Katrina Styx has been a reporter for the Hastings Star Gazette since 2010. She has a bachelor's degree in English with a minor in journalism from the University of Wisconsin - River Falls. Prior to coming to Hastings, Katrina reported for weekly newspapers in Jordan, Minn., and River Falls, Wis.
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Hastings High School's boys golf team is young. Only two of the six varsity players attend the high school. Three are in eighth grade. And then there's Matt Radke, a seventh-grader. His age, however, is no indicator of his ability. Radke has been keeping up with his older teammates and has consistently been one of the team's leaders this season. "It's really fun knowing that I can go out there and compete with the high schoolers," he said. He's not just talking about his own team.
Ask a Hastings baseball fan to name the best players in town, and many would be able to rattle off a long list. After all, Hastings is home to a number of top-performing athletes. In a few years, however, the names rolling off fans' tongues will be different.
The Hastings Raiders baseball team is putting the regular season behind them and getting ready for playoffs, which begin Saturday. Senior captain Tyler Rohr is working to keep his team motivated and ready to play. "Every game, I've got to keep complimenting the guys," he said. This season has not been anything like what Rohr expected. "I expected the season to go a lot differently," he said. He explained that he figured his teammates' hard work would have paid off more than it has. Even though their season record is discouraging, the boys aren't done fighting.
The Hastings Hawks dedicated their May 21 game to a special group of people. They called it Hastings Heroes Night, and the Hastings Area Professional Network stepped in to honor a few locals for their acts of bravery and kindness. Three individuals accepted honors. Bob Theesfeld is the president of Hastings Community Car Care. Theesfeld coordinates and works with those who need assistance with various car repairs. Volunteers do the labor, and parts are paid for by donations from community members and groups.
The Hastings boys tennis team finished its team play last week. Six players will compete Thursday, May 27, in the first round of the individual tournament. "We played our best tennis our last couple weeks," head coach Mick Willette said. Early in the season the Raiders battled minor injuries and illnesses and suffered a couple early losses, but they recovered and put up some dominant performances later in the season. "It's a season where we really improved greatly over the year," Willette said. Vs. Albert Lea The Raiders started section playoffs on the right foot May 18.
Hastings High School's girls track and field team is young this year, and while Sophia and Johanna Kneen are new to the team, they came with a little experience. The sisters moved to Hastings with their family last July from North Branch. Sophia had been participating in track and field for five years, and Johanna for three years when they joined the Raiders. Sophia, a junior, first turned to track and field to break away from her routine. "I had been doing gymnastics my whole life and I wanted something different," she said. Her events this year are the 200-meter, 400-meter, 4x400 relay
Hastings' boys track and field team placed third out of eight teams at the Spartan Invitational April 29 in Richfield.
Hastings High School's girls track and field team is wrapping up its season and heading into the conference preliminaries next week. After a quadrangular meet in Cottage Grove May 20, the team will head into prelims May 25. Finals are May 27. Both conference meets will be held at East Ridge High School. Spartan Invite The Raider girls placed fifth at the Spartan Invitational in Richfield April 29. The team scored 71.5 points, putting them ahead of Park of Cottage Grove and Columbia Heights.
The school year is nearing its end, but the Hastings girls golf team still has three more matches to play before the Suburban East Conference tournament May 27. The girls already packed three SEC matches into the past week. "We're going to be hitting it hard the next couple weeks," head coach Becky Hartung said last week. Since the Raiders had only played three conference matches, it was still difficult to say how far they've come this season, Hartung said. "Overall they're a good team," she said.
The Raiders boys golf team had a team score of 324 at the Stillwater match, which was held Monday. Hastings placed sixth out of 10 teams. After four SEC matches, the boys' average scores are in the 80s.