Alec Hamilton is a RiverTown Multimedia sports reporter covering Hastings, Farmington and Rosemount athletics. He graduated from Drake University with a journalism degree in 2014.
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The Hastings boys' swimming and diving team started its dual season this past week with a 101-80 loss to Cretin-Derham Hall on Tuesday, Dec. 11, and then a 90-88 win over Henry Sibley Thursday, Dec. 13. The Raiders hosted Tartan on Tuesday, but do not compete again until Jan. 3 when they host South St. Paul.
Paige Peltier, a Hastings native and junior at Cretin-Derham Hall, was surprised Dec. 6 at a Cretin boys' basketball game when she was named a girls' soccer Allstate All-American. During halftime of the game, she heard a message over the school intercom from former national team player and Olympic gold medalist Julie Foudy congratulating her on her award. The athletic department at Cretin-Derham Hall and Peltier's family were able to surprise her with the award.
Hastings senior Corbin Leflay took a little time off from wrestling this weekend to play one last football game. Leflay was chosen to participate in the 2018 Minnesota All-Star football game played at U.S. Bank Stadium this last Saturday. Leflay played on the Minnesota South All-Star team and carried the ball four times for seven yards. The South ran away with the game, beating the North team 33-12. After one of the best rushing seasons in recent memory for Hastings, Leflay was the first Hastings Raider football player to be chosen for the All-Star game since 2006.
Hastings junior Mallory Brake found senior Megan Mattson wide open in the lane for a layup with less than 10 seconds left to put the Raiders up 53-51 over St. Croix Lutheran Friday night. The bench exploded as the Crusaders called timeout and it looked like Hastings was going to pull out a tightly-contested, non-conference matchup for their first win of the season. But then the unthinkable happened. St. Croix Lutheran inbounded the ball, split two Raider defenders to break the press and found a seventh-grader in the right corner who hit a 3-pointer for the win right before the buzzer. Hastings is still looking for its first win of the season.
Hastings girls' hockey won at Dodge County, tied with North St.Paul/Tartan on Tuesday and then lost to Mahtomedi on Thursday. The Raiders are now 3-4-1 and traveled to South St. Paul to take on the Packers on Tuesday, Dec. 11. They then host Rochester John Marshall on Saturday, Dec. 15.
After going 2-1 to win the consolation bracket when they hosted the Raider Duals, Hastings took a step forward this past week. The Raiders went 7-0 in duals between a quadrangular at Tartan on Thursday, Dec. 6, and the Park Invitational on Saturday, Dec. 8. Thursday, the Raiders beat Tartan 74-3, North St. Paul 84-0 and Minneapolis South 69-9. Saturday at the Park Invitational Hastings won the championship with wins over Blue Earth 46-21, 51-12 over Eagan, 53-21 over rival Park and then beat Albert Lea 36-31 in the championship dual. Hastings improves to 9-1 in duals over the first two weeks of the season and will compete in the Minnesota Christmas Tournament in Rochester Friday and Saturday, Dec. 14-15.
The Hastings boys' basketball team used a strong second half and two stellar performances from seniors Matt Schlottman and Isaac Rabey in an 85-69 over the Wolfpack in their home opener. Hastings led 35-31 at halftime and then scored 50 second-half points to secure the victory.
If hockey teams could bank goals for future games, the Hastings boys would be rich beyond measure. They have won three straight since losing 5-0 in their season and home opener to the Park Wolfpack and have racked up goals while doing so. The Raiders won at Dodge County 10-0 on Dec. 1, shutout Tartan 6-0 at Hastings Civic Arena on Tuesday, Dec. 4, and then routed the the Henry Sibley Warriors 7-1 in another home matchup on Thursday, Dec. 6. Hastings travels to North St. Paul on Thursday, Dec. 13, and then hosts Mahtomedi on Saturday, Dec. 15.
The Hastings Raiders wrestling team opened its season on Saturday by hosting their annual Raider Duals, which featured eight varsity and junior varsity teams in a three round tournament. Participating were Hastings, Coon Rapids, Shakopee, River Falls, Prior Lake, St. Francis, Minnetonka and Albert Lea. The Raiders faced Coon Rapids in the first round and tied 30-30, but Coon Rapids took the dual via the first criteria (matches won). Hastings then beat River Falls (Wis.) 42-32 and Prior Lake 47-21 to win the consolation bracket. Coon Rapids