27 November 2013

Girls Hockey: Tiger net first ""W"

Megan Stivers scored the game-winner (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Farmington opened its final season in the Missota Conference with a 1-0 nail-biter of a win over Northfield (1-3) Tuesday night at Schmitz-Maki Arena.

The victory was the first of the young season for the Tigers who had been outscored by a combined 15-7 in their first three outings.

Megan Stivers scored five minutes into the opening period on assists from Michaela Tonsager and Maddi Oines. The defense and sophomore goaltender Molly Singewald did the rest.

"The girls really started where they left off in the third period against Irondale," Tiger coach Jon Holmes said.  "We played three solid periods."

The stifling Tiger defense limited the Raiders to just 20 shots for the night and Singewald stopped them all for her second career shutout.

"Our defensive corps and forwards kept the majority of their shots from outside the blue line as dump-ins or from outside the immediate slot area.

"Molly also played well, taking all the awkward situations head-on and never giving us the feeling of being nervous. She held steadfast on the rare occasions when they (Northfield) got a shot from in close."

The girls won't have much time to reflect on their first win as they get back on the ice the day after Thanksgiving when they entertain Eastview at Schmitz-Maki Arena. Game time is 7:00.

Molly Singewald 20 saves and 2nd career shutout (photo by Jim Lindquist)

Boys B-Ball: Off to a winning start

Nick Varner 13 points, 13 rebounds (file photo by Jim Lindquist)
Farmington shrugged off a shaky first half to score a 71-52 non-conference win over Hastings Tuesday night in Hastings.

Four Tigers scored in double figures in the season opener which saw the visitors out-point the Raiders 39-18 in the second half.

"At the end of the night we were where we wanted to be," Tiger coach Shane Wyandt, "but we have a lot of work to do. Too many turnovers, too many breakdowns. We can play a lot better."

The Tigers broke to an early lead but Hastings used a 9-0 run midway through the first half and hit the last shot of the opening period to take a 34-32 lead at intermission.

"Give credit to Hastings," Wyandt said. "They have a lot of guys back from last year and they are solid fundamentally. They dictated the tempo of the game in the first half and we can't afford to let that happen." 

The second half started poorly with the Raiders scoring the first four points of the second half before Farmington put together a 14-4 run to take control.

The Tigers took the lead for good at 43-42 on a pair of free throws by Eli Rockett with 12:10 to play and went on to outscore Hastings 27-10 the rest of the way.

"We got our transition going pretty well in the second half," Wyandt said. "When we do that, everything seems to pick up for us. Shooing, defense, energy, everything."

Eli Rockett 20 points, 8 boards (file photo by Jim Lindquist)
Rockett scored a team-high 20 points to pace the Farmington offense. Zach Speikers finished with 17 and Nick Varner and Mac Bassett chipped in with 13 apiece.

Varner made it a double-double with a game-high 13 rebounds and also dished out six assists. Bassett had six assists and a pair of steals.

The Tigers shot the ball well from the field (26 of 49 for 54 percent) but struggled at the free throw line, converting only 19 of 32 tries.

Perhaps the biggest disappointment came in the turnover department where Farmington's totaled 18 miscues, one more than Hastings.

"I don't know if it was first-game jitters or what," Wyandt said, "but we have to do a better job of taking care of the basketball."

The Tigers continue their string of non-conference games against Section 1 competition  next week with a pair of trips to Rochester. Tuesday they take on Mayo and Thursday they travel to John Marshall.

Tiger Scoreboard: November 27, 2013

Boys Basketball
Farmington 71 Hastings 52

Girls Hockey
Farmington 1 Northfield 0

25 November 2013

Dance Team: Tigers open at Burnsville

Farmington opened its 2013-14 season under first-year coach Lindsay Jensen Saturday with an appearance at the talent-laden Burnsville Invitational.

The Tigers placed sixth among seven teams in Kick and fifth among five in Jazz. The Tiger Junior Varsity took fourth among four teams in Kick and fourth of five in Jazz.

Overall, coach Jensen said she was pleased with her team's first outing of the season.

"We were up against some tough teams," she said. "Many of them have placed at the state competitions in past years. Our dancers brought positive attitudes and lots of energy and that's what we needed.

"This was a good first competition and we can only go up from here. Tuesday night we go to Shakopee for the first Missota Conference Kick meet where we hope to see our scores increase."

Girls Hockey: Knights make it a long night

Kenna Cavanaugh 1st varsity goal
Last winter Irondale, a team that went on to play in the state tournament, paid a visit to Schmitz-Maki Arena and went home with a 1-1 tie in what Tiger coach Jon Holmes called his team's best effort of the season.

Saturday night the Knights returned to Schmitz-Maki and this time there no doubt about the outcome. The visitors, behind the seven-point (5 goals, 2 assists) performance of Samantha Donovan, rolled to a 7-3 non-conference victory.

"We had a series of mistakes that were positioning and support issues," Tiger coach Jon Homes said. "Historically, it seems that we have had a tougher time containing teams that have one outstanding player than those teams that come at you every line, every shift with great players. 

"I haven’t been able to pin point what that is yet, but certainly it is something I need to try and find a solution for."

Donovan scored a hat trick and added an assist in the opening period to stake the Knights to a 4-1 lead. The Tiger goal came from eighth-grader Ellie Moser (from Brooke Raske) who netted her third goal in as many games in the losing effort.

Donovan tacked on two more goals and an assist in the second period to stretch Irondale's lead to 7-2 heading into the final period. Kenna Cavanaugh scored her first career varsity goal to account for the Farmington score.

The Tigers recorded the only goal of the final period when Halea Wright scored unassisted with 5:32 to play.

Tiger goaltender Maddie Bowe had a rough night on the job, surrendering all seven Irondale goals on just 27 shots. Farmington finished the contest with 20 shots on net.

"The nice part about it is the girls were faced with a challenge going into the third already being down by five goals and they took that challenge head on and completed it and never folded it in.  We went out to the third with the intent of not allowing another goal and winning the period and we did both.

"It really showed that we have the ability to play with any team and to focus especially in times when most teams would throw it in. The next steps will be to get this rolling for a beginning period and making it last for an entire game."

Farmington (0-3) will open its Missota Conference season Tuesday with a home game with Northfield at Schmitz-Maki.

Middle School basketball camps start Dec 2

Farmington High School basketball is sponsoring a new winter program for middle schoolers geared to improve player fundamentals in a camp-style format.

The skill camps begin December 2 and run through February. They will be conducted by Farmington Middle School coaches with oversight provided by the high school boys and girls coaching staffs.

The camps, which will replace the traditional Middle School interscholastic program, will focus on fundamental skills such as shooting, ball handling, defensive techniques and conditioning. 

The sessions can serve as a supplement to travel basketball or provide an opportunity for students participating in other sports to keep active during the winter months.

The cost of this program is $75 per player. The girls' camp will run every Monday and Wednesday immediately after school at Boeckman Middle School. The boys' sessions will run every Tuesday and Thursday immediately after school at both Dodge and Boeckman Middle Schools. 

Students may register now by accessing the Athletics Registration Packet on the FHS Athletics Page on the school’s website at www.farmington.k12.mn.us/athletics. Registrations should be turned in prior to December 3 at the High School Athletics Office.

For more information contact the Activities Office at 651-252-2514.

24 November 2013

Wrestling: Optimism reigns in Tiger camp

2103 state champion Taylor Venz
Coach Chad Olson couldn't wait for the start of the 2013-14 mat season and considering the make-up of his veteran team, why not?

The Tigers return no less than 13 contributors from last year's team that overcame injury and illness to send four individuals to the state meet. One, then freshman Taylor Venz, came home with a state title and another, freshman Jamin LeDuc, returned with a sixth place medal.

A strong senior class provides seven of the 13 returnees, including Brian Caravantes (126/132), Jake Gabbard (113/120), Joe Hoeve (170/182), Joe Liden (152/160), Chris McCue (182/195), Godfrey Mpetey (220/285)  and Jake Rudeen (160/170).

Other veterans include juniors Kyle Benjamin (138/145), Brayden Chapman (138), Matt Rustad (132) and John Walz (152) and sophomores Venz and LeDuc.

Benjamin and Hoeve joined Venz and LaDuc at the Class AA meet last season.

Jamin LeDuc sixth place finisher at state last year (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Sophomore Victor Gliva (106) and and ninth-grader Skyler Raymond (113) also figure to compete for varsity mat time this winter.

Olson was not not shy in assessing his team's outlook for the 2013-14 season.

"We are going to be good this season," he said. "It has been a slow build, but this should be our year.

"We have 13 starters back from last year's team, great leadership and all four state entrants from last year. We will be able to fill out a full line-up, something we haven't been able to do. We have 50 wrestlers in the program."

Olson said the only obstacle is one over which he has little control.

The question is, he said. "Can we stay healthy?...Confidence will also be a factor."

Joe Hoeve state meet qualifier last season (photo by Jim Lindquist)
December will provide no shortage of confidence building opportunities. In the days leading up to the holidays, the Tigers go toe-to-toe with Section 1AAA contender Hastings, compete in an invitational meet at Prior Lake full of state-rated teams, and then head to a talent-rich 32-team meet in Rochester. Between Christmas and New Year's they travel to Fargo for the 66-team multi-state Rumble on the Red.

The Missota Conference has only four schools offering wrestling, but two of them, New Prague and Shakopee are state-ranked.

"We will compete for the conference title," Olson predicted.

As for the post-season, the Tigers move back to Section 1AA, a move that Olson said will benefit his team.

"We should be one of the top three teams," he said. "We will see how close we are when we go up against Hastings on Dec. 6." Perennial power Owatonna should also be a contender in the section race.

Jon Lund, Doug Quick and Aaron Kukowski will assist Olson this season with Lance Offermann, Steve Gliva and Pat Wojociechowski working with the middle school grapplers.

The Tigers open their 2013-14 campaign Thursday, Dec. 5, with a home meet against Richfield. The following night they host the early season showdown with Hastings.

Kyle Benjamin state meet qualifier in 2013 (photo by Jim Lindquist)

Tiger Scoreboard: November 24, 2013

Boys Hockey
Hastings 2 Farmington 1

Girls Hockey
Irondale 7 Farmington 3

23 November 2013

Boys Hockey: Luckless Tigers fall to Raiders

Dallas Tucker scored the lone Tiger goal (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Farmington outshot Hastings 17-0 on the third period but finished the final 17 minutes with just one goal in a 2-1 non-conference loss to Hastings Saturday afternoon at Schmitz-Maki Arena.

The defeat came on the heels of a 4-3 win over Rochester John Marshall on Thursday and evened the Tigers early season record at 1-1.

"We saw a lot of good things from our boys in this game," Tiger coach Keith Revels said. "We got better and better as the game went on and thoroughly dominated play in the third period. 

"For the night, we had four goal celebrations nullified, three in the third period.  We couldn't see from bench if the puck made it in or not, but the reactions of the players indicated maybe the puck had found the net....I'm not sure what to make of it, but we just seemed unable to get a goal to count when we needed it."

The Raiders got the better of the shot opportunities (23-18) through the first two periods and led 2-1 at the second intermission.

Jack Erickson made his season debut (photo by J. Lindquist)
Dallas Tucker finally broke the scoring ice for the home team 3:28 into the final frame on assists from Erik Holmstrom and Justin Novak to cut the deficit to a single goal.

Farmington continued to charge the net as witnessed by their dominant shots on goal advantage but could never slip the puck by Hastings' netminder Matt Radke.

Nick Schoening patrolled the Tiger goal and had a quality outing, stopping 23 of 25 shots.

"I can't remember ever holding a team without a shot in third period of a game before," Revels said. "It certainly doesn't happen often. 

"We showed a lot of determination and played through some adversity and I believe we came away a better team. It was a frustrating loss but we will continue to focus on the things we can control and move forward....A few too many penalties and a lot of calls at the other team's net sort of sums this one up."

The Tigers will try to get back in the win column next Saturday when they travel to Egan to take on the Wildcats in another Saturday matinee. The puck drops at 3:00 at the Eagan Ice Arena.

22 November 2013

Alumni: Mincke wins Big Ten Award

Big Ten Conference News Release
November 21, 2013

University of Minnesota senior Kaitlin Mincke of Farmington has received the 2013 Big Ten Sportsmanship Award, given annually to a representative of each of the conference's 12 women's cross country programs.

The student-athletes chosen are individuals who have distinguished themselves through sportsmanship and ethical behavior. These student-athletes must also be in good academic standing and have demonstrated good citizenship outside of the sports-competition setting.

"Kait has been awesome, especially this year as a fifth-year senior," head coach Sarah Hopkins said.

"As someone who wasn't necessarily a top-top runner on the team for the first couple years of her career, she has shown the rest of the team that if you just keep with it, keep striding, and keep believing in yourself, you can do a lot of really special things.

"That's been a great thing to show some of the younger kids. I think the underclassmen see the rest of that fifth-year senior group as just always having been good, and I think they all remember where Mincke was last year and how far she's come. She's a really great example of someone who sticks to it and has been able to get better every day."

Mincke raced in five meets this season, including her first Big Ten Championship meet. She posted back-to-back career-best 6K times at the Griak Invitational (22:17.6) and the Wisconsin Adidas Invitational (21:21).

Mincke also took ninth overall at the SDSU Classic 5K and 10th overall at the Oz Memorial 6K. At the conference meet, Mincke came in 37th overall in 21:57.2 as the Gophers' eighth runner. She served as an alternate for the NCAA Midwest Regional and will do the same at this weekend's NCAA championship.

Boys Hockey: Tigers hang on to beat JM

Justin Novak scored twice in the season opener (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Farmington dominated play but feisty Rochester John Marshall hung around until the final horn in a 4-3 Tiger win Tuesday in the season opener at Schmitz-Maki Arena.

The home team outshot the Rockets by a one-sided 48-19 in the battle of Section 1AA rivals but the visitors stayed in the game largely on the efforts of goalie Patric Sedecki (44 saves).

"One of the things we knew we had to do this year was find ways to finish in close games, so that was a positive for us," Tiger coach Keith Revels said. "We took too many penalties but I liked our aggressiveness at both ends.

"We had a couple of breakdowns where we didn't play the body and it cost us, but overall it was a good way to start."

"Many more positives than negatives," chimed in veteran assistant coach Shawn Anderson.

The contest was actually three games in one with Farmington coming out buzzing with an overwhelming first period in which it outshot JM by a 17-4 count. 

John Siebenaler (from Grady Hauswirth and Tanner Grubb) and Justin Novak (from Eric Holmstrom and Dallas Tucker) each scored goals in the game's first 10 minutes but the Tigers still led by only a goal at the first break.

John Siebenaler netted the first Tiger goal (photo by Jim Lindquist)
The pace slowed considerably in the scoreless second frame as the Tigers played a man short for six minutes as punishment for a trio of costly penalties. The Farmington penalty kill unit kept the Rockets off the board but the rash of infractions didn't sit well with Revels.

"We have some guys who are much bigger and stronger than they were last year," Revels said, "and we are playing more aggressively. That's what we want to do, but we have to find a way to stay out of the box."

Things really opened up over the final 17 minutes. First, Austin Martinsen (from Holmstrom and Trippel) slapped in a power play play goal from the point to stretch the winners' margin to a more comfortable two scores. Martinsen's goal was the first of his varsity career.

That edge lasted less than two minutes, however, as the Rockets cut it back to one with a power play goal of their own.

Novak's second goal of the night (from Chris Fitzgibbons and Trippel) with five minutes to play in regulation gave the Tigers a little breathing room before the Rockets scored  their final goal of the night in the closing seconds. Farmington dominated the final period, out-shooting its guests 21-8. 

Junior Gage Overby had a relatively quiet night in the Farmington nets, finishing with 16  saves, including one on a breakaway with six minutes to play in the second period.

The Tigers won't have much time to savor the victory. Hastings visits Schmitz-Maki Saturday afternoon in another non-conference contest. The Raiders downed the Tigers 6-2 in last year's season opener in Hastings.

"They have a lot of guys coming back so that will be a good test for us," Revels said.

Gage Overby 16 saves (photo by Jim Lindquist)

21 November 2013

Tiger Scoreboard: November 22, 2013

Boys Hockey
Farmington 4 Rochester John Marshall 3

Hockey Equipment Drive at Schmitz-Maki

The Farmington Youth Hockey and Farmington High School Hockey teams are sponsoring an equipment drive for Defend the Blue Line from November 17 - 30, 2013.

Location: Schmitz-Maki Arena
114 West Spruce Street
Farmington, Minnesota

Equipment drop off times (bin can be found near concession stand):
Monday - Friday from 3pm - 9pm
Saturday and Sunday 8am - 9pm

Bring in your new or gently used hockey equipment. Defending The Blue Line® will then distribute the equipment to military kids to help them with their dreams of playing hockey.

Swimming: O'Reilly goes out with a flourish

Kaitlyn O'Reilly all-state in three events  (photo by Minnesota State High School League)
Kaitlyn O'Reilly collects all-state swimming honors like attics collect dust.

The talented Tiger senior finished seventh in the 200 individual medley and eighth in the 100 backstroke at the Class AA state meet held Wednesday night at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center.

In addition, she teamed up with Cora Ruzicka, Kirsten Kracke and Chelsea Gehrke to finish seventh in the 200 freestyle relay. The seventh place finish in the relay tied Farmington's best effort ever in a relay event at state.

The trio of top eight finishes ran O'Reilly's career all-state recognitions to nine over the past four seasons.

"Kaitlyn's accomplishments in the pool speak for themselves as she's the most decorated Lady Tiger in program history," coach Jen Marshall said.

"She's a leader in and out of the water and is always helping other swimmers with their strokes and turns. She plans to continue her swimming career in college and I'm excited to follow where life leads her."

The 2013 state team achieved the highest-ever finish (12th) by a Tiger team
The Tigers turned in their best-ever finish in the team standings at state, placing 12th among 36 schools. Their 60 team points were the second most ever scored by a Farmington girls team at the state finals.

In addition to the three all-state performances, the Tigers scored points in two other events at state. Kracke ranked 14th in the 50 freestyle while the 200 medley relay foursome of O'Reilly, Ruzicka, Kracke and Gehrke took 12th place.

Gehrke finished two spots out of the scoring column in the 100 butterfly with an 18th place finish.

"The days of the state meet were different this year, and because of it, we had an additional five days between sections and state," Marshall said. "The good part is that it was the case statewide. The bad part is that it was difficult for many teams to hold their taper. 

"Fortunately for the Lady Tigers, we had a great prelims which set us up in good positions for the finals. Unfortunately, by the time finals rolled around we had run out of gas...We have a lot to be proud of though as we had a fantastic season."

Girls Basketball: Tigers trending upward

Junior all-Missota Conference guard Sofia Chadwick (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Last year Farmington oftentimes fielded a starting lineup comprised of five sophomores, not a likely recipe for success, especially in a Missota Conference filled with state-rated team.

The young Tigers took their lumps during the 2012-13 season but with a year of experience and physical maturity behind them, third-year coach Sondra Chadwick is hoping for a reversal of fortunes.

"The fact that we were so young last year was a challenge," Chadwick said, "but one that will pay off for us this year. The experience the girls got last year put them far ahead of where we would normally expect to be at the start of the season.

"These girls have worked very hard in the off-season and have made a commitment to improve individually which will help the team improve as a whole...I anticipate we will be competitive in all of our games this season, including both the conference and the section."

Chadwick has eight reasons on which to base her optimism, namely the veterans returning from last year's 2-25 season.

At the top of the last is junior guard Sofia Chadwick who led the team in scoring (15 points per game) and assists last season and landed a spot on the elite all-Missota Conference team. Alicia Hett, another junior back court player, received all-league honorable mention last winter.

Other returnees include  senior forward Aly Grebner; junior forward Kaitlyn Gorden, the team's leading rebounder a year ago; junior guards Abby Gallus, Jordyn Homeier and Leah Hammond and sophomore guard Morgan Mach.

Junior guard Alicia Hett (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Junior forward Becky Genzler, sophomore forwards Heidi Lambrecht and Madalyn Allison and freshman forward Kamry Corraro should also vie for varsity court time.

Chadwick listed experience, versatility and the ability to shoot the basketball as big pluses for her 2013-14 team.

"We are seeing a nice mix of athletes who can score from inside and outside and run the floor," she said. "We can already see our transition game has improved tremendously since last season. We should also be more of a three-point threat than we were last year."

Chadwick said Chaska is the clear favorite in the race for Missota Conference honors with New Prague and Shakopee also fielding quality teams. Lakeville North won the section title last season and is the favorite to repeat in 2014.

 "The biggest factors for our success will be how much these girls will compete with each other in practice, embrace their roles, play consistently and continue to improve," Chadwick said.

Chadwick and veteran ninth grade coach Joe McCarthy have been conducting practices with athletic director Bill Tschida filling in as a temporary assistant until a new junior varsity coach is hired.

The Tigers open their season Tuesday, Dec. 3, with a non-conference home game with section rival Rochester Mayo.

Boys Basketball: A need to finish

Eli Rockett (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Last winter the Tigers finished with a 14-14 record in a season that included 10 games decided by 10 or fewer points.

With seven key contributors returning from that squad, veteran coach Shane Wyandt is looking for a few additional entries in the win column for 2013-14.

"We were a very competitive squad last season," Wyandt said, "but we struggled with consistency, especially in tight games. We must mature and be better in those situations. We do a lot of things extremely well but we must stay together in all situations to finish the way we want to."

Six of the seven veterans are seniors including post players Nick Varner and Eli Rockett, guard/forward Mac Bassett, forward Tyler VanWinkle and guards Johnny Dittman and Jordan DeCroock.

Rockett earned all-Missota Conference honorable mention as a junior; Varner made the all-Missota team as a sophomore.

Junior guard Zach Speikers has been in the varsity rotation since his freshman season. Senior forward Dallas Guyot and junior forward/guard Wyatt Ferm are also expected to battle for varsity floor time this winter.

Gone from the lineup is career 1000-point scorer and all-conference selection Darren Beenken but Wyandt intends to make up for his absence with a balanced scoring attack.

"We feel we can get points from everyone we play," he said.

Wyandt also likes what he has seen in early practices from his twin-post threat of Rockett and Varner as well as the overall length of his lineup.

Senior Mac Bassett (photo by Jim Lindquist)
"We have a lot of experience and should have improved guard play," Wyandt said. "But we need to play with consistency and make better decisions, especially down the stretch in close games. We also aren't real deep inside."

Wyandt said Shakopee will probably be the pre-season pick for the last Missota Conference championship but added he expected his team to be in the hunt in both the conference and section races.

"In the conference there are probably four other teams, including us, who could win it," he said. "We respect all of the teams in the conference but feel we will challenge at the top."

Junior guard Zach Speikers (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Lakeville North, paced by Xavier recruit J.P. Macura, is the odds-on favorite to win the section title with Rochester John Marshall also returning a veteran team.

"They are the favorites until someone knocks them off," Wyandt said, "and we feel we can be that team. We look forward to the opportunity."

Tharen Johnson returns as the Tiger junior varsity coach as does Brent Mahlstedt with the B-squad. Roland Bradley and Steve LeDuc share the ninth grade coaching duties.

Friday night's scheduled season opener with Owatonna has been postponed due to the Huskies playing in the Class 5A football championship next week.

The Tigers kick off their 2013-14 campaign next Tuesday with a non-conference road game at Hastings.

Tiger Scoreboard: November 21, 2013

Girls Swimming and Diving
Class AA State Meet at the University of Minnesota
Farmington 12th among 36 schools with 60 team points
Kaitlyn O'Reilly 7th place in 200 individual medley and 8th place in 100 backstroke
200 freestyle relay team of O'Reilly, Cora Ruzicka, Kirsten Kracke and Chelsea Gehrke 7th place

20 November 2013

Girls Hockey: One step forward, one step back

Shelby Klotz celebrates her second period goal (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Tiger coach Jon Holmes summed up his team's goal for Tuesday night's hope opener against section rival Rochester John Marshall succinctly.

"We just want to pick up where we left off against Hastings last Friday night," he said.

Unfortunately, that didn't happened as the Tigers turned in what Holmes termed a "lackluster" performance in a 5-2 loss to the Rockets.

The visitors struck early, scoring the first period's only goal from long range on a shot that soared over Tiger goalie Molly Singewald's shoulder.

A costly turnover in front of the Farmington goal produced the second JM score just 31 seconds into the second period and five minutes later the Rockets made it 3-0 on a rebound shot from point-blank range.

The Tigers got on the board late in the second period when Maddi Oines hit Shelby Klotz with a perfect pass at center ice and and the speedy junior took it the rest of the way, beating the Rochester goalie on nice individual move.

Ellie Moser scored her second goal in as many games (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Eighth-grader Ellie Moser netted her second goal in as many games on a laser of a shot from the right circle 5:17 into the third period to bring the home team to within 3-2 but the Rockets answered with two more late scores to pull away.

"On the one hand, we have some girls who were playing their first game of the year at home and they may have been a little tight," Holmes said. "But we made some defensive mistakes we can't afford to make and expect to win...If learning from your mistakes is a positive thing, then we should learned a lot tonight."

The Rockets outshot the Tigers by a 33-24 margin. Singewald finished with 28 saves in the losing effort.

Farmington gets back on the Schmitz-Maki ice Saturday night when it plays host to Irondale, a state tournament entry last winter.

"We played our best game of the season ( a 1-1 tie) when they came here last year," Holmes said. "We're hoping to play that well again."

19 November 2013

Tiger Scoreboard: November 20, 2013

Girls Hockey
Rochester John Marshall 5 Farmington 2

Alumni Tracker: The Rifleman

Patrick Sunderman
2012 FHS grad Patrick Sunderman was a member of the Tiger cross country team during his high school days but now he is competing in quite a different sport at the collegiate level.

Sunderman is a sophomore on the unbeaten University of West Virginia rifle team that has cruised to six consecutive wins over Ohio State, Army, Nebraska, Mississippi, Akron and Navy this season.

As a freshman, Sunderman received Great American Rifle Conference (GARC) and National Rifle Association (NRA) all-American honorable mention honors.

Recently, the former Tiger was interviewed by the West Virginity University athletic media center. That exchange takes place two minutes into the broadcast and may be viewed at http://www.wvusports.com/blogs.cfm?blog=WVUSportsBuzzBlog&story=24567

Sunderman, also a member of the West Virginia National Guard, is majoring in mechanical engineering at West Virginia.

Gymnastics: Keeping up the momentum

Kylie Wharton 7th in state beam (photo by J. Lindquist)
Last winter the Tiger closed with a flourish, achieving their highest score (140.55) of the season and qualifying two individuals for the state meet at the Section 3AA Championships.

Veteran coach Lynn Bauman is hoping this year's squad can carry that momentum into the 2013-14 season.

"I'm hoping to pick up right where we left off last season and improving form there," she said. "We are shooting for third in the conference and we're moving back to Section 1AA for the post-season."

Bauman returns 13 contributors from last years team, including seniors Kathryn Beckett and Tahra Eckert; juniors Ashley Ellefson and Kyle Wharton; sophomores Racquel Beckett, Elizabeth Welter, Gina Mercurio and Kenzie McCuddin; freshmen Rachel Kiminski, Kyla Bauman, Sam Kramer and Amanda Davenport and eighth-graders Amanda Ruth and Samantha Maynard.

Wharton shook off an injury-plagued season to finish seventh on the balance beam at the state meet last year. Five returnees also earned all-section honors last winter: Eckert, vault; Davenport, uneven bars; Wharton, balance beam; Kiminski, balance beam and Beckett, floor exercise.

Sophomore Sidney Comes, eighth-grader Abby Schwartz and seventh-grader Katie Bellefeille also figure to compete for spots in the varsity and junior varsity lineups this winter.

Bauman says this year's team doesn't have the numbers it has had in years past but thinks that may actually work to her advantage.

"I believe having a smaller team will make us stronger," she said. "As for individual events, beam is looking amazing...and we've only been practicing for five days."

Senior Tahra Eckert (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Bauman said she believes this year's team has a legitimate shot at breaking the all-time school scoring mark of 141.275 if it can remain healthy and injury-free, two areas that seriously impacted the 2012-13 season.

"I'd also like to get a couple girls back to the state meet," she said.

State power Northfield figures to be the team to beat in both the conference and section races with New Prague also figuring to field a solid entry in the Missota.

Brad Albano returns for his second year as varsity assistant coach. Bridgit Abuzzahab, a former gymnast from Spirit Gymnastics/Hamline joins the staff as the other assistant.

The Tigers open their 2013-14 season Saturday, Nov. 30, when they travel to Austin for Winter-Warm-Up Invitational at the Austin YMCA.

17 November 2013

Boys Hockey: Tigers deep and experienced

Justin Novak all-Missota Conference last season (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Based on last weekend's trip to the Iron Range, the Tigers are ready to roar into the 2013-14 season.

In three scrimmages against Hibbing, Virginia and International Falls coach Keith Revels' team outscored the opposition by a lopsided 16-2 count.

"We got solid goaltending from Nick Schoening and Gage Overby," Revels said, "and the defensive group shined all weekend. The forwards found the net and moved the puck very well."

Revels returns 15 players that saw significant ice time last winter in a .500 season (13-13-1) that included a strong finish and an appearance in the section semifinals.

"We are deep in returnees and have a lot of talented newcomers pushing for playing time," Revels said. "We have five of six defenders back as well as two experienced goaltenders and lot of potential scorers."

Eight of the veterans are members of a strong senior class, that includes netminder Schoening; forwards Landon Neilson, Tanner Grubb, Jack Erickson, Chris Fitzgibbons and Dallas Tucker and defenders Corey Rudrud and Alex Aubrecht.

Other returnees include juniors Overby (goalie), Benton Olson (defense) and Justin Novak (forward) and sophomores Grady Hauswirth (forward), Devin Bernu (forward), Erik Holmstron (defense) and John Siebenaler (forward).

 Novak and Erickson led the team in scoring last winter with 30 and 28 points respectively and both made the all-Missota Conference team.

Jack Erickson all-conference in 2013 (photo by J. Lindquist)
Junior forwards Austin Martinesen, Jake Trippel and Matt Olund as well as sophomores Cooper Zimmer (forward), Tyler Jette (defense) and Wyatt Jensen (forward) also figure to push for varsity ice time this winter.

Although the Tigers have had no trouble finding the net in their pre-season scrimmages, Revels said one thing this year's team will have to prove is its ability to consistently put goals on the board.

"At times we had some difficulty finishing last year," he said. "We didn't close well and lost a number of tight games."

Revels said he's not big on predictions but did offer he has been impressed with what he has seen from his team in the early going.

"I am confident we will compete at a high level in both the conference and section," he said.

New Prague is the defending Missota Conference champion and Lakeville North and Lakeville South have dominated the section tournament in recent years.

Revels is joined on the bench by a trio of assistant coaches: Todd Karich, Shawn Anderson and former Tiger skater Jared Rowan.

The Tigers kick off their 2013-14 season Thursday night with a non-conference home game with Rochester John Marshall at Schmitz-Maki Arena. Saturday they entertain Hastings in an afternoon game that starts at 3:00.

Gage Overby 6-6 won-lost record last season (photo by Jim Lindquist)

16 November 2013

Girls Hockey: Raiders trip Tigers in OT

Maddie Bowe 30 saves (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Kiki Radke scored with less than a minute left in overtime to give Hastings a 3-2 non-conference win over the Tigers in their season opener played Friday night at Hastings Civic Arena.

Radke's game-winner ended a see-saw battle that saw the teams trade four goals through two periods and then skate through a pressure-packed scoreless third period and extra session.

"It was one of the best hockey games I have been to in a few years," Tiger coach Jon Holmes said. "The rink was packed and the crowd was rowdy."

The Raiders got on the board first midway through the opening period before Maddi Oines tied the count three minutes later with a power play score on an assist from Michaela Tonsager.

Hastings re-took the lead with under two minutes to play in the first only to have Tiger eighth-grader Ellie Moser knot the score on an assist from Brooke Raske 52 seconds into the second period.

From there the teams took turns creating scoring opportunities only to be turned away by  a couple of efficient goaltenders.

Farmington had an apparent goal nullified in the second period when an official lost sight of the puck and blew the whistle just before the puck crossed the goal line.

"We just reminded each other that we cannot control that and it's part of the game," Holmes said. "We didn't hear another word or complaint about it. An incident like that would more often than not crack a team and I'm just so proud that we just re-grouped and went back to business."

Maddi Oines scored 1st Tiger goal (photo by Jim Lindquist)
The two teams combined for 57 shots on net in the contest with the Raiders finishing with a 33-24 edge.

Maddie Bowe went the distance in the nets for the Tigers and finished the night with 30 saves.

"The team we have this year is extremely positive and willing to put in the needed work to have success," Holmes said. "They also really get that we are at our best when we play like a team. We are a blue collar bunch that needs everyone contributing and they certainly did that.

"Outside of not winning the game, of course, this was the best season opener we could have hoped for."

The Tigers will try to get into the win column Tuesday when they host Section 1AA rival Rochester John Marshall in a non-conference game at Schmitz-Maki Arena.

Dance Team: Tigers young and eager

Captain Alexis Johnson
The 2013 Tiger Dance Team will feature a new head coach and a varsity roster that doesn't include a single senior.

Lindsay Jensen, a 2007 Farmington High School graduate, takes over the program this winter after serving as varsity assistant coach at her alma mater the past two years.

Jensen, a fifth grade teacher at Riverview Elementary School says she is excited about her new position.

"I want to contribute to the same team that I have been part of for six years," she said.

Not only are there no seniors on the 23-member varsity squad, only five performers are upperclassmen: juniors Alexis Johnson (captain), Maddie Reed (captain), Jacquelyn Smithson, Sarah Gasior and Taylor Huntley.

Other team members include sophomores Amanda Lathrop, Erica Beck, Macy Savisik, Makayla Ford, Morgan Rubin, Courtney Kruse, Maddie LaVictoire, Morgan Felty and Taylor Deplazes; freshmen Kerstin Wetterstrom, Lauren Darrington, Mara Laxdal, Jacquelynn McKinney and Makayla Zinnel and eighth-graders Kaitlyn Whitehill, Abbey Egerstrom, Jenna Gray and Kamryn Stevenson.

"We have 15 returning dancers from last year and eight new ones," Jensen said. "I am anxious to see what the future holds for these athletes at they develop into a strong group, both mentally and physically, in the upcoming years.

"Our goals for this year are to continue to work on individual dance development and skills, have fun and be confident at each performance and competition."

Captain Maddie Reed
Jensen said she didn't necessarily want to define her team's success in specific numbers but rather stressed the concept of season-long improvement.

"Our sport is very subjective but increasing our scores for both jazz and kick would be a success for us," she said. "Success is always giving your best effort.

"I always tell the girls when you walk off the floor you should be able to tell yourself  'I gave everything I had; that was the best I could do'."

Brittany Dahlberg (varsity assistant) and Amanda Sterna (junior varsity) will serve as assistant coaches this winter.

The Tigers open their competitive season Saturday, Nov. 23, with an appearance at the Burnsville Invitational.

Tiger Scoreboard: November 16, 2013

Girls Hockey
Hastings 3 Farmington 2 (OT)

14 November 2013

Football Awards, Stats

Mac Bassett All-Missota and Offensive MVP (photo by Jim Lindquist)
Tiger football coach Mark Froehling and his staff announced a long list of award winners at the team's post-season banquet held Thursday night.

All-Missota Conference: Mason Auge, Mac Bassett, Godfrey Mpetey and Josh Patterson

All-Missota Conference Honorable Mention: CJ Wynings, John LeBlond, Eli Rockett and Jordan DeCroock

Most Valuable Player (Offense): Mac Bassett

Most Valuable Player (Defense): Mason Auge

Most Valuable Player (Special Teams): Reid Taubenheim and Jordan DeCroock

Mason Auge All-Missota and Defensive MVP (photo by Jim Lindquist)

Coaches Award (offense): Noah Kary and Tyler VanWinkle

Coaches Award (Defense): Nick Meyer and Michael Thompson

Captains: Mason Auge, Tyler VanWinkle, Godfrey Mpetey and CJ Wynings

Squad Leaders:  John LeBlond, Mac Bassett, Reid Taubenheim, Mason Gaylord, Nick Ruark, Kevin Clifton and Johnny Dittman

Josh Patterson All-Missota (photo by J. Lindquist)
Scout Most Valuable Player (Defense): Alex Baumann and Joe Rucci

Scout Team Most Valuable Player: (Offense): Jake Hoffman and AJ Croucher

Academic All-State: Nick Ruark and Kade Kearney

Academic All-State (Team): Gold Distinction for grade point average of 3.75 or higher

In addition to the individual and team awards, Froehling also honored veteran assistant coaches Gary Burr and Pat Hudak, each of whom have been members of the Tiger staff for more than three decades.

Godfrey Mpetey All-Missota Conference (photo by Jim Lindquist)


Tyler VanWinkle 132 for 240 (55%) for 1460 yards, 14 touchdowns, 15 interceptions

Noah Kary 441 yards on 106 attempts (4.2 yards per carry) and 1 touchdown
Derek Klotter 401 yards on 115 attempts (3.5 yards per carry) 
Jordan DeCroock 135 yards on 21 carries (6.4 yards per carry) and 1 touchdown

Mac Bassett 33 catches for 566 yards (17.2 yards per catch) and 4 touchdowns
Jordan DeCroock 35 catches for 379 yards (10.8 yards per catch) and 5 touchdowns
CJ Wynings 21 catches for 163 yards (7.8 yards per catch) and 3 touchdowns
Johnny Dittman 13 catches for 154 yards (11.8 yards per catch) and 1 touchdown

Mason Auge 122 tackles, 1 interception, 1 sack
Eli Rockett 71 tackles. 4 pass break-ups
Kevin Clifton 65 tackles, 1 sack
Godfrey Mpetey 50 tackles, 1 sack, 1 fumble recovery
Michael Thompson 50 tackles, 2 fumble recoveries
John LeBlond 46 tackles, 3 fumble recoveries, 4 sacks
Mason Gaylord 43 tackles, 1 interception, 1 fumble recovery
Tanner Thode 39 tackles 1 fumble recovery, .5 sack
Nick Ruark 38 tackles, 1 sack
Nick Meyer 35 tackles, 3 sacks

Reid Taubenheim 13-17 extra points and 2-4 field goals
Mason Gaylord 4-4 extra points and 1-1 field goals

Reid Taubenheim 30 for 936 yards (31.2 average), 7 inside 20-yard line
Mason Gaylord 17 for 513 yards (30.2 average) 3 inside 20-yard line

Kickoff Returns
Jordan DeCroock 13 for 309 yards (23.8 yards average) and 1 touchdown
Derek Klotter 12 for 237 yards (19.8 average)

Punt Returns
Jordan DeCroock 9 for 51 yards (5.7 average)

13 November 2013

Alumni Tracker: Bridges off to fast start

Jordan Bridges
Former Tiger Jordan Bridges' junior season for the Jamestown College (North Dakota) women's basketball team is off to a flying start. Bridges has started all seven games for the Jimmies (6-1) this season, hitting 60 percent of her field goal tries while averaging 10.9 points and six rebounds a contest.

2012 FHS female Athlete of the Year Taylor Meyer scored four points and pulled down two rebounds in 21 minutes off the bench as her University of Minnesota-Duluth team beat Bethel 80-71 in its season opener this week...Another ex-Tiger, Elena Koch, is a junior on the College of St. Benedict team that opens its 2013-14 campaign this weekend. Koch played in all 27 games for the Blazers last season.

2011 Tiger male Athlete of the Year Carl Elmer holds down the 149-pound slot in St. Olaf College's wrestling lineup. Elmer finished 16-10 as a sophomore for the Oles last winter.

Former Tiger hockey scoring machine Krystal Baumann who played one season for the University of Vermont and another abbreviated season with Minnesota State, Mankato, has landed at Gustavus Adolphus College where she is a junior forward for a Gusties team that is rated seventh in the most recent NCAA Division III national poll...2012 Tiger grad Betsy Anderson is a starting defender for the women's puck team at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

2009 Tiger grad Josh Zitzmann will play in a bowl game this fall. Zitzmann led Rochester Community and Technical College (RCTC) in receiving during its 10-1 regular season (36 catches for 601 yards and nine touchdowns). The Yellowjackets will play Iowa Western in the Graphic Edge Bowl Dec. 8 in the UniDome on the campus of Northern Iowa University in Cedar Falls.

To qualify for the bowl game RCTC had to defeat Central Lakes College (Brainerd) to win the Minnesota state title. 2013 FHS grad Athen Ashton played for Central Lakes this season, gaining 229 yards on 79 carries and scoring three touchdowns.

Tyler Barnes
Another ex-Tiger football player, Bubba Friedlund will also be going to the post season. The senior offensive lineman has helped unbeaten Bethel University to the Minnesota Intercollegiate Conference (MIAC) championship and a No. 5 ranking in the NCAA Division III national poll...Former Tiger Tyler Barnes has helped Minnesota State, Moorhead build a three-game winning streak heading into its season finale Saturday at St. Cloud State...

CJ Record has seen increasing playing time for Southwest Minnesota State University this fall. The ex-Tiger has been in on 14 tackles as a defensive back and special teams player for the Mustangs...Nick Albano, who played a year at RCTC with Zitzmann, has been in on five tackles for Idaho State this fall.

1989 FHS male Athlete of the Year Matt Walter guided his Annandale football team to the Section 3AAA championship game this fall. The Cardinals who won the section last season finished the 2013 season campaign with a 7-4 record...2004 Athlete of the Year Matt Simon is the tight ends coach for Rutgers University who will be moving to the Big Ten Conference in 2014.

Sydney Eckert of the FHS class of 2013 played in 15 of 17 games for Vitebro College (Wisconsin) who won the Midwest College Conference women's soccer championship this fall...Ex-Tiger Sam Leske started 15 of 17 games on defense for Gustavus Adolphus College (13-3-1) who lost to St. John's in the semifinals of the MIAC post-season soccer tournament but will play in the NCAA Division III post-season tournament.

Bailey Opsal
Former Tiger track and cross country standout Kaitlin Mincke finished 37th in a field of 104 runners to help the University of Minnesota to a third place finish at the Big Ten Conference Cross Country Championships held Nov. 3 at Purdue...Ex-Tiger Bailey Opsal was a member of the College of St. Scholastica women's team that won the 2013 Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC) cross country title this fall.

Danielle Dombeck who helped the Tigers to their only state volleyball tournament ranks third in digs as a senior defensive specialist for the North Dakota State University women's team.

Former Tiger  girls' basketball coach Jim Schreffler is now the assistant boys' hoop coach at Northfield...Ex-Tiger Ryan Pietsch is an assistant girls' hockey coach for the Raiders.