Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.
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After opening the 2013 season with three straight losses, the Hudson River Rats of the St. Croix Valley Baseball League have won three straight games to even their season record at 4-4. The Rats' latest win came last Saturday, June 8, at Grandview Park when they erased an early 2-0 deficit to Plum City with 13 unanswered runs in a 13-2, seven-inning victory to improve to 3-1 in SCVBL play. Sunday's scheduled game at Elmwood was rained out and will be made up July 28 on the Expos home field. Hudson will travel to Ellsworth to take on the Hubbers this Friday night, June 14, at 7:30 p.m.
After a thrilling 12-inning victory over Big Rivers Conference rival Eau Claire Memorial in the WIAA sectional semifinals last Thursday, June 6, in Wisconsin Rapids, the Raider baseball team couldn't keep the momentum going in the sectional final against Stevens Point, falling 11-1 in five innings. The loss was just the second of the season for the Raiders and marked the second straight year Hudson has lost to Stevens Point with a berth in the state tournament on the line. "Hats off to Stevens Point," Raider head coach Ryan Huppert said.
Not many high school athletes get to end their season in front of a two-day total of 17,395 people, but that's what 28 Hudson athletes had the chance to do at the 2013 WIAA State Track and Field Championships at the Veteran's Memorial Field Sports Complex in La Crosse last weekend. Raider senior Taylor Steffen made the most of her third and final opportunity at state by bringing home a fifth place medal in the girls' shot put, while freshman Miranda Miller contributed to the Raider girls' team score with an eighth place finish in the 800 meter run.
The Hudson Area Lacrosse Association's boys' varsity club team defeated Mankato, 19-2, in its first round playoff game as nine different players scored goals and 17 of the 19 goals coming off assists. Hudson scored nine unanswered goals in the first quarter. Mankato scored to start the second quarter, but then Hudson scored three more to end the first half with a 12-1 lead In the third quarter Hudson scored five goals to the enthusiastic cheers of the Hudson boys U11 team, which stopped practice early to watch the varsity team.
Rain in Wisconsin Rapids Tuesday, June 4, forced the suspension of the first WIAA baseball sectional semifinal between Eau Claire North and Stevens Point and wiped out Hudson's semifinal game against Eau Claire Memorial slated for later that afternoon. Both games are scheduled to be played Thursday, June 6, with Eau Claire North and Stevens Point resuming play in the top of the fifth inning at 9:30 a.m. and the Raiders and Old Abes scheduled to begin at approximately 11 a.m.
River Falls' Mitch Lenneman and Trent Powell both reached the awards podium in the boys' 1600 meter run and Hudson's Taylor Steffen took home a medal in the girls' shot put at the 2013 WIAA State Track and Field Championships in La Crosse Saturday. Lenneman and Powell both broke the River Falls' school record in the 1600 meter run to finish fourth and fifth, respectively. Lenneman crossed the finish line in 4 minutes, 14.42 seconds while Powell was clocked at 4:14.77.
The Hudson Raider baseball team clinched its first conference championship since 1979 Tuesday, May 21, by sweeping a doubleheader from Eau Claire North, 4-2 and 5-3, at Eau Claire's Carson Park. Trailing 3-2 in the bottom of the fifth inning in the second game of the doubleheader, Raider senior Mike Hommes delivered an RBI single up the middle to give Hudson the lead for good.
The Raider baseball team's 2013 hit parade continued as it exploded for 24 runs in a doubleheader sweep at Rice Lake but came to an abrupt halt Friday at home against Eau Claire Memorial as the Raiders were shut out for the first time in 71 games, 6-0. Hudson got back on track in the nightcap however, handing the Old Abes their first shutout loss in 37 games with a 4-0 victory. The Raiders' 3-1 week left them tied with Eau Claire North for first place in the Big Rivers Conference, both at 5-1.
The Raider softball team looked in midseason form in its first home doubleheader of the season last Tuesday against Rice Lake, pounding out 25 hits, including four home runs, and committing just one error while sweeping the Warriors 11-1 and 10-1. The pair of victories improved the Raiders' record to 3-1 in this weather-stunted season.
The Raider girls' soccer team did its best to regroup following an emotional halftime ceremony in remembrance of former teammate Jordan Costello last Tuesday night against Eau Claire North. But on a bittersweet night at the middle school field the Huskies held off the Raiders for a 2-1 victory. Raider players wore special T-shirts during pre-game warm-ups in memory of No. 4 Costello, a 2012 Hudson High School graduate, and for suicide prevention and awareness.