SPORTS FEEVER – March 7, 2024

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SPORTS FEEVER by Chris Fee of KROX Radio –

What a great time of year. We have State Boys Hockey going on in St. Paul, Section Girls Basketball championships this weekend and boys sectional tournament play the next week-plus.  Best of luck to all teams, and enjoy the exciting experience!!!

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The Section 8AA Girls Basketball Tournament Championship will be pretty much as expected, with Perham taking on Pelican Rapids. The game will be played on Friday, March 8, at Concordia College Moorhead at 7:00 PM.
Perham has pretty much coasted through the tournament while Pelican Rapids trailed big in the first half of the semi-finals, but battled back to win in overtime.

The top two seeds are playing in the championship and Perham will be the favorite to win the game. But this is an interesting matchup. Perham has the best post player in the section and one of the top players in the state with Willow Thiel. Pelican Rapids plays solid defense and has outstanding guard play.

I am picking Perham to win by 8 points.

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The Section 8A Girls Basketball CHAMPIONSHIP game is on Friday at Ralph Englestad Arena in TRF. It is no surprise after having the top two seeds in each sub-section play in the semi-finals, and now you have Kittson County Central taking on Fosston for a trip to state.

Kittson County Central’s athleticism is the top in the section, and if they are able to run and gun, they are going to be tough to beat. Fosston is a defensive-minded team, and if they can slow down the game, they will be tough to beat.
Kittson County Central is deeper, and I give them the nod in this game.  KCC to win by 10.

KROX will have the game on our video stream with a pre-game show at 6:30 p.m. and an opening tip at 7 PM.

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The tournament begins on Thursday. The seeds and tournament schedule is below.

1. Pelican Rapids
2. Park Rapids
3. Wadena-Deer Creek (had tie-breaker with Barnesviile)
4. Barnesville
5. East Grand Forks (had tie-breaker with DGF)
6. Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton
7. Hawley
8. Perham
9. Thief River Falls
10. Roseau
11. Warroad
!2. Crookston (had tie-breaker with Menahga)
13. Menahga

FIRST ROUND (Thursday, March 7 at high seed)
Pelican Rapids, Park Rapids and Wadena-Deer Creek have first round byes
#13 Menahga at #4 Barnesville
#12 Crookston at #5 East Grand Forks (ON KROX RADIO)
#11 Warroad at #6 Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton
#10 Roseau at #7 Hawley
#9 Thief River Falls at #8 Perham

QUARTERFINALS (Saturday, March 9 at high seed)
GAME 1 – TRF/Perham winner at #1 Pelican Rapids
GAME 2 – Menahga/Barnesville winner vs Crookston/EGF winner
GAME 3 – Roseau/Hawley winner at #2 Park Rapids
GAME 4 – Warroad/DGF winner at Wadena-Deer Creek

SEMI-FINALS (Wednesday, March 13 at Concordia College)
6:00 PM – Game 1 winner vs Game 2 winner
7:45 PM – Game 3 winner vs Game 4 winner

CHAMPIONSHIP (Friday, March 15 at Concordia College)
7:00 PM –

Crookston will take on East Grand Forks in the first round. It will be the third meeting between the two teams. EGF won big in the first meeting and they held on to edge Crookston the second game.

This will be an interesting matchup. If Crookston takes care of the ball and plays defense the entire game and gets after it, they could win.  Of course, they will have to make some shots and not have an offensive drought. East Grand Forks will want to run and gun, and if they are able to do that, they could win big again.
I am not comfortable on a pick for this game because it all depends on Crookston playing like they are capable. If they play like they are capable the entire game….they will win. If EGF is able to run and have an up-tempo game, the Green Wave will win!

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The Section 8A Boys Basketball seeds and bracket have been announced, with Cass Lake-Bena and Fertile-Beltrami earning the top seeds. The seeds and bracket are below.

1. Fertile-Beltrami
2. Red Lake County
3. Goodridge/Grygla
4. Sacred Heart
5. Northern Freeze
6. Warren-Alvarado-Oslo
7. Kittson County Central
8. Stephen-Argyle
9. Climax-Fisher
10. Badger/Greenbush-Middle River

1. Cass Lake-Bena
2. Win-E-Mac
3. Red Lake
4. Mahnomen/Waubun
5. Fosston
6. Bagley
7. Clearbrook-Gonvick
8. Kelliher/Northome
9. Blackduck
10. Lake of the Woods

FIRST ROUND GAMES (Thursday, March 7)
West Sub-section
Game 1 – #8Stephen-Argyle vs #1 Fertile-Beltrami  6:00 PM at UMC
Game 2 – #5 Northern Freeze vs #4 Sacred Heart 7:45 PM at UMC
Game 3 – #7 KCC vs #2 Red Lake County 6:00 PM at NCTC
Game 4 – #6 Warren-Alvarado-Oslo vs #3 Goodridge/Grygla 7:45 PM at NCTC

East Sub-section
Game 5 – Northome/Kelliher  at Cass Lake-Bena 7:00 PM at Cass Lake
Game 6 – #5 Fosston vs #4 Mahnomen/Waubun 7:00 PM at Mahnomen
Game 7 – Clearbrook-Gonvick at #2 Win-E-Mac 7:00 PM at Erskine
Game 8 – #6 Bagley at #3 Red Lake 7:00 PM at Red Lake

QUARTER-FINALS (Saturday, March 9 at Ralph Englestad Arena in TRF)
NOON –  GAME 1 winner vs Game 2 winner (on KROX Radio)
1:45 PM – Game 3 winner vs Game 4 winner (on KROX Radio)
3:30 PM – Game 5 winner vs Game 6 winner (on KROX Radio)
5:15 PM – Game 7 winner vs Game 8 winner (on KROX Radio)

SEMI-FINALS (Wednesday, March 13 at REA in TRF)
6:00 PM – West sub-section championship (on KROX Radio and KROX TV)
7:45 PM – East sub-section championship (on KROX Radio and KROX TV)

CHAMPIONSHIP (Friday, March 15 at REA in TRF)
7:00 PM – On KROX Radio and KROX TV

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Section 8A Boys Hockey announced it All-Section 8A team and the award winners are listed below-

The Section 8A Coach of the Year – Tyler Palmizcino
Section 8A Assistant Coach of the Year – Scott Berglun


First team –
Warroad – Carson Pilgrim, Ryan Lund
East Grand Forks – Brock Schultz, Landon Jamieson, Grady Wagner
Thief River Falls – Connor Ruff

Second team –
Thief River Falls – Cooper Anderson, Jace Erickson
East Grand Forks – Cloe Bies
Red Lake Falls – Gavin Girdler
Warroad – Murray Marvin Cordes
Park Rapids – Sawyer Torkelson

Third team –
Thief River Falls – Max Arlt, Spencer Anderson
Warroad – Will Hardwick, Broden Hontvedt, Blake Norris
Red Lake Falls – Blake Breiland
Detroit Lakes – Dalton Songstad

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The Northwest Boys Hockey Conference has announced its all-conference team. The teams in the conference are Red Lake Falls, Lake of the Woods, Bagley/Fosston, and Kittson County Central.

Northwest Conference team champions – Red Lake Falls.

All Conference team –
Goalies – Jameson Turner (KCC), and Ashtin Fredrickson (RLF)
Defense – Dillon Gowler (LOW), Sawyer Stromlund (LOW), Xavier Payment (RLF), Brock Seeger (RLF)
Forwards – Morgan Muir (KCC), Brant Baron (LOW), Jordan Kvernen (LOW), Randy Wood (LOW), Blake Breiland (RLF), Gavin Girdler (RLF)

Honorable Mention –
Bagley/Fosston – Logan Dillich, Kyle Johnson
Kittson County Central – Wyatt Samuelson
Lake of the Woods – Jayce Lucek
Red Lake Falls – Dennis Lanctot, Kegan Schmitz, Jace Seeger

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The latest Minnesota High School sports rankings are available by clicking the link below.

Minnesota High School Rankings – KROX (

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Make plans now to attend the 29th annual “Lace ‘em Up” basketball camp to be held in Red Lake Falls High School at the Robert Matzke Gym from June 3-6, 2024

The camp is open to any boys or girls who are currently in grades K-11.  The camp is set up to run from 9:00 a.m. until 12:00 for grades 5-11 (grade they were in this past school year) each morning and from 12:30 until 3:00 p.m. for grades K-4 (grade they were in this past school year).  The cost of the camp is $70, with a maximum cost per family of $100.  If you register before May 22,  you will also receive a camp T-shirt.  After May 22, ALL SINGLE REGISTRATION FEES WILL BE $80, AND THE MAXIMUM COST PER FAMILY WILL BE $120 due to CAMP PREPARATION AND AWARD ORDERS.

Cut on the dotted line and return the following to: Steve Philion, 518 Champagne Ave., Red Lake Falls, MN 56750. (cell:  218-686-3608) (home: 218-253-2499). E-mail:

Make checks payable to: Lace ‘em Up Basketball Camp

If anyone needs help with the cost of the camp, let Mr. Philion know as we have people who have offered to cover costs for kids that need financial help.

_    _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _   _

Grade in 2023-2024________________ (GRADE JUST COMPLETED)

T-shirt sizes:     Please circle one:

Youth sizes:       EXTRA SMALL           SMALL            MEDIUM             LARGE

Adult sizes:        SMALL     MEDIUM     LARGE      X-LARGE        XX-LARGE


MALE____________              FEMALE____________

I, the parent of the above student agree to allow my child to participate in the 2024 “Lace ‘em Up” basketball camp in Red Lake Falls.  I also understand that the camp director, the City of RLF, and the RLF school district are not responsible for any injuries, accidents, or COVID that my child might incur.

SIGNATURE OF PARENT OR GUARDIAN:_______________________________________

Emergency cell number of parent or guardian:________________________________

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

Halle Bruggeman is a freshman on the University of Wisconsin-Stout Women’s Tennis team.

Grace Fischer is a freshman on the Concordia College (Moorhead) Women’s Golf team.

Ethan Boll is a Freshman on the University of North Dakota Football team.

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

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

Jacey Larson is a Sophomore playing hockey at Dakota College at Bottineau.

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

Elise Tangquist is the Head Girls Golf Coach at Horace High School in Fargo, ND..

Kaleb Thingelstad is a junior playing golf at Kansas 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.

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

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

Crookston School District Coaches
Todd Miner 
is a Pirate Football assistant coach.
Ben Parkin 
is the head Pirate Baseball Coach.
Emily Meyer 
is the Pirate head girls hockey coach and softball assistant 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
Marley Melbye is the Head Girls Swimming coach and assistant girls golf 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

Tim Desrosier is an Assistant Coach for Warren-Alvarado-Oslo Pony Boys Basketball

Pat Wolfe is the head wrestling coach for Fosston/Bagley.

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) Horgen is the 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 Wisconsin Badgers 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 in the Army and is now a Ranger.

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

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