A Long Day’s Journey Into Night

The day began, as usual, with an early morning trip to the gym. It was considerably balmier than it had been . . . since July? (The temperature would hit 38 for the day, and with forecasts of similar weather all next week, we’re thinking of putting the dock in next weekend.) After an hour and a half of strenuous exercise, the supervisor and I immediately undid any positive benefits by heading to the Kiwanis pancake feed at the Senior Center. It was the beginning of Legacy Weekend, and we needed to be cloned to cover all events.

As we went home to rest (and digest the pancakes) before heading out again, we noted that because of scheduling conflicts we would be unable to: enter the ice fishing contest, go to the clay workshop and reception, stay for the boys’ basketball game (with the Alexandria Aces performing at halftime), participate in the candle light cross-country ski/snowshoe through Carlos State Park, or see Lisa Lynn’s debut performance at SAWA.

It began at the winery. The Salty Dogs were performing – and the winery was featuring Legacy/Valentine’s Day specials, including port shots in chocolate cups. Dee-lish! We could only stay for a little over an hour – but the cast serenaded Ruthie (for our 10th anniversary is Valentine’s Day) with her favorite song, What’ll I Do?, as we headed for the next event. Thanks again to Annie, Bruce, Erik, and Tom for putting a twinkle in Ruthie’s eye. We were off to SAWA, which was hosting a wine and chocolate tasting – what’s not to like? Four different wines paired with four different chocolates – needless to say, we liked them all. And it was here we heard our first report on the ice fishing contest. It was subsequently independently confirmed. It seems so preposterous, that an errata will be issued later if not true. The report was – although something like 4,000 anglers participated on Lake Agnes, NOT A SINGLE FISH WAS CAUGHT(?)

Next, we had to repair back to the house so the supervisor could determine appropriate attire for a basketball game followed immediately by a hockey game. This almost requires professional assistance. The girls’ basketball team was hosting Bemidji on “Hoops vs. Cancer” night. We found Val Trumm on the concourse, obtained our pre-ordered shirts, and entered the gym to find the Pink Shirts displayed throughout the crowd and on both teams. I videoed the warm-ups and the game’s beginning – as you can see at the opening tip, Bemidji featured a sophomore center who was listed as 6’2” though she seemed considerably bigger than that in relation to Sam:

http://www.youtube.com/user/ruthobert#p/a/u/1/y2xiRHDgZ-M

http://www.youtube.com/user/ruthobert#p/a/u/0/q3ulFS14mfE

The Cards began the game as usual – high energy, turn the other team over often, leading to a 7-0 lead through the video. Shortly, Lauren picked up her 2nd foul and sat most of the 1st half. Though that did not initially cause negative issues, it seemed to effect the Cards flow in the game. The Cards led 32-12 at half, and I commented how that reflected how good we are because we didn’t play very well. With Lauren back in at the start of the 2nd half, the Cards started pulling away even further. Then we were hit by an affliction of poor shooting that affected our entire game. If we tried to throw the ball in the ocean, it would hit a kelp bed and bounce back out. A lead that once was in the mid-20’s was cut to 7 at one point. We have to give the Lumberjacks some credit here – while their center is their only height, and she was very good both scoring and blocking shots (she must have had at least 10), they also had a 5’9” fullback who would bulldoze through everyone and was a good shooter, and their little guards started launching high-arcing 3’s that would re-enter the atmosphere with frost from the stratosphere and somehow swish right through the basket. The Cards then decided it was time to crank up the “D” again and created turnovers that led to easy baskets – so we were able to maintain the lead. But down the stretch, when we could have put the game away, we must have missed 7-8 free throws in a row. It’s hard to be picky in a 55-45 victory over a quality opponent, but that was probably the Cards worst shooting display since the Fergus game.

[Gentle men of the cloth (and sports fans and golfers):  Dave Hoyme and Rollie Halvorson.  Their significant others, Jeanne, to Dave’s right, and Alice, not in the picture, apparently are a little more camera shy.]

[I said, Martin!  So, at first he ducked.  Your snowbird friends would like to say, ‘Hi!’.]

[The Defense prepares.]

We left JHS immediately to head to the RCC. It seemed it had been months since we’d been there. The girls’ hockey team spent the last half of the regular season on the road playing Class AA consortium schools. Now we were home to open the section playoffs against someone more our own size – Long Praire/Grey Eagle/Wadena-Deer Creek. We listened to the game report on KXRA on the way over – the first period was complete with the Cards holding a 3-0 lead, on a 34-0 shot advantage! The Cards were taking out a half-season’s frustrations on a young LPGEWDC team. We found Robo at the railing and the supervisor went down to sit with Karen Meuwissen. The rest of the game was similar to the 1st period – the Cards won 10-1, on a 60-3 shot advantage. Next up, the Cards play 2nd-seed, Morris-Benson, with the state’s leading scorer, Dani Schultz, at Benson on Tuesday. Neither we, nor apparently anyone associated with the Alex program, has ever played at Benson. We heard, however, that the arena is cold with limited seating. Therefore, these senior Super Fans likely will not make that trip – and hope they can make it to the finals on Friday, likely to be played at the MAC in St. Cloud.

http://www.youtube.com/user/ruthobert#p/a/u/2/Wd5mRixpzpE

[Karen and Ruthie.]

[The pink socks are a hockey tournament tradition – back to the days when the girls wore pink laces in their skates to make them look tough!]

We received an e-mail from the McCoys, who were at the basketball games with two grandsons, that the boys’ team lost to Bemidji 61-47. They said the boys did not shoot well (a night long Cardinal affliction?), but the Lumberjacks are very good with a 17-3 record and have a player who scored over 50 points in a game this year.

Alumni report: The Gusties won again on Friday with Danielle Justice in goal, and Michelle Anez contributed an assist as Wisconsin-River Falls continued its undefeated season.

[Danielle]

[Michelle]

[Addendum:  If you notice the winery photo, the windows are wide open.  At this time of year, 38-degree weather feels warm.  But it also means our getaway weather is a month early.  It is 44 degrees here this morning.  Mud, slush, and puddles are everywhere.  Water and snow are gushing off the roofs.  This is the weather we hate – and it’s suppose to be like this all week.  In a winter of total weirdness – with snow everyday in December and January, to too cold to snow the first part of February and then immediately too warm to snow – maybe spring will be really early?  Also, did you notice in Wisconsin’s big win over undefeated Ohio State, three of their players accounted for 51 points – and they’re all Minnesota kids!  Where do we go wrong?]

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