Sunday Round Up (6/4)
Congratulations to all the recent graduates in the area. Whether it be for your high school diploma, your associates, bachelor's or graduates degree, the next steps in your life are a wonderful chapter for one and all. Consider the choices you make during this new chapter so as to not waste it!
On the local sports scene, things are going from slow to slower but there are still a few categories worth highlighting.
Ships on the diamond
The state tournaments for baseball and softball have been taking place in Mandan and Jamestown. The Class B games were in Jamestown while the Class A games went down north of the capital. Park River - Fordville - Lankin took the Baseball title over Thompson and on the girls side Kindred - Richland prevailed over Central Cass.
Back in Mandan, West Fargo did a two step. The lady Packers did their part against the host neighbors from Bismarck. For their part, the boys met in the middle to decide the years champion against Dickinson. Both came away successful, for the girls that's old hat but for the boys it's a new experience. Both go to show that a conclusion that I've come to is all the more accurate. Check it out, if you want to know what I'm alluding to!
Beyond the Baseball and Softball diamonds there was also a south end duel in girl's soccer at Shanley High. When the clock stopped running Davies has prevailed over the host Deacons. At least they didn't drive too far... But seriously, it must have been a special feeling to end the season in front of as many fans as wanted to show up, for both teams.
So between Baseball, Softball & Soccer it was as close to a clean sweep as the Fargo area was going to get in this set of championships. More importantly though, win or lose hopefully all the competitors appreciate the success they achieved!
After starting with a scorching 9 - 1 road trip, the Redhawks arrived at the friendly confines, only to struggle. They split with Sioux City before losing the series against Wichita in only two games. At last check they were also behind in the dust pan game but at this time it is not complete.
It's too early to make any hard conclusions about the odd and very rapid switch from dominant to dominated but maybe there's something in the North Heartland air that makes it tough for both the Redhawks and the Twins to pull out W's at their fields. More on the Twins later, but it's a curious trend for each team so far!
The curious case of the young Vikings. The middle of last week the NFL Player's Association advised all the Vikings rookies to refrain from signing their contracts. The stated reason was because of offset language. I'm of the opinion that it was a back handed way of getting back at the Purple over their intended handling of the Bridgewater contract. Suffice it to say, the Vikings found a loop hole to retain Teddy for an extra year at the same dollar amount that he'll be paid this year. Genius. Almost Belichickian, but it's not actually breaking the rules so it's only almost.
Back to the point, within hours of the advisement becoming news, there was word that players were starting to sign. One here, one there, two another day then finally the alpha - Dalvin Cook - inked up and the Vikings are all set for their last run to Mankato.
The Lynx are the best team in the WNBA. Undefeated and even when they play below expectations they've been able to win. It's too early to speculate about another perfect season but for the only franchise that's had real success since the early 90's, every victory is a great step!
Speaking of the Twins, I've said it before and I'll say it again - they're still playing at a surprising level. Maybe there will come a time when the surprise fades but I hope not because it's much more enjoyable to have a summer where Mauer and the guys are succeeding! There are a two noteworthy nuggets about the Twins this week so let me break em down:
The Twins have only begun to campaign for Sano to make the All - Star game, but with the way he's playing he needs to be in the early MVP discussion. Not a front runner by any means but in the conversation.
More of the same. Minnesota has as long and as miserable a history in professional sports as an region in all the world can. Vikings lose the Super Bowls. Lakers go to LA. Timberwolves...yeah. Twins make playoffs, barely win. Those are just the headlines, there are a myriad of other negatives that could make the list, and another was added just yesterday.
Albert Pujols is not the player that he used to be, but he is a future HOF and has been a good major leaguer for a long time. Against the Twins, in Anaheim, he had a historical achievement, his 600th home run. It wasn't any ordinary deep shot though. He joined the club not with a walk off winner, though that would have been equal or maybe better but he got into the 600 with a grand slam. You can't make it up. The first every grand slam as the 600th of a career and of course it comes against the Minnesota team. The only way it could have been compounded is if the pitcher threw a perfect game while another guy or maybe AP went for the cycle. In any case, negative history keeps being made for the pros down the road. Good for him though!...