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Farmington softball honored at Minnesota Sports Awards

Maddie Muelken (left), Catie Dully (center) and Emily Berdan (right), captains from last season, accept the Sports Moment of the Year award on behalf of the Farmington Tigers softball team. Alec Hamilton / RiverTown Multimedia1 / 6
Maddie Muelken posed with her award after the festivities were over. Alec Hamilton / RiverTown Multimedia2 / 6
Several members of the Farmington Tigers softball team were in attendance at the Minnesota Sports Awards to support teammate Maddie Muelken and help accept their Sports Moment of the Year Award. Alec Hamilton / RiverTown Multimedia3 / 6
Emily Berdan, Catie Dully and Maddie Muelken pose with head softball coach Paul Harrington after the ceremony. Alec Hamilton / RiverTown Multimedia4 / 6
The Farmington softball players show off their Sports Moment of the Year Award. Photo courtesy of Nikki Muelken5 / 6
Maddie Muelken accepts the Courage Award to a standing ovation at the Minnesota Sports Awards. Alec Hamilton / RiverTown Multimedia6 / 6

Farmington was well represented at this year's 2017 Minnesota Sports Awards as members of the 2017 softball team received two awards at the prestigious event. The team won the Sports Moment of the Year for their thrilling run through the 4A state tournament last spring, culminating in a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 10th inning by Emma Frost to win Farmington's first-ever team state title. The award was voted on by the public and the Tigers beat out the Minnesota Twins making the playoffs a year after a 100-loss season and the Minnesota Lynx winning their fourth WNBA championship.

Even more well deserved was now-graduated Maddie Muelken receiving the Courage Award. The Courage Award is given to "an athlete or other sports figure who overcame significant challenges on or off the playing field, inspiring others with their courage, perseverance and determination."

Muelken was diagnosed with stage 2-Hodgkin's lymphoma last spring, right before the start of the season, but continued to play through her treatment — sometimes pitching the same day as receiving chemotherapy— and helped lead her team to the state title. Muelken pitched 10 shutout innings in the state championship game and this past August received the wonderful news that she was cancer free.

Muelken and fellow captains from last year's team Emily Berdan and Caitie Dully accepted the Sports Moment of the Year award on behalf of their teammates. When Muelken received the Courage Award, she received a standing ovation from the hundreds of attendees.

The event was held on the floor of the Target Center, home of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx. It was put on by Sports Minneapolis and emceed by play-by-play announcer for the Minnesota Wild and host of Twins Live, Anthony LaPanta, and former Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Ahmad Rashad.

Alec Hamilton

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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