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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Two nights after a tough 6-4 loss at home to River Falls last Tuesday, Jan. 31, the Raider boys hockey team traveled to Rice Lake and knocked the Warriors out of a share of first place in the Big Rivers Conference. James Fall had two goals and an assist as the Raiders handed Rice Lake just its second BRC loss of the season and knocked them out of a tie with Eau Claire Memorial for first place. Hudson improved to 6-4-0 in BRC play, 9-8-1 overall and will wrap up the regular season at home this Thursday, Feb. 9, at 7 p.m.
Hudson earned all-conference honors in seven different events, including the top two spots in the 500 yard freestyle, on its way to a third place team finish at the Big Rivers Conference Swimming and Diving Championships Saturday, Feb.
The Raider girls' basketball team lost a pair of three-point games last week, coming up short to Eau Claire Memorial, 55-52, at home last Tuesday, Jan. 31 before dropping a 42-39 decision Friday, Feb. 3 at Menomonie. "We had a shot," head coach Ed Johnson said about both games. "That's what you're looking for. We had two chances at the end, unfortunately we couldn't take advantage." The Raiders trailed by six with one quarter remaining last Tuesday against Memorial before a late rally fell just short.
Both the UW-River Falls men's and women's basketball teams can earn at least shares of their respective Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) championships when they take on UW-Whitewater in a college basketball doubleheader Saturday at Karges Center. The Falcon women host the Warhawks at 3 p.m. while the men's game is scheduled for 5 p.m. The UWRF women can share the WIAC title with a win over Whitewater and a UW-Eau Claire victory over UW-Stevens Point. The Blugolds and Pointers square off at 3 p.m.
Charlie Skinner and Willie Skinner each won one event and helped the Raiders' 400 freestyle relay to a victory in the final event of the night but the Hudson boys' swim and dive team came out on the short end of a 92-78 decision in a Big Rivers Conference dual meet at the middle school pool last Thursday, Jan. 26. Saturday, Jan. 28, the Raiders had two of the top five finishers in five different events, including three victories, at the Buffalo (Minn.) Border Battle. Up next for the team is the Big Rivers Conference meet this Saturday, Feb.
Even a slight shift in momentum can change the direction of a team's season. The Raiders girls' hockey team broke a six game losing streak by tying Chippewa Falls/Menomonie back on Jan. 19, and used that game as a springboard for two road victories last week. Last Thursday, Jan. 26, the Raiders took the short trip down Hwy. 35 to the Wildcat Centre in River Falls to face the fourth-ranked and three time defending state champion, St. Croix Valley Fusion, a team they lost to in overtime three weeks earlier. The Raiders emerged this time with a 4-3 upset victory. Saturday, Jan.
The Raider gymnastics team wasn't content with posting a season-high score of 132.8 in its dual meet against River Falls last Tuesday, Jan. 24.
The Raider boys' hockey team scored five second-period goals on its way to a 10-2 victory at Menomonie last Tuesday, Jan. 24 before coming up just short in a 4-2 loss to Big Rivers Conference leader Eau Claire Memorial on Thursday. Dylan Haskins had four goals, including two shorthanded goals less than a minute apart, in Tuesday's rout of the Mustangs. Hudson took a 3-1 first period lead on goals by Josh Dardine, Lawrence Pruitt and Taylor Casey.
Big Rivers Conference wrestling fans have had last Thursday's regular season finale between Hudson and Chippewa Falls circled on their calendars since the beginning of the season. The match between the only two remaining undefeated conference teams lived up to expectations, but in the end Chippewa Falls held on for a 30-26 victory on its home mat to hand the Raiders their first BRC loss since 2004 and snap their six-year BRC title run. The loss left the Raiders with a record of 5-1 in BRC duals while Chippewa Falls finished at 6-0. Hudson reeled off four straight victories from 160
Following a 48-38 nonconference loss at home to Edina, Minn. last Tuesday, Jan. 24, the Raider boys' basketball team went on the road and posted a 46-43 Big Rivers Conference victory over Eau Claire Memorial Friday to improve to 4-3 in conference play. Hudson, now 9-5 overall, will visit Menomonie (5-3, 8-7) Thursday, Feb. 2 before returning home to host River Falls (4-4, 6-9) Saturday, Feb. 4 at 7:30 p.m. They'll hit the road for a nonconference game Monday, Feb.