Chris Murphy is a sports reporter for the Forum. He's covered high school and college sports in Chicago, North Dakota and Minnesota since 2009 and, for some reason, has been given awards for doing so.
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Fargo Fargo South High School strength coach and physical education teacher Dick Henderson wants no part of this. He feels there is no story about his retirement, after 45 years of coaching, 33 of which came as the only strength coach South has ever had. The spotlight is not meant for him, as for the last 99 high school seasons he's nudged it in the direction of the field or the court where an athlete he helped mold in the weight room is performing.
WEST FARGO—As the dust settled on the East Region baseball tournament, the last team standing was top-seeded West Fargo. The Packers topped Fargo Davies 3-0 in the tournament championship Saturday, May 27, at Young Field for the crown. "We wanted to go get this one," West Fargo coach Brett Peterson said. "We were here a couple years and lost. You have the sense of relief that you qualified for state, but you want to come out and play well."
WEST FARGO—West Fargo's baseball team has kept it interesting in its first two games of the East Region tournament, but the Packers have used the sixth inning to show why they are the top seed of the tournament. "Guys are learning from their previous at-bats," West Fargo coach Brett Peterson said. "We got a little more selective. We waited for our pitch. That's the difference between this year's team compared to last year's. Everyone has been here before. This team has had a state tournament appearance. Seems like we're playing better baseball at the end."
WEST FARGO—All Grand Forks Red River sophomore Dane Montgomery was seeing at the plate was curveballs Thursday, May 25, in the opening round of the East Region baseball tournament at Young Field. Red River coach Mark Varriano told him to wait for a fastball and not do too much with it when . He waited 12 innings and punched the fastball into right field for a two-out single that plated Reed Turner. That's all No. 7 seed Red River needed for the 1-0 upset of No. 2 seed Fargo North.
MOORHEAD—The cliché "no tomorrow" is often used when a Game 7 approaches in sports. Regardless of what happens in Game 7 of the NHL Eastern Conference Finals between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Ottawa Senators on Thursday, May 25, there will most certainly be a Friday.
FARGO—Before Fargo Davies' third football game last season, coach Jason Thielges took a leave of absence from coaching and teaching due to an unspecified medical condition. Thielges was in his seventh year coaching Davies, winning a Class 3A state championship in 2014. Rob Jacobson took over for the rest of the season. Davies athletic director Todd Olson and Thielges said Wednesday, May 24, Thielges is back teaching and will be back as the head coach for the Eagles next season. "I am coming back, and I am healthy and ready to go," Thielges said.
MOORHEAD—Moorhead announced Wednesday, May 24, Kenard Booker as the new head wrestling coach for the Spuds, pending school board approval June 12. Booker was a college wrestling coach for eight years between being head coach at Bacone College (Okla.) and an assistant coach at the the University of Mary in Bismarck, where he also wrestled. In all, he coached 46 All-Americans and two teams to runner-up finishes at the NAIA national championships. He's tired of finishing second.
Fargo Owen Anderson, 11, wanted to cross the finish line standing, not pushed in a chair. He didn't care he was blind or had autism or Crohn's disease. He wanted to stand crossing the finish line at the Fargodome for the full marathon in the Scheels Fargo Marathon on Saturday, May 20. That's exactly what he did. "It was really exciting," Owen's mom, Stacey, said. "We just love to see Owen happy, so to see him so excited and people cheering for him, that's a pretty big deal around here. That's our goal in life, to see him happy."
Fargo Since December, 36-year-old Steve Kachur trained incredibly hard for the half-marathon of the Scheels Fargo Marathon. He had to beat his girlfriend, Kelli Sinnock, who he met in a lounge in Winnipeg four years previous. It wasn't because of pride or bragging rights, but because he needed to get to the finish line before her, so he could propose to her. "I can never keep a secret from her, so it was so hard," said Kachur.
Fargo About five years ago, 23-year-old Ivan Schleppenbach realized he really liked to juggle. He also liked to run. The logical next step was joggling—running while juggling. "I love doing both of them, so why not do them together," said Schleppenbach, who is from St. Joseph, Minn. On Saturday, May 20, Schleppenbach juggled his way through the half-marathon of the Scheels Fargo Marathon for the fifth straight year.