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Letter To The Editor - Blackduck baseball team is congratulated

To the editor:

A wonderful story took place in the community of Blackduck this spring. Perhaps you and many of your fine readers would love to learn about the exploits of the 2011 Blackduck Drakes baseball team. The Drakes proved to be truly mighty in the game of baseball this season.

The Drakes, under the direction of fourth year head coach Rick Olhava, finished with an impressive record of 19 wins and five defeats.

The local nine took top honors in the Northern Division of the Northland Conference, but fell to the Southern Division and defending champion Cass Lake in the conference title game. Despite the loss, the Drakes earned the top seed in the East 8A Subsection tournament where they turned the tables on the Panthers of Cass Lake, defeating them in the Subsection 8A championship game by a score of 5-2.

The subsection baseball championship was the first in any sport for a varsity boys team at BHS in over a decade.

The Blackduck Drakes also made their first appearance in the MSHSL baseball ranking's since 1997. The Drakes were ranked in the top ten throughout much of this season, holding the number one spot for several weeks. This was the first time in BHS history that ANY sports team received the number one ranking in a MSHSL weekly poll.

The Drakes met Norman County West in the semifinals of the Section 8A tournament on June 7 in Thief River Falls. NCW ended the season sooner than expected for the Drakes, winning by a decisive 12-2 score. There was no joy in Mudville after that game. However, one game makes not an entire season.

Congratulations to the Drakes for competing at such a high level and for representing our school and community with class and distinction. Also, congratulations to the graduating seniors, Michael Dexter, Brandon Beck, Luke Binkley, Tanner Stomberg, Justin Bryant and Charles Biberg. Your legacy is assured. We look forward to the return of the rest of the squad next season: Matthew Patch, Trey Volk, Dominic Anderson, Aaron Nissen, Lucas Krabbenhoft, Shane Fenske, Mitchell Sparby, Jacob Krabbenhoft, Dylan Weisert and Cody Berquist.

It was very apparent this particular group of young men bonded to form a strong and cohesive team, dedicated to achieve a common purpose and goal. They are a fine example of how much athletics and competition can play in the development of our youth.

Congratulations once again to the Blackduck High School, Coach Olhava, his staff and the members of the 2011 Drakes baseball team. Go Drakes!

Dwight Kalvig