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Host families make for pleasant experience

It's been said that Wheaties is the breakfast of champions. Matt Weeks and his Millard West (Omaha) teammates are hoping Linda Killoran's homemade french toast will turn the trick today. Weeks and his team will participate in the Midwest ...

It's been said that Wheaties is the breakfast of champions.

Matt Weeks and his Millard West (Omaha) teammates are hoping Linda Killoran's homemade french toast will turn the trick today.

Weeks and his team will participate in the Midwest Plains Region 15-year-old Babe Ruth baseball championship game at Jack Williams Stadium at noon today, some 400-plus miles away from home.

However, feeling homesick has not been an issue for the Nebraska team, who have stayed with four Fargo host families this week.

"They've been awesome," Weeks said. "I get my own huge bed, tons of food...They even made us french toast this morning."

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Host families were chosen on a volunteer basis for the tournament and assigned by Babe Ruth official Paula Hirchert, who housed a group of Millard West boys herself.

While some of the families may have been hesitant at first, Hirchert says they've had nothing but good things to say about the experience.

"They've (the players) just been great," Hirchert said. "A couple of the families have younger boys who are just in awe of the older kids. It's just been an awesome experience for everybody."

Besides playing in a full slate of games this week, with the help of the host parents the team has had a pot luck picnic, gone fishing in the Red River and even had a team party complete with darts and PlayStation tournaments.

"We've been finding lots of stuff to do," Weeks said.

While the team has enjoyed its week-long stay in Fargo, it still faces one hardship.

Saying good-bye.

"I don't know if our kids are going to even want to go back with us. They've had such a good time here," Millard West parent Tom Wilkinson said.

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"These people (the host parents) have done a tremendous job of opening their homes, hearts and refrigerators for our kids."

Readers can reach Forum reporter Mike Cummings at (701) 241-5580

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The Black Hawks trailed by two goals with just over six minutes left to play but rallied and upended Fargo in overtime on Saturday.