Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.
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The Bemidji VFW baseball team continued it success at the state tournament Friday as the Vets advanced to today's winner's bracket final with a 7-4 victory over St. Paul RanView. Bemidji will meet Worthington at 1 p.m. today and that winner will be in the driver's seat for the state crown. The loser will move into the loser's bracket final and would have to claw its way back into the tournament championship series. Already in the loser's bracket are Red Wing and New Ulm which met Friday night in an elimination game, and Austin and RanView.
A 10-day layoff did not adversely affect the Bemidji VFW offense during the first round of the state tournament Thursday in Austin. The Vets turned six first-inning hits into as many runs and continued that torrid pace the rest of the way. When the dust settled Bemidji outgunned Forest Lake 17-10 and advanced to today's second round in the double-elimination tournament and a match-up against either St. Paul RanView or Proctor. Those teams met Thursday evening and the winner will face Bemidji at 2 p.m. today. "We hammered the ball," said VFW coach Brad Johnson.
Bemidji's MGA Junior girls golf team finished seventh at the state meet held Monday and Tuesday at Braemar Golf Course in Edina. Representing the Bemidji Town & Country Club, the squad carded rounds of 183-174-357. University-Les Bolstad Golf Course dominated the field once again, winning its sixth consecutive girls title. The team finished 153-155-308 and enjoyed a 36-shot advantage over runner-up Minnesota Valley of Bloomington which shot 179-167-346. Shelby Sauer paced Bemidji with rounds of 92-86-178. Individually she finished 18th.
It's been 10 days since the Bemidji VFW baseball team took a pair of games from Moorhead to capture the district championship. And the coaches and players can't wait to return to the diamond. "We're sick of practicing. We're ready to play some baseball," Coach Brad Johnson said. The Vets will get that chance 2 p.m. Thursday when they tangle with Forest Lake in the first round of the state tournament in Austin. The Bemidji contingent headed south this morning and the first order of business will be the state tournament banquet 4:30 p.m. today.
The Bemidji Town & Country Club will host the 27th annual First National Bank BSU Women's Athletics fundraising golf tournament Friday and more than 80 women were registered as of Tuesday. "But there is still time to join us," said Sue Engel, one of the volunteer tournament committee members. The event features a 5-person scramble tournament and the day's activities include 18 holes of golf with a shotgun start at 9:30 a.m., rolls and coffee at 7:30 a.m., lunch, complimentary food and beverages on the course, drawings, games and an awards ceremony. This summer marks the 12th year that First
The Bemidji VFW baseball team will open its state tournament schedule 2 p.m. Thursday against Forest Lake. The double-elimination tournament is being hosted by Austin and Bemidji will play its first game at Seltz Field. Also in the field are New Ulm, Alexandria, Worthington, Red Wing, St. Cloud, St. Paul Ranview and Proctor. If the Vets win their opener they will return to Seltz Field 2 p.m. Friday for the winners' bracket semifinals. A loss would move Bemidji into the losers' bracket and a 7:30 p.m.
There is a new Titleist golf ball in the pond to the right of the 15th green courtesy of Rick Passolt. After an adventuresome journey from the tee to the green, Passolt decided that the ball was the culprit. He also determined that the best spot for the ball would be under water, where no one would be tempted to use it again. "It was a bad ball. I had to get rid of it," Passolt said. As soon as he made the toss Passolt's fortunes began to change during Saturday's Executive Championship match against Curt Howard. On No.
Scott Anderson lives in Dawson, Minn., but he is no stranger to the Bemidji Town & Country Club. "I worked at Potlatch but then I had to look for another job and I found one in Dawson," the boiler engineer said. "Before I moved I was a member of the Bemidji Town & Country Club for five or six years. We still have a house in Bemidji." Saturday in the Senior Championship match against Eric Niskanen, Anderson performed as if he never left. The two golfers staged a classic battle that didn't end until Niskanen missed a bogey putt on No.
In 1961 Jim Trapp played in his first Birchmont and four years later he entered his second. This week he made it back for his third Birchmont appearance. "It's been 45 years since I've been here," Trapp, of Tuscon, Ariz. said. "Murray Williamson is a friend of mine and he talked me into entering. I'm happy that he did." Saturday afternoon Trapp capped his 2010 Birchmont by capturing the Super Senior title with a 1-up victory over defending champion Bryant Barnes of Shawnee Mission, Kan. The golfers were deadlocked heading into No.
Braeden Ohman of Grand Forks won the Junior Championship Division of the Birchmont and he credits one hole for the victory. "I didn't start off very well and he capitalized on my mistakes," Ohman, who defeated Dakotah Brunelle of Cass Lake 4-3, said. "But my birdie on No. 10 turned the match around." Ohman lost the first two holes, clawed his way back to even after No. 8 but fell behind again after a double-bogey on No. 9. On the 10th hole he was left off the tee and had to punch over the trees back onto the fairway with his second shot.