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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Despite jumping out to early leads in both games last week, the Raider girls basketball team was only able to post one win. It was a big one, however, as they handed Menomonie their second Big Rivers Conference loss of the season while evening their own conference record at 2-2.
Cole Danielson netted a natural hat trick and Grady Gornick, Ben Lundeen, Jack Flattum and Carter Maack all had multiple point nights as the top-ranked Raider boys hockey team improved to 7-0 with a 5-0 victory at Rice Lake Tuesday, Dec. 19. Alex Cohen stopped all 10 shots to record his second shutout of the season as the Raiders outshot the Warriors, 43-10. Hudson took a 2-0 lead with a pair of goals 26 seconds apart late in the first period.
The Raider boys swim and dive team improved to 4-0 in dual meets this season with a 102-73 victory over White Bear Lake Tuesday, Dec. 19, at the Hudson Middle School Pool. The Raiders swept at least two of the top three spots in seven of the first nine events before swimming the last two events as exhibitions.
The Hudson High School Varsity and JV Cheer and Stunt Teams kicked off their competition season this past Saturday, Dec. 16, at the University of Minnesota Cheerleading Championship in the Sports Pavilion. The varsity team took first place in the small coed division. Varsity team member include Nick Becker, Lane Burke , Lilly Burke, Samantha Evens, Olivia Fremling, Zach Girard, Izzy Hughes, Taylor Jankowski, Keoni Lapean, Carley Larson, Tori Leoni, Abigail Lingenfelter, Maya Nordahl, Amber Skoglund, Dalyon Waldner, Anna Zaspel.
Twin brothers Cale and Shane Blinkman, 16, represented the St. Croix Swim Club at the USA Swimming Speedo Winter Junior Nationals at the University of Iowa Dec. 6-9. Shane Blinkman finished first in the 200 yard individual medley to become the Junior National champion for the western half of the United States. There was a second identical meet run at the same time at the University of Tennessee, where swimmers from the eastern half of the USA attended.
Anna Wilgren's goal with 6 minutes, 44 seconds remaining gave the top-ranked Raider girls hockey team a 3-2 victory over the second ranked Eau Claire/Altoona Stars in an early-season showdown between Big Rivers Conference powerhouses Thursday, Dec. 14, at Gornick Arena. All three of Hudson's goals came on the power play in a game that featured two undefeated teams at the top of the Wisconsin Prep Hockey girls coaches poll. Wilgren's goal secured the win for Hudson after ECA had rallied from two goals down to tie the score, 2-2, with one period remaining.
The Raider boys swimming and diving team improved to 3-0 in dual meets this season with a 99-70 victory over Watertown-Mayer Friday, Dec. 8, and a 110-68 win over Tartan Tuesday, Dec. 12. Hudson swept the top three spots in the 500 yard freestyle and took two of the top three places in five other events in the win over Watertown-Mayer. Steven Asmus won the 500 free with a time of 5 minutes, 2.25 seconds, Ethan Hanson was second in 5:33.48 and Jonathan Bennett took third in 5:38.46.
The Hastings girls basketball team held its first four opponents to an average of just over 30 points per game so far this season. Hudson nearly matched that total in the first half. The Hudson Raiders and Hastings Raiders played to a 25-25 tie through the first 18 minutes Friday, Dec. 15, in Hastings. But the home team outscored its Wisconsin visitors 33-20 in the second half to remain undefeated with a 58-45 victory.
The top-ranked Raider boys hockey team erupted for five goals in a seven-minute span late in the second period to snap a 2-2 tie on their way to an 8-2 victory over Menomonie in a Big Rivers Conference game at Gornick Arena Thursday, Dec. 14. The win kept the Raiders undefeated at 6-0 overall and on top of the BRC standings with a mark of 3-0. They visited Rice Lake this past Tuesday, Dec.19, before opening Schwan's Cup play Tuesday, Dec. 26, against St. Paul Academy at the Schwan's Super Rink in Blaine.
Jacob Anderson won an individual title at 160 pounds and heavyweight Cole Godbout was second as the Raider wrestling team finished second at the 24-team Marty Loy Wrestling Classic in Fond du Lac Saturday, Dec. 16. Burlington won the team title with 253 points and Hudson was second with 210.5 while Freedom finished third with 158. Raider coach Chris Hansen said placing second at a prestigious event like the Marty Loy Classic is a tremendous accomplishment.