Last year the Bemidji High School fall sports teams enjoyed banner seasons and longtime Lumberjacks fans marveled at the overall success of the eight programs.
This fall’s editions, however, are rivaling last year’s squads in terms of success a month into their campaigns and by season’s end the cumulative result could match or succeed what transpired a year ago.
Leading the charge is the boys soccer team which enters the week 7-0-1, the lone blemish being a 1-1 tie against section power St. Cloud Cathedral. Last week the Jacks edged Detroit Lakes 3-2 and battered Walker-Hackensack-Akeley 5-0. This week BHS will hope to continue its winning ways when it hosts Hibbing Thursday and travels to Brainerd Saturday.
Leading the offense are Isak Sommer and Alex Schussman. Both have eight goals. Sommer also owns five assists and Schussman one.
Riley Brooks has three goals while Connor McNallan and Austin Kovach each have two and Ryan Greendahl, Seth Wall, Felix Hoefer and Alex Amillategui have one.
McNallan has started seven games in the BHS net and has a .900 save percentage and a 0.84 goals against average, stopping 54 shots in 570 minutes.
The girls soccer team is 6-3 following Saturday’s 3-0 home loss to Moorhead. The Jacks have a pair of games this week, traveling to East Grand Forks Thursday and entertaining Brainerd Saturday. Earlier this season Bemidji edged EGF 3-2 at home.
The girls tennis team also is having a banner season, posting a 5-0 record in duals and making noise in its invitational schedule.
Today the Lumberjacks will host Detroit Lakes at 2 p.m. and Crookston at 5 p.m. On Thursday they will head to Thief River Falls for a dual and Saturday BHS will participate in the Fergus Falls Invitational.
The swimmers and divers also are unbeaten in head-to-head competition and they will hope to up their dual record to 4-0 today when they welcome Warroad.
The Jacks are coming off Saturday’s impressive showing at the Hibbing Invitational, a nine-team meet they claimed on the strength of six event victories.
Bemidji captured the 200 medley and 400 free relays, Lexie Hendricks won the 200 and 500 free races, Steph Frey set the pace in the 200 individual medley and Danielle Hoven topped the field in the 100 breast stroke.
The cross country teams are at Bagley today and the Jacks will send a junior varsity dominated team to the invitational. Saturday the varsity will return to duty at the Milaca Invitational.
Last week the Lumberjacks finished fourth out of 20 teams in the boys race at Little Falls while the girls were 10th in an 18-team field. Jenna Truedson continued her dominance as she was the individual girls winner while Sam Carlson paced the boys by placing sixth.
Bemidji’s volleyball team also is having a great campaign, winning six of its first seven matches. The lone loss came last week when the Jacks dropped a marathon 3-2 match at Nevis. The battle featured a pair of state tournament teams as BHS won the Section 8-3A title last fall while the Tigers finished second in the state Class A tournament.
The Lumberjacks bounced back from that setback to trip Duluth East 3-1 Saturday afternoon.
Today they will welcome Roseau and on Friday and Saturday the Jacks will participate in a giant invitational hosted by Apple Valley. This meet traditional attracts the top teams in Minnesota and will provide a stern test for Bemidji.