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Grant Anderson makes a save for the Agates earlier this season in a loss against Hibbing. Coach Dave Lukkonen is hoping for wins against Eveleth-Gilbert and Princeton in the coming weeks. Photo by Jill Innis.

Sports roundup: Sept. 20

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Hight and Paron make mark on XC team

Despite being in just eighth grade, Kiviok Hight and Jake Paron finished in line with much more experienced runners in last Thursday's cross country meet at Eveleth-Gilbert.

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"We tried Kiv and Jake on varsity and had some really surprising results," Schield said of the two Two Harbors boys. Hight finished second on the boys team and Paron placed fifth, helping the Vikings secure third place.

Senior Owen Cruikshank finished seventh for the team and junior Everett Hommes was just three seconds behind. Senior Drew Christensen finished 99th overall and sophomore Donovan Rigdon finished his first varsity race with a time of 24:27.

The girls ran a strong race, too, finishing fourth out of 14 teams. Sophomore Abi Seipke placed fourth for the team and 43rd overall while Ruby Walsberg placed 79th. Patricia Mueck raced for the first time and finished with a respectable time of 22:58.

"She even said she thought she could go a little faster," Schield said, adding that they were impressed with everyone's performance.

The team races again this Saturday at Milaca, one of the biggest races in the state. Schield said they're stressing improvement for everybody.

Two Harbors soccer boys lose close match in OT

The Agates almost tallied their first win for the season at last Thursday's home game against Superior.

Junior Quaid Cavallin's two goals were matched by the Spartans, sending the game into overtime where the Spartans sank another point for the win. Coach Dave Lukkonen said it was a strong game that showed off the offensive power of the team.

"Quaid is turning into a natural scorer," he said, adding that senior Mills Johnson is tenacious in the offensive end, too, keeping the defense of opposing teams busy.

Lukkonen said the boys are working on playing strong for the entire 80 minutes as they have a tendency to lose momentum as the game goes on.

The boys have two promising games coming up -- don't miss their match on Saturday against rivals Princeton at 1 p.m. (they are the only team the Agates beat last year) and their Monday rematch against Eveleth-Gilbert (4 p.m.).

Girls' soccer striving for more

The Agates couldn't manage to hold their lead Tuesday against Esko.

Junior Alyssa Nieman made the game's first goal in the first half and, thanks to strong goaltending by junior Sam Dewey, it was almost enough to win the game. The Eskomos came back in the last minutes of the second half, sinking two goals to take the game 2-1.

Head coach Jeff Peterson said many of the girls have been playing well so far this season, but they have yet to sync with each other.

"There's been a lot of good individual effort but we need to pull together as a team," he said.

He added that the team's lineup is still fluid, with players from the junior varsity team routinely being thrown in the mix.

There are 42 girls total out for the team and new JV coach Lauren Miller is finding her footing easily, Peterson said. The JV girls are playing hard and learning a lot.

"We're one of the smallest schools and we can learn from the competition. I'm hoping our team commits a little more and isn't satisfied with a losing record," he said.

Football wins again

The Agates won another home game last Friday, keeping their undefeated record going. In their first-ever game against the Ogilvie Lions, the Agates dominated and walked away with a convincing 48-6 victory.

"This is such a great group of young men to work with and they make coaching an absolute blast," head coach Tom Nelson said.

Junior running back Kyler Kinn rushed for 228 yards on 10 carries and tallied 2 touchdowns and junior running back Lucas Kempffer rushed for 77 yards on 8 carries, adding another touchdown. Senior fullback Mike Nordean also scored for the Agates, junior tight end Tim Bott caught a 38-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Kyle Omtvedt and Omtvedt ran for a second touchdown.

"I thought offensively we moved the ball well again. Our blocking is continuing to improve as our kids are really understanding our schemes and what we are trying to accomplish offensively," Nelson said.

On defense, Bott led the Agates with 12 tackles and 1 quarterback sack and senior defensive end Mark Pearson had 9 tackles.

The Agates head to International Falls tonight, and Nelson said he's expecting a tough fight.

Two Harbors volleyball team still winless

After losing in three sets to Cook County on Thursday and Cromwell on Tuesday, the Agates are still winless this season. They play Esko Thursday and don't play again until next Thursday.

Silver Bay volleyball rebuilding

Farther up the shore, the Mariners are 0-6 and have yet to win a game. After losing seven seniors last year, the young team is gaining experience and working hard on the court.

They lost to Floodwood last Thursday and Moose Lake/Willow River Tuesday and play Carlton Thursday. Head coach Tom Frericks said they'll be battening down the hatches for that match. Next week they play Ely on Monday and take on Wrenshall on Tuesday.

"We're definitely improving and that's the main thing," Frericks said. He added that captains Brandi Nopola and Sydney Topp are stepping up this season to fill the shoes of last year's graduating seniors. Frericks said they are working on serving in practice, hoping to bring the percentage up from 85 to 90 and score more aces.

Despite a losing record, he said the girls leave it all on the court every game.

"They truly fight to the very end. They have a very good work ethic and they are very good on the court," he said.

Swimmers remain unstoppable; swim at home next week

The Two Harbors/Silver Bay swim team managed to come out on top at the Soderlind Invitational last weekend, beating Proctor/Hermantown and Milaca in a hard-fought contest.

Coach Heather Mayfield said the meet came down to the last relay race, the 400-meter freestyle. Mara Boulanger, Allie Mayfield, Julia McDonald and Leann Fynboh pulled off the win and set a pool record in the process, winning the meet by nine points. Fynboh also took first and set two pool records in the 50- and 100-meter freestyle races and Boulanger pulled off first in the 100-meter fly.

On Tuesday, the girls headed to Cloquet and won their fourth dual meet of the season against the Cloquet-Esko-Carlton team. The Agates took first in every event except one, easily winning the meet with a 53-38 score.

"The girls were a little tired but it is that time of the season; we are working hard and they are starting to really feel it. They still remained strong," Mayfield said.

The first chance this season to see the undefeated girls in action at home is next Tuesday, Sept. 24, at 5 p.m. at the Two Harbors High School pool. They're hosting Babbitt-Embarrass and on Thursday they host Proctor at 5 p.m.

Hockey on the horizon

Registration for Two Harbors Youth Hockey takes place next Wednesday and Thursday at the Lake County Arena in Two Harbors. The arena will be open 6-8 p.m. both days for sign up.

Once again, the hockey association received a grant to provide 20 sets of gear to first-time players to help keep the cost down. More information will be available at the registration events.

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LaReesa Sandretsky
LaReesa Sandretsky is a Two Harbors High School graduate and Duluth native who began working at the News-Chronicle in 2012 as a reporter. She took over as editor in 2014. She covers County Board, including the Lake County broadband project.
(218) 834-2141
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