Sports forum: A midweek look at the F-M area sports scene

It didn't take the Scheels Fargo Marathon long to double its numbers. The event has more than 4,800 registered runners, compared to 2,414 in the inaugural race last year.

It didn't take the Scheels Fargo Marathon long to double its numbers. The event has more than 4,800 registered runners, compared to 2,414 in the inaugural race last year.

Registration for the marathon and half-marathon closed Monday. But the 5K run/walk is still open until May 10 and the Youth Run will be open until the day of the race on May 20.

"That's great stuff," said marathon executive director Mark Knutson. "We're obviously going to hit 5,000. After that, it's anybody's ballgame."

One of the event's favorite guests last year, Hajime Nishi from Tokyo, Japan, may return this year. The first Scheels Fargo was the retired executive's 390th marathon. He is now into the 400s and sent Knutson an e-mail wondering if there was a spot for him.

"He said he was supposed to be in Europe but he was thinking of being back in the U.S.," Knutson said.


The marathon, half-marathon, marathon relay, 5K and youth run starts and ends at the Fargodome. It appears the organization made a wise move in changing the location

from the Fargo Civic

Center downtown to the dome.

The Civic Center was full at 2,414 runners. Knutson figures a good day could produce another 500 kid entrants.

"We're pretty pumped up about it," he said.

- Jeff Kolpack

Bison motivated

for Minnesota


The North Dakota State baseball team has 15 players on its roster from the state of Minnesota. Nothing would please them more than beating the University of Minnesota tonight.

The Bison host the Gophers at 6:30 p.m. at Newman Outdoor Field. At 6-32, a win would erase a lot of ills for NDSU this season.

"I think it's a little bit of a rivalry, not so much in the coaching staffs or the schools, but in the players," said NDSU head coach Mitch McLeod. "A lot of our kids and their kids played against each other in high school. We have a lot of Minnesota kids who didn't get recruited by them."

NDSU sends Jake Laber to the mound. The sophomore from Fargo is 1-8 with a 7.40 ERA, but is coming off a complete game, eight-strikeout performance at Valparaiso University (Ind.) last weekend.

"Jake has a tremendous amount of talent," McLeod said. "But like most young pitchers, they have to learn to throw strikes consistently, to keep it down and get ahead of hitters."

The Gophers are 22-20. They beat the Bison 5-4 in March at the Metrodome and lead the all-time series 18-0.

- Jeff Kolpack

Hill could be on legends boxing card


Virgil Hill's name is being tossed around for a "legends" boxing card on July 29. It would also feature former heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield and light heavyweight champion Roy Jones Jr., according to the Web site.

Hill, the North Dakota fighter coming off a World Boxing Association cruiserweight title belt win over Valery Brudov in January, would face journeyman Kenny Keane.

Hill would be the most successful of the three big-name boxers in terms of recent fights. Jones has dropped his last three and Holyfield is 2-5-1 in his last eight.

Bill Sorensen, Hill's manager, couldn't be reached for comment.

- Jeff Kolpack

Inside information

Steve Holdren, perhaps the best all-around player on the South Dakota State men's basketball team, is transferring to the University of Illinois. Holdren told the Sioux Falls Argus-Leader newspaper that his heart was somewhere else than Brookings. He'll have to sit out next season because of NCAA transfer rules. ... The SDSU football team signed defensive end Jason Bonwell, a third-team junior college All-American at Glendale Community College (Calif.). ... Former Minnesota State University Moorhead All-American Brett Beeson was named the most valuable player of Spain's LEB2 professional basketball league. Playing for Sabadell, a city near Barcelona, he finished second in the league in scoring at 19.5 points per game. Sabadell finished with an 18-12 record, good for sixth place, and is playing in the first round of the playoffs.

- Forum staff reports

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