Speaking of Sports

By John Fragodt, Sports Reporter

You’re lucky to have him — There are certain people in your life that you know you’re lucky to have.  There are other people that you might not be aware of who you are also lucky to have in your life, and one of those is Matt Pederson.

Pederson is passionate about the history of sports at Minnewaska Area High School as well as Starbuck and Glenwood High Schools.  He consistently keeps me informed of student-athletes breaking schoo records, reaching career milestones, or continuing successful streaks.

He is a very valuable resource not only for me, but for all those connected by MAHS sports.

One of those streaks is a top-4 individual state finish by Minnewaska Area athletes.  Miles Wildman earned fourth place at the State Wrestling Meet this past winter, continuing a streak of Minnewaska Area athletes earning at least one top-4 finish at state each year.  “The streak started in 2001-02 and there was less drama this year regarding the streak than last year when the girls track team had a top-four finish by Lauryn Ankeny in the 300 hurdles,” Pederson said.  

Of course, three months after Wildman placed fourth at state, the Lakers had two more top-4 finishes at state as Owen Meulebroeck and Jayda Kolstoe earned gold medals at the state track meet.

•  In addition, the Lakers have another top-4 streak of Minnewaska Area teams finishing in the top-4 at state, a streak which dates back to 2006.  “The Minnewaska Area girls golf team came through with another top-4 finish (the team placed third) which extends the streak back to 2006, with the exception of 2020 when the girls track team didn’t have a chance to defend its True-Team state title due to COVID,” Pederson said.  “Fifteen of those top-4 state finishes belong to the girls golf team.”

Yes, congratulations to another very successful year of sports at Minnewaska Area High School and thanks to Matt for his continued service to the Minnewaska Area community.

That’s a lot of wrestlers — I forgot to mention during the winter sports season some thoughts I had about the state wrestling tournament.

The Lakers sent five wrestlers to the state meet this past winter and I thought that was a lot of wrestlers.  That wasn’t anything compared to some other schools, including Totino-Grace, which sent 12, St. Michael-Albertville and Mounds View, who both sent 11 wrestlers to the state meet, Simley (10), and Stillwater, Chatfield and Hastings, who all sent nine.


Of course, the Class A and AA sections have 10-12 teams each while most of the Class AAA sections had 7-9 teams.  Still, that’s pretty amazing that a team like Totino-Grace can send all but one of its team to the state individual tourney.  And I thought five wrestlers was a lot . . .

It’s going to come down to the wire — The Minnesota Twins would make the playoffs if the Major League Baseball season ended today.  The Twins are one game ahead of Kansas City for the second of three wildcard berths while Boston is another 1 1/2 games back.

In the National League, things are a little different. Besides the three divisional leaders (Philadelphia, LA Dodgers and Milwaukee), Atlanta (46-36) is the top wildcard team, but there are nine teams within 4 1/2 games of each other in the battle for the final two other wildcard berths.

Yes, San Diego (46-42), St Louis (43-40), NY Mets (40-41), Arizona (41-43), San Francisco (41-44), Pittsburgh (40-43), Washington (39-44), Cincinnati (39-45) and Chicago Cubs (39-46) are all in the thick of things in the wildcard race.

At first, I wasn’t too excited when Major League Baseball started including wildcard teams in the playoffs, but when you consider how exciting it will be for all those teams the rest of the summer, it’s a super idea.

I’m going to try — Have you ever looked to see how many pictures and videos you have on your cell phone?  Well, I have, and I’ve been told I have far too many.  Heck, my cell phone is constantly telling me it doesn’t have enough storage space so please get rid of some of them.

At last check, I had 4,271 pictures and 398 videos.  My goal was to get that down to 2,000 pictures and 250 videos.  Seems like a decent goal, but exactly how long is that going to take me? 

Well, I will start today (Monday, July 1) and I have a goal to get rid of at least a couple hundred every day.  I’ll keep you posted how I do . . . I’ve tried it before and failed; it’s really hard.