Austin Monteith is a sports reporter for the Bemidji Pioneer. He is an Illinois native and a Butler University graduate. Follow him on Twitter @amonteith92.
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ST. PAUL -- The Bemidji American Legion baseball team erased a three-run deficit, but ultimately succumbed 5-3 to Pierre, S.D. in pool play at the Gopher Classic in St. Paul Saturday afternoon. The loss is the third straight for the Centaurs through the first two days of the 96-team tournament.
BEMIDJI -- Nothing can keep Joel Otto from returning to Bemidji each summer. He never misses the Galen Nagle Memorial Golf Tournament, which celebrated its 21st edition Friday at Bemidji Town and Country Club. “I try to make sure I’m here every year,” said the former Calgary Flame and Stanley Cup champion. “... I’ve been to every one of them, and plan on doing that in the future.”
BEMIDJI -- The date and matchups for Hockey Day Minnesota 2019 have been set. The dates: Jan. 17-19, 2019. The matchups: Bemidji girls vs. Woodbury, Bemidji State men vs. Michigan Tech, Minnetonka boys vs. Andover, Bemidji State women vs. Minnesota State and Bemidji boys vs. Greenway.
BEMIDJI -- At the moment it may only appear to be a pile of dirt, but a site on Lake Bemidji’s south shore will soon become much more in the months ahead. Construction began Wednesday on the site of the rink that will host Hockey Day Minnesota 2019. The outdoor rink will be situated west of the Sanford Center on a plot of land near the Central Avenue roundabout.
BEMIDJI -- A defeat in the first game of Wednesday evening’s doubleheader did not discourage the Bemidji American Legion baseball team. The Centaurs recovered from a 3-0 loss to Alexandria in the early contest and captured a 6-3 victory in the nightcap to split the two-game set.
BEMIDJI -- Time may be up on 3-on-3 overtime and shootouts in college hockey. The NCAA Men’s and Women’s Ice Hockey Rules Committee approved a standardized overtime format Thursday that would require all conferences to only use a five-minute, 5-on-5 overtime period. Instead of continuing to a 3-on-3 period and a shootout, games still deadlocked after the 5-on-5 overtime would end in a tie.
COON RAPIDS -- Abbie Kelm reached new heights Wednesday at the Class 3A girls golf state tournament. The recent Bemidji High School graduate carded an 80 in the second round at Bunker Hills Golf Club in Coon Rapids to finish the two-day tournament in 13th place, the highest state tournament finish of her career. After posting a 76 Tuesday, Kelm shot 40 on both the front and back nine Wednesday to finish with an overall score of 156.
BEMIDJI -- A former Lumberjack is taking charge of the Bemidji High School girls hockey team. Michael Johnson has been tabbed to be the program’s new head coach, BHS activities director Troy Hendricks announced Wednesday. “I’m pretty fired up about it,” Johnson said. “I was a head coach previously down in the Madison, Wisconsin area, and then moved back to Bemidji about three years ago. I’m ready to work with the high school kids again.”
BEMIDJI -- Bunker Hills Golf Club has become a familiar destination for a pair of Bemidji High School golfers. Abbie Kelm will be embarking on her third straight Class 3A girls golf state tournament appearance, while Taylor Offerdahl will make her second when the two-day event tees off Tuesday, June 12, at the Coon Rapids course. “It’s always exciting to make it to state,” said Kelm, a senior. “It’s nice knowing going in what’s going to happen.”
MINNEAPOLIS -- Nic Buffo triumphed in his first match Friday, but went on to fall in the consolation championship Friday in the singles competition of the Class AA boys tennis state tournament at the University of Minnesota’s Baseline Tennis Center in Minneapolis. The Bemidji High School senior defeated Rogers sophomore Richard Griffiths 1-6, 6-2, 10-3 in the semifinals to advance to the consolation final where he fell to Orono junior John Kasner 7-5, 6-1.