|State Boys' and Girls' Soccer Tournament
St. Paul Como Park boys only team to defend title
The boys of St. Paul Como Park, in Class A, are the only returning champions to defend their title at the 2014 State Soccer Tournament. Of the 32 qualified teams, only six teams played in the 2013 state tournament. Eight of the 32 teams are first-time qualifiers. Anoka is the only school that has qualified both a boys' team and a girls' team.
St. Paul Como Park is the No. 4 seed for Class A boys. East Ridge of Woodbury is the No. 1 seed for Class AA boys. Minneapolis Washburn is the No. 1 seed for Class A girls. Eagan is the No. 1 seed for Class AA girls.
Class A Boys Highlights
No. 1 Seed (Section 5) DeLaSalle, Minneapolis (17-1-1) vs. (Section 4) Mahtomedi (12-3-4) — 5:30 p.m., Oct. 23, at Chisago Lakes High School in Lindstrom: The Islanders of DeLaSalle are making their first state tournament appearance. The Zephyrs of Mahtomedi are making their sixth appearance and won the 2009 title.
No. 4 Seed (Section 3) St. Paul Como Park (14-4-2) vs. No. 5 Seed (Section 6) Chaska (13-5-0) — 7:30 p.m., Oct. 23, at Chisago Lakes High School in Lindstrom: The defending champion St. Paul Como Park Cougars are making their third consecutive and overall appearance. The Hawks of Chaska are making their first tournament appearance.
No. 2 Seed (Section 8) St. Cloud Apollo (18-0-2) vs. (Section 1) Rochester Lourdes (15-5-0) — 5:30 p.m., Oct. 22, at Osseo High School: The Eagles of St. Cloud Apollo are making their third appearance. The Eagles of Rochester Lourdes are making their fifth consecutive and 13th overall appearance. Rochester Lourdes won titles in 1998, 1999 and 2012, but lost in the 2013 quarterfinals.
No. 3 Seed (Section 2) Mankato West (18-1-0) vs. (Section 7) Monticello (13-4-2) — 7:30 p.m., Oct. 22, at Osseo High School: The Mankato West Scarlets return to make their fifth appearance. The Magic of Monticello are making their first tournament appearance.
Class AA Boys Highlights
No. 1 Seed (Section 4) East Ridge, Woodbury (19-0-0) vs. (Section 7) Duluth East (12-3-4) — 5:30 p.m., Oct. 22, at Chisago Lakes High School, Lindstrom: The Raptors of East Ridge are making their first tournament appearance. The Greyhounds of Duluth East are making their third appearance and enter with a 15-game unbeaten streak. Their two previous appearances were as a Class A team.
No. 4 Seed (Section 6) Wayzata (13-3-3) vs. No. 5 Seed (Section 1) Rochester John Marshall (13-3-2) — 7:30 p.m., Oct. 22, at Chisago Lakes High School, Lindstrom: The Trojans of Wayzata return for their 12th appearance. The Rockets of Rochester John Marshall are making their second appearance.
No. 2 Seed (Section 5) Maple Grove (19-0-0) vs. (Section 3) Rosemount (7-8-3) — 5:30 p.m., Oct. 21, at Osseo High School: The Crimson of Maple Grove are making their fifth tournament appearance. The Irish of Rosemount are making their second appearance.
No. 3 Seed (Section 2) Minnetonka (16-0-2) vs. (Section 8) Anoka (12-6-1) — 7:30 p.m., Oct. 21, at Osseo High School: The Skippers of Minnetonka return for their third appearance. The Anoka Tornadoes return to make their 13th appearance and won the 2007 title.
Class A Girls Highlights
No. 1 Seed (Section 3) Minneapolis Washburn (18-0-0) vs. (Section 8) Sartell-St. Stephen (13-3-4) — 5:30 p.m., Oct. 23, at St. Cloud State University: The Minneapolis Washburn Millers are returning to make their 11th appearance. The Millers qualified nine consecutive times from 1981 through 1989 and won the 1981 title. The Sabres of Sartell-St. Stephen are making their second consecutive and fourth overall appearance.
No. 4 Seed (Section 7) Princeton (18-1-0) vs. No. 5 Seed (Section 4) Hill-Murray, Maplewood (9-6-4) — 7:30 p.m., Oct. 23, at St. Cloud State University: The Tigers of Princeton are making their first tournament appearance in just their fifth varsity season. The Hill-Murray Pioneers are making their second consecutive and fifth overall appearance.
No. 2 Seed (Section 6) Orono (16-2-1) vs. (Section 1) Dover-Eyota (15-2-1) — 5:30 p.m., Oct. 22, at Park High School, Cottage Grove: The Spartans of Orono are making their seventh tournament appearance and won the 2009 title. The Eagles of Dover-Eyota are making their first tournament appearance.
No. 3 Seed (Section 5) Park Center, Brooklyn Park (16-3-0) vs. (Section 2) Albert Lea (12-3-2) — 7:30 p.m., Oct. 22, at Park High School, Cottage Grove: The Pirates of Park Center are making their first tournament appearance. The Tigers of Albert Lea are making their third appearance.
Class AA Girls Highlights
No. 1 Seed (Section 3) Eagan (18-0-1) vs. (Section 6) Hopkins (12-5-2) — 5:30 p.m., Oct. 21 at Park High School, Cottage Grove: The Wildcats of Eagan are making their sixth appearance. The Royals of Hopkins are making their inaugural tournament appearance.
No. 4 Seed (Section 5) Centennial, Circle Pines (16-1-2) vs. No. 5 Seed (Section 4) Cretin-Derham Hall, St. Paul (14-5-0) — 7:30 p.m., Oct. 21, at Park High School, Cottage Grove: The fourth-ranked Cougars of Centennial are making their fourth appearance. Cretin-Derham Hall is making its eighth appearance.
No. 2 Seed (Section 1) Lakeville North (15-2-1) vs. (Section 8) St. Michael-Albertville (16-3-0) — 5:30 p.m., Oct. 22, at St. Cloud State University: The Panthers of Lakeville North return to make their fourth consecutive and fifth overall appearance. They were the 2013 runners-up and finished third in 2012. The Knights of St. Michael-Albertville are making their third state tournament appearance.
No. 3 Seed (Section 2) Eden Prairie (15-2-1) vs. (Section 7) Anoka (9-8-2) — 7:30 p.m., Oct. 22, at St. Cloud State University: The Eden Prairie Eaglesare making their third consecutive and ninth overall tournament appearance. They tied for third in the 2013 tournament. The Tornadoes of Anoka are making their seventh appearance and won the 1989 title.
After this week's quarterfinal rounds Tuesday through Thursday, all semifinal games will be played at Husky Stadium on the campus of St. Cloud State University.
Class AA boys' semifinals will be played at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 28, followed by the Class AA girls' semifinals at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. The Class A boys will take to the field at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. on Wednesday, October 29, and the girls will follow at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.
The tournament concludes on Thursday, Oct. 30, with all championship games being played at Husky Stadium. The Class A boys will play at 9:30 a.m. and the Class A girls will compete at noon. The Class AA boys' will play at 2:30 p.m. and the girls will follow at 5 p.m.
All third-place games will be held at Selke Field across the river from Husky Stadium in St. Cloud. That schedule begins with the Class A boys at 8:30 a.m. and the Class A girls at 10:30 a.m. The Class AA boys will start at 12:30 p.m. followed by the girls at 2:30 p.m.
All four championship matches will be webcast live at www.Prep45.com for a fee of $4.97 per day.
Official Tournament Ball
The official state soccer tournament ball is the Nike Catalyst (SC2353-161).
|State Cross Country Running Meet
All four team champions return to defend 2013 titles;
Alexandria's Bethany Hasz to defend Class AA individual title
All four team champions return this Saturday, Nov. 1, when the Minnesota State High School League's 2014 State Girls' and Boys' Cross Country Running Meet is conducted at St. Olaf College in Northfield. The Perham boys in Class A and the Wayzata girls in Class AA are both in the hunt for their third consecutive titles. The boys of Wayzata in Class AA and the girls of Annandale in Class A are looking for their second consecutive team championships.
Junior Bethany Hasz of Alexandria is the only returning individual champion. She earned top honors in Class AA last year. The 2013 runner-up is the highest returning qualifier in the Class AA boys' race and both of the Class A boys' and girls' races.
The girls run a 4,000-meter course. The boys run a 5,000-meter course.
Class A Boys Highlights
The Yellowjackets of Perham return as the two-time defending champions. They have two runners with previous state meet experience. Eight other teams also return from last year's field: Martin County West of Sherburn, Waseca, Canby/Minneota, Minnehaha Academy, Mora, Glencoe-Silver Lake, St. Cloud Cathedral, and Proctor. Minnehaha Academy includes students from Hope Academy in Minneapolis.
The other teams qualified this year are Lake City, La Crescent, Montevideo, Holy Family Catholic of Victoria, Holdingford, Eveleth-Gilbert, and Hawley/Ulen-Hitterdal.
Senior Shane Streich of Waseca, who earned runner-up honors in 2013, is the highest returning individual medal-winner. Four other Top 10 finishers also return: senior Isaac Overmyer of Park Rapids Area, fourth; senior Ephraim Bird of Minnehaha Academy, seventh; senior Andrew Zachman of Holdingford, eighth; and senior Billy Beseman of Perham, 10th.
Class A Girls Highlights
Eleven of last year's 16 teams are back, including the defending champions from Annandale. The Cardinals return with six runners from last year's roster. Other teams that are returning are Dover-Eyota, Waseca, Fairmont, Lac qui Parle Valley/Dawson-Boyd, St. Paul Academy and Summit School, Holdingford, St. Cloud Cathedral, South Ridge of Culver, Perham, and Park Rapids Area. The other qualified teams are Rochester Lourdes, Redwood Valley of Redwood Falls, Trinity School at River Ridge of Eagan, Mora, and Crosby-Ironton.
Senior Mary Naas of St. Paul Academy and Summit School, who earned runner-up honors last year, is the highest returning Top 10 finisher. Seven additional Top 10 finishers also return: junior Rebecca Wilkin of Trinity School at River Ridge, third; junior Elizabeth Schlafke of Annandale, fourth; sophomore Madison Schandelmeier of Luverne, sixth; junior Tierney Winter of Waterville-Elysian-Morristown/Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton, seventh; senior Kailee Kaminski of Esko, eighth; senior Kayla Huhnerkoch of Redwood Valley, ninth; and senior Emily Donnay of Eden Valley-Watkins/Kimball Area, 10th.
Class AA Boys Highlights
Half of last year's 16 teams will be back, including the defending champions from Wayzata. The Trojans have six runners with previous state meet experience. Other teams returning from last year's meet are Red Wing, Rosemount, Stillwater Area, White Bear Lake Area, Centennial of Circle Pines, Alexandria, and Bemidji. The other teams in the field are Rochester Century, Chaska, Shakopee, Prior Lake, St. Michael-Albertville, Hopkins, Elk River, and Andover.
In the individual competition, senior Connor Olson of Wayzata is the highest returning qualifier. He is looking to improve on last year's runner-up showing.
In addition to Olson, three other 2013 Top 10 finishers also return: senior Chase Cayo of St. Michael-Albertville, sixth; senior Faysal Mahmoud of Burnsville, ninth; and senior Logan Ramlet of Edina, 10th.
Class AA Girls Highlights
The two-time defending champions from Wayzata lead a field of eight returning teams. The Trojans return with four members of last year's team.
The other returning teams are Lakeville South, Marshall, Eagan, East Ridge of Woodbury, Forest Lake, Willmar, and Bemidji. Austin, Chaska, Eastview of Apple Valley, White Bear Lake Area, St. Michael-Albertville, Centennial of Circle Pines, Edina, and Duluth East round out the Class AA field.
Defending champion Bethany Hasz of Alexandria, a junior, leads the field of seven returning Top 10 finishers. The others are: junior Megan Hasz of Alexandria, runner-up; senior Jenna Truedson of Bemidji, third; senior Anna Van Wyk of Eagan, fourth; senior Emily Betz of East Ridge, fifth; sophomore Annika Lerdall of Wayzata, eighth; and sophomore Tess Misgen of Shakopee, 10th.
The Class A boys' race will start at 10 a.m., followed by the Class A girls' race at 11 a.m. The Class AA boys' race will start at 1 p.m., followed by the Class AA girls' race at 2 p.m. A combined awards ceremony will take place approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of the girls' race in each class.
State Meet Parking
School teams, meet officials, media, and vehicles displaying handicapped passes will be allowed to park on the St. Olaf campus near the race course at Skoglund Athletic Center.
Spectator parking is available at four remote parking lots at the southeast end of St. Olaf campus. Large red signs will direct spectators to these lots. Shuttle service to and from campus will be provided from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The pick-up and drop-off points will be posted with large red “Bus Stop” signs.
|District Football 2015-16, 2016-17
League adopts District Football scheduling plan for 2015 and beyond
Minnesota State High School League schools should no longer have a reason to travel far out of state to find football opponents or play less than an eight-game regular season football schedule. The League Board of Directors today unanimously adopted a plan that places all member schools with football programs into Districts. The members of each district will divide the district into sub-districts, and then create a full schedule for each team. In nearly all cases the placement of schools will not negatively affect traditional rivalries or preferred opponents.
For several years League staff, school administrators and football coaches have sought a solution for schools that have had difficulty filling their regular season football schedule. A committee of coaches, athletic administrators and Board members developed a District Football Scheduling System that was approved by the Board in January. A separate District Placement Committee made up of coaches and administrators worked hard to group schools into districts based on enrollment, geography and like schools, while also considering individual school preferences for maintaining traditional opponents.
"Everyone needs to keep in mind that this is just a step in the process of developing actual schedules for our member schools," explained Associate Director Kevin Merkle in presenting the plan to the Board. "Some districts have a wide range in school enrollment and geography, but once the districts determine their sub-district alignments, most of the enrollment and geographical issues will be solved."
The recommendation approved by the Board of Directors included:
Placement of all schools in a scheduling district
Final decision on appeals from schools who requested to be placed in 9-Man
Bylaws to guide the work of each district
Allowing limited inter-district play upon approval of the Board of Directors
A plan for the initial meetings for each district that will be lead by members of the District Football Placement Committee.
The 10-member District Football Placement Committee met five times since mid-March to place schools in districts, using enrollment, geography, like schools and current conference membership and current opponents as key criteria. Schools were given the opportunity to provide information to the committee in advance, including three teams that they would like to continue to schedule. Those requests were reviewed carefully and were met to the extent possible. More than 90 percent of the schools' requests were met, and a significant majority of schools were placed in a district with most, if not all, of the schools that they now play.
Districts will have initial meetings in the near future to discuss the placements and the next steps in the process. The next major step will be for districts to decide on sub-district alignments. Once that is completed, schedules for the 2015 and 2016 seasons can be developed. The goal is for all schools to have a complete schedule for both years by Nov. 1, 2014.
"We are indebted to the members of the District Football Placement Committee for their diligence and hard work in this process," Merkle told the Board, "They put in an extraordinary amount of time and effort and their focus was always on doing what was best for our member schools and their students."
To view the new football districts listing the schools placed in each district, click on the link below.
|Coaching for Change
League advances education module addressing sexual harassment and violence against girls
Long before the advent of current public and media attention to accusations of violence against women by some high profile National Football League players, the Minnesota State High School League began the process of developing educational curriculum to assist high school coaches with educating their athletes about the problem of violence against teenage girls.
The curriculum is one of several educational modules that all coaches working with athletes in grades 9-12 must take. It is titled Coaching for Change: A Game Plan to Prevent Violence and was created in partnership with the Sexual and Domestic Violence Council of Anoka County, Men as Peace Makers, the Gender Violence Institute, and the Men's Action Network. Funding was provided by a grant from the Greater Twin Cities United Way.
The module was available for fall sport coaches this year and thus far nearly 9,000 coaches have completed it, with an additional 15,000 recipients expected by the end of the 2014-15 school year.
"Sexual and domestic violence are difficult topics to understand and discuss, and there are few coaches who are trained to deal with these topics effectively," explained Jody Redman, associate director of the League. "If we expect coaches to challenge the current status quo and immerse their programs in a counter-cultural belief system, we must provide them with consequential and ongoing professional development and support so they are prepared to address these issues effectively."
The goal is to create a heightened awareness of a team's culture and the social norms that are shaping student athlete's attitudes and behaviors related to teen dating violence, sexual assault, and sexual harassment. With this increased awareness, coaches can positively impact the lives of their athletes.
Coaches will learn basic strategies that will help them address these tough issues as they arise and proactive approaches they can use throughout the year.
The education module first introduces coaches to the socialization of boys. Former NFL defensive lineman (Baltimore Colts and Detroit Lions) Joe Ehrman narrates this portion of the module, including what he dubs the three scariest words that every man has heard in his lifetime: "Be a man!"
Ehrman, the author of InSideOut Coaching: How Sports Can Transform Lives, a book whose principles form the framework for the League's Why We Play initiative, explains that boys are taught to separate their heart from their head. He believes that boys and men measure their masculinity based on three myths:
1) Boys learn by ages 7, 8 or 9 that masculinity is measured on the athletic platform by their ability and skills, their size and their strength.
2) By the time boys reach seventh, eighth or ninth grade, many believe their masculinity must be measured by sexual conquest.
3) And later in life, the primary measure becomes economic success.
"We need to reframe sports," Ehrman explains. "We need to redefine what it means to be a coach. We need to rewire the broken men who have separated their hearts from their heads. They've got to get connected again.
"And then we've got to do the preventive work, give every boy affirmations, validation of all of their feelings."
Although some forms of abuse may appear harmless, they indeed are not. The types of behavior that must be addressed can range from emotional abuse, to controlling behavior, to sexual harassment, to sexual assault, to physical assault.
Staggering statistics are offered. According to the 2010 Minnesota Student Survey and the 2008 Minnesota Crime Survey, one of every four teens have or will experience dating violence and that one of every five girls will become victims of sexual abuse before the age of 18, with that ratio increasing to one in three by the time they reach mid-life.
The preventive work is at the heart of the League's Continuing Education Requirement (CER) for coaches. This module, estimated to require just 45 minutes of a coach's time, presents a number of different scenarios that coaches could face, along with several options on how to respond, and then the most appropriate response must be chosen.
Coaches are encouraged to think differently about what they are teaching young people regarding honor and respect. There is no single right way to teach these values, they are told, adding that with any message that matters, they will need to find their own voice and deliver their message in an authentic way.
The appropriate responses to the scenarios presented always require immediate attention and usually face-to-face conversations with both perpetrators and victims. In some cases, issues must be referred to administrators, and in many cases referrals to counseling are paramount.
A number of possible proactive prevention actions are offered. Number one on that list is very simple: "Add respect to your team rules." Coaches of boys' teams are also encouraged to create this culture by supporting the success of a girls' team, or incorporate a female role model into a practice, game or team event, or host an event to honor the women important in the lives of the boys on their team.
"All who are involved in a student's education must understand the purpose of WHY WE PLAY and what we want students to acquire through participation," Redman adds, "which includes providing them with an environment where they are developing appropriate beliefs and ideals around their identity, sexual harassment and violence."
|Max Drives The Bus, Cheers For The Team And Much More
|Posted by John Millea(email@example.com)- Updated 10/29/2014 5:14:51 PM
|ST. CLOUD – “Thanks Max!” “Thanks Max!” “Thanks Max!”
As the soccer players from Orono High School stepped off the bus before their Class 1A girls state semifinal game here Wednesday, the Spartans thanked their bus driver for delivering them safely once again. Max Kookie, however, is more than a bus driver to the Spartans; he is a friend, a fan, even a super hero. The Spartans love Max.
Kookie knows the players by name. He is almost always watching from the stands when they play, including home games when no bus is needed. He is invited to postseason team banquets, graduation parties for seniors, and is basically a member of the family. He drives other Orono teams, too, but the girls soccer players claim him as their own.
“A lot of these girls are two- and three-sport athletes who get to see Max all year round,” said soccer coach Erin Murray. “He’s always friendly, he’s always on time, we trust him. These girls can be loud and obnoxious on the bus, and some other bus drivers aren’t quite so accepting of that. He lets them sing and be crazy or celebrate after games. He comes to our banquets and kind of gets included in everything. He’s pretty much part of the team.”
Here’s the most amazing part of the story: Kookie moved to Michigan recently, but drove the 600 miles back to Minnesota this week in order to chaperone the team to the state tournament.
“I enjoy the kids,” said Kookie, who wore a sweatshirt with the words “Bus Driver Max” on the front, along with the logos of several Spartans teams. “They all know me and I know all of them by name.”
Kookie started driving a bus route for the Orono school system in 2001, and two years later he transported his first sports team. Athletes are always happy when they see Max behind the wheel.
“He’s like a super hero almost, showing up to our games, knowing every single one of us by name and being there all the time,” said junior soccer player Jessica Woessner. “Even when our parents aren’t there, he’s there. It’s not something a normal bus driver would do, and we thank him every single day for that.”
Kookie is known by more than the athletes. Parents, students and others said hi when they saw Max sitting in the stands Wednesday at St. Cloud State’s Husky Stadium. One mom saw him and said with a smile, “Hi Max! Did you get those girls here safe?” Sure did, he answered.
“Max isn’t your typical bus driver,” Orono senior Abby Chargo said. “He cares about everybody. He comes to every single game. You look up in the stands at our home games and Max is there. He drove all the way back from Michigan just to drive us. He’s someone who’s really special to us. We wouldn’t trade him for any bus driver in the world.”
WEDNESDAY’S CLASS 1A GIRLS SEMIFINALS
--Orono 4, Park Center 0/ Sophie Babo scored two goals as the Spartans advanced.
--Minneapolis Washburn 3, Hill-Murray 0/ The Millers scored all three goals in the second half.
WEDNESDAY'S CLASS 1A BOYS SEMIFINALS
--St. Cloud Apollo 1, Mankato West 0/ Leighton Lommel got the game-winner in the 48th minute as the Eagles advanced to Thursday’s title game.
--DeLaSalle 2, Chaska 1 (OT)/ The winner came on a header by Michael Wageman after a nice cross by Christian Kardio.
THURSDAY’S STATE TITLE GAMES
At Husky Stadium, St. Cloud State University
1A boys/ DeLaSalle vs. St. Cloud Apollo, 9:30 a.m.
1A girls/ Orono vs. Minneapolis Washburn, noon
2A boys/ Wayzata vs. Anoka, 2:30 p.m.
2A girls/ Eagan vs. Eden Prairie, 5 p.m.
BY THE NUMBERS
*Schools/teams John has visited: 108
*Miles John has driven in the Toyota Camry: 3,779
Follow John on Twitter: @MSHSLjohn
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