The competitive winter sports seasons at Bemidji High School began Nov. 9 when the girls hockey team battled East Grand Forks to a 4-4 tie and 171 events later only the boys basketball team remains in action.
The girls hockey team finished with an 11-10-5 record and advanced to the semifinals of the Section 8-2A tournament.
Bemidji’s boys hockey team ended 8-17-2 and also advanced to the section semifinals where the Lumberjacks lost 5-1 to Moorhead.
The boys and girls ski teams each competed in 10 events and capped their winters by sending representatives to the state meet.
Tony Sagedahl and Kyle Sagedahl represented BHS in the boys race while Jenna Truedson and Morgan Sagedahl held that honor in the girls state meet.
The gymnasts posted a 5-3 dual record and topped the 130.00 barrier on five occasions.
Last week the girls basketball team dropped a 53-45 decision at Rogers in the opening round of the Section 8-4A tournament. After beginning the campaign with an 0-8 record the Jacks went 8-10 the rest of the way and finished the year with an 8-18 mark.
Over the weekend the wrestlers and swimmers put the finishing touches on very successful seasons by following some of their athletes at the state meets.
Brian Maas had a spectacular winter for the wrestling team. On Saturday the sophomore finished his year with a 40-5 record when he claimed fifth place at the state meet in the 113-pound division.
In the championship semifinals Maas lost 5-4 in three overtimes to Sam Bennyhill of Mound-Westonka. He battled back through the wrestlebacks to finish fifth.
“At state the difference between fifth and first can be one move or one point,” said BHS wrestling coach Rance Bahr. “Brian would have liked to have pulled it out in that semifinal but it was a great match and he came up a little short.”
Logan Crosby also placed at state as the senior finished sixth in the 126-pound class.
Crosby (37-6) lost his second match but stayed alive in the consolation round with two straight pin wins. The senior fell in the consolation semifinals and then was edged 3-1 in the battle for fifth place.
Bemidji’s other state wrestler, Kade Johnson, split his four matches. He went 1-1 in Friday’s opening rounds and opened Saturday’s consolation action with a 14-3 victory. His tournament ended with a loss in his fourth match.
“All three of our kids finished in the top eight at the state in their weight classes,” Bahr said. “We’re also coming home with two medals and that is very impressive.”
The swimmers and divers also fared well at last weekend’s Class A state meet at the University of Minnesota pool.
Individually, diver Sam Howard finished ninth. Howard was seventh heading into Saturday’s final three dives but two divers were able to surpass the junior during the final rounds.
Teammate Tyler Hemp was 14th in the 100 breast stroke with a time of 1:02.73. In Friday’s preliminaries Hemp set a personal best with a time of 1:01.87.
The junior also helped Bemidji’s 200 medley relay unit finish 15th. The team, which included Nate Gubbels, Hemp, Matt Arndt and Nick Gubbels, swam its fastest time of the winter (1:44.02) in the preliminary round and followed that with a 1:44.53 time during Saturday’s race.
Hemp also swam the 200 free at the state meet but did not advance to Saturday’s final two heats. Bemidji’s 400 free relay team of Nick Gubbels, Hemp, Wyatt Yartz and Nate Gubbels also swam Friday but failed to make it to Saturday’s second round.
Today at Brainerd the boys basketball team will try to pull off the upset. The Lumberjacks ended the regular season 2-23 and is seeded eighth in the section tournament.
The Warriors are the top seed and own a 25-1 record.
Earlier this winter Brainerd stopped the Lumberjacks 83-46 in Bemidji. Billy Baumgartner paced Bemidji’s offense with 24 points and Connor McNallan had 10.
Today’s other upper-bracket game finds No. 4 Buffalo (19-7) hosting No. 5 St. Michael-Albertville (17-9).
In the lower bracket No. 2 Elk River (18-8) entertains No. 7 St. Cloud Tech (8-18) and No. 6 Rogers (10-16) visits No. 3 Moorhead (16-8).
Today’s winners advance to the section semifinals which will be played Saturday at St. Cloud State. The championship game will be March 14 at a neutral site.
Section 8-4A Boys Basketball
Today’s 7 p.m. Quarterfinals
Game 1: Bemidji (No. 8) at Brainerd (No. 1),
Game 2: St. Michael (No. 5) at Buffalo (No. 4)
Game 3: St. Cloud Tech (No. 7) at Elk River (No. 2)
Game 4: Rogers (No. 6) at Moorhead (No. 3)
At St. Cloud State
Game 5: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 6 p.m.
Game 6: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 7:30 p.m.
Championship, March 14
Neutral Site, 7 p.m.
Game 7: Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner