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AREA NOTEBOOK: Co-ops approved for Munich and Langdon prep basketball

Two decades ago, Munich vs. Langdon was a rivalry as good as it gets in North Dakota Class B boys and girls basketball. Next year those rivals, located 25 miles apart, will become one. At a recent meeting of the board of directors of the North Da...

Two decades ago, Munich vs. Langdon was a rivalry as good as it gets in North Dakota Class B boys and girls basketball.

Next year those rivals, located 25 miles apart, will become one.

At a recent meeting of the board of directors of the North Dakota High School Activities Association, co-ops in boys and girls basketball between the two schools were approved. The co-ops begin in the 2014-15 school year.

“We talked about this a year ago,” said Langdon athletic director Rich Rogers, who has been at the school since 1997. “We revisited it this year and decided to go for it.

“Back in the day, in the ’90s and before, they were teams that went at each other pretty hard. They both had very good teams; both were ranked in the state a lot of times. It was good competition. Those games filled the gymnasiums.”

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How good were the programs?

In boys basketball between the 1984-85 and 1995-96 seasons, Langdon and Munich each qualified for the Class B state tournament three times. In girls basketball between 1992 and the 2004-05 seasons, Langdon was a state qualifier six times, and the Starkweather-Munich co-op twice.

But those days are gone. Now Langdon and Starkweather-Munich are struggling with participation numbers. Boys and girls basketball teams in both programs have sub-.500 records.

“The big reason is numbers. We just don’t have them,” Munich athletic director Tim Polansky said. In grades 9-12, Polansky said, Munich-Starkweather has eight boys basketball players and 10 girls basketball players. “And Langdon’s numbers are a little better, but they aren’t exceptional.”

The rivals coming together “seems kind of funny,” Polansky said. “But when you look at it, a lot of co-ops are like this - rivals because the schools are close (in proximity) and everybody knows each other on the teams.”

Both athletic directors said the transition should be smooth because the schools already co-op in several sports.

Starkweather won’t be part of the Langdon-Munich basketball co-op. Starkweather school board member Cara Thompson said that, after exploring options, “it looks like we’ll be going with North Star (in Cando). We’ve met with their school board and it looks like they’re on board with it, too.”

Yon a finalist

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Zach Yon of Roseau is one of the final 10 candidates for the Minnesota Mr. Hockey award. The Mr. Hockey award is given to the outstanding senior in the state, as selected by a panel of professional scouts, coaches and selected media members.

Yon, who has committed to UND, leads the 15-6-1 Rams with 29 goals and shares the team lead with 59 points.

The award winner will be announced March 9 at the annual Mr. Hockey Awards banquet in the Twin Cities.

Strong Region 2 field

Carrington hasn’t lost to a North Dakota Class B wrestling team this season. Yet when coaches seeded the Region 2 individual tournament on Wednesday, the Cardinals had No. 1 seeds in only four of the 14 weight classes.

“That says that our region has some balance and some excellent wrestlers,” Carrington coach Josh Kerbaugh said. “The seeds are about where we expected. Region 2 is tougher than people give it credit for.”

The Region 2 tournament will be held Saturday in Hillsboro, with the top four placers in each weight class qualifying for the B state tournament.

Here are the top seeds:

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  •   Pembina County North (4): Bradyn Horgan, 120 pounds; Jesse Schurman, 170; Jeff Stith, 220; and Tyson Lafferty, 285;
  •   Carrington (4): Joe Bakke, 126; Patrick Freeman, 138; Walker Carr, 145; and Riley Lura, 182;
  •   Central Cass (3): Andrew Jahnke, 106; Austin Rust, 113; and Kyle Schultz, 152;
  •   Hillsboro-Central Valley (2): Jordan Bolstad, 160; and Wyatt Schultz, 195;
  •   Harvey-Wells County (1): Carson Koble, 132.

Vandal reaches 1,000

Alli Vandal has beaten teammate Mary Jo Guilbert to the 1,000-point milestone.

Vandal, a 6-foot junior, scored 16 points against St. John last Thursday, giving her 1,007 points. Guilbert, a 6-1 senior, is also closing in on 1,000 points with more than 900. While both have the size to play the post, Vandal plays more on the wing.

“With two 6-footers, teams are putting four defenders in the paint,” Bulldogs coach Pat Wilkes said. “Alli is an excellent post player. But she can play all five positions. She’s an excellent ballhandler. Her strongest area is slashing to the basket for her shots or getting to the free-throw line. And she’s really improved her outside shooting.”

Briefly

Fosston-Bagley wrestlers Alexi Bode at 145 pounds and Sam Manecke at 160 won titles last weekend at the Walker Invitational tournament. . . . Four seniors on last season’s North Prairie football team, Trenton McCloud, Grayson Marty, Devin Poitra and Austin Rinas, have signed letters of intent to play football at Valley City State.

 

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