastica Thursday in the first round.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – The UW-Superior volleyball team announced Wednesday morning that they are withdrawing from the UMAC tournament due to COVID-19 protocols. The Yellowjackets were scheduled to face St. Scholastica Thursday in the first round. The Saints will now host Minnesota Morris Thursday night at the Reif Gym. Top seed Northwestern will be given a bye and will host the…

Longtime Assistant Coach Tyler Korby to Lead Cloquet Softball Team

The Lumberjacks will open the season next Monday at Esko.

CLOQUET, Minn. – The defending Section 7AAA champs Cloquet are back on the field, but with a new leader in the dugout. Longtime assistant coach Tyler Korby is now the head coach for the Lumberjacks. He is also the club director for the Minnesota Blast travel softball team. And that means he’s already very familiar with many of his players….

UWS Softball Scores Early and Often in Home Sweep over North Central

The Yellowjackets would score double-digit runs in both games against the Cardinals.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – The UW-Superior softball team opened their UMAC schedule with a pair of five-inning victories over North Central Tuesday at the NBC Spartan Sports Complex. The Yellowjackets scored six runs in the second and third innings of the first game and added seven in the fourth. And it was more of the same in the second game as…

Grand Rapids’ Hayden DeMars Leads Team Yellow Over Team White in Boys Hockey All-Star Game

Grand Rapids forward Hayden DeMars would finish with four goals and take home MVP honors.

DULUTH, Minn. – Grand Rapids forward Hayden DeMars would finish with four goals and take home MVP honors as Team Yellow defeated Team White 7-5 in the 34th annual Essentia All Star Boys Hockey Game. Joey Pierce, Logan Dushkin and Tom Nemanich also scored for Team Yellow, who also got five assists from Braeden Holcomb. Team White were led by…

CSS Baseball Holds Off UWS in Second Bridge Battle of 2021

Virginia native Jack Perala allowed just two hits in five innings of work.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – Virginia native Jack Perala allowed just two hits in five innings of work as the St. Scholastica baseball team got the road win over rivals UW-Superior 6-1 Tuesday afternoon at the NBC Spartan Sports Complex. It was Perala’s first collegiate win of his career, while Cody Venske also made some history with his first career home run…

CSS Soccer Teams Pick Up Home Wins Over Crown

It was a big day on the pitch for the Saints men's and women's soccer teams.

DULUTH, Minn. – Senior Maren Friday finished the day with a hat trick as the St. Scholastica women’s soccer team defeated Crown 4-0 Tuesday afternoon at Saints Field. Brea Archer scored the other goal for the Saints, who have not allowed a goal in their last 13 UMAC conference games. On the men’s side, CSS opened their season with an…

Hermantown’s Joey Pierce Back on the Ice for Minnesota Wilderness

Pierce's teammates Aaron Pionk and Zam Plante will also skate for the Wilderness for the rest of the NAHL season.

CLOQUET, Minn. – After a heart-breaking end to his high school career, Hermantown hockey captain Joey Pierce has laced up the skates again and is now playing junior hockey with the Minnesota Wilderness. The UMD commit joined the team last week and plans to finish out the season with them. Pierce has played for the Wilderness before and is excited…

Pederson’s No-Hitter Powers UMD Softball to Home Sweep of Minnesota Crookston

It was also a big day for Cloquet alum Kiana Bender, who homered in each game.

DULUTH, Minn. – North Branch native Sam Pederson would finish with her first career no-hitter as the UMD softball team blanked Minnesota Crookston 10-0 in Game One and picked up the sweep with a 9-1 win in Game Two Tuesday at Malosky Stadium. It was also a big day for Cloquet alum Kiana Bender, who homered in each game. The…

Proctor, Hermantown Cities Proclaim Thursday “Proctor/Hermantown Mirage State Champions Day”

The two communities will honor the team after their thrilling state title win this past weekend, which was their first in program history.

HERMANTOWN, Minn. – The cities of Proctor and Hermantown announced this week that this Thursday, April 8th will be proclaimed “Proctor/Hermantown Mirage State Champions Day”. The two communities will honor the team after its thrilling state title win this past weekend, which was the first in program history. As of now, there is not an event of some kind planned…

MIB Girls Basketball Lose Nail-Biter in Class A State Semi-Finals

Freshman Jordan Zubich finished with 14 points while Ava Butler chipped in with 12 for the Rangers

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – Abby Hennen would knock down a free throw with 2.1 seconds left in the game that gave Minneota the 54-53 win over Mountain Iron-Buhl in the Class A girls basketball semi-finals Tuesday afternoon at the Target Center. Freshman Jordan Zubich finished with 14 points while Ava Butler chipped in with 12 for the Rangers, who finish their…

Game Week Finally Arrives for Esko Softball Team

The Eskomos will be in their first action since they won the section title back in May of 2019.

ESKO, Minn. – Practices continue this week for prep softball teams. And for many teams like Esko, it’s also game week. The Eskomos will be in their first action since they won the section title back in May of 2019. And because of spring break last week, Monday was the first time the entire team practiced together. “It’s really exciting….

Grand Rapids Defenseman Jack Peart Wins 2021 Mr. Hockey Award

Peart scored 11 goals and recorded 24 assists in his senior campaign, helping Grand Rapids make it to the section title game.

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Grand Rapids defenseman Jack Peart has won the Mr. Hockey award, given to the best senior hockey player in the state of Minnesota. He is the first defenseman to win the award in 12 years and the first Thunderhawk winner since 2014 when Avery Peterson took home the honor. Peart scored 11 goals and recorded 24…

Alyssa Watkins Scores OT Game-Winner to Give Proctor/Hermantown First-Ever State Title

Senior forward Alyssa Watkins scored the game-winning goal in double overtime

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Senior forward Alyssa Watkins scored the game-winning goal in double overtime as the Proctor/Hermantown girls hockey team defeated Gentry Academy 3-2 in the Class A state championship game. Aurora Opsahl and Izy Fairchild also scored for the Mirage, who captured their first state title in program history. Attached video includes postgame comments from head coach Emma…

Coaches Corner: Scott Sandelin

For this week's segment, we catch up with the head coach of the UMD men's hockey team.

DULUTH, Minn. – For this week’s Coaches Corner, we hear from UMD men’s hockey coach Scott Sandelin as the Bulldogs get set for their fourth straight trip to the Frozen Four. UMD will face UMass Thursday night in Pittsburgh, PA. Categories: Coaches Corner, College, Friday Night Frenzy, Sports, University of Minnesota – Duluth

Duluth Denfeld Softball Team Dedicating Season to Late Coach Dick Swanson

For the first time in decades, Denfeld will take the field without their longtime head coach Dick Swanson, who passed away back in August.

DULUTH, Minn. – This week, practices got underway for prep softball teams, including Duluth Denfeld. But this year, the Hunters will begin the season without a very special member of their program. For the first time in decades, Denfeld will take the field without their longtime head coach Dick Swanson, who passed away back in August. Nikki Jensen will take…

Late Rally Falls Short in Home Opener for UMD Baseball

The Bulldogs drop both games of the double-header by one run.

DULUTH, Minn. – The UMD baseball team would have runners in scoring position with one out in the bottom of the seventh, but the rally would fall short as they drop their home opener to Upper Iowa 5-4 Friday at Wade Stadium. And it would be another close game in the nightcap, but the same results as the Peacocks hang…

UMD Softball Earns Walk-Off Win over Wayne State in Home Opener

Kelly Swank would hit a game-winning RBI triple in the bottom of the seventh.

DULUTH, Minn. – Kelly Swank would hit a game-winning RBI triple in the bottom of the seventh that gave the UMD softball team the 5-4 win over Wayne State Friday afternoon in their home opener at Malosky Stadium. The Bulldogs would go on to sweep the Wildcats with a shutout win in the second game 6-0. They’ll look to keep…

St. Scholastica Volleyball Picks Up Home Win Over Northland College

CSS will close out their season Saturday at home against Minnesota Morris.

DULUTH, Minn. – Jessica Remer finished with a career-high 24 kills while Katie Brostrom had a career-high 54 assists as the St. Scholastica volleyball team defeated Northland College 3-1 Thursday night at the Reif Gym. It was the Saints’ 49th straight win over the Lumberjills. CSS will close out their season Saturday at home against Minnesota Morris. Categories: College, Sports

St. Scholastica Baseball Happy To Be Back at Wade Stadium

Last weekend, the Saints returned home for the first time in two years and have rattled off three straight wins at Wade Stadium.

DULUTH, Minn. – The college baseball season is underway, and so far, so good for St. Scholastica. Last weekend, the Saints returned home for the first time in two years and have rattled off three straight wins at Wade Stadium. “I think just in terms of coaching, it felt normal for the first time in two years. When you’re on…

Proctor/Hermantown Girls Hockey Take Down Warroad, Advance to State Championship Game

The Mirage advance to the state championship game for the first time in program history.

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Freshman Hannah Graves finished with two goals as the Proctor/Hermantown girls hockey team defeated Warroad 3-1 in the Class A state semi-finals at the Xcel Energy Center. Senior Alyssa Watkins also scored her sixth goal of the tournament, while junior Abby Pajari finished with 31 saves. The Mirage advance to the state championship game for the…

Duluth Marshall’s Gianna Kneepkens Scores State-Record 67 Points in Final High School Game

Kneepkens wraps up her high school career with 3,702 points, which will sit in the #5 spot on the all-time scoring list.

DULUTH, Minn. – Tuesday, the Duluth Marshall girls basketball team suffered a heart-breaking loss in the state quarterfinals. It was the final game in the high school career for Gianna Kneepkens and she went out with a bang. Kneepkens finished with a career-high 67 points, which is also a new prep girls state record for most points scored in a…

Hermantown JV Hockey Team Receives Outpouring of Support After State Quarterfinals

The support included an exchange of mutual respect on Twitter between Zam Plante and Dodge County's Brody Lamb.

HERMANTOWN, Minn. – After their loss in the state quarterfinals Tuesday night, the Hermantown JV hockey team has received an outpouring of support all over social media, including from former Hawk and current UMD Bulldog Blake Biondi, as well as an exchange of mutual respect on Twitter between Zam Plante and Dodge County’s Brody Lamb. Categories: High School, Sports

Prep Boys Baskeball: Duluth East, Hibbing, MLWR, Deer River Fall in State Quarterfinals

The season came to an end for the Greyhounds, Bluejackets, Rebels and Warriors.

OSSEO, Minn. – In the Class AAAA state quarterfinals, the Duluth East boys basketball team struggled in the second half as they fell to Wayzata 78-69. In other quarterfinals action, DeLaSalle defeated Hibbing 92-72 in Class AAA, Minneapolis North knocked off Moose Lake-Willow River 71-40 in Class AA, and in Class A it was Badger/Greenbush-Middle River over Deer River 58-52….

State Semi-Final Meeting with Warroad Awaits Proctor/Hermantown Girls Hockey Team

Puck drop for tomorrow's game against Warroad at the Xcel Energy Center is set for 11 a.m.

PROCTOR, Minn. – Wednesday morning, the best breakfast for Northland hockey fans won’t be a bagel or eggs benedict. It will be the start of the state semi-finals for girls hockey. And Proctor/Hermantown have earned a spot at the table. The Mirage will go up against Warroad, the #1 ranked team in Class A. The Warriors are led by Ms….

MIB Girls Basketball Talk Thrilling Quarterfinals Win

MIB will face defending state champs Minneota in the state semi-finals on Tuesday.

MOUNTAIN IRON, Minn. – The Mountain Iron-Buhl girls basketball team got a big win Tuesday afternoon over Cass Lake-Bena in the Class A quarterfinals. It wasn’t pretty though as the Rangers committed 24 turnovers and only led for the last 17 seconds of the game. But they say a win is a win when it comes to the state tournament….

Marshall, Denfeld Baseball Teams Begin Practices with New Head Coaches

Spring practices are underway for the Duluth Marshall and Duluth Denfeld baseball teams, who both have new head coaches.

DULUTH, Minn. – As winter sports begin to wind down, that means spring sports are starting back up. And it’s been a long wait for many local teams who had their seasons cancelled last year, including Northland baseball teams. And for some teams, like Duluth Denfeld, it means getting re-introduced to their new head coach. Joe Wicklund took over last…

Prep Girls Basketball: MIB Advances to Class A Semi-Finals; Season Ends at Quarterfinals for Duluth Marshall, Grand Rapids

The Rangers stay alive in the state tournament, while the season came to an end for the Hilltoppers and the Thunderhawks.

PEQUOT LAKES, Minn. – In a game where they lead for the final 17 seconds, the Mountain Iron-Buhl girls basketball team earned a comeback win over Cass Lake-Bena 50-49 in the quarterfinals of the Class A state tournament. The Rangers move on to face Minneota in the state semi-finals. That game will be next Tuesday at the Target Center. In…

Hermantown Boys Hockey Fall to Dodge County in Class A Quarterfinals

Cameron Pietrusa, Sam Swenson and Zam Plante all scored for the Hawks, who were playing without most of their varsity players due to COVID exposure.

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Hermantown boys junior varsity hockey team fought valiantly in place of their varsity teammates, but it wouldn’t be enough as they fell to Dodge County 7-3 Tuesday night in the Class A state quarterfinals. Cameron Pietrusa, Sam Swenson and Zam Plante all scored for the Hawks, who were playing without most of their varsity players…

UWS Women’s Soccer Blank Northland College at Home

Emma Street and Claire Smith each scored in the second half.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – Emma Street and Claire Smith each scored in the second half as the UW-Superior women’s soccer team earned an exhibition victory over Northland College Tuesday afternoon at the NBC Spartan Sports Complex. The Yellowjackets will open their regular season schedule Saturday as they will host Martin Luther. Categories: College, Sports

UMD’s Scott Sandelin Named Finalist for Spencer Penrose Award

Since the start of the 2016 season, Sandelin has posted the second-most wins in all of NCAA.

DULUTH, Minn. – Tuesday, UMD’s Scott Sandelin was named a finalist for the Spencer Penrose Award given to the top head coach in Division I men’s hockey. This is the fifth year in a row that Sandelin has been nominated for the award, which he won back in 2004. Since the start of the 2016 season, Sandelin has posted the…

St. Scholastica Baseball Tops UW-Superior in Non-Conference Bridge Battle

Dallas Miller was stellar on the mound for the Saints as he finished with a career-high 12 strikeouts

DULUTH, Minn. – In their first meeting since the 2019 UMAC playoffs, the St. Scholastica baseball team got the home win over UW-Superior 5-2 Monday afternoon at Wade Stadium. Dallas Miller was stellar on the mound for the Saints as he finished with a career-high 12 strikeouts, allowing just two hits over 7.1 innings of work. CSS improves to 3-2…

GRG’s Claire Vekich Named Top-5 Finalist for Ms. Hockey Award

The winner of the Ms. Hockey award will be announced next Tuesday April 6th.

GRAND RAPIDS, Minn. – Grand Rapids/Greenway’s Claire Vekich is now a top-five finalist for the Ms. Hockey award, given to the top senior player in the state of Minnesota. Vekich says she hopes the nomination will bring more attention to girls hockey programs in the Northland. “I think it’s a really big eye-opener to have a Northern GRG hockey player…

Five-Goal Game Could Mean More D1 Offers for Proctor/Hermantown’s Alyssa Watkins

Watkins is not currently committed to playing college hockey, but she does want to play at the Division I level.

HERMANTOWN, Minn. – The prep hockey world is still buzzing after Proctor/Hermantown’s Alyssa Watkins scored five goals in a win over Luverne in the Class A state quarterfinals. Watkins is not currently committed to playing college hockey, but she does want to play at the Division I level. And maybe her performance could help with some much-deserved exposure. “Obviously, this…

Hermantown Boys Hockey Varsity Team in Quarantine, JV Squad to Play in State Quarterfinals

The vast majority of the varsity team will not take part in the game, but members of the junior varsity squad will made eligible to play.

HERMANTOWN, Minn. – The Hermantown boys hockey team will be shorthanded for Tuesday’s Class A state quarterfinals game against Dodge County due to exposure to COVID-19. The vast majority of the varsity team will not take part in the game, but members of the junior varsity squad will made eligible to play. Here’s the official statement from athletic director Beth…

Duluth Marshall Girls Basketball Hold Off Esko to Win Second Straight Section Championship

Senior Gianna Kneepkens led all scorers with 31 points.

ESKO, Minn. – Senior Gianna Kneepkens led all scorers with 31 points as the Duluth Marshall girls basketball team held off a late rally from Esko to pick up the win 63-52 in the Section 7AA championship game. Ava Meierotto chipped in with 14 points to help the Hilltoppers punch their ticket to the state tournament for the second straight…

Watkins’ Big Day Powers Proctor/Hermantown Girls Hockey Past Luverne in State Quarterfinals

Watkins tied a state tournament record with four goals in the second period.

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Senior forward Alyssa Watkins finished with five goals, including three shorthanded, as the Proctor/Hermantown girls hockey team rolled past Luverne 8-0 Friday afternoon in the Class A state quarterfinals. Reese Hientzman, Hannah Kaupinnen and Ella Anick also scored for the Mirage, who move on to the state semi-finals where they will face #2 seed Warroad. Puck…

Michigan Withdraws From NCAA Tournament, UMD Men’s Hockey Advance to Regional Finals

The UMD men's hockey team now moves on to the regional final to face the winner of North Dakota vs. American International.

FARGO, N.D. – It was a shocking start to the NCAA men’s hockey regional tournament as the University of Michigan has withdrawn due to a positive COVID-19 case. The UMD men’s hockey team now moves on to the regional final to face the winner of North Dakota vs. American International. The regional final is still scheduled for Saturday night. Categories:…

Hermantown Boys Hockey Take Down Duluth Denfeld to Win Section 7A Championship

Seniors Joey Pierce and Ethan Lund each scored twice as the Hermantown boys hockey team defeated Duluth Denfeld 7-1 to win the Section 7A championship.

HERMANTOWN, Minn. – Seniors Joey Pierce and Ethan Lund each scored twice as the Hermantown boys hockey team defeated Duluth Denfeld 7-1 to win the Section 7A championship. George Peterson, Aydyn Dowd and Beau Janzig also scored for the Hawks, who are going to the Class A state tournament for the 11th time in the past 12 seasons. Kade Shea…

Duluth East Boys Basketball Win First Section Title Since 2012

It is the Greyhounds first section title since 2012 and the first for head coach Rhett McDonald.

DULUTH, Minn. – Senior guard Giovani Saldivar led the way with 24 points as the Duluth East boys basketball team got the home win over Coon Rapids 74-60 Thursday night. It is the Greyhounds first section title since 2012 and the first for head coach Rhett McDonald. Categories: High School, Sports