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 boys' hockey team is riding a wave of goals into the postseason. The Raiders erupted for 17 goals in their final two games of the regular season last week, rocking Chippewa Falls, 7-1, on the road last Tuesday before hitting double-digits in a 10-0 home shutout Thursday over Eau Claire North. Hudson ended the regular season with a record of 11-8-1 overall (8-4-0 in the Big Rivers Conference) and earned the No. 3 seed in the 11-team WIAA regional bracket. They will face the winner of Tuesday night's game between No. 6 Amery and No. 11 Baldwin-Woodville this Thursday, Feb.
If you missed the last five minutes of the second period, you missed all the scoring in the Raider girls' hockey team's final home game of the season last Thursday, Feb.
After coming up one basket short in a one-point loss at Rice Lake back on Jan. 7, last Saturday's rematch between the Raider and Warrior girls basketball teams was all Hudson. The Raiders jumped out to a 28-14 halftime lead on their home court and made their shots down the stretch on their way to defeating Rice Lake, 56-48, for their first Big Rivers Conference win of the season. "It's been a long time coming," head coach Ed Johnson said. "We were able to put everything together and played a complete game.
The Raider boys' basketball team dropped a pair of games last week, 57-38, at Big Rivers Conference leader Rice Lake Friday and 45-37 at home to North St. Paul Saturday. The Raiders, now 6-4 in BRC play, 11-8 overall, will wrap up the regular season with home games this Thursday, Feb. 16, against Eau Claire North and Saturday, Feb. 18, against Stillwater before going on the road to face Chippewa Falls next Friday, Feb. 24. WIAA regional play is set to begin Tuesday, Feb.
The Raider boys' swimming and diving team qualified for this weekend's WIAA State Championships in six events while setting three new school records and placing third as a team at the 11-team Division 1 sectional meet last Saturday, Feb. 11 at the middle school pool. Eau Claire Memorial/North won the team title with 406 points followed by Chippewa Falls with 322 and Hudson with 288.5. Senior Charlie Skinner and sophomore Willie Skinner each qualified for state in two events as well as members of the Raiders' 200 yard medley and 400 freestyle relay teams.
Hudson won four of the first five matches Tuesday night but earned just one win the rest of the way as Wausau West defeated the Raiders, 41-18, at the WIAA Division 1 Team Sectional Championship in Merrill. After a loss at 152 pounds to open the match, Kolya Hawksford won a major decision at 160, Tanner Owens earned a technical fall at 170, and Dima Hawksford and Derek Schindler won decisions at 182 and 195 pounds, respectively.
Four Raider wrestlers earned individual titles and 12 Raiders moved on to the individual sectional as Hudson claimed the WIAA regional championship Saturday in Chippewa Falls. Hudson advances to face Wausau West in a WIAA team sectional Tuesday, Feb. 14, in Merrill. The winner advances to the WIAA State Team Tournament March 2-3 in Madison. A dozen Raiders will compete this Saturday at Eau Claire North for a berth in the WIAA State Individual Tournament Feb. 23-25. The individual sectional tournament gets underway at 10:30 a.m.
There was plenty of hype surrounding last Saturday's (Feb. 4) Big Rivers/Dunn-St. Croix Challenge in River Falls. And in the end, Hudson emerged as the champion of what Raider coach Chris Hansen called the toughest tournament in the ten year history of the event. The Raiders crowned three individual champs on their way to earning their second straight BRC/DSC Challenge title. Hudson finished with a team score of 214 to finish above BRC regular season champion Chippewa Falls' second place score of 202.5. St.
The Raider boys' basketball team moved to within a half-game of second place in the Big Rivers Conference with wins over Menomonie and River Falls last week. The Raiders defeated Menomonie, 41-30, on the road Thursday, Feb. 2 before topping River Falls, 42-37, Saturday, Feb. 4 at home. The two victories gave the Raiders a record of 6-3 in the BRC (11-6 overall), and into sole possession of third place, one-half game behind 7-3 Chippewa Falls.
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.