Sports

Wed
14
Dec

Boys win one, lose one


Junior captain Cole Trager is back on the court after an injury. He had two points in Tuesday’s loss.

The Irish boys basketball team split two games last week.
On Tuesday, Dec. 6, Maple Lake lost 57-32 to Annandale at home, and on Friday, Dec. 9, they went on the road to defeat the St. John's Prep Johnnies 70-64.
Maple Lake was outsized and outgunned against the Cardinals who boast two 6-foot, 6-inch tall starters.
The Cardinals took advantage of Irish shooting woes the first half of the game, claiming a 41-11 lead by the break. Maple Lake shot better the second half, outscoring Annandale 21-16, but it was too little too late.
"Their size gave us trouble on both ends of the floor," Irish coach Tim Staloch said. "We didn't shoot the ball very well. They dominated us in second-chance points and points off turnovers."
Mitch Hoistad lead scoring with 15 points for the Irish. He also had five rebounds.
Annandale held Joe Stockman to just three points and Zack Eder and Andy Mavencamp to five.

Wed
14
Dec

MAML hockey is 5-1

After losing 10-2 to St. Michael-Albertville early in the week, the Monticello-Annandale-Maple Lake boys hockey team cruised to two wins to boost their record to 5-1.
The Moose fell to the always-tough Knights in Mississippi 8 conference play, Tuesday, Dec. 6, on the road, then defeated Buffalo 3-2 at home on Thursday, Dec. 8, and Champlin Park 5-3 on Saturday, Dec. 10, in Champlin Park.

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Wed
07
Dec

ANML wrestle to fourth at tournament


Nate Carlson dominates Antony Lenz of Rogers on his way to a first-place finish at the Maple Grove Invitational at 170 pounds. Carlson pinned Lenz in 1:02. (Photos by Mary Christen)

The Annandale-Maple Lake wrestling team opened its season on Saturday, Dec. 3, on the road at the Maple Grove Invitational. The grapplers came home with several top five individual finishes and fourth place as a team overall. Among the eight competing, only Anoka (1st), Byron (2nd) and Mahotomedi (3rd) finished ahead of the Lightning.
Nate Carlson and Trae Bedford took first place in the tournament at 170 and 182 pounds, respectively.
“Nate looked very good, strong and quick. He is up a few weight classes, mainly from the muscle gained from off-season lifting,” coach Ben Youngs said. “He pinned his kid in the finals and that kid was a state qualifier from last year.”

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Wed
07
Dec

Lightning wrestlers show potential


Leading this year’s Annandale-Maple Lake wrestling squad are captains, from left, Trae Bedford, Hunter Manka, Quinn Youngs, Dom Braun and Nate Carlson.

The Annandale-Maple Lake wrestling team returns to the mat with a mixed bag of athletes, some seasoned and others young and inexperienced.
Among the returning is 126-pound junior Quinn Youngs who grappled his way to a fourth-place finish at the Minnesota State High School League State Wrestling Tournament last year, finishing with a 38-6 season record. He is joined by senior Trae Bedford who also finished fourth at state last year and ended the season with a 22-7 record. He wrestles at 170/182 pounds. Nathan Carlson is the other returning state tournament qualifier. A 160/170-pound senior, Carlson finished with a 22-8 season record.
Other strong returners include Jack Klug, Dom Braun, Hunter Manka, Jonah Hayes, Noah Hayes, Walker Weege, Reed Rasset and Joe Driscoll, head coach Ben Youngs said.

Wed
07
Dec

Ben Youngs heads ANML wrestling


Maple Lake’s Ben Youngs takes over as head wrestling coach for Annandale-Maple Lake Lightning.

Maple Lake cross country and track coach Ben Youngs will take over the position of head wrestling coach for the Annandale-Maple Lake Lightning this winter with the resignation of former head coach Jason Bartels.
Youngs comes with plenty of coaching experience. Aside from his current track and cross country duties, he served as the junior high wrestling coach for ANML in 1996-1997, and helped with the youth wrestling program when his own children went through it.
He also wrestled throughout his own elementary and high school career.
“When I heard coach Bartels was leaving, I was worried there wouldn’t be many applicants,” Youngs said. “I met with Jesse Puncochar and we discussed what it would be like if the two of us joined coach Steve Kosloski in the room. I became excited to work with them and also the kids I helped coach in the youth program.”

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Wed
07
Dec

Moose hockey off to strong start

Sports Editor
The Monticello-Annandale-Maple Lake boys hockey team is off to a strong start after three early season wins.
The Moose opened the competitive year with an 11-1 victory over Prairie Centre Area at home, on Saturday, Nov. 26. The team continued its winning ways on Tuesday, Nov. 29, with a 5-2 on-the-road win against Pine City.
Friday, Dec. 2, produced another win for the local team. Casey Chiodo, Troy Dahlheimer and Nick Zwack had goals in the 3-0, non-conference success.

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Wed
07
Dec

Gymnasts soar in opener

The Maple Lake gymnastics team got off to a promising start, Friday, Dec. 2, on the road at Dassel-Cokato during the first meet of the season.
The introduction of a substantial number of new gymnasts had all the athletes a bit nervous, coach Kaitlyn Helmbrecht said, but they all “held their own and had a good night.”
“I am especially proud of all the seventh graders for completing their first meet,” she said.
The varsity crew got off to a bumpy start on the bars with a few falls, then went to the vault where scores greatly improved.
“The girls shined with their new floor routines and dance moves,” Helmbrecht said, but their best event, as a whole, was the beam.

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Wed
07
Dec

Irish fall to NY-A, D-C


Mollie Scheiber passes to a teammate during Thursday night’s game against Dassel-Cokato. She contributed seven points. (Photos by Brenda Erdahl)

Sports Editor
The Maple Lake girls basketball team suffered two tough losses last week to start the season, but coaches still feel they are moving in the right direction.
The Irish opened the season on Tuesday, Nov. 29, on the road at Norwood-Young America where they fell 57-32 to the Raiders who qualified for state last year and return the core of their team this year, putting them in the top 10 preseason poll for Class AA.
On Thursday, Dec. 1, Maple Lake hosted Dassel-Cokato, a non-conference, non-section opponent, with a formidable front court starring a 6-foot, 2-inch senior, and lost 51-46.
NY-A jumped to a quick 13-0 lead behind some dominating post play, and never looked back. Maple Lake settled into the game and found some rhythm on offense by closing out the first half on a 9-1 run, but still trailed by 15 at the half, 32-17, coach Adam Ronnenberg said.

Wed
07
Dec

Down but not out Boys basketball looks to new talent


Juniors Cole Trager, left, and Alex Toedter were elected team captains. The only two players with returning varsity experience, both are currently benched because of injuries. Trager expects to be back on the court soon, but Toedter will be out the majority of the season. (Photo by Brenda Erdahl)

The Maple Lake boys basketball team is ready to play despite having no real varsity experience to fall back on.
The loss of seven seniors from last year’s 17-and-10 squad was the first blow to the Irish program, then came the second. The only two returning athletes, juniors Cole Trager and Alex Toedter, are both injured.
Trager suffers a broken thumb, left over from the football season, and Toedter has a broken tibia and fibula, also from football. Trager expects to be back on the court soon, but Toedter could be out much of the season.
Despite the setback, coach Tim Staloch is optimistic about the up-and-coming talent.
“Without Al and Cole we lack size and experience, but we should be able to shoot the ball well,” he said.
Josh Bidwell, a guard, is the Irish’s lone senior. Bidwell is a smart player who defends well, Staloch said.
Junior Andy Mavencamp is a “good all-around player that will help us in every aspect of the game.”

Wed
07
Dec

Young Irish come up short at first home game


Joe Stokman charges toward the basket during the Irish’s Friday, Dec. 9, home opener. The sophomore guard had 12 points in Maple Lake’s 64-57 loss to Norwood-Young America.

The young Irish came out ready to play, Friday, Dec. 2, in the boys basketball home opener.
Despite no significant varsity experience, the Maple Lake ball-handlers dominated the first half against Norwood-Young America, but ultimately fell 64-57 to the Raiders in the non-conference match-up.
“I was extremely proud of the players for the way they came out ready to play.  Nobody had significant varsity experience and they played smart and with a lot of poise,” coach Tim Staloch said.
Maple Lake played well on both sides of the ball that first half, jumping to a 35-15 lead by the break.

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