Matt Steichen has been the sports editor at the Farmington Independent and Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communications from Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa. He has previously been a sports writer at the Sioux City Journal and Le Mars Daily Sentinel and the sports editor at the Austin Daily Herald.
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A little rest went a long way toward helping the Farmington swimming and diving team capture its second Missota Conference championship in three years. The Tigers began backing off their intense workout schedule last Wednesday. The three-day breather paid off as they won all three relays and overtook Chaska/Chanhassen 537-529 Saturday at the Shakopee West Junior High pool. "The boys got a little rest during practice and really worked on fine-tuning their strokes," Farmington coach Ryan Hamen said.
Coming off a memorable victory over Holy Angels, the Farmington boys hockey team saw some familiar problems resurface during a pair of closely-contested Missota Conference losses to Northfield and Chanhassen last week. Head coach Keith Revels was pleased to see some of those mistakes begin to get corrected in the Tigers' 5-2 non-conference win over Bloomington Kennedy Saturday at Bloomington Ice Garden. "We had goals of not taking a period off, limiting our penalties and converting on our opportunities," Revels said.
Losses like Friday night's are getting all too familiar for the Farmington boys basketball team. The Tigers led visiting Red Wing by six points with under four minutes to go, but the Wingers came back to tie the game late and iced a 61-59 victory on Ryan Boldt's basket with six seconds remaining. The loss was Farmington's ninth of the season, seven of which have come by a total of 26 points.
Farmington only won one of its three matches Friday at the Lakeville North Invitational, but wrestled well enough to make it a relaxing night for head coach Chad Olson. "Friday was probably the quietest I have been as a coach because the wrestlers were giving great effort and sticking to their plans," Olson said. "It was a very enjoyable night for me." The Tigers opened with a 40-33 win over Eden Prairie that could move them up in the seeding in the upcoming section tournament.
New Prague 142.05, Farmington 134.20 Friday night at New Prague Vault: 1. Tahra Eckert, 9.35; 4. Kiana Lord, 9.15; 5. Kathryn Beckett, 9.025 Uneven bars: 5. Kiana Lord, 8.05 Balance beam: 3. Tahra Eckert, 8.7; 5. Kathryn Beckett, 8.375 Floor exercise: 2. Kiana Lord, 9.1 All-around: 2. Kiana Lord, 33.975, 3. Tahra Eckert, 33.60 JV score: 116.3 Northfield 145.65, Farmington 137.35 Tuesday night at Farmington Vault: 2. Tahra Eckert, 9.2; 3. Kiana Lord, 9.1; 5. Kathryn Beckett, 9.05 Uneven bars: 5. Kiana Lord, 8.45 Balance beam: 2. Kylie Wharton, 9.0; 5.
Another long losing streak isn't getting the Farmington girls basketball team down. The Tigers scored just eight points in the first half Friday at Shakopee as they lost their eighth straight, 47-24. The team also lost 10 straight to start the season and now stands at 2-18 overall. "One thing about this group is that they show up every day in practice focused, have positive attitudes, and they work hard to improve," second-year head coach Sondra Chadwick said.
Some members of the Farmington swimming and diving team got to try out some new events last week. With the Tigers facing a pair of lesser opponents, head coach Ryan Hamen made things interesting by juggling his lineup a bit. His squad still defeated Rochester Mayo 99-82 on Senior Night last Tuesday at Dodge Middle School and rolled by Shakopee 104-77 last Thursday. "I gave the seniors a chance to choose events they either have not swam in a long time or one they normally would not swim. This allowed us some very close races which made it a more exciting meet," Hamen said.
As far as anyone on the current coaching staff can remember, the Farmington boys hockey team had never beaten Holy Angels. That was before last Thursday night, however, when the Tigers used a goal from Dallas Tucker 2 minutes, 43 seconds into overtime to deal the perennial state power a 3-2 loss, its first in the Missota Conference this year, at Richfield Ice Arena. "(Assistant coach) Todd Karich has been on board for 12 seasons and this is his first time beating them and (assistant coach Shawn) Anderson can't recall ever beating them either," Farmington coach Keith Revels said.
The Farmington basketball team needed a game like Monday night's against Waseca. Coming off back-to-back losses that went down to the wire last week - and six straight closely-contested Missota Conference games going back to Jan. 11 - the Tigers outmanned the visiting Bluejays from the opening tip and cruised to a 70-42 rout at Tiger Gym. "This was a nice refresher after a tough loss and a nice change of pace game during a very tough conference schedule," coach Shane Wyandt said.
The Farmington girls hockey team ended a disappointing regular season on a high note Friday night in Rochester. The Tigers took the lead in the second period and rode Molly Singewald's 23-save effort to a 2-0 upset of Rochester John Marshall at the Rochester Recreation Center. The Rockets entered the game with a record of 17-6 and finished third in the Big Nine Conference. Rachael Peroutky scored both goals for the Tigers against. Haley Doll assisted on the first and Tyler Words on the second.