SPORTS FEEVER – February 16, 2023

SPORTS FEEVER by Chris Fee of KROX Radio –

Congratulations to the Crookston School District and its residents on passing the multi-use athletic complex referendum by 304 votes on Tuesday!!!� The no votes went down more than 100 from the first vote, and that was great to see.

There were 225 absentee ballots and 1,491 people voting in person for a total of 1,716 votes, with 1,010 yes votes to 706 no votes. � The referendum passes by 304 votes.

The ballot asked voters to vote for a $4,965,000 referendum.

The estimated costs for the project are $4,964,671 with a bond issue total of $4,965,000, with the artificial turf field�s construction costing $1,182,000 and the track�s construction costing $837,000.� The grandstand and press box�s installation cost $387,000, the lighting/electrical work cost $715,000, and the Site work cost $924,000.� The construction cost for the Concessions Stands and Bathrooms would be $178,000, with other contingency costs equaling about $741,571.

The community could start seeing some work done behind the school as soon as this summer once a proper plan is made.���You don�t want to put everything ahead of things.� We needed to pass the referendum, and I think the next step is to plan accordingly.� As we get the information, we will share that with our stakeholders, but they�ll definitely see some action behind the school this summer with dirt work and things happening.� Hopefully, they�ll be able to provide us with more completion or timeline in terms of how all of those pieces, the field, work of the field, artificial turf, bleachers, press box, and the track, how all of those things will come together, and hopefully, the best scenarios we can do some things this fall,� Kuehn explained.� �We�re working on a timeline sometimes that construction is not always as fast as it used to be, and sometimes securing certain materials have been more difficult to get.� Hopefully, we�ll know more as we work with our architect and construction manager on putting together an appropriate timeline.�

The first time the district asked the voters to pass a referendum in August 2022, it failed by nine votes (842 to 833).

Kuehn and the Crookston School District thank all who came out to support the referendum passing for the district and the community.� �On behalf of the district, just a huge thank you,� said Kuehn.� �We�re very humbled and appreciative that we can move forward and put a very awesome facility out the back doors of our High School, and something I think, for many years, will be a great place for our youth, school district programs, Phy Ed. Classes to have the ability to use it throughout the school year.�


Multiuse Complex Aerial 2

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We are sad to report a longtime Thief River Falls teacher, coach, and administrator, Tom Hunt, has passed away after a lengthy battle with Leukemia.� He passed away Monday night at his home in rural Crookston at the age of 73.
The funeral service for Tom will be held at 11:00 a.m., Tuesday, February 21, 2023, in Our Savior�s Lutheran Church, Crookston, with The Rev. Steve Bohler, officiating. Visitation will be at the Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home on Monday from 5-7:00 p.m., with a 7:00 p.m. prayer service, and visitation will continue at the church for one hour prior to the funeral. Burial will take place in Oakdale Cemetery in the spring. Both the prayer and funeral services will be livestreamed by going to Tom�s obituary page at www.stenshoelhouske shortly before their scheduled starts and clicking on the prompt to view. Messages of condolence to Carol and the family may be offered on the funeral home website as well.

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Bemidji High School football assistant coach, and an all-around great guy, Jim McKeon passed away unexpectedly over the weekend after suffering a heart attack/stroke while ice fishing with his son. The son tried to revive him, but was unsuccessful.
The McKeon family lost Gianna in January 2022 at the age of 10 after being diagnosed in February 2021 with telangiectatic osteosarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer.
The longtime BHS coach won the Butch Nash award at the 2022 Minnesota Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame banquet in Minneapolis. The honor is given to assistant coaches in the state who play a prominent role in their school’s football program and own qualities that make them “the epitome of the ideal assistant coach.”

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I received some concerns about things that transpired at the end of the Red Lake Falls and Crookston Pirate Boys Hockey game.
I have changed this article from the original post because the two administrations are talking about it, and there are a lot of rumors, and both administration and coaches are talking to each other, trying to get to the bottom of it � �As always, there is more to the story.

But for future reference, I CANNOT do anything about a player or parent’s behavior.� (Unless it is my kid or my family) I am a lowly radio guy.� All complaints in cases like this NEED to go to Crookston High School A.D. and Superintendent Dave Kuehn.� Actions like this by Pirate student-athletes and parents SHOULD NOT be allowed, and should be reprimanded, including a benching, if all the complaints I have received are true.
I had a kid get kicked out of a C-Squad tournament in Fosston last weekend, and I was not there.� �An Ada-Borup kid had Matthew Contreras in a headlock/chokehold, and my son went over to help him and the Ada kid and my son pushed each other, trying to protect each other’s teammates.� Both kids got kicked out.� Nothing cheap by either team.� Calling a technical foul on both players was probably a good message to send, even though there wasn’t malicious intent behind each push.� Kicking them out was a terrible call, and the official needs better comprehension of what is going on during the play.
But it was a valuable lesson learned for my son.� Even though we tell him to stick up and help teammates, you have to be smarter on the floor, and it is a lesson learned for him at a young age, and hopefully, he learns from it.

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The Section 8A Girls Hockey championship�game is on Thursday at 7:00 p.m.� KROX will have the game on KROX Radio and the KROX video stream with a pre-game at 6:20 p.m.

Crookston is 17-6-2 on the year and has had two lopsided losses to Warroad this season.� But, the two losses have been more competitive this year than they were last year, so there is more optimism going into this year’s rematch in the championship game.� Crookston played one of their better games in the semi-finals with a 5-0 win over Thief River Falls.� It was the kick in the breezers the Pirates needed going into their toughest game of the year.� Warroad is Warroad.� They have a Ms. Hockey candidate in the transfer from Fargo, and that top line of three Division 1 commits is something nobody can duplicate.� �How does Crookston slow them down?� Because you’re not going to stop them.

They are going to have the play the best and most physical defense they have played all year.� At the same time, they are going to find ways to score.� In last week’s column, We said Crookston has had a hard time scoring against the top teams they have played.� It is time to shake that off and show what they are made of.� They will need to get shots on goal and crash the boards like Dennis Rodman (no regard for your body) and stuff that puck in the net.� The Warroad goalie has shown susceptibility when teams get the puck on the net, so Crookston has to get pucks deep and shots on goal, preferably not at the goalie, but even so, crashing the net is going to be huge!
Crookston can’t commit penalties.� They can’t compete with the top Warroad line without all five skaters on the ice.� Nobody can!

Say what you want about David (Izzy) Marvin, but he is a helluva coach and demands 110 percent every practice and game.� He has built a machine!!! This game is still a case of David and Goliath, and I think Crookston is going to have a bigger stone in the sling on Thursday night.� It should be a high-level girls hockey game, and you won’t want to miss it.

KROX will have it on the radio with Hall of Famer Frank Fee with the play-by-play.� We will also have it video streamed and the link to watch is below.

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The Section 8A Wrestling Team tournament semi-finals and Championship will be held on Friday at Fertile-Beltrami Gymnasium.

Semi-finals at 6:00 p.m.
#1 Frazee vs #5 Crookston (ON KROX RADIO at 5:20 p.m.)
#2 UNC vs #3 Fosston/Bagley

Championship is at 7:30 p.m.

The semi-finals should be two great matches.� Crookston has a full line-up now with an open weight at 170 pounds.� The Pirates should be able to make up at least a 12-point swing with Frazee, so it should be an exciting match on KROX Radio.
UNC and Fosston/Bagley will be one that could come down to the last matches of the dual.� All I know is if you want to watch some great wrestling, Fertile-Beltrami High School is the place to be on Friday.

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As expected, the Warroad Warriors are the #1 seed in the Boy�s Section 8A Hockey Tournament. The first round will take place Tuesday, February 21, and the Championship will be held on Thursday, March 2, at Ralph Engelstad Arena in Thief River Falls. The team seeds and schedule are below �

1. Warroad
2. East Grand Forks
3. Detroit Lakes
4. Thief River Falls
5. Red Lake Falls
6. Kittson County Central
7. Bagley-Fosston
8. Park Rapids
9. Crookston
10. Lake of the Woods

Tuesday ���February 21� �(Section 8A Play-in games)
7:00 PM� �� �#10 Lake of the Woods at� #7 Bagley-Fosston
6:00 PM� �� � #9 Crookston at� #8 Park Rapids� � �(ON KROX Radio)

Thursday �� February 23� �(Section 8A Quarter-Finals)
7:00 PM� ��� �Winner 9/8� � � �at� #1 Warroad
7:00 PM� ��� �#5 Red Lake Falls� �at� #4 Thief River Falls
6:00 PM� ��� �#6 Kittson County Central� at� �#3 Detroit Lakes
7:00 PM� ��� �Winner 10/7� � � at� �#2 East Grand Forks

Saturday ���February 25� (Section 8A Semi-Finals�� at Thief River Falls)
4:00 PM� ��
6:00 PM� ��

Thursday �� March� 2� (Section 8A Championship��at� Thief River Falls)
7:00 PM�� �

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Crookston Pirate Head Girls Golf coach Jeff Perreault is happy to announce Marley Melby as the next Pirate Girls’ Golf Assistant Coach.
Marley (Hanson) Melbye, is a Crookston native graduating from Crookston High School in 2007. She was a three-sport athlete while beings a state participant in swimming, basketball and golf. In college, at the Minnesota State University Moorhead she continued on the Swimming and Golf Teams.
She currently works at Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc as the Senior Programs Director and High School Swim Coach for the past 12 years. “I am excited to be assistant coach for the Girls Pirate Golf team,” said Melbye. “I look forward to sharing my love for the game.”
The hire is pending school board approval.

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The annual Pine-to-Prairie Conference Championship basketball games will be held on Saturday, February 18 at the Win-E-Mac Gymnasium in Erskine, MN.

PTP Girls Basketball Championship – Noon
Park Christian Falcons (A) VS Fertile-Beltrami Falcons (H)

PTP Boys Basketball Championship – following GBB game
Ada-Borup-West Cougars (A) VS Fosston Greyhounds (H)

Admission: Adults – $6.00 Students – $4.00
� Only MSHSCA passes will be accepted

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I will get into Section 8A and 8AA Boys and Girls Basketball next week.� All I know is there will be a lot of tie-breakers affecting seeding!!!� �Stay tuned as there are a lot of big games coming up!

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Congratulations to Warren-Alvarado-Oslo Boys Basketball’s Jackson Woinarowicz for breaking the record for career rebounds for the Ponies!� He should be able to grab a lot more over the next month or so.

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We have updated the Boys and Girls Hockey, Boys and Girls Basketball, and Wrestling rankings.� To see them click on the link below –

Minnesota High School Rankings

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The Crookston Youth Basketball Association tournament is being held March 24-26, 2023, and teams can register through the Tourney Machine App or by following this link: CYBA Tournament Registration.

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The 2023 East Grand Forks Sports Boosters Youth Basketball tournament will be held March 10-12.� The registration link is up and ready.� Go to and click on the Youth Basketball Tourney tab to get your team registered.

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The Crookston Figure Skating Club, in cooperation with the Crookston Park and Rec Department, present Dreams on Ice 2023 �Back to the 90�s� on March 11and 12 at the Crookston Sports Center. �Show times are �7:00 p.m. Saturday and 2:00 p.m. Sunday. Adults are $6, Senior Citizens and students $4, preschoolers are free, and a family weekend pass is $25.

� � �



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How are former Crookston Pirates athletes doing in college or elsewhere?

Breanna Kressin is a Freshman on the Hockey Cheer Team for THE University of Minnesota Golden Gopher Hockey team.

Emma Osborn�is a freshman playing basketball at Northland Technical and Community College in Thief River Falls.

Jacey Larson�is a freshman playing hockey at Dakota College at Bottineau.

Olivia Huck�is a freshman playing soccer at Minnesota State Moorhead.

Aleah Bienek�is a freshman playing hockey at Trine University in Indiana.

Elise Tangquist�is the Assistant Girl�s Volleyball and Assistant Girl�s Golf Coach this year at Heritage Christian Academy in Maple Grove.

Kaleb Thingelstad is a sophomore playing golf at Dakota Wesleyan.

Joslynn Leach�is a sophomore playing golf at Concordia College in Moorhead.� The Cobbers wrapped up the Fall season.

Brady Butt�is a Junior playing football at the University of Jamestown.

Ty Hamre�is playing football at Bemidji State University.

Paul Bittner�is playing professional hockey in Norway.

Kate MacGregor�is senior swimming at Minnesota State Moorhead.

Aleece Durbin�is a Junior on the University of North Dakota Women�s Track and Field team.

Nick Garmen�is a junior playing tennis at the University of Minnesota Morris.

Elizabeth Erdman�is a coach for the Moorhead Red Dragon swim team.

Crookston School District Coaches �
Ben Parkin
is the head Pirate Baseball Coach.
Emily Meyer�
is the Pirate head girls� hockey coach and softball assistant coach.
Lacia Hanson�is the Junior High softball coach.
Jeremy Lubinski
�is a Pirate 8th Grade Football coach.
Amy Boll�
is the head Pirate Girls Track head coach
Sarah Reese�
is the Pirate Head Girls� Soccer coach
Cody Brekken
�is the Crookston Community Pool Supervisor
Marley Melbye�is the Head Girls� Swimming coach
Brock Hanson
�is a Pirate Baseball volunteer assistant coach.
Ben Halos�is a Pirate Baseball assistant coach.
Alex LaFrance�
is a Pirate Baseball volunteer assistant coach.
Jeff Perreault�
is the Pirate Girls Golf head coach
Wes Hanson�is the Pirate Wrestling Head Coach and assistant boys golf coach
Kevin Weber�is a Pirate Boys Basketball volunteer assistant coach
Connor Morgan�is the Pirate Boys Hockey assistant coach
Sam Melbye�is the Pirate Boys J.V. Hockey coach
Chris Dufault�is a youth wrestling Coach
Colton Weiland�is an assistant wrestling coach

Non-Crookston High School coaching/Admin/etc �

Austin Sommerfeld�is an Assistant Athletic Director for Strategic Communication at the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth.

Collin Reynolds�is the head baseball coach for the University of Colorado Buffalo Club Baseball team.

Trent Stahlecker�is a School Security Specialist & he works for the Brevard Public Schools, Florida.

Cody Weiland�is an assistant wrestling coach at Proctor/Hermantown.

Josh Edlund�is the head football coach and phy ed teacher at Flandreau, South Dakota.

Allison Lindsey Axness�is Assistant Varsity Volleyball Coach�at Champlin Park

Jeff Olson�is the Head Wrestling Coach and Head Baseball coach at Delano.

Jake Olson�is an Assistant Football Coach and Head Boys� Tennis coach at Delano.

Katy Westrom�is the Head Girl�s Tennis Coach and Head Boys� Tennis coach at Monticello High School.

Matt Harris�is an Assistant Principal/Athletic Director at Saguaro High School in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Marty Bratrud�is the Superintendent and High School Principal at Westhope High School.

Gordie Haug�is an assistant football coach at the University of Wyoming.

Mike Hastings�is the Minnesota State Mankato Men�s head Hockey coach.

Mike Biermaier�is the Athletic Director at Grand Forks Schools.

Stephanie (Lindsay) Perreault�works with the North Dakota State stats crew for Bison football, volleyball, and basketball in the winter. Stephanie�s husband, Ryan, is the assistant director for Bison media relations.

Jason Bushie�is the hockey athletic trainer at Colorado College.

Chris Myrold�is the Director and Fitness at Mission Ranch and Fitness in Camel, California.

Kyle Buchmeier
�is a Tennis Pro at the Reed-Sweatt Family Tennis Center in Minneapolis

Ben Andringa�is serving our country with the Army and is deployed to Iraq for nine months.

Jarrett Butenhoff�is serving our country with the U.S. Navy.

Joshua Butenhoff�is serving our country on a Submarine with the Pacific Fleet with the US Navy.

Peter Cournia�is a 2002 Crookston High School Graduate and a grad of West Point and currently serving in the U.S. Army.

Erik Ellingson�is serving our country with the U.S. Air Force at Minot.

Philip Kujawa,�class of 2004, from Crookston High School.� He is an Army recruiter in Rochester.

Rob Sobolik�is the General Manager of the Fargodome

That�s it for this week.� Thanks for the comments, and if you have anything to add or share, please e-mail��or call.� Thanks for reading and listening to�KROX RADIO�and