Chad Richardson is the publisher and editor at the Hastings Star Gazette. He was the general manager of the Farmington Independent and Rosemount Town Pages from 2000 to 2007. He previously worked at the Star Gazette from 1996 to 2000 as a photographer and reporter. He also worked as a photographer and writer at the Pope County Tribune in Glenwood.
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This time of year, as football fans begin forecasting how their favorite teams will fare in 2010, one key stat is used: How many returning starters does their team have? By that measure, there will likely be many other teams in the Suburban East Conference that will have a leg up on the Hastings High School team. The Raiders return a total of eight starters. That leaves 14 spots that will be filled by newcomers, and the field of those newcomers is smaller than normal for the Raiders.
Balance. For Hastings coach Rita Girgen, that word will have all kinds of meaning, and all kinds of importance, for her 2010 Hastings girls volleyball team. "We definitely lost some key players from last year, but we have had players totally step up so far," Girgen said. "Those players who have moved on to college have set the standard. They've encouraged the kids who are coming back, and they're running with it. "We are very deep this year. This year, we don't just have one go-to player. We're going to have four go-to players.
New faces are the norm this fall for Hastings cross country coach John Dewall. The longtime Hastings coach saw the graduation last summer of many decorated runners for both the girls and the boys, leaving him looking high and low this fall for enough athletes to field competitive teams for the boys and the girls. The good news? He's found some runners. The boys and the girls are not deep, but berths in the state meet are certainly possible for at least a few boys and girls. "We have a lot of new kids this fall," Dewall said.
As the Hastings boys soccer team takes the field this fall, they are being led by their third coach in as many seasons. Thankfully for many of the players, their new coach is anything but a new face. Shane Lanning, a HHS graduate, returns to his alma mater to lead the Raiders. Lanning knows well what the team is facing. As a high school student here, he had three coaches in four years. If there's one thing that will help the Raiders get through the transition, it will be attitude, Lanning said. "Attitude is key for me," he said.
It's a whole new year, a whole new team, a whole new season and a fresh start for the Hastings girls soccer team. Head coach Joanne Teigland is determined to make this season a fun one and one in which the Raiders are more successful. "The whole team is awesome," Teigland said. "I love my team. I'm so excited. They busted their butts at tryouts. They worked so hard. They are upbeat, too. "A big thing for us this season is coming together as a team. There's a lot of skilled players, and the kids in the younger classes really understand the game.
Four major changes are planned for this fall and next year at the Hastings Country Club. Starting Sept. 1 the club, fighting a downturn in the economy and in the golf industry, has dramatically cut rates for members, opened its restaurant to the public, offered tee times to the public every day and come up with a new golf-only option for members. "It's just a reflection of the economy and the golf industry in general," said club president Nick Conzemius. "This is just something we have to take a look at. The golf industry is struggling.
The fall sports season is officially under way at Hastings High School. The girls tennis team from Hastings kicked things off over the weekend, traveling to Duluth for a tournament organized by Duluth East. Hastings won two close matches and lost one. Vs Duluth East Hastings began the tournament with a 4-3 win over Duluth East. Results went like this: At first singles, Duluth's Qwong Suthijindawong defeated Lindsey Reinisch of Hastings, 6-0, 6-0 At second singles, Duluth's Annie Mahoney won over Kirsten Peterson, 6-4, 6-1. At the third spot, Hastings' Morgan Tjomsland won over Carolin
The summer season continues for two area amateur baseball teams. The Hastings Hawks won their state tournament game Saturday in Willmar, setting up a big 7:30 p.m. game this Saturday against Shakopee in Bird Island. If the Hawks win, they'll play against at 7:30 p.m. Sunday in Willmar against the winner of the Sauk Rapids and Burnsville game. The tournament continues Sept. 4-6. The second area team still alive are the Hampton Cardinals.
Like many people, a poor economy meant Terry Gilomen was looking for work. For eight years, he worked as the service manager at Tahoe Sports in Rosemount, fixing boats, snowmobiles, motorcycles and everything in between. The business closed a few years ago as the economy took its toll on the marine and powersports industry, and Gilomen needed work. Slowly he began fixing broken down toys at his home south of Farmington. It didn't take long for him to realize he was going to make a living at it.
One year ago, the Hastings boys soccer coaching position came available after longtime coach Jim Niemann stepped down. Former Hastings goalkeeper and HHS graduate Shane Lanning thought long and hard about applying for the position, but with his second child on the way, the timing was anything but ideal. He decided against applying. It turns out, he didn't have to wait long to get his chance to lead the Raiders. After one season with the varsity program, Marshall Morehead resigned just two weeks ago.