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Sports from the week of September 13, 2006



15-14 thriller again

This time, TMB rally falls short

By Dick Donaldson

For the second time in two weeks, the Panther football team played in a 15-14 game. But Friday night, Tracy/Milroy/Balaton finished on the short end of the score to the MACCRAY Wolverines.

In both games the Panthers allowed the opponents to take the opening possession the length of the field to score.

“We can’t allow those long drives by our opponents for touchdowns and we can’t always be playing from behind and still be successful,” Co-Head Coach Derek Flann told his players following the game.

“You’ve got to use your heart to get those extra yards to score when you get close,” said Co-Head Coach Randy McIntire to the squad. “And you have got to use your head to avoid costly mistakes.”

Still the game had positives for the Panthers. TMB spotted a team many predicted would contend for the conference title an early score and played them very close the rest of the way. The passing game has emerged s a real threat and the kicking game, with Spencer Zwaschka booming punts (one traveled 65 yards from the line of scrimmage) and Aaron Frisvold’s kickoffs, a real plus.

The turning point of Friday’s game came in the fourth quarter. The Panthers had just scored to close to the score of 15-14 when a Wolverine tried to field Frisvold’s kickoff on the run, and fumbled it. The Panthers’ recovered on MACCRAY’s 35-yard line with 6:35 remaining in the game. A pass to McIntire gave the Panthers a first down at the 24. Two running plays and an incomplete pass made it fourth down and 5 yards to go at the MACCRAY 19. Dolan went back to pass and spotted David Schmidt near the right sideline at about the 10-yard line. Schmidt was covered by a defender behind him. Dolan’s pass was to the outside where only Schmidt could catch it. However Schmidt went to the ground and the pass fell incomplete giving the ball to the Wolverines. Many of the fans were shouting interference and the official yelled, “No! He fell down!”

When asked about the play following the game David Schmidt responded, “I didn’t just fall down!”


The Panthers’ Aaron Frisvold kicking off to the Wolverines. The kick was fielded at the 2 yard line and returned to the 29. From there MACCRAY, despite 2 false start penalties, moved to a touchdown in 12 plays with Quarterback Justin Koenen scampering for the score from 28 yards out. The run for the extra point was good and, with 8:12 left in the first period, the Wolverines led 8-0.

The Panthers received the ensuing kickoff, put the ball in play on their own 29 and went three and out, forcing a punt by Spencer Zwaschka that carried all the way to the end zone for a touchback. This time the Wolverines were stopped by their own penalties and had to punt. TMB got the ball at their own 48. Swan picked up 7 yards on first down before QB Isaac Dolan hooked up with David Schmidt for a 26 yard gain to the MACCRAY 19 yard line. A false start penalty halted the drive and TMB turned the ball over at the MACCRAY 13. The Wolverines moved to a first down at their own 30 yard line but a fumble recovery and a running play for a 1 yard loss stopped them and they punted. With 3rd and 10 for TMB Dolan hit Schmidt for a 13 yard gain and a first down as the first period ended. The Panthers moved all the way to the MACCRAY 12 yard line before turning the ball over on downs when a 4th down pass to Kyle McIntire gained only 2 yards.

MACCRAY, assisted by two Panther face mask penalties, moved all the way to the TMB 45 before punting. The Panthers took possession on their own 36. A false start penalty and a running play that lost 8 yards brought about a 2nd and 23 before a pass interference penalty gave TMB a first down at their own 38 yard line. On the next play Dolan hit Schmidt for 62 yards and a touchdown. With 5:36 remaining in the first half the run failed and MACCRAY held an 8-6 lead.

The Wolverines returned the kick off to their own 35. From there MACCRAY reeled off 4 straight running plays of 8,22,9and11 yards plus a 15 yard face mask penalty gave them a touchdown. The kick was good and with 4:01 remaining MACCRAY regained the lead 15-6.

Schmidt returned the kickoff to the 29 and passes of 7 yards and 6 yards to Schmidt and McIntire gave TMB a first down at the TMB 42. On third a 9 Dolan’s pass was intercepted and returned to the Panther 8 yard line. However a 15 yard penalty on MACCRAY moved the ball back to the 23. The Wolverines made a first down to the 9 yard line but the Panther defense stopped them and took the ball back at the 10 yard line as the first half ended.

TMB took the second half kickoff on the 13 yard line and moved to a first down before having to punt. MACCRAY could not move the ball and punted back with the Panthers returning to their own 10. With 3rd and 10 the Wolverines intercepted a pass and took over at the TMB 28 yard line. MACCRAY got a first down at the TMB 17 but a good, hard tackle by McIntire denied them on a fourth down try and the Panthers took the ball back at the 10 yard line. TMB was forced to punt with the Wolverines putting the ball in play at the TMB 42 yard line. On third down MACCRAY fumbled and Spencer Zwaschka recovered at the Panther 33 yard line.

TMB moved to a first down at the Panther 44 but subsequently lost the ball on a fumble at the 50 yard line. MACCRAY returned the favor and fumbled to TMB at the Panther 29. From there TMB marched, in nine plays (5 rushes for 20 yards and 4 passes for 26) including 2 Wolverine penalties, to a touchdown with Swan scoring on a 6 yard run. On the conversion attempt TMB was penalized for a false start and MACCRAY for pass interference before the pass to Schmidt was good. With 6:35 remaining in the game TMB had closed to 15-14.

On the following kickoff the Wolverines fumbled and the Panthers got the ball back at the MACCRAY 35 yard line. With 5:46 left Dolan completed a pass to McIntire for 13 yards and a first down on the 24. Swan picked up 3 yards and then 2 yards sandwiched around an incomplete pass to make it 4th and 5 at the Wolverine 19 yard line. The fourth down pass to Schmidt was ruled incomplete and MACCRAY took possession on their own 19.

The Wolverines then kept the ball for 10 plays while running out the clock.

TMB rushed 30 times for 72 yards and were 15 of 30 passing for 198 yards. MACCRAY rushed 46 times for 250 yards and were 7 of 16 passing for 54 yards. TMB had 270 yards of total offense to 304 by the Wolverines.

Chris Swenson led the Panther defense with 25 tackles and a recovered fumble, Seth Swan had 16, Spencer Zwaschka 15 and a recovered fumble, Dan Deiter, Andrew Prairie, John Gervais and Kyle McIntire had 11 each, John Swenhaugen, Taylor Rignell, Aaron Frisvold and Chris Hansen had 4 each with Rignell also forcing a fumble and Frisvold recovering one, Pheng Her, Nathan Jacob, Jordan Rolling, Isaac Dolan and Tyler Bauer had 2 each plus Drew Nelson had one.

MACCRAY 8-7-0-0-15

TMB 0-6-0-8-14

First quarter

MACCRAY- Koenen 28 run, Gussing run

Second quarter

TMB-Schmidt 62 pass from Dolan, run failed

MACCRAY-Koenen 11 run, kick good

Fourth quarter

TMB- Swan 6 run, pass good

Rushing- MACCRAY- Koenen19 for 115

TMB-Swan17 for 44

Passing-MACCRAY-Koenen 7 of 16 for 54 yards

TMB-Dolan 15 of 30 for 198 yards

Receiving-MACCRAY- Madsen 2 for 24 yards

TMB-Schmidt 7 for 123 yards

Spikers split six matches in 5 days

The Panther volleyball team has had busy week.

Tracy/Milroy/Balaton swept Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg Thursday, lost to Owatonna and to Benilde-St Margaret’s Friday, beat Willmar and West Fargo on Saturday and lost to Windom Monday. The action left the Panthers with a 3-4 season record.

“We were really beat up for the Windom game,” said Panther Coach Cyndi Raymond. “Over the weekend Lindsey Daniels suffered a mild concussion, Emily Scharfe is hurting and Michele Lanoue is still rehabbing her knee. We had to start freshman Shea Lanoue, who had really played and served very well over the weekend, against Windom. In spite of the soreness and injuries the kids have really played well.”

The scores of the KMS match were 27-25, 25-16 and 25-23. Jackie Haecherl led the team in serving as she was 33 of 33 with 2 aces to go with her 11 digs. Mallory Fultz and Molly Miller led the hitting with 16 and 10 kills respectively.

On Friday, in the first match, in the Southwest Minnesota Challenge, the Panthers fell to Owatonna by scores of 12-17 and 25-25. The whole Panther team served very well as they were 29 of 32 with 5 aces. Mallory Fultz led the offense with 4 kills while Shelby Jones had 6 digs and Lindsey Daniels followed with 4.

In the second Friday match TMB fell to Benilde-St Margaret’s 13-25 and 25-25. Again the team served very well as they went 32 of 35 with 4 aces. Michele Lanoue led the offense with 4 of the team’s 11 kills. Shelby Jones came up with 5 of the 16 digs that were recorded.

On Saturday the Panthers opened play with a 27-25, 25-19 win over Willmar. Shelby Jones led the team in serving as she went 7 for 7 with 3 aces. The whole team was 51 of 53 with 6 aces. Mallory Fultz led the hitting with 6 of the team’s 16 kills. Lindsey Daniels had 9 digs and Shelby Jones 7.

In Saturday’s second match the Panthers won over West Fargo 25-11 and 25-19. The team served 56 of 58 with 7 aces and Jackie Haecherl was 17 of 17 with 4 aces to go with her team leading 8 digs. Mallory Fultz had 6 kills and Michele Lanoue followed with 5.

Against Windom on Monday the Panthers lost 25-15, 25-22 and 25-16 without the services of setter Lindsey Daniels. Mallory Fultz led the serving as she was 18 of 19 with 3 aces while Shelby Jones was 3 of 5 with 2 aces. The team was 51 of 61 with 6 aces for the match. Jones had 10 digs and Emily Scharfe had 12 of the team’s 24 kills.

First home soccer match is double overtime thriller

The Plum Creek Area Penguin soccer team made their home debut Tuesday afternoon against Worthington and lost in two overtime periods 4-2. The loss dropped the Penguins’ season record to 0-6.

“Today was a new beginning for the Penguins,” said Coach Phil Goetstouwers. “We played a tough game and, although we lost, everyone involved should be very proud. We accomplished several things. First of all, we played tough physically and mentally for the whole game. We eliminated the easy goals that we’ve allowed in the past. We scored more goals and, best of all, we overcame a mental obstacle. In the past, when an opposing team went ahead by a goal our confidence was rattled and we didn’t play at our ability level. The heads dropped and it seemed like we gave up. Although we were outshot 7 to 24, we played very tough defensively. In the first half, we moved the ball around better and created better opportunities, but hats off to our defense led by Vang Thao, as well as a hats off to Kong Thao, our goalie. On offense, Fong Her scored both goals. The first one was set up by a cross from Peng Thao. The second goal was set up by a free kick from Shueleng Yang, deflected by David Ottogali. The game started off great with the Penguins scoring the first goal. Then, down 2-1, the Penguins scored again to keep it tied for the remainder of the half. The second half was scoreless forcing the two five minute overtime periods. With seconds left in the first overtime, Worthington scored off a corner kick. In the second overtime Worthington scored with another header, this time off a throw-in.”

“We all feel proud of today’s efforts,” added Goetstouwers. “Although winning is still our ultimate goal, we are coming together more and more as a team and we are exhibiting more and more improvement each game and practice. Considering we played a solid team with a record of 5-2 and tied them at the end of regulation, we know we are on the right track to becoming successful. This young group of guys are starting to work together, connect and trust one another, which are key ingredients to making a successful team.”

The Penguins’ next home match will be against SW Christian on Thursday, September 28 at 4:30 p.m.


Girls all improve times

Runners narrowly miss goal of beating MCC

Panther cross-country runners continued to improve their performances at the Marshall Invitational Monday.

The Panther boys were fifth and the girls eighth at the Marshall Invitational Monday.

“Ayla Snyder finished her third race of the season by shaving eight minutes off her previous 4000 meter time!” said Panther Coach Marie Hanson. “I knew Ayla was more than capable of that, but she needed to believe in herself as well. She really helped the team and lived up to her potential tonight! Jessica Mason also ran a respectable race coming in as our fourth runner. The entire girls’ team finished with a strong showing and every one of them improved their time which is an amazing performance.”

The Panther boys, led by a fourth-place from Ryan Tholen, also had a strong showing.

“Alex Jones ran a tough race placing tenth in the midst of a good Marshall team. Derek Evans and Joe Hook really picked up the pace tonight as well,” Hanson said.

The Panther runners just missed their pre-meet goal of finishing a head of Murray County Central. The Panther girls finished seven points behind MCC, with the boys just a point behind. Hanson noted that the teams would meet again in Worthington Saturday.

“Hopefully, we will be able to achieve this goal.

Girls’ varsity

1)Marshall, 18; 2) Windom, 80; 3) Redwood Valley, 100; 4) YME, 117; 5) SCMC, 147; 6)Worthington, 154; 7) MCC, 160; 8) T/M/B, 167; 9) Lakeview, 223.

Karli Tholen, 14, 16:56; Ayla Snyder, 25, 18:46; Haley Hebig, 42, 19:06; Jessica Mason, 44, 19:24; Jen Vroman, 48, 19:40; Celia Brockway, 50, 20:03; Carly Miller, 59, 22:15.

Boys’ varsity

1) Marshall, 35; 2) Redwood Valley, 62; 3)SCMC, 103; 4)MCC, 106; 5) T/M/B, 106; 6) WWG/RRC, 142; Worthington, 145; 8) Pipestone, 181.

Ryan Tholen,4, 16:56; Alex Jones, 10, 17:42; Joe Hook, 34, 19:51; Sam VanNevel, 36, 19:54; Derek Evans, 38, 20:04; James Prairie, 56, 24:20.

Girls’ junior varsity

Rachel Stobb, 11th, 20:22; Tinke Albach, 23rd, 22:09; Bekah Zens, 30:07.

Boys’ junior varsity

Dalton Kirk, 21st,18:03; Josh Lubben, 28th, 19:50.

Junior high

Mac Tiegs, 14:26.

Ryan Tholen tops Tracy meet

The Panther Cross Country Invitational at the Tracy Country Club Thursday, began with a boys’ junior varsity race followed two minutes later by the girls’ junior varsity. For the Panthers, Dalton Kirk placed 13th with a time of 7:57; Josh Lubben, 22nd with a time of 8:41; Mac Tiegs, 37th with a time of 16:06. For the girls’ it was Ayla Snyder 8th with a time of 8:33; Tinke Albach 37th with a time of 9:34; Bekah Zens 73 with a time of 14:13.

In the varsity portion of the meet the Panther girls and boys were both 5th.

The boys team scores were: 1) Canby/Minneota, 75; 2) SCMC, 92; 3) MACCRAY, 97; 4) SESM, 110; 5) T/M/B, 115; 6)WWG/RRC, 130; 7) Worthington, 141; 8) YME, 180.

Scoring for the Panther boys were: Ryan Tholen, first, 16:43; Alex Jones, 10th, 18:50; Sam VanNevel, 31st, 20:27; Joe Hook, 34th, 21:07; Derek Evans, 35th, 20:22; James Prairie, 53rd, 24:50.

“Both the boys and girls teams had great performances today!” said Panther Coach Marie Hanson. “Ryan Tholen showed his prowess on our boy’s course. He had some competition too. Ryan went into the final half mile with two competitors on his shoulders, but he shook them off to win his race. Alex Jones showed more of his ability today, placing tenth in tough competition. I think Alex is starting to come around again, I believe we can see great performances from him for the rest of the season. Sam VanNevel also had a strong showing. Sam worked very hard this summer and it’s really paying off. It’s very exciting to watch Sam improve –he really deserves it.”

The girls’ team scores were: 1) Canby/Minneota, 5; 2) Windom, 6; 3) YME, 10; 4)SCMC, 151; 5) T/M/B, 168; 6)SMSE, 195; NUC, incomplete.

Scoring for the Panther girls were: Karli Tholen, 11th, 17:45; Jen Vroman, 35th, 20:22; Haley Hebig, 32nd, 20:44; Carly Miller, 42nd, 21:11; Jessica Mason, 44th, 21:38; Celia Brockway, 45th, 21:40.

“On the girls’ side we also had some good performances,” said Hanson. “Karli Tholen led her team again, placing 11th. She runs a very smart race. I’m very impressed with her ability to ‘run her own race’ at such a young age. Jen Vroman stepped up this race as well, the start of her race looked great…I look to her to really help lead the team by the end of the season. Carly Miller also improved this race. Carly has a lot of talent, but little experience. The more races she runs the more she will improve and she too will be exciting to watch as the season unfolds.”