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ALEXANDRIA -- Jenny Bridge has a basement full of trophies -- but she would give them all back to have played in one state tournament basketball game. It has been 10 years since Bridge wore a Beavers uniform, but the 2003 Hanson High School graduate still has a connection with the team and the Alexandria community. Bridge said she attends almost every game, and will be in attendance to watch the Beavers compete in the Class B state tournament, which starts today in Huron. While Bridge never played in a state tournament game, she racked up a ton of individual awards.
ALEXANDRIA - Today, Hanson makes its sixth appearance at the state girls' basketball tournament with hopes of finally hoisting the championship trophy. The Beavers came close to winning it all in 1992, but fell to Hurley in the title game. They also qualified in 1990, 2007, 2008 and last season. Hanson (21-2) enters the first round of state as the third seed and plays sixth-seeded Wall at 7:45 p.m. today at Huron Arena. "It would mean a lot to me and my teammates to win the state tournament," Hanson guard Kelli Wenande said.
South Central's Sam Hazen made the most important basket of his life Tuesday at the Corn Palace in Mitchell. With 15 seconds left on the game clock, the 6-foot-5 junior beat a double team and elevated toward the basket, released the ball, which kissed off the glass and fell through the net. The basket came with 11 seconds remaining in the game. The bucket gave South Central a 63-62 lead over Ethan in the Region 6B boys' basketball championship at the Corn Palace in Mitchell. It proved to be the game-winner and was the final score of the contest.
With only one senior last year, the Hanson girls' basketball team went to the Class B state tournament and finished sixth. After defeating South Central 54-37 in the Region 6B girls' basketball championship Saturday at the Corn Palace in Mitchell, the Beavers are going back with their sights set on a state title. This time, Hanson has five seniors and a ton of experience. "We have been working all year for this," Hanson coach Jim Bridge said. "From the day we drove home on the bus from last year's tournament, the girls all said we want to come back, but it was easier said than done.
HURON -- For the second straight year the Sanborn Central/Woonsocket girls' basketball team is heading to the Class B state tournament. The Blackhawks defeated a scrappy Mitchell Christian squad 53-47 to earn the Region 5B championship Friday in Huron. "It feels absolutely incredible to be going to state, but first and foremost, hats off to Mitchell Christian," co-head coach Rob Baruth said. "They have some outstanding ladies and coaches and they gave us a run for our money.
Dakota Wesleyan University track athletes Tamika Irvin and Nicole Court-Menendez are in different places in their careers, but this weekend at the NAIA indoor track and field championship they will be in search of the same goal. Irvin and Court-Menendez are each hoping to garner NAIA All-American status at the national championships. Both runners are DWU's only athletes who qualified for the national championships. "We are excited to be here, we love coming to nationals. ... Both Tamika and Nicole have legitimate shots of becoming NAIA All-Americans," DWU track coach Pat Belling said.
All seven Dakota Wesleyan University wrestlers competing in the NAIA national wrestling tournament today in Des Moines, Iowa, know what it feels like to wrestle on this big stage. But they don't know how it feels to be an All-American. Last year Richard Rios (133), Dusty Paulsen (149), Trever Devestern (157), Kyle Gerlach (157), Nicholas Hutcheson (165), Tyler Sarringar (174) and Eric Gruis (HWT) all made the NAIA national wrestling tournament. Rios, Gerlach and Devestern each came within one match from earning All-American status.
Mitchell High School's weight room is packed with 25 students and three coaches after school. Among them is Abby Sudbeck, a sophomore, who is a member of the Kernels track and field team and the only female member of the Mitchell powerlifting club. "I think it's kind of different because usually it is the guys who are supposed to be the strong alpha males, but I go out there and show them what I've got," Sudbeck said.
The Mitchell Aquatic Club won't be the largest team at the state A swimming championship this weekend in Aberdeen, but coach Kyle Margheim hopes his team will be the most efficient. Twenty-nine MAC swimmers will compete at the championships, beginning Friday from ages 8 to 18. The meet concludes Sunday. "I am very proud of my kids, and I think we will have strong standouts at each age group," Margheim said. "They give out a percentage award for the team that has the most points per swimmer, and I think we will be in the top two in that category, which would be a huge success. ...
WINNER -- It's been three days since Winner's Tate Novotny defeated Wagner's Trevor Lensing by major decision to claim the Class B 170-pound state championship. But the fact that he's a state champion wrestler still has not sunk in. The victory was the second time this school year Novotny has won a state championship; the other time was in November when Winner won the Class 11B football title.