Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.
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On March 18, 1984 the Bemidji State University men's hockey team was hosting Merrimack in the second game of the NCAA Division II national championship series. BSU had taken the first game 6-3 and the entire community was buzzing with the excitement that accompanies a potential national title. In addition to a possible championship, the Beavers also were one game away from posting what many hockey experts thought was impossible: an unbeaten, untied campaign. Heading into the rematch Bemidji State sported a 30-0-0 record.
Trailing 3-0 after four innings the Bemidji VFW baseball team rallied in the final three frames to nip Moorhead 4-3 at the BSU diamond in the first game of Wednesday's doubleheader. In the nightcap the home team outlasted its guest 11-7. The Vets return to duty today as they host Perham in another doubleheader starting at 2 p.m.
The Fourth of July holiday break is over and the Bemidji Legion baseball team returned to action Tuesday with a sweep at Roseau. That doubleheader began a busy final week of the regular season which includes today's twinbill at Brainerd plus a weekend trip to the Gopher Classic. "We had four days off and everybody came back ready to play baseball," said Legion coach Mike Fogelson. "We played very well Tuesday at Roseau." Bemidji improved to 18-8 by sweeping Roseau 8-2 and 12-2.
The second half of the VFW baseball season begins today when Bemidji entertains Moorhead in a doubleheader beginning at 4 p.m. Today's games represent the start of a busy two weeks as the Vets will play 14 games in 11 days. Another doubleheader with Moorhead, a makeup of an earlier postponement, also is likely to be scheduled during this time frame. The VFW is 9-3 and 8-0 among teams in its district.
In 1992, at the age of 60, Don Niskanen retired from Bemidji High School where he taught industrial arts and coached, among other programs, the middle school golf teams. An avid and accomplished golfer, Niskanen was ready to enjoy retirement and was anxious to continue testing himself at the Bemidji Town & Country Club. Although he didn't know it upon his retirement, Niskanen was destined to spend more hours at the golf course than anyone could imagine. "Dave Lehmann was the men's golf coach and he became ill," Niskanen said.
Qualified umpires are always in need, especially in northern Minnesota where distances can limit the options of a coach looking for someone to call a game. "When I moved to Bemidji six years ago there were three guys umpiring together: Kevin McCarthy, Pete Larson and Marshall Graham," said Brian Schultz. "There were other guys working on their own trying to line up games.
The long-awaited break for the Bemidji Legion baseball team has finally arrived. During the past 11 days Bemidji has played 18 games, a streak that ended Thursday when the Legion entertained Brainerd in a doubleheader. The Legion will have an opportunity to rest and enjoy the Fourth of July holiday as Bemidji is off until Tuesday when it heads to Roseau.
After 10 games on the road the Bemidji VFW baseball team opened its home season in style Wednesday as the Vets swept East Grand Forks 7-2 and 12-2 at the Bemidji State University diamond. The victories gave Bemidji a 9-3 record heading into a holiday break. The VFW will return to action July 7 when it entertains Moorhead. The next day Bemidji will host Perham. The Vets were in charge of both games from the early stages. In the opener Bemidji scored a run in the first and added three in the third.
It would have been understandable had the Bemidji Legion baseball team been weary Wednesday night when it hosted Thief River Falls. Wednesday's contest, which was switched to a single nine-inning game from its original doubleheader status, represented Bemidji's 16th game within the past 10 days. Those figures will increase today as the Legion hosts Brainerd in a twinbill at the BSU diamond beginning at 5 p.m. "Considering how much we have played lately, I was very glad to see us score 15 runs on 12 hits and to have our pitcher do so well," Legion coach Mike Fogelson said. The offensive out
A nine-game road trip which included five games in St. Cloud, two in Perham and two more in Nisswa, ends today when the Bemidji Legion hosts Thief River Falls. Today's action was originally scheduled as a double-header beginning at 5 p.m. but, because of the Legion's recent hectic schedule which includes Thursday's home twinbill against Brainerd, today's game is likely to be switched to one 9-inning contest. The game time is still expected to be 5 p.m. In Tuesday's late action the Legion was at Nisswa.