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 hot start was enough to overcome a sluggish finish and net the Farmington boys hockey team its first win of the 2010-11 campaign Friday night at Schmitz-Maki Arena. The Tigers, coming off lopsided losses to Hastings and Rochester John Marshall, hung five goals on Cedarburg (Wis.) in the first 23-plus minutes before having to hang on for a 6-4 victory. "Saw some nice things from us early and some old problems returned late," coach Keith Revels said. "We stopped moving our feet and we were turning cirles away from loose pucks.
Senior Carl Elmer began his senior season in fine fashion at Saturday's season-opening Lakeville North Invitational. Elmer, coming off a 30-5 junior year where he qualified for the state meet, pinned all three of his opponents to place first at 145 pounds. His effort helped the Tigers place 10th out of 14 teams, one place better than a year ago. Eighth-grader Brayden Chapman was the team's next best finisher, placing third at 119 pounds. He opened the meet with a 9-8 win over Lakeville North's No. 2-seeded wrestler, then pinned the No. 4 seed in his weight class in the third-place match.
Head coach Shane Wyandt wasn't kidding when he said before the season he planned to play upwards of 12 players in his varsity rotation. Wyandt cleared his bench in the second half of Friday's season opener at Tiger Gym and 17 Tigers got in the game. Thirteen scored points in a 74-43 rout of section rival Rochester John Marshall. "It was interesting. I had no idea what to expect going in," said Wyandt, who had just four players with significant varsity experience at his disposal going in. "John Marshall is kind of a team in transition too, so I thought they were a good team to start with.
The Section 1AAAA Tournament doesn't begin for nearly three months, but the Farmington girls basketball team is already building its case to be named a top seed. The Tigers opened the 2010-11 season with road victories over teams they faced in last year's section tournament, and just might run into again this post-season.
Boys Basketball @ Owatonna Owatonna 80, Farmington 55 Girls Basketball vs. Hudson (Wis.) Farmington 71, Hudson (Wis.) 41 Boys Hockey vs. Winona Farmington 6, Winona 1 Girls Hockey at Eden Prairie Eden Prairie 3, Farmington 2
Farmington built a 20-3 lead in the opening seven minutes and never looked back in Friday's season-opening 74-43 win over Rochester John Marshall at Tiger Gym. The Tigers, who led 39-13 at the break, were led by Alex Michels' 19 points.
Krystal Baumann and Hannah Alexander each scored goals and Jessica Erchul stopped all 15 New Prague shots in a 2-0 shutout of the Trojans Thursday night at Schmitz-Maki Arena. The Tigers (4-3) compete again Tuesday against Eden Prairie.
It looks to be another year of transition for the Farmington boys basketball team. Missota Conference champions two years ago, the Tigers said goodbye to four senior starters that provided the bulk of their scoring and rebounding after the 2008-09 season.
For a while on Saturday afternoon, it looked like Farmington's girls hockey team might finally break through for the quality win it's been looking against one of its Section 1AA rivals. The Tigers, facing a Lakeville North team that knocked them out of the section tournament last February, led 1-0 after a period and remained deadlocked at two apiece through two before the Panthers skated away for a 4-2 win Saturday at Ames Arena. The Panthers outshot the Tigers 42-18, including 39-10 over the final two periods.
The offense wasn't bad, the defense was alright, but the transition from offense to defense hurt the Farmington boys hockey team in its season opener Saturday at Hastings Civic Arena. The Raiders scored four transition goals as they skated to a 5-2 victory over the Tigers. "We worked very hard and had numbers backchecking, but need to communicate on who is taking whom so there are not opposing players unaccounted for to hurt us off the rush or off a rebound shot," Farmington coach Keith Revels said.