Alec Hamilton is a RiverTown Multimedia sports reporter covering Hastings, Farmington and Rosemount athletics. He graduated from Drake University with a journalism degree in 2014.
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The renovation of the basketball courts at Pioneer Park is complete and Wednesday the Minnesota Timberwolves, along with the City of Hastings, held a ribbon-cutting ceremony honoring the event. The refurbishment of the courts at Pioneer Park was made possible by the Minnesota Timberwolves' FastBreak Foundation and its Our Courts, Our Future program, in partnership with U.S. Bank. This past spring, the Pioneer Park courts (along with courts in Hibbing, St. Cloud and St. Paul) won an online vote to be renovated by the Timberwolves.
High school sports have changed gradually over the last decade and one of the areas you see that the most today is during the offseason. Less than a decade ago, strength programs were just getting started and most (not all) sports maybe had a three-day camp during the summer. Today, every sport has some sort of summer strength program on top of summer leagues, holding their own camps and traveling to others.
Several months have passed since I have had the room and time to check in on Rosemount and Farmington athletes competing beyond high school. Below are Irish and Tiger athletes who have just started their collegiate athletic journeys, are finding great success and are even playing professional ball:
A little over a month ago, Hastings High School juniors Sydney Radke and Addie Buck became heroes when they helped save the life of a man who had collapsed in his driveway. Ever since, the two have deservedly had their heroism recognized and both said that the response has surprised them. Now slightly removed from the incident, the two reflected on the events of that day, how they felt and the response of the Hastings community since then. The incident
The Hastings Raiders boys' and girls' Nordic (cross-country) ski teams competed in the Metro East Conference championship meet last week and freshman Linnea Urban came home a champion after running away with the girls' race. Behind her was fellow freshman and teammate Emma Bratvold as the runner-up. For the boys, sophomore Trevor Caflisch finished second after falling victim to some semi-controversial strategy. As teams, the Hastings girls finished third with 435 points behind Henry Sibley and Mahtomedi, while the boys took fifth with 399 points.
The Rosemount cheerleading team are state champions, winning every single competition they have taken part in. The Irish won the Land of 10,000 Lakes regional competition, the East Ridge Extreme and qualified for the finals at state, where they took first in the non-tumbling, class 2A Division 2. Because of their finish at the regional competition, they will head to the national competition at Disney World in Florida.
December was a fast month for the Hastings Area Swim Team. HAST swimmers had the opportunity to swim in three meets during the month: the Northfield Winter is Coming Invite Dec. 2-3, the BAC Holiday Classic Swim Meet Dec. 9-10 and the HAST Conf. C/Pre C Meet Dec. 15.
The East Ridge girls' basketball team traveled to Hastings on Saturday, Dec. 9, to face the Raiders and lost 54-17. A day earlier at home against White Bear Lake, they fell 61-46 and on Tuesday, Dec. 5, they lost to Edina 52-23. With those losses, the Raptors are now 0-5 overall on the season and 0-1 in the Suburban East Conference. Edina and White Bear Lake
It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the Farmington and Rosemount U-12B girls' hockey teams last Wednesday, Nov. 29, at Schmitz-Maki Arena in Farmington. Their game was chosen as the Minnesota Wild's Youth Hockey spotlight game, where the Wild organization picks a youth hockey game, comes to the arena and gives the players involved as close to a professional hockey experience as possible. Mike Cassano, the director of player development for the Farmington Youth Hockey Association, detailed all the effort that went into making the event happen.
Six Park High School athletes across three sports signed their National Letters of Intent to play collegiate athletics next year at their chosen institutions. Softball teammates Delaney Young, Alayna Silvis and Riley Perryman; basketball player Molly Wenner; and lacrosse teammates Grant Glazier and Zakk Morse each committed to different schools.