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Sports from the week of September 24, 2003

Coach: TMB shows it can play with elite teams

The Panther volleyball team split four matches at the Eagle Invitational at Apple Valley over the weekend. There were 16 teams involved including six of the top ten ranked teams in the state in class 3A.

"Usually there are two or three very good teams in this tournament but this year almost all the teams were very good," said Panther Coach Katie Gervais.

Two teams from Southwestern Minnesota reached the finals with Jackson County Central defeating Marshall for the championship.

The participating teams, in order of finish, were Jackson County Central, Marshall, Chaska, Apple Valley, Lakeville, Fosston, Hibbing, Alexandria, Eagan, Armstrong, T/M/B, White Bear Lake, Mabel-Canton, Central Minnesota Christian, Moorhead and Bloomington Jefferson.

Chaska, the No 1 ranked Class 3A team, beat TMB 25-8, 25-14. The Panthers won the next match over Mabel-Canton 25-21, 25-20. Saturday, the Panthers lost to Eagan, the No. 9 rated team in class 3A 25-14, 25-17 but beat White Bear Lake 21-25, 25-20 and 15-8.

"We started the tournament not playing very well but improved during the weekend," said Gervais. "That is what we wanted. Every one of the teams there are capable of making it to the state tournament in their class and we proved we could play with them."

The Panthers are now 8-7 for the season and they are 3-0 in the 212 Conference. T/M/B meets Yellow Medicine East in a conference clash at Tracy on Thursday, Sept. 25.

Runners prepare for Redwood Falls meet

The Tracy/Milroy/Balaton Girls Cross Country Team ran in the Windom Invitational last Thursday. Team scores were: United South Central, 48; Martin County West, 57; Windom, 87; 4) TMB, 90; 5) Lake Crystal/Welcome Memorial, 145.

Jillian Tholen paced the Panthers with a third-place finish and a time of. 16:11.

Other TMB varsity competitors were: 13) Steph Kaup, 17:22; 20) Rebecca Gervais, 17:45; 25) Dani Jones, 18:14; 37) Jenna Schaar, 19:29; 39) Jessica Coulter, 19:49; 40) Celia Brockway, 19:52.

"This was our third meet in six days and that makes it difficult," said Panther Coach Steve Jones. "The kids ran very well in spite of it. We now have only one meet a week for the rest of the season. That gives us a chance to rest our legs and try to improve."

Panther runners travel to Redwood Falls Thursday.

MACCRAY passes Panthers by

State-ranked Wolves blitz TMB 40-13

The Panther football team opened conference play with a 40-13 loss to MACCRAY Friday night at Tracy.

The loss dropped T/M/B's season record to 0-4 and they are 0-1 in the conference. MACCRAY improved to 4-0 for the season and 1-0 in the conference.

"We slowed their running game down and forced them to pass," said Panther Coach Randy McIntire. "But it turned out that their passing really hurt us."

The Panthers hung in there with the Wolverines in the first period, which ended 7-7. However three unanswered second period touchdowns by the Wolverines put T/M/B in a deep hole when they trailed 28-7 at the intermission. MACCRAY also scored once in each of the third and fourth quarters while the Panthers were able to score only once.

The Panther defense held the Wolverine rushing attack to 3.8 yards per carry, but gave up three touchdown passes and a long pass to the three-yard line set up another score.

"We did real well against the run," said McIntire. "It is a slow process but we are improving."