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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The Raider girls tennis team didn't have long to prepare for the 2017 season. With just three days of practice under their belts, the Raiders traveled to Eau Claire Saturday, Aug. 12, for a tournament co-hosted by Eau Claire North and Eau Claire Memorial. After going 2-1 in Eau Claire, the team headed across the state Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 21-22, for the two-day Green Bay Southwest Sweet 16 Tournament, where they went 3-1 to finish fifth. They played their first home match in over a year Thursday, Aug. 24, against River Falls and came away with a 6-1 victory.
Aaron Squires and Riley Brown each ran for over 100 yards and scored five touchdowns between them-- all in the first half-- as Hudson rolled to a 49-12 victory over Eau Claire North in the Big Rivers Conference football opener for both teams Friday, Sept. 1, in Hudson. Squires ran for 119 yards and three scores and Brown totaled 100 yards and two touchdowns as Hudson put up a total of 382 yards on the ground.
Chloe Germain posted a team-low score of 52 at the River Falls Golf Club Monday, Aug. 28, as the Raider girls golf team finished fifth with a team score of 221 at the first Big Rivers Conference match of the season. Eau Claire Memorial took top honors with 191 followed by River Falls with 201, Chippewa Falls with 211, and Eau Claire North with 216. Menomonie finished 17 strokes behind Hudson in sixth place with 238 while Rice Lake was seventh with 252.
Hudson football coach Adam Kowles admitted his team might have been caught up in the fanfare and hoopla surrounding the debut of Hudson's new Raider Stadium Friday night, Aug. 25. "I'll be honest, I think the guys felt a lot of pressure on them to win since it was the opener at the new stadium," Kowles said. "I know I did. We played a little bit tight. I hope that going forward we can just get back to playing football, flying around, and having fun, because that's when we are at our best."
The Raider volleyball team jumped right into action last week, competing in a pair of quads at Marshfield and St. Croix Central before playing in the two-day Menomonie Sprawl over the weekend at UW-Stout. The Raiders, who return just three letterwinners from last year's squad, went 1-2 at the Marshfield Quad Tuesday Aug. 22, before winning two of three at St. Croix Central Thursday, Aug. 24, in Hammond. In eight games at the Menomonie Sprawl Friday and Saturday, Aug. 25-26, the Raiders went 5-3, including a straight set win over Grantsburg to clinch seventh place.
While most of the attention was focused on the Raider football team's first game at the new high school stadium last week, Hudson's boys soccer team was actually the first to play on the new turf field. The Raiders hosted Woodbury under the lights Thursday, Aug. 24, and while the outcome was a 2-1 loss, head coach Steve Sollom said there was plenty to like about the brand new facility.
The newly formed Hudson Tennis Association hosted its first official event called "Rally the Family" Sunday, Aug. 13, at the St. Croix Valley Indoor Tennis Center on Brakke Drive. In conjunction with the Unites States Tennis Association (USTA) Northern organization who provided the instructors, drills and activities, the HTA also had volunteers there to assist with programming throughout the three-hour event.
Sophomore Rachel Ball picked right up where she left off in her state-qualifying freshman season by winning the girls race by nearly a minute at the season-opening Eau Claire North Husky Invitational at City Wells Park Saturday, Aug. 26. Ball ran away from her competition to win the 5,000 meter race with a time of 18 minutes, 27 seconds. Katie Faris of Chippewa Falls was a distant second in 19:23. Ball returns after finishing 15th at the WIAA State Championships in 2016, the only Raider girl to qualify for state.
Stevens Point scored 16 unanswered points in the fourth quarter, including the game-winning field goal with 14 seconds remaining, to defeat Hudson, 23-21, in the inagural game at Hudson's new Raider Stadium Friday night, Aug. 25. Hudson reeled off 21 straight points in the third quarter to take a 21-7 lead but couldn't overcome four turnovers in its first loss of the season.
Of all the amenities at the new Hudson High School Raider stadium, there's one that's sure to please everybody. "We have running water," athletic director Stephanie DeVos pointed out. "No more porta-potties." Indeed, the men's restroom features six stalls and eight urinals while there are 20 stalls in the women's restroom. There are also three family restrooms; a far cry from the six porta-potties that sat next to the scoreboard at Newton Field.