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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Hudson junior Bailee Dierks reached the podium in the 100 meter hurdles for the second straight year and both Hudson and Rivers Falls girls' earned medals in the relays on the final day of the WIAA State Track and Field Championships Saturday, June 2, in La Crosse. Dierks, the defending Division 1 state runner-up in the hurdles, placed fourth in Saturday's finals with a time of 15.23 seconds to pick up her second state medal in the event.
Both River Falls' girls relays qualified for Saturday’s finals and they will be joined in the 400 meter relay finals by the team from Hudson after the first day of the WIAA Division 1 Track and Field Championships in La Crosse Friday, June 1.
The Wildcat softball team saw its season come to an end with a 10-0 loss to Hudson in a WIAA Division 1 Regional semifinal game Wednesday, May 23, in Hudson. The Raiders scored three runs in the first inning, five in the third and two more in the fifth to keep their season alive while the Wildcat's year ended with a record of 2-14. Skyler Ross had the lone River Falls hit in the game, a two-out single in the first inning. The Wildcat's only other base runner came in the top of the fifth when Jenna Huppert laid down a bunt and reached on a throwing error.
The Wildcat girls' soccer team entered the season with some pretty lofty goals. The first was to win what is arguably one of the toughest conferences in the state. They fell just short of that goal, losing their only two games of the season to Big Rivers Conference champion and the eighth-ranked team in the state in Division 1-- Eau Claire Memorial-- to end up second, their highest finish since 2013.
River Falls boys' golf coach Josh Bazey figured a team score of 320 by the Wildcats at the Division 1 sectional in Stevens Point would be good enough to get them to state. But 315 would be even better. That's the score the Cats posted at the sectional Tuesday, May 29, after shooting their best 9-hole score of the season on the back nine at the Stevens Point Country Club to qualify for the WIAA State Tournament for the second year in a row.
Luke Naughton would make his grandpa proud. The River Falls High School sophomore is one of just 24 athletes from across the country to be invited to the Scholastic Clay Target Program's USA Junior Olympic Development Camp for shooting sports in Colorado Springs May 23-28. And it's all because he liked to tag along and watch his grandpa shoot when he was just a toddler.
Hudson freshman Bennett Swavely earned medalist honors and River Falls had three players in the top ten as the Wildcats finished second and the Raiders placed third at the 8-team WIAA Division 1 Boys' Golf Regional at Troy Burne Tuesday, May 22.
Former Wildcats Jon Krueger, a junior at UW-Stout and James Witt, a junior at UW-La Crosse, have both received honorable mention to the 2018 All-WIAC Baseball Team. Krueger worked predominantly in right field, but also played as the designated hitter, and was a Blue Devil leader at the plate where he batted .321 (36-for-112) with 13 runs scored, 13 RBI on two doubles, a triple and a home run.
Sorensen, Tolkkinen qualify for nationals UW-River Falls senior Colton Sorensen and junior Linsey Tolkkinen have qualified to compete in the NCAA Division III Track and Field Championships this weekend, May 24-26, at UW-La Crosse.
Thirty-two River Falls athletes advanced to sectional as the Wildcat boys took first place and the girls placed second at the eight-team WIAA Division 1 Track and Field Regional in Superior Monday, May 21. The Wildcat boys will be sending 17 athletes to the sectional meet in 11 different events while the girls qualified 15 athletes in 12 events. All eight of the Wildcat relay teams advanced.