Sports Memories: Jirele is featured speaker at banquet

Published 8:51 pm Friday, April 26, 2024

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Sports Memories by Tom Jones

10 years

Tom Jones

  • Haley Harms had the lone hit as the Albert Lea Tigers softball team was shut out 7-0 by Rochester John Marshall. Harms was also on the mound, striking out three batters and allowing six hits.
  • In a game that featured 27 walks between the two teams, the Albert Lea Tigers baseball team fell 17-12 to Rochester Century in their home opener. Jake Thompson scored two runs and added an RBI in the loss.
  • The Albert Lea girls’ track and field team took third place in a quadrangular at Rochester Mayo. Larissa Hacker took third place in the 400-meter dash with a time of 50.71.

20 years

  • Matt Bremseth cracked a one out offering over the 380-foot center field fence in Lyle to give the Alden-Conger Knights a 12-11 walk-off win over Lyle-Pacelli.
  • The Albert Lea boys’ golf team entered Big Nine play with a 301-310 win over Rochester Mayo at the Eastwood Golf Course in Rochester. Ben Jones took the medalist honors with a 73.
  • The Albert Lea boys’ tennis team picked up a 7-0 win over Fairmont. Picking up wins at singles were Conner Keyeski, Greg Peterson, Andrew Dyrdal and Jon Hatcher.
  • The Albert Lea girls’ golf team opened their Big Nine season with a 417-420 win over Rochester Mayo at the Albert Lea Country Club. Seventh-grader Kelly Hanson shot an 18-hole 100 to lead the Tigers.

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50 years

  • Wilson & Co. II took the men’s B-league volleyball championship with a 54-6 record. Team members included Dave Heincke, Gary Newberg, John Johnson, Greg Manthei, Tom Watkins, Vern Lawson, Bruce Cowell and Carl Babiasz.
  • Helen Seline’s Glenville girls’ track team won a triangular with Frost and Emmons. The Trojans scored 84 points with Emmons placing second with 42 and Frost third with 14.
  • The Albert Lea golf team ran their record to 2-0 on the season with a 321-341 win over Mankato East at the Mankato Country Club. Albert Lea’s Mark Knutson was medalist with a 78.
  • Coach Jim Silliman’s Albert Lea b-squad baseball team defeated Blue Earth 14-4. Tom Anderson belted a home run for the Bengals and also picked up the win recording six strike outs.
  • Coach Owen Rentscher’s Emmons baseball team swept a doubleheader over Alden with Richard Hacker and Gay Iverson picking up the wins. With the two wins, the Eagles were 5-0 on the season.
  • Albert Lea basketball coach Orrie Jirele was the featured speaker at the Emmons High School athletic banquet. Loring Stead was named Most Valuable Player for football and John Yost was named Most Valuable Player for basketball. Pam Hauge won the Fighting Female Award for the girls’ basketball team.
  • Mark Simunds took first place in the 100, 220 and quarter-mile to lead the Albert Lea Tigers track team to a triangular win over New Ulm and Mankato East in meet held in Mankato. The Tigers were coached by Jerry Kaphers, who 50 years later, is now an assistant coach at Mankato East.

Alumni update

It was quite a winter sports season for 1997 ALHS graduate Marcus Ludtke and his wife, Jordi, of Elko. Their two sons, Tanner and Griffin, were the top two scorers for the University of Nebraska-Omaha men’s hockey team. Freshman forward Tanner was the leading scorer for the Mavericks with 11 goals and 17 assists for 28 points and his sophomore defenseman brother Griffin was right behind him with 27 points on four goals and 23 assists for 27 points. Tanner was selected in the third round of the 2023 NHL draft by the Arizona Coyotes. with the 81st overall pick. The Lakeville South High School graduates are the grandsons of Craig and Brenda Ludtke of Albert Lea.