Northwest where?

Published 10:23 pm Monday, October 4, 2010

The No. 9 Lake Mills volleyball team’s road to a state championship in Des Moines goes through Northwest Iowa this season.

Yes, it’s a very windy road.

That’s because there’s a hotbed — a Bermuda triangle perhaps — of bumps, sets and spikes in Iowa’s O’Brien County.

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In this small county — known best for its Dutch ancestry and infamous U.S. Representative (the one that shouted “you lie” during the President’s health care speech to Congress) — lies four schools within 20 miles of each other, all ranked in the top 11 for Iowa volleyball.

Boyden-Hull High School and Western Christian High School, of Hull, are ranked No. 11 and No. 1, respectively in class A and AA.

Sheldon High School, of Sheldon, and Unity Christian, of Orange City, are ranked No. 4 and No. 6, respectively, in class AA.

If Lake Mills (31-1) is going to win the state championship this year, they’re almost certainly going to go through some of these teams from northwest Iowa.

Before they even begin thinking of the state tournament, though, Lake Mills is focusing on Forest City and No. 5 West Fork, two teams they’ll have to beat in order to get there.

The most well-traveled team in the of Minnesota

Speaking of northwest Iowa, The Alden-Conger Knights football team has made more than their fair share of trips to southwest Minnesota, and might be the most well-traveled football team south of the Twin Cities.

During the first four weeks of the prep football season, the Knights have played in Edgerton, Westbrook and Hills, for a total of 824 miles round trip. All four towns are near the Minnesota-South Dakota Border.

To put it into perspective, the Albert Lea Tigers will log 558 miles during their entire season, which includes a trip to Winona, and two trips to Rochester.

Thankfully, the road warriors’ travel days are done, as they play in Janesville Friday, and finish the season with two home games.