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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River Falls High School senior Mari Pechacek made the shot of the WIAA Girls State Golf Championships Tuesday when she made a hole-in-one on the par-3, 135-yard third hole at University Ridge Golf Course in Madison. Pechacek's ace helped the Wildcats shave 15 strokes from their first day score and move up two spots to finish in seventh place in the 12-team Division 1 competition. The Cats were in ninth place after Monday's first round score of 358, but bounced back with 343 Tuesday to finish with a two-day total of 701.
Tanner Kusilek ran for 249 yards and three touchdowns and Ryan Kusilek passed for two touchdowns and ran for another as the Wildcats picked up their first Big Rivers Conference win of the season with a 51-7 victory over Eau Claire North Friday night in Eau Claire. Tanner Kusilek scored on touchdown runs of 4, 79 and 76 yards while Ryan Kusilek capped the scoring with a 61-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. Ryan Kusilek also threw a pair of touchdown passes to Erik Wunrow covering 25 and 23 yards.
Both the River Falls and Hudson boys' soccer teams will open the playoffs at home when WIAA regional action begins Tuesday, Oct. 11. The Wildcats (13-6-0) earned the No. 5 seed in the 16-team regional and will host No. 12 D.C. Everest (5-11-1) Tuesday at 4 p.m. Hudson (8-11-0) drew the No. 8 seed and will host No. 9 Marshfield (6-10-2) at 7 p.m. A River Falls win would send them to the regional final against either No. 4 Wausau East (13-5-0) or No. 13 Lakeland (6-7-1) Thursday, Oct. 13, at the home of the highest remaining seed.
Halle Hauer earned medalist honors and three Wildcats finished in the top five to lead the River Falls girls' golf team to a 23-stroke victory at the WIAA Division 1 La Crosse Sectional Wednesday at Forest Hills Golf Course. The sectional title earned the Cats a berth in the WIAA State Tournament for the first time since 2001. Hauer defeated Grace Onsrud of La Crosse Central/Logan in a one-hole playoff to earn medalist honors.
Wildcat girls' swim coach Lynn Huiskamp wasn't disappointed with the Wildcats' first Big Rivers Conference loss of the season Thursday, especially when the Cats traveled to St. Paul two days later and took third place at the Simley Invitational. "This meet, despite the loss, was a very affirming and upbeat meet for our team," Huiskamp said after the Cats' 111-75 loss to the Raiders. "We knew Hudson had gained significant speed in their team this season and were mentally well prepared to greet them.
Hudson scored on its first two possessions of the game and went on to spoil River Falls' homecoming by shutting out the Wildcats 28-0 Friday night at Ramer Field. The Raiders compiled 416 yards of total offense compared to 167 for the Wildcats to keep their playoff hopes alive. Hudson improved to 3-2 in the Big Rivers Conference, 4-3 overall while River Falls dropped to 0-5 in conference play, 2-5 overall. After a River Falls punt on the opening possession, Hudson scored on its first possession of the game when quarterback Luke Miller hit Tucker Malecha with a 16-yard touchdown pass. The W
Four Wildcats finished in the top eight to lead the Cats to a five stroke victory at the WIAA Division 1 Golf Regional at Turtleback Golf Course in Rice Lake Wednesday. River Falls won the regional title with a team score of 341. New Richmond was second with 346 followed by Hudson with 374 and Rice Lake with 387. All four teams move on to the WIAA Sectional next Wednesday, Oct. 5, at Forest Hills Golf Course in La Crosse. Senior Mari Pechacek led the Cats by tying for second place with a score of 83.
River Falls led three times in the first half and trailed by just two points, 21-19, at halftime, but Chippewa Falls scored four straight touchdowns in the second half on their way to a 49-26 victory over the Wildcats Friday night at Ramer Field. The Wildcats scored on their opening possession of the game when Tanner Kusilek capped a 68-yard drive with a two-yard touchdown run.
The Wildcat girls tennis team won two of three matches at the New Richmond Triangular Saturday to finish in a three-way tie for first place. The Cats avenged a 6-1 loss to the host Tigers earlier this season with a 4-3 victory over the host team in their opening match before sweeping Rice Lake, 7-0. In the final match, Altoona pulled out a 4-3 victory over River Falls. All three teams finished 2-1 on the day, although the Wildcats had more total wins by virtue of their 7-0 victory over Rice Lake. "It was a great day for the girls, all told," coach David Markson said.
Four-year-old Parker Bruesewitz appears to be enjoying his ride during the mutton busting contest at Saturday afternoon's performance of the 47th annual Falcon Frontier Days Rodeo at UW-River Falls Lab Farm No. 1. competitors from 14 collegiate rodeo clubs competing in the Great Plains Region of the NIRA took part in three performances last Friday and Saturday. The rodeo is the oldest and only collegiate rodeo held east of the Mississippi and is sponsored by the UW-RF Rodeo Club.