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State Adapted Softball Tournament
Home Page Photo The adapted softball programs of the Minnesota State High School League's member schools take center stage on Friday and Saturday, June 3-4, at Coon Rapids High School for their 23rd annual tournament. Here is a look at the tournament:

What to watch
Here are some storylines to follow during this season's adapted softball state tournament:
  • In the CI Division, Chaska/Chanhassen/Prior Lake/Shakopee is the defending state champion. The Southern Stars are 10-2 this season and are the No. 3 South seed in the bracket. Last year's title was the first for the Southern Stars.
  • Anoka-Hennepin is the defending champion in the PI Division. The crown in 2015 was the first for the Mustangs in the PI Division. Anoka-Hennepin is 9-2 this season and earned the No. 1 North seed in the bracket.
  • Hana France, a senior outfielder on the Anoka-Hennepin PI Division squad, was the Athena Award winner at Blaine High School.
  • Robbinsdale/Hopkins/Mound Westonka, which won six consecutive PI Division state championships from 2009-14, has a state-best 10 overall.
  • Robbinsdale/Hopkins/Mound Westonka head coach Marcus Onsum has a state-best 162-31 record in 16 softball seasons.
  • Dakota United PI coach Brett Kosidowski has led the Hawks to a 67-7 record in the PI Division over the past six seasons.
  • Dakota United senior shortstop Grayson Nicolay, who holds numerous PI Division state records, ends his impressive career.

      2016 State Adapted Softball Tournament-CI Division
    Quarterfinals
    6/3 4:00 PM
    6/3 5:30 PM
    6/3 7:00 PM
    6/3 7:00 PM
    Semifinals
    6/4 12:00 PM
    6/4 12:00 PM
    Final
    6/4 4:00 PM
    3rd Place
    6/4 3:30 PM
    Consolation - Semifinals
    6/4 9:00 AM
    6/4 10:30 AM
    Consolation - Final
    6/4 1:45 PM

      2016 State Adapted Softball Tournament-PI DIvision
    Quarterfinals
    6/3 4:00 PM
    6/3 4:00 PM
    6/3 5:30 PM
    6/3 5:30 PM
    Semifinals
    6/4 10:30 AM
    6/4 10:30 AM
    Final
    6/4 1:45 PM
    3rd Place
    6/4 1:30 PM
    Consolation - Semifinals
    6/4 9:00 AM
    6/4 9:00 AM
    Consolation - Final
    6/4 12:00 PM


    Items to know
  • Results, linescores and highlights from the tournament will be posted on the League's website at www.mshsl.org
  • School Space Media will be streaming the championship games on PrepSpotlight.TV . There is no fee to view the games.
  • Media credentials are not required for this event.
  • League Communications Coordinator Tim Leighton will serve as Media Steward for the tournament.
          
  •       
    Robotics a thrilling visit into fascinating world
    Home Page Photo By Tim Leighton

    A handful of days have passed since the conclusion of the Robotics state tournament. While the participants have moved on, the memories still linger.

    As a rookie observer of the tournament, I wasn’t fully prepared for what I was about to experience when I entered Mariucci Arena on the University of Minnesota campus.

    Sure, I had heard how cool it was to see the robots and their alliances competing at adrenaline-fueled levels. I’d also been told of the brain power at work as the student-participants collaborate at ease at a techno-level not known to some of us.

    But to fully embrace the beehive of activity and revel in the enthusiastic, competitive environment, you really do need to witness it in person.

    The arena floor for this year’s competition was partitioned off into two distinct areas: the competition zone and the pits.

    While I had a blast watching the competitive robots bang into one another while trying to toss “boulders” into an opponents’ fortress, what really impressed me and left the biggest impression was what was happening behind the scenes in the pits.

    Behind the scenes, or in this case, a massive curtain, teammates were hard at work repairing robots that had been injured in battle. Rows of shiny tool chests filled with common tools and specialized ones occupied the team zones while PVC, wiring and, yes, even duct tape, were strewn about on work benches.

    I had the pleasure of meeting members from Team 2530, a co-op of the Rochester Public Schools. Pictured here, from left to right in their fluorescent green shirts are Rochester Century students Kayla Kanzelman, Nadia Alexander and Noah Hanson. They are pictured with the League’s Amy Doherty, the director of the tournament.

    Alexander and Hanson played the roles of ambassadors brilliantly, taking this first-timer on an amazing journey of what happens behind the scenes. They took me into a world that ranged from creativity to marketing to fundraising.

    Can you imagine as a high school student having to meet with upper management of the Mayo Clinic, Medtronic or IBM to share your program’s vision and to ask for sponsorship? What seems like a daunting task is a source of pride for Alexander, a junior captain.

    “It is an honor to share our goals, dreams and ambitions with important people,” Alexander said.

    “We pour everything into robotics,” said Hanson, a sophomore. “We want to share what we do with the community.”

    Team 2530 is made up of 60 students from Rochester’s three public high schools, Century, Mayo and John Marshall.

    “We are extremely proud of our students, advisors and adult mentors on Team 2530,” said Rochester Century activities director Mark Kuisle, who was in attendance at the tournament. “The team puts in long hours to make their dreams come true in this educational setting. Robotics is more than just a competition. Team 2530 strives to collaborate, set ambitious goals, have outstanding civic-mindedness and be very creative in their design. What more could you ask?”

    The team was founded in 2007. Minnesota is the first state association to sanction Robotics as an activity.

    “As an administrator, I am very humbled by this team,” Kuisle said. “They are true ambassadors of the Rochester Public Schools.”

    These observations certainly aren’t revelations to all. They witness the wonderment of Robotics on an annual basis.

    One lasting vision made me smile as it reinforced the positive impact of student activities. During some congested traffic along the boards on the arena floor, Alexander offered her hand to Hanson so she could help him navigate. They continued hand in hand for a short distance.

    Not only were they teammates, they were friends, too.
          


    Memorial Day 2016: Celebrating The Red, White And Blue
    Posted by John Millea(jmillea@mshsl.org)- Updated 5/30/2016 8:34:52 PM

    My mother was wearing the stars-and-stripes-themed shoes that my wife and I had given her for Mother’s Day this year. It was Monday morning, Memorial Day, and my mom and I were walking to American Legion Post 162 in my hometown of Graettinger, Iowa.

    I had not packed any red, white or blue apparel before driving to my mom’s house on Sunday evening. My clothes were adorned by a couple Nike swooshes as we sauntered the two blocks “uptown” to the annual Memorial Day ceremony.

    That was the beginning of a Memorial Day that ended when I returned home to the Twin Cities on Monday evening. Between that stroll to the morning ceremony and my arrival in my own driveway were 165 miles of mostly Minnesota blacktop, an inordinate amount of orange traffic cones, enthusiastic crowds of softball fans and a bounty of stars and stripes.

    When Minnesotans ask about my hometown, my reply is always the same: “If you know where Fairmont and Jackson are, it’s about 30 minutes south from there.” So yes, I am a proud native of Iowa … who grew up watching the Vikings on television and taking summer trips to see the Twins at Metropolitan Stadium. Our eighth-grade class trip was classic 1970s Twin Cities: Bus ride to the Como Zoo, trip to the top of the IDS Tower, evening performance of the Ice Capades at the Met Center and late-night bus ride home.

    The Monday morning ceremony (pictured) in my little hometown was touching. High school band and choir kids performed patriotic tunes, the World War I poem “In Flanders Fields” was read by a student (a duty I performed at this ceremony when I was in high school), prayers were offered, a rifle salute rang out and “Taps” was played. The main reason for the gathering, of course, was remembering those who gave their lives in defense of our country; several men from my town were killed during wartime. But all our veterans are recognized at this ceremony with the reading of their names.

    The list began with several Civil War veterans, followed by those who served in the Spanish-American War in 1898. The bulk of the names came from the two World Wars, and they were followed by those who served in Korea, Vietnam, the Gulf War, Iraq and Afghanistan.

    My dad, who served a non-combat role in the Navy and died a year and a half ago at 87, was near the end of the list of World War II veterans. The final name on the list belonged to my wife’s uncle Laurence (I wrote about him on April 14, shortly after he died).

    One of the names from the Gulf War list belonged to a boy I grew up with. He served in the Army’s 82nd Airborne. After he took his own life in 2008, his obituary included this passage: “He enjoyed fishing, hunting, golfing and the anticipation of a Minnesota Viking football game.”

    After the ceremony ended, Mom and I walked back home, swatting at gnats that had made an unceremonious entrance in the warm windless sunshine. I headed out of town, driving due north to the state line. I slowed down for pedestrians in downtown Sherburn before making my first visit to the little town of Trimont, one of the newest communities in Minnesota. Trimont was formed in 1959 when the twin villages of Triumph and Monterey merged.

    Then came Madelia, St. James, Lake Crystal and finally North Mankato, where three different softball sections were playing tournament games. As I pulled into a parking lot at spectacular Caswell Park – home of the state tournament June 9-10 – I rolled down the car window and heard magical sounds coming from all six fields. The clang of metal bat belting the ball, crowds roaring, teammates yelling encouragement. Bliss.

    Most folks were dressed in their school’s colors but some wore red, white and blue. Fans sat in lawn chairs under shade trees or umbrellas to block the bright sun while braver souls slathered on sunscreen and watched from the metal bleachers. Babies nodded off in strollers and athletes applied fresh eye black to their cheeks, which served a dual purpose of hiding the red and fighting the glare.

    The scene was Memorial Day perfection: Americans watching kids play ball. Grandparents shuffled along, some with walkers and canes, in order to reach the field where their grandkids were playing. Little kids dug in the playground sand or played catch with each other. A dad tossed a small football to his son as they stood in the thick green grass beyond an outfield fence. Pizza, hot dogs and nachos sailed through concession windows. For a while I sat next to a grandma and was thrilled to see that she too was spitting sunflower seeds.

    A winding path home from North Mankato (warning: Highway 169 between Mankato and St. Peter is closed for road work) took me through Eagle Lake, Madison Lake, Elysian, Waterville, Morristown and Faribault, where I picked up northbound Interstate 35. Rows of flags stood sentry along the highway in Elysian, people in kayaks and canoes paddled leisurely on quiet streams as cottonwood seeds floated in the air on their wispy sails. Kids rode their bikes, adults mowed their lawns.

    Thank you, veterans, for giving us this day.

    BY THE NUMBERS
    *Schools/teams John has seen/visited: 714
    *Miles John has driven in the Toyota Camry in 2015-16: 11,593





    More of John's Journal
    Spring at a Glance:
    Adapted Softball: June 3-4 Coon Rapids H.S.
       CI Bracket   PI Bracket
    Boys' Tennis: June 7-10
       AA: Baseline Tennis Center   Brackets
       A: Read-Sweatt Tennis Center  Brackets
    Girls' Softball: June 9-10 Caswell Park, N. Mankato
       Section Brackets   State Brackets
    Track & Field: June 10-11 Hamline, St. Paul
    Golf: June 14-15 Various Sites
    Lacrosse: June 14,16,18 Minnetonka & Chanhassen
       Section: Girls   Boys   State: Girls   Boys
    Baseball: June 16,17,20 Various Sites
       Section Brackets   State Brackets
    Clay Target: June 25 Mpls Gun Club, Prior Lake

    League News
    MSHSL Behavior Expectations 
    June Board Agenda 
    June Executive Committee Agenda 
    June Eligibility Committee Agenda 
    June Finance Committee Agenda 
    Show Older News Items

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    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    51m ago
    Love this. twitter.com/RockyHulneADH/

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    53m ago
    Believe me, a state birth is not what you meant to write... twitter.com/BurnsvilleBlaz

    Amy Doherty
    ‎@MSHSL_Amy
    3h ago
    Section 3AA 3200 final won by Kevin Gunawan @EVHSAthletics.

    Amy Doherty
    ‎@MSHSL_Amy
    3h ago
    Section 3AA 3200 lead pack, lap 2 or 3. @PLLakers Lovely night at UST. @TommieAthletics

    MSHSL 8h ago
    Here's an excellent series of articles about the challenges faced by high school coaches. Written by the Duluth News Tribune's Louie St. George, these stories are a must-read for anyone who cares about high school activities.Click on the links to read the three stories...http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/sports/preps/4042995-parental-power-play-high-school-coaches-increasingly-targeted-overbearinghttp://www.duluthnewstribune.com/sports/preps/4043439-parental-power-play-parent-coach-friction-often-matter-playing-timehttp://www.duluthnewstribune.com/sports/preps/4043549-parental-power-play-coaching-still-labor-love

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    8h ago
    Links to entire series by @Louiesg3 ...duluthnewstribune.com/sports/preps/4duluthnewstribune.com/sports/preps/4duluthnewstribune.com/sports/preps/4

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    8h ago
    Part 3 of excellent series on coaching challenges by @Louiesg3 . The best reporting I've seen on this topic. twitter.com/Louiesg3/statu

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    10h ago
    Hearty shout-out to my new friends (and new Twitter followers) at Breck! Great discussion. @BreckAthletics

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    11h ago
    Classroom visit today!

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    14h ago
    Memorial Day 2016: Celebrating The Red, White And Blue. Check out John's Journal. mshsl.org/mshsl/johnsjou

    MSHSL 1d ago
    Memorial Day 2016: Celebrating The Red, White And Blue.Check out John's Journal.

    John's Journal

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    1d ago
    Memorial Day 2016: Celebrating The Red, White And Blue. Check out John's Journal.
    mshsl.org/mshsl/johnsjou

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    1d ago
    Wanted: A very tall person, a very long stick or both ... to retrieve those softballs trapped way up there.

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    1d ago
    Sitting at a ballgame next to a grandma and we're both spitting seeds.

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    1d ago
    LeSueur-Henderson shortstop Alicia Boettcher with some serious face protection.

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    1d ago
    Sportsmanship 101. We never take it for granted. @MSHSL_Coaches

    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    1d ago
    Love these.


    John Millea
    ‎@MSHSLjohn
    1d ago
    Case closed. Caswell is the best site for state softball. North Mankato is a great host, too. twitter.com/MavsLaker/stat



     


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