Ty's Take: West Fargo spring successes continue
Baseball, softball, track and field, girls soccer and girls tennis: by the looks of things, the spring sports season is in full swing in North Dakota.
Here's a look at the West Fargo sports results of the past week, and a glance at things to come.
Track and field finishes strong at Moorhead Invite
After a promising showing during the short indoor track and field season earlier this spring, the Packers were eager to show what they could do outside.
West Fargo's first test of the regular season came last Friday during the Moorhead Athletic Association Invitational at Concordia College, where several regional teams from North Dakota and Minnesota competed.
Both Packers teams finished second behind host Moorhead. The boys accrued a team total 1,049 points, while the girls finished with 900.5 points. Though West Fargo teams didn't grab the top honors, several individual Packers managed to do just that.
On the boys side, senior Spencer Uetz took first in both the 800- and 1,600-meters, finishing in 1 minute, 59 seconds and 4:26, respectively. Fellow senior Jamison Gehrig also landed atop the podium, finishing with a 9:49.23 in the 3,200 to beat out Moorhead's Lukas Gemar by nearly five seconds. The other Packers' first came from the 800-meter-relay team, which finished in 1:32.64 to edge Fargo North.
Other top West Fargo finishers included the Shane Hillen-Shane Siverson, 2-3 finish in the 400 meters. The duo was less than three-tenths of a second apart, and was less than half a second off the winning time of 50.68 run by Fargo North's Waha Sem.
Another 2-3 Packers finish happened in the high jump, where freshmen Jordan Bishoff and James Heinen-Lugert each cleared six feet.
On the West Fargo girls side, Ellie Grooters once again stole the show. The senior standout finished first in three events - the 100- and 300-meter hurdles and 200-meter dash - and placed second in both the 3,200 meters and high jump.
West Fargo's only other top-three finish in track came during the 800-meter relay, in which the Packers placed second with a 1:50.72.
On the field side, however, West Fargo cleaned house. Senior Maria Brekkenstran's throw of 115 feet, 10 inches in the discus put her solidly in first place, and junior Cherae Reeves took first in the shot put with a throw of 36 feet, 11 inches. Brekkenstran finished third in the shot put with a 34-09.
Christina Bruenjes also showed the promise of good things to come. The West Fargo freshman grabbed third in both the long and triple jumps with leaps of 16 feet, 1 inch and 33 feet, respectively.
West Fargo's most recent meet was Tuesday at the Grand Forks Sertoma, but the results were not in by press time. Their next track and field meet is 1 p.m. Friday at Concordia College for the Fargo Shanley Invitational.
Soccer ready to hit stride
With a squad boasting 10 seniors, the Packers girls soccer team is hoping for big things this year.
And though they currently sit near the bottom of the East Region standings with a 0-2 record, don't let the numbers fool you - the games have been tight.
Last week, West Fargo started off with a 1-0 loss to Fargo South (1-1 EDC, 2-1-1 overall), followed by a close 3-2 loss Thursday to Fargo Shanley (3-0, 3-2-0). Then during the East-West Crossover on Saturday in Bismarck, the Packers finished with 1-1 ties against Bismarck and Minot.
Senior captain Kelsey Kloos racked up the brunt of the Packers' offense and accounted for two goals and an assist for the week. Midfielder Mara Johnson also contributed, scoring a goal against the Demons and an assist against Minot. West Fargo's other goal against Fargo Shanley came from junior forward Andrea Muller.
The Packers had a game Tuesday at Grand Forks Central, but results were not in by press time. Their next game is 7 p.m. Thursday at home against Fargo North.
Baseball: The Packers (4-1, 8-2) are only one game behind conference-leading Fargo South (5-0, 7-1), and with the way things are shaping up, the Bruins may want to watch their tails. In a double-header Tuesday, West Fargo fell 2-0 to south in the opening conference game, but defeated the Bruins handily 8-1 in the nightcap. The Packers then swept Devils Lake 10-0 and 9-2 on Friday before heading to the Marshall, Minn., tournament on Saturday, where they picked up a 10-9 win in eight innings over Willmar (Minn.) High School, before falling 7-4 to Marshall (Minn.). West Fargo had games Monday against Thief River Falls (Minn.) and Tuesday at Wahpeton, but the results were not in when this edition of the Pioneer went to press. The Packers' next game is 5 p.m. Thursday, April 29, at home against the Spartans.
Softball: The Packers currently sit in first place in the state standings with a 7-1 record. Last week, West Fargo had wins of 14-0 and 4-2 over Grand Forks Red River, and 18-0 over Enderlin. They played Tuesday against the Deacons, but results weren't in by press time. The Packers play at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Devils Lake, and Saturday at the Detroit Lakes (Minn.) Tournament.