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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When the final team scores were announced at the end of Thursday night's Big Rivers Conference gymnastics dual meet between Hudson and River Falls, Raider coach Holly Stewart said it was hard to tell which team won. Two-time defending BRC champion River Falls took first with a score of 138.125. But Stewart said the Raiders' score of 136.05 was a season-high that gave the team plenty to be excited about. "The girls had a great meet," Stewart said. "They have been working hard and setting goals as a team.
The Raider girls' basketball team couldn't overcome a slow start and dropped a 60-36 nonconference decision to Ellsworth last Tuesday night at the high school gym. Ellsworth jumped out to a 15-8 first quarter lead and widened the gap to 33-21 at halftime and 50-29 at the end of three. Hudson, now 1-11 overall, 1-5 in the Big Rivers Conference, will host BRC leader Menomonie (12-1, 5-1) Friday, Jan. 29 at 7:30 p.m. and travel to River Falls (6-6, 2-4) Tuesday, Feb. 2. Kaitlyn Haag led the Raiders with nine points in last week's loss to Ellsworth while Jamie Lindstrom finished with eight.
The Raider boys' swimming and diving team dropped a close, 99-84 decision to Stillwater last Tuesday before a shorthanded squad took third at Saturday's eight-team Husky Invitational in Eau Claire. Hudson was without the services of Campbell Fall, Jay Skinner and Gabe Dwyer Saturday and lost Luke Wusterbarth to illness during the meet but still compiled 202 points, good for third place. Eau Claire was first with 396 followed by Chippewa Falls with 303. Last Tuesday, with a full squad, the Raiders gave Stillwater, Minn., all they could handle in a nonconference dual loss.
Four different Hudson players scored goals and goaltender Alise Riedel made 40 saves as the Hudson girls' hockey team defeated the top-ranked and defending state champion St. Croix Valley Fusion 4-2 Thursday night (Feb. 4) in Hudson. It was the Fusion's first loss to a Wisconsin team in two years and its' first-ever loss in Big Rivers Conference play. The team is a cooperative program consisting of players from River Falls, Baldwin-Woodville, St.
The Raider boys' basketball team opened the second half with a 7-0 run to take a double-digit lead over Chippewa Falls and never let up on its way to a 61-39 victory over the Cardinals Friday night at the high school gym. The win came three nights after the Raiders dropped a 42-34 decision at Eau Claire North. Hudson, now 3-3 in the Big Rivers Conference, 4-7 overall, will host a pair of Minnesota teams in nonconference games this weekend. They face Edina Friday, Jan. 22 at 7:30 p.m. and North St. Paul Saturday, Jan. 23 at 7:30 p.m. at the high school gym.
Senior Paige Kazak and sophomore Toria Ferrell both finished in the top ten in the all-around to help the Raider gymnastics team to a fourth place finish at the 12-team River Falls Invitational Saturday in River Falls. Kazak took seventh in the all-around with a total score of 33.625 while Ferrell finished tenth with 32.5. Host River Falls took first in the final team standings with 139.35 points followed by a pair of Minnesota schools--Chisago Lakes with 133.15 and Centennial with 131.475. Hudson was fourth with 128.475 while Stewartville, Minn.
The Raider wrestling team tuned up for its Big Rivers Conference showdown with Chippewa Falls this Thursday by dominating Eau Claire North in a 70-3 victory last Thursday at the high school gym. Hudson posted nine pins in the win to improve to 5-0 in conference duals. Chippewa Falls is also undefeated and the two teams will square off Thursday, Jan. 21 at 7 p.m. in Chippewa Falls with the regular season conference title on the line. This is the second year in a row Hudson and Chippewa Falls both take undefeated records into their dual match.
Jay Skinner and Charlie Skinner each won two events and the Raiders had two of the top five finishers in six different events on their way to taking first place at the four-team Head of Lakes Invitational in Superior Saturday. The first place finish came two days after Hudson rolled to a 131-30 Big Rivers Conference victory over Rice Lake. The Raiders visited Stillwater, Minn., for a dual meet on Tuesday, Jan. 19, and will compete in the Old Abe Invitational at Eau Claire Memorial Saturday, Jan. 23 before hosting Chippewa Falls in the final home dual meet of the season Thursday, Jan.
The sixth-ranked Hudson wrestling team ran its season record to 11-0 in dual meets and won another tournament championship Saturday at the Hudson Invitational. That capped off an impressive week as Hudson also improved to a league-leading 4-0 record in the Big River Conference with a 76-3 win Thursday at Rice Lake. Hudson opened Saturday's Invite with a 71-6 drubbing of Baldwin-Woodville in the opening round. In round two the Raiders faced Sauk Rapids-Rice (Minn.) for the first time in history and came away with a convincing 51-13 victory.
If last week's results are any indication, things are starting to gel for the Raider boys' basketball team. The Raiders started the week with a 52-42 nonconference win over Red Wing, Minn., Tuesday night and followed that up three nights later with an impressive 72-65 Big Rivers Conference victory over Rice Lake. Head coach Jason Swavely said the two victories are good confidence boosters for the young team. "We're starting to breed some confidence in the young guys," he said. "As the young players start to play together they are starting to gel. Their roles are becoming defined.