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Journal-Press Internet Sports & School - October 19, 2017
Rob LaPlante

Journal-Press Sports Editor Rob LaPlante may be reached by phone at 763-682-1221 or click here to email him

Bison play waiting game in 6-1 finals defeat

By Rob LaPlante

Sports Editor

By the time Buffalo's top singles and doubles players finished their warmups, the Wayzata girls' tennis team was well on its way to securing a 6-1 playoff win. 

With only five available courts at the start of last Thursday's 5 p.m. Section 5AA championship match at Baseline Tennis Center in Minneapolis, four of the five matchups were either concluded or near conclusion.

Wayzata was leading in all matches, minus No. 2 singles where eighth-grader Anna Lee ended up winning Buffalo's lone point in a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Trojan senior Ava Marko.

It wasn't until 6:15 p.m. when Bison senior Simona Potockova and Wayzata senior Sam Stephenson began their match. It was an intriguing matchup as the two were seeded No. 3 and No. 2, respectively in the individual tournament.

Senior Claire Stevens and seventh grader Alaina Lee started their match at No. 1 doubles shortly after Wayzata senior Mia Zucchi and junior Lauren Lo won 6-0, 6-1 over Buffalo junior Cassie McNitt and sophomore Ella Stevens at No. 2 doubles.

The delayed starts caused the match to officially end nearly four hours after its start time, which was frustrating for everyone involved.

Bison head coach Scott Larsen thought the delay played a bit of a factor in the outcome.

"I think that's a big deal, because pressure is a funny thing," Larsen said. "A couple of our biggest spots were sitting on the bench while everybody else was playing. If we have a scenario where our one singles is winning and one doubles is playing well for us, to go with our two singles win, that's seen by Wazyata players and it might have a different sense in the match. I'm disappointed we didn't get everybody out at the same time. The complexion of the match may have been a little different."

Instead, Buffalo's most lethal weapons sat and watched as Wayzata's two and three doubles grabbed the first two points with straight-set wins. Shortly after, Wayzata's three and four singles followed suit.

By the time one singles and one doubles were done with warmups, the Trojans had already clinched the necessary four points to win the match.

"It was tough already knowing the scores going into our match," said Claire Stevens, who teamed with Lee for a 6-3, 6-3 loss to Wayzata seniors Sydney Stern and Grace Jacobson, seeded No. 1 in the doubles tournament. "We still played with a lot of intensity and wanted to win. Even though we knew we were down, we still tried our hardest."

After winning the first set 7-6 (7-4), Potockova dropped the final two sets to Stephenson 7-5 and 10-2 in a third-set super tiebreaker. It was only Potockova's second loss of the season.

With Wayzata playing seven of its 11 seniors in its varsity lineup, Larsen noted that the Trojans' experience was key.

"I think Wayzata's experience was a big factor. They were sort of in our position last year when they lost to Delano in the section tourney," Larsen said. "Now this is their year, but I think our young players will benefit from being here. You could tell there were some nerves, especially early in the matches. There were a lot of fans behind them and we came out a little bit tight. Building on this experience, we're going to be stronger next year."

As one of only two seniors on Buffalo's roster, captain Mya Lubben was disappointed they couldn't make state, but the experience of her first section final was one she'll never forget.

"The whole environment is really cool, but you have to try and block stuff out with the bigger crowds," Lubben said. "It was so much fun, though – an absolute blast. It was a great way to end all the years I've been playing tennis. The whole season was wonderful."

With Buffalo's future bright returning all but three varsity seniors, Claire Stevens expects future Bison teams will eventually jump the next hurdle.

"They are all so young and they are all still improving," Stevens said. "Even from the start of the season you can see how much they have improved. It's so good for them to get this experience down here. Scott is such a great coach too, with all his experience and he's so supportive of us. It's nice to have a friendly coach you can trust."

Buffalo finished the season 22-4 overall and brought home its first conference title since 2012, going a perfect 9-0 in Mississippi 8 play.

"It's tough to not be disappointed with the loss to Wayzata, but if you look at the body of work this team had this year, this was an extraordinary year," Larsen said. "That conference championship meant an awful lot to them. We knew we would be a quality team with the amount of kids we were bringing back and the amount of work they did in the off-season.

"To make it to this final match in the section, I told the kids, there were 124 teams that started playing a week and a half ago and we made it to the final 16. I'm super-proud how they played this year. I won't say I was surprised, but I was happy they played at the level I know they were capable of playing at."  



Ryan Chev eCouponsJust five days after losing to Stephenson in the team tourney, Potockova earned sweet payback with a 7-6, 6-7, 6-4 marathon win Tuesday over Wayzata's top player.

The match took just over three hours to complete. Potockova made quicker work in the early rounds of the tourney with a 6-1, 6-1 first-round win over Patrick Henry's Rachel Clifton. She won 6-0, 6-1 in round two over Champlin Park's Simran Desai. Potockova led 7-5 in round three, before an injury forced No. 6 seed Victoria Epshteyn of Maple Grove to forfeit out of the tournament.

Potockova was the only Bison player to advance to the second day of the two-day individual tourney at Reed-Sweatt in Minneapolis.

Eighth-grader Anna Lee, seeded No. 5 in the tourney, exited in round three with a 6-0, 6-0 loss to No. 4 seed Nicole Snezhko of Champlin Park. Lee defeated Park Center's Hawa Doucoure 6-0, 6-0 in the first round, and Abby Johnson of Rogers 6-2, 6-0 in round two.

Buffalo's doubles teams also went 2-1 in tourney play. Senior captains Claire Stevens and Mya Lubben, seeded No. 4 in the tourney, opened with a 6-0, 6-1 win over Maple Grove's Cassandra Barry and Grace Bakke. Another 6-0, 6-1 win followed in round two over Monticello's Gina Bourgeois and Hannah Daniels. They eventually were eliminated in round three with a 3-6, 6-4, 7-5 win by No. 3 seed Emily Rubbelke and Sam Stickler of Rogers.

Junior Cassie McNitt and sophomore Ella Stevens also exited in the third round with a 6-2, 6-1 loss to top-seed Sydney Stern and Grace Jacobson of Wayzata. Prior to the loss, Stevens and McNitt, seeded No. 8 in the tourney, defeated Robbinsdale Armstrong's Ottilea Brueshaber and Renae Brunner 6-1, 3-6, 6-2. Stevens and McNitt won their round-two matchup 6-1, 6-4 over Anoka's Adrianna Warden and Maya Nibbe.


Section 5AA Finals

Wayzata 6, Buffalo 1

(Thursday, Oct. 12 at  U of M Baseline)

Singles: No. 1 – Sam Stephenson (W) def. Simona Potockova (B) 6-7 (4-7), 7-5, (10-2); No. 2 -- Anna Lee (B) def. Ava Marko (W) 6-2, 6-2; No. 3 -- Emily Reisman (W) def. Emma Carlson (B) 6-3, 6-1; No. 4 -- Courtney Kallas (W) def. Vanessa Blanchet (B) 6-0, 6-1.

Doubles: No. 1 – Sydney Stern & Grace Jacobson (W) def. Claire Stevens & Alaina Lee (B) 6-3, 6-3; No. 2 -- Mia Zucchi & Lauren Lo (W) def. Cassie McNitt & Ella Stevens (B) 6-0, 6-1; No. 3 -- Isabella Binger & Natalie Epshteyn (W) def. Ohnica Melenich & Mya Lubben (B) 6-2, 6-2.


Bison Singles Records

Anna Lee24-3

Simona Potockova22-2

Emma Carlson13-9

Vanessa Blanchet12-3

Alaina Lee7-4

Mya Lubben3-1

Claire Stevens2-1

Cassie McNitt1-0

Nicole McHenry0-1

Gina Miller0-2

Team Totals81-26


Bison Doubles Records

Mya Lubben20-5

Ohnica Melenich 20-6

Ella Stevens20-7

Cassie McNitt19-9

Claire Stevens16-10

Perrin Thompson9-1

Alaina Lee6-7

Hillary Hovland4-5

Vanessa Blanchet1-0

Gina Miller1-2

Team Totals116-52


Bison grab third straight

Late fumble secures win

By Rob LaPlante

Sports Editor

In a game that featured a combined 89 points on offense/special teams, it was a key play on defense that solidified a 48-41 Bison football road win last Friday at Chisago Lakes.

Buffalo junior Damien Biegert's fumble recovery with 22.5 seconds left in regulation spoiled any last-second heroics for the Wildcats, and disappointed their large homecoming crowd. 

Senior John Gaughan was responsible for the key play late in the game, prying the ball from the hands of Manuel Rosario, who fumbled while fighting for extra yards at the Bison 9-yard line.

"We talk about on defense that when you get a guy stood up, the next guy is supposed to come in and help wrap up and punch the ball at the same time," said Bison head coach Todd Bouman. "The defense has been doing a great job, and it's good to see the offense put some points on the board this week."

The turnover was one of seven total in the game, with Buffalo's defense producing two interceptions and three fumble recoveries. It marked the third straight game Buffalo's defenders have created at least three or more turnovers.

Buffalo led 13-0 after one quarter thanks to a pair of rushing scores from junior running back Riley Habisch, who found paydirt from 16 and four yards out.

The Bison missed an opportunity early to blow the game open when they came up empty on two previous red-zone visits. Habisch, who ended the night with five TDs, nearly had a sixth but fumbled at the one-yard line.

"I thought Riley went in, but the (referee) didn't see it that way," Bouman said. "No matter how frustrating it gets, you have to move on."

The Bison blew another opportunity for points on its second possession of the game when they failed to convert on a fourth down at the Chisago Lakes' 17-yard line.

With the defense playing well, junior wide receiver Jack Munsterteiger wasn't concerned about the early miscues.

"If we kept battling, we knew good things would happen," Munsterteiger said. "We knew coming in that we had to score a lot. We felt if we stopped them a couple times on defense that we would win the game."

Chisago Lakes (1-6 overall, 1-5 division) entered the game scoring 205 total points, while allowing 244.

The offense for the Wildcats would eventually show up as they grabbed a 21-20 lead on rushing scores from Rosario, Henry Trost and a 97-yard kickoff return for a TD by Matt Mohr.

Mohr's score came just 19 seconds after Buffalo grabbed a 20-7 second-quarter lead on a 21-yard TD pass from sophomore Aidan Bouman to junior Treyton Welch.

"The kickoff was the most frustrating play," Coach Bouman said. "Peter Deneen (senior) couldn't have kicked it any better, deep into the corner, but we just took a few bad angles. It was an opportunity to go up 2-3 scores and we let that happen."

Buffalo took a 27-21 lead into half on Habisch's third TD. Two of Habisch's four rushing scores came from a newly implemented wildcat formation, which put the quarterback at wide receiver and Habisch taking the direct snap.

With senior fullback Tannor Schiller serving a 1-game suspension for two unsportsmanlike conduct calls in Buffalo's previous game, Bison coaches came up with some new ideas.

"With Tannor out this week, we obviously didn't have the same personnel for short-yardage situations," Coach Bouman said. "Coach (Craig) Lachowitzer and Coach (Josh) Ortmann came up with a great idea of putting together a heavy formation. It really helped us out this week."

The see-saw game continued on the first play from scrimmage in the second half as Trost broke free for a 67-yard rushing score. Buffalo grabbed a 34-28 lead on Habisch's fourth rushing TD, this coming from 16 yards.

Mohr's second TD of the game, minus a failed extra point, tied the score 34-34. The Bison took a 41-34 lead early in the fourth quarter on a 43-yard TD pass from Bouman to Welch, but Chisago Lakes tied it once again on Mohr's 29-yard rushing TD with 5:54 left in regulation.

Buffalo's eventual game-winning drive was setup by a couple key third-down conversions, one to Welch, another to Munsterteiger.

Although he was held out of the end zone, Munsterteiger finished with six catches for 73 yards. Junior Joe McNamara, who had an interception on defense, also had a big game with four catches for 101 yards.

Both receivers benefited from Welch's career-best performance of 14 catches for 214 yards and two TDs.

"It's getting to the point where teams have 2-3 guys over by Treyton," Munsterteiger said. "It helps the passing game anytime we can get another receiver in the flat. I think I had three catches on smash routes because both those guys sucked back to Treyton. His presence is huge."

Bouman's third TD of the game was his biggest, when his screen pass went 20 yards for the eventual winning score by Habsich with 2:40 left in regulation.

"That kid is crazy – five touchdowns!" Munsterteiger said. "He's the shiftiest person I know. He'll put a hit on somebody and he can make people miss. He could be a D-I running back anywhere."

On top of his five scores, Habisch ended the night with 161 yards rushing on 29 carries. He added seven catches for 74 yards receiving. In his modest way, he gave most the credit to his linemen."

"I have a great line," Habisch said. "It's really fun playing when the offense is clicking like this – moving the ball down the field, efficiently and quickly."

Not to be outdone, Bouman's three TD passes gives him 15 on the season. He ended the night 32-47 for a career-high 432 passing yards.

More so than the individual accomplishments, Coach Bouman was most proud of his team gutting out a win.

"In the past, there were times where we lost games like this," he said. This group of kids has that mentality that they're not going to let that happen."

The victory moves Buffalo (4-3 overall, 4-2 division) a game above the .500 mark with one game remaining in the regular season.

"It's been a great year," Habisch said. "This is the first time we've been above .500 this deep in the season in a long time."

Results of Wednesday's Oct. 18 home game against Rogers was unavailable due to deadline. A win would assure Buffalo its first winning season since finishing 8-2 in 2009.



* Bouman's performance last week earned him Star Tribune Metro Player of the Week honors. His 1,813 passing yards entering the Rogers game leads the North Central District, and unofficially leads the state (not all teams post individual statistics).

* Welch's two touchdowns extended his touchdown streak to eight straight games dating back to a two-TD performance in last year's playoff game at Blaine. His 14 catches were the most since former receiver Tyler Johnson grabbed 18 that same playoff game.

* Senior Jaiden Russell had a career-high 14 tackles against Chisago Lakes, bringing his total to 49. Sophomore Dustin Sarvie leads the team with 74.


Buffalo 48, Chisago Lakes 41

(Friday, Oct. 12 at Chisago Lakes)

Buffalo       13   14    7   14    –    48

Chisago Lakes       0   21   13     7    –    41


First quarter

B -- Riley Habisch 16 run (kick failed) 6:04.

B -- Habisch 4 run (Danika Tweten kick) 0:15.

Second quarter

CL -- Manuel Rosario 1 run (Ryan Mower kick) 9:06.

B -- Treyton Welch 21 pass from Aidan Bouman (Tweten kick) 7:56.

CL -- Matt Mohr 97 kickoff return (Mower kick) 7:37.

CL -- Henry Trost 39 run (Mower kick) 4:54.

B -- Habisch 8 run (Tweten kick) 0:34.5.

Third quarter

CL -- Trost 67 run (Mower kick) 11:39.

B -- Habisch 16 run (Tweten kick) 9:07.

CL -- Mohr 10 run (kick failed) 5:35.

Fourth quarter

B -- Welch 43 pass from Bouman (Tweten kick) 11:41.

CL -- Mohr 29 run (Mower kick) 5:54.

B -- Habisch 20 pass from Bouman (Tweten kick) 2:40.

Individual stats:

Bison leaders:

Passing – Aidan Bouman 32-47--432, (3 TD); Treyton Welch 1-1--36.

Rushing – Riley Habisch 29-161, (4 TD); Welch 1-3; Bouman 4-(-25).

Receiving – Welch 14-214, (2 TD); Joe McNamara 4-101; Habisch 7-74, (TD); Jack Munsterteiger 6-73; Jacob Muhich 1-6.

Tackles – Jaiden Russell 14, (forced fumble); Dustin Sarvie 8; Joe McNamara 8, (INT); Zach Phillips 6; Tony Dahl 5; Logan Grossinger 4; Ryan Kluver 4; John Gaughan 4, (forced fumble, fumble recovery); Joey Farniok 3; Welch 2, (INT); Muhich 2; Tristan Eull 2; Jacob Scherber 2, (forced fumble); Trevor Johnson 1; Tucker Johnson 1; Michael Tweten 1; Daunte Matilla 1; Damien Biegert 0, (fumble recovery).

Wildcat leaders:

Wildcat stats not available.



Buffalo ties STMA for conference title

By Rob LaPlante

Sports Editor

Bison girls' swim/dive head coach Rachel Busch made a promise to her squad at the beginning of the year.

She lived up to her promise at the conclusion of Tuesday's 93-93 road tie at St. Michael-Albertville.

"At the very beginning of the season the girls asked if they could push me into the pool if we beat Monticello," Busch said. "I said, 'no,' the only way they could push me in is if we win the conference championship."

 Not only did they defeat Monticello earlier this season, but the tie with STMA meant both teams finished the year 5-0-1 in conference duals.

The win means STMA extends its run of Mississippi 8 titles to six straight years. It's Buffalo's third overall conference title, and first since there was a three-way tie for first with the Bison, Monticello, and STMA in 2011.

"Obviously, winning it yourself would be ideal, but at the end of the day we still came out with the same title," said senior Alex Zeiss.

Zeiss continued her dominance on the diving board. Her score of 276.75 set a new STMA pool record and helped give Buffalo eight out of a possible 16 points in diving.

Buffalo led 33-29 at the conclusion of diving. After trailing 8-6 in the first event, the Bison never trailed the rest of the meet after grabbing 11 out of 16 possible points in the 200 freestyle, led by junior Tianna Kosek's first-place time of 2:00.25.

Throughout the meet, STMA's high-end talent was evident with first-place finishes in nine of the 12 events. But Buffalo's strength all season has been its depth, evidenced by the Bison placing second and third in eight events.

After careful deliberation, Busch spent a little longer preparing her lineup for this particular meet.

"I had the meet seeded based on our times and based on their times and what I expected them to swim, but you can never guarantee that for sure," Busch said. "A lot of things went in our favor that on paper wasn't supposed to happen. My job tonight was to strategize and keep track of the points, and every single point mattered and they knew it and went for it."

Busch credited the Bison's previous meet, where they finished second to Maple Grove in the Section 8AA True Team meet last Saturday at Elk River.

Buffalo scored 1,002.5 points at True Team. Maple Grove scored 1,152 points. More notable was STMA's third-place score of 996.

Despite finishing second, representing Section 8AA at next Wednesday's Class AA True Team state meet at 6:15 p.m. the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center in Minneapolis will be Maple Grove and STMA.

The Knights got the wild card bid over Buffalo based on receiving more NISCA (National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association) Power Points, which is based on times and not places.

Busch said the results at True Team gave the Bison even more incentive coming into Tuesday's dual with STMA.

"True Team results was a big boost to our confidence," Busch said. "The girls have known all season that they have been doing amazing things. They were looking forward to this meet, and stayed positive and believed we could come out with a win."

Prior to True Team, Buffalo defeated Big Lake 114-72 last Thursday at Big Lake. Zeiss set Big Lake's pool record with a score of 301.10. Including STMA's dual, it was the fourth time this season she's broke a school or pool record.

Zeiss says by far this has been the best season for the program.

"I've been on the team since seventh grade, and in that time we had never beat Monticello or St. Michael," she said. "We're doing so well. I seriously could see state in the near future for the entire team."

Zeiss credits her head coach for most the success.

"It's crazy how well Busch has developed this program," Zeiss said. "We've incorporated weight training and just different things that have helped. She's such a good coach and I seriously the success is how she's built this program and not so much us." 


Buffalo 114, Big Lake 72

(Thursday, Oct. 12 at Big Lake)

200 Medley Relay (8-4-2): 1. Buffalo (Sydney Polzin, Brianna Shroyer, Kassy Shroyer, Tianna Kosek) 1:54.89; 2. Buffalo (Kaitlyn Schendel, Marna Hanson, Caitlin Drews, Julia Gleason) 2:07.31; 3. Buffalo (Zoe Carik, Madeline Hill, Kennedy Stromberg, Trinity Geyen) 2L10.28. (14-0).

200 Freestyle (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Valerie Childs (BL) 2:06.06; 2. Kolby Schendel (B) 2:12.85; 3. Sydney Polzin (B) 2:17.38; 4. Caitlin Drews (B) 2:21.65; 5. Katlyn Emerson (BL) 2:37.22. (23-7).

200 Individual Medley (6-4-3-2-1): Elle Kaiser (B) 2:32.78; 2. Julia Kolles (B) 2:32.87; 3. Kaitlyn Schendel (B) 2:34.28; 4. Grace Thieke (BL) 2:39.28; 5. McKenna Peterson (BL) 2:49.34. (36-10).

50 Free (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Gabbie Werner (BL) 24.99; 2. Tianna Kosek (B) 25.15; 3. Kamryn Robarge (BL) 26.25; 4. Kassy Shroyer (B) 26.72; 5. Julia Gleason (B) 26.90. (43-19).

1-Meter Dive (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Alex Zeiss (B) 301.10; 2. Olivia Yost (B) 188.35; 3. Abby Schreifels (BL) 173.15; 4. Miranda Passig (B) 165.50; 5. Vanessa Dalmeida (BL) 163.80. (55-23).

100 Butterfly (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Valerie Childs (BL) 1:02.46; 2. Kassy Shroyer (B) 1:04.11; 3. Brianna Shroyer (B) 1:07.97; 4. Ellie Carik (B) 1:11.08; 5. Taylor Muehlbauer (BL) 1:17.44. (64-30).

100 Free (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Gabbie Werner (BL) 53.67; 2. Kamryn Robarge (BL) 56.62; 3. Julia Kolles (B) 58.59; 4. Madeline Hill (B) 1:03.25; 5. Caitlin Drews (B) 1:04.10. (70-40).

500 Free (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Tianna Kosek (B) 5:42.00; 2. Kaylie Carik (B) 6:00.84; 3. Kennedy Stromberg (B) 6:14.33; 4. Keily Schumann (BL) 6:35.33; 5. Emilie Kirchoff (BL) 6:49.89. (83-43).

200 Free Relay (8-4-2): 1. Big Lake (Velerie Childs, Maria Turk, Kamryn Robarge, Gabbie Werner) 1:44.95; 2. Buffalo (Kassy Shroyer, Kolby Schendel, Julia Kolles, Tianna Kosek) 1:45.61; 3. Buffalo (Julia Gleason, Kaitlyn Schendel, Brianna Shroyer, Elle Kaiser) 1:51.38. (89-51).

100 Backstroke (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Sydney Polzin (B) 1:04.00; 2. Kaitlyn Schendel (B) 1:09.61; 3. Katlyn Emerson (BL) 1:11.30; 4. Elle Kaiser (B) 1:14.10; 5. Grace Thieke (BL) 1:15.46. (101-55).

100 Breaststroke (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Brianna Shroyer (B) 1:13.95; 2. Kolby Schendel (B) 1:17.14; 3. Marna Hanson (B) 1:20.40; 4. Sierra Stromberg (BL) 1:21.59; 5. Melania Capes (BL) 1:26.21. (114-58).

400 Free Relay (8-4-2): 1. Big Lake (Valerie Childs, Maria Turk, Kamryn Robarge, Gabbie Werner) 3:57.69; 2. Big Lake (Grace Thieke, Ally Helgoe, Katlyn Emerson, Taylor Muehlbauer) 4:29.36; 3. Big Lake (Emilie Kirchoff, Jaden Anderson, Meikiina Hillukka, Sierra Stromberg) 5:05.87. EX: Buffalo (Sydney Polzin, Elle Kaiser, Kaitlyn Schendel) 4:06.13. (114-72).


Section 8AA True Team Meet

(Saturday, Oct. 14 at Elk River)

Team scores: Maple Grove 1152; 2. Buffalo 1002.5; 3. St. Michael-Albertville 996; 4. Brainerd 863; 5. Rogers 747; 6. St. Cloud Tech 730.5; 7. Elk River 586.

200 Medley Relay (8-4-2): 1. STMA (Kelsey Kocon, Emma Lezer, Kristen Pieper, Jordyn Schnell) 1:49.48, 56 pts.; 3. Buffalo (Sydney Polzin, Brianna Shroyer, Kassy Shroyer, Tianna Kosek) 1:54.61, 52; 11. Buffalo (Ellie Carik, Marna Hanson, Caitlin Drews, Julia Gleason) 2:06.47, 36; 17. Buffalo (Zoe Hiers, Madeline Hill, Emily Strommen, Trinity Geyen) 2:09.75, 24; 23. Buffalo (Kennedy Stromberg, Natalie Bobick, Zoe Carik, Abby Serbus) 2:15.43, 12.

200 Freestyle (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Andie Timpie (R) 2:00.35, 28; T7. Julia Kolles (B) 2:09.70, 21.5; 14. Kaitlyn Schendel (B) 2:14.48, 15; 15. Caitlin Drews (B) 2:15.12, 14; Kaylie Carik (B) 2:17.82, 9.

200 Individual Medley (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Kelsey Kocon (STMA) 2:15.70, 28; 2. Brianna Shroyer (B) 2:22.62, 27; 4. Kolby Schendel (B) 2:24.66, 25; 8. Sydney Polzin (B) 2:29.03, 21; 13. Marna Hanson (B) 2:32.71, 16.

50 Free (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Beth Kelzer (R) 24.46, 28; 3. Tianna Kosek (B) 25.15, 26; 8. Kassy Shroyer (B) 26.30, 21; 14. Julia Gleason (B) 27.24, 15; 18. Elle Kaiser (B) 27.58, 11.

1-Meter Dive (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Alex Zeiss (B) 472.55, 28; 14. Olivia Yost (B) 293.40, 15; 16. Miranda Passig (B) 287.15, 13; 24. Kwynn Kalamaha (B) 220.85, 5.

100 Butterfly (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Emma Lezer (STMA) 59.35, 28; 2. Kassy Shroyer (B) 1:00.64, 27; 6. Julia Kolles (B) 1:05.44, 23; 13. Ellie Carik (B) 1:09.80, 16; 24. Zoe Carik (B) 1:17.58, 5.

100 Free (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Beth Kelzer (R) 53.38, 28; 3. Tianna Kosek (B) 55.10, 26; 17. Elle Kaiser (B) 1:00.76, 12; 18. Julia Gleason (B) 1:00.91, 11; 22. Madeline Hill (B) 1:02.81, 7.

500 Free (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Abbey Cornelius (MG) 5:22.58, 28; 11. Kaylie Carik (B) 6:02.08, 18; 15. Emily Strommen (B) 6:10.52, 14; 16. Zoe Hiers (B) 6:10.73, 13; 18. Kennedy Stromberg (B) 6:13.58, 11.

200 Free Relay (8-4-2): 1. STMA (Faye Roberts, Kristen Pieper, Ashton Hobza, Jordyn Schnell) 1:42.65, 56; 3. Buffalo (Kassy Shroyer, Kolby Schendel, Julia Kolles, Tianna Kosek) 1:44.67, 52; 8. Buffalo (Julia Gleason, Kaitlyn Schendel, Brianna Shroyer, Elle Kaiser) 1:50.03, 42; 14. Buffalo (Zoe Carik, Emily Strommen, Trinity Geyen, Marna Hanson) 1:54.52, 30; 25. Buffalo (Kennedy Stromberg, Natalie Bobick, Laura Eggen, Kaylie Carik) 2:04.11, 8.

100 Backstroke (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Amber Secrist (R) 1:00.47, 28; 3. Kolby Schendel (B) 1:03.73, 26; 6. Sydney Polzin (B) 1:05.08, 23; 11. Kaitlyn Schendel (B) 1:08.84, 18; 13. Zoe Hiers (B) 1:10.63, 16.

100 Breaststroke (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Emma Lezer (STMA) 1:07.50, 28; 6. Brianna Shroyer (B) 1:13.72, 23; 13. Marna Hanson (B) 1:19.21, 16; 21. Ellie Carik (B) 1:22.34, 8; 22. Madeline Hill (B) 1:23.33, 7.

400 Free Relay (8-4-2): 1. STMA (Ashton Hobza, Faye Roberts, Kelsey Kocon, Emma Lezer) 3:44.59, 56; 5. Buffalo (Sydney Polzin, Kolby Schendel, Kaitlyn Schendel, Julia Kolles) 3:57.78, 48; 7. Buffalo (Caitlin Drews, Ellie Carik, Madeline Hill, Elle Kaiser) 4:05.52, 44; 15. Buffalo (Kaylie Carik, Abby Serbus, Laura Eggen, Kennedy Stromberg) 4:18.60, 28; 17. Buffalo (Zoe Carik, Trinity Geyen, Emily Strommen, Zoe Hiers) 4:19.88, 24.


St. Michael-Albertville 93, Buffalo 93

(Tuesday, Oct. 17 at STMA)

200 Medley Relay (8-4-2): 1. St. Michael Albertville (Kelsey Kocon, Emma Lezer, Kristen Pieper, Faye Roberts) 1:52.16; 2. Buffalo (Sydney Polzin, Brianna Shroyer, Caitlin Drews, Trinity Green) 2:01.41; 3. Buffalo (Ellie Carik, Marna Hanson, Kassy Shroyer, Elle Kaiser) 2:03.35. (6-8).

200 Freestyle (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Tianna Kosek (B) 2:00.25; 2. Ashton Hobza (STMA) 2:02.66; 3. Julia Kolles (B) 2:07.42; 4. Kaitlyn Schendel (B) 2:11.42; 5. Maggie Lombardi (STMA) 2:15.01. (17-13).

200 Individual Medley (6-4-3-2-1): Kelsey Kocon (STMA) 2:16.97; 2. Brianna Shroyer (B) 2:23.51; 3. Kolby Schendel (B) 2:25.11; 4. Sydney Polzin (B) 2:26.52; 5. Kally Riley (STMA) 2:33.20. (26-20).

50 Free (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Jordyn Schnell (STMA) 25.15; 2. Kassy Shroyer (B) 25.79; 3. Faye Roberts (STMA) 26.21; 4. Julia Gleason (B) 26.91; 5. Elle Kaiser (B) 27.30. (33-29).

1-Meter Dive (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Alex Zeiss (B) 276.75; 2. Isabella Baldwin (STMA) 224.05; 3. Nicole Kyono (STMA) 189.95; 4. Miranda Passig (B) 167.60; 5. Anna Tschida (STMA) 165.60. (41-37).

100 Butterfly (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Emma Lezer (STMA) 58.17; 2. Kassy Shroyer (B) 1:01.78; 3. Julia Kolles (B) 1:05.17; 4. Kristen Pieper (STMA) 1:06.28; 5. Kennedy Stromberg (B) 1:08.79. (49-45).

100 Free (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Tianna Kosek (B) 53.96; 2. Jordyn Schnell (STMA) 54.60; 3. Faye Roberts (STMA) 57.37; 4. Julia Gleason (B) 59.50; 5. Elle Kaiser (B) 1:00.69. (58-52).

500 Free (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Ashton Hobza (STMA) 5:36.51; 2. Kolby Schendel (B) 5:49.66; 3. Kaylie Carik (B) 5:54.85; 4. Maggie Lombardi (STMA) 5:59.26; 5. Emily Strommen (B) 6:15.66. (67-60).

200 Free Relay (8-4-2): 1. STMA (Faye Roberts, Kristen Pieper, Ashton Hobza, Jordyn Schnell) 1:42.76; 2. Buffalo (Kassy Shroyer, Julia Kolles, Kolby Schendel, Julia Gleason) 1:45.39; 3. Buffalo (Kaitlyn Schendel, Caitlin Drews, Trinity Geyen, Tianna Kosek) 1:48.03. (73-68).

100 Backstroke (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Kelsey Kocon (STMA) 1:01.54; 2. Sydney Polzin (B) 1:04.42; 3. Kaitlyn Schendel (B) 1:07.81; 4. Zoe Hiers (B) 1:11.25; 5. Sarah Berscheit (STMA) 1:12.11. (81-75).

100 Breaststroke (6-4-3-2-1): 1. Emma Lezer (STMA) 1:09.66; 2. Brianna Shroyer (B) 1:12.50; 3. Madison Jurkovski (STMA); 4. Marna Hanson (B) 1:19.37; 5. Kally Riley (STMA) 1:20.95. (87-85).

400 Free Relay (8-4-2): 1. STMA (Jordyn Schnell, Ashton Hobza, Kelsey Kocon, Emma Lezer) 3:44.59; 2. Buffalo (Sydney Polzin, Kolby Schendel, Kaitlyn Schendel, Tianna Kosek) 3:57.78, 48; 3. Buffalo (Caitlin Drews, Ellie Carik, Julia Kolles, Elle Kaiser) 4:05.52. (93-93).



Boys repeat; girls third

By Rob LaPlante

Sports Editor

A "next man up" mentality propelled the Bison boys' cross country team to a second straight conference championship Tuesday afternoon at Bertram Park in Monticello.

Minus a top runner no longer with the team due to disciplinary reasons, the Bison rallied together to place seven runners in the top-16, including their five top scorers all placing in the top-11.

The 31 points edged second-place St. Michael-Albertville's 33 for the conference title.

Junior Isaac Basten of Buffalo edged out two STMA runners for individual medalist at 16:20.89. Jonah Breuer (16:41.57) and Carter Knaus (16:49.66) finished 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

Only two runners not from STMA or Buffalo finished among the top-11. Buffalo sophomore Nick Oak finished fifth (17:06.44), senior Braden Benson was sixth (17:10.18), junior Ryan Russek was eighth (17:13.19), and junior Alexei Hensel finished 11th (17:24.78).

STMA's other top-five scorers finished seventh, ninth, and 12th. The two-point margin is one that ultimately was decided with Hensel edging Luke Peterson of the Knights for that 11th place spot. Had Peterson won, Buffalo still would have claimed the conference title based on a tiebreak rule with the next highest placer being junior Joey Anderson's 15th place time of 17:47.12.

"The two teams are pretty even," said Bison co-head coach Dave Knutsen. "If we raced STMA 10 times, I think it ends 5-5."

"At the start of the season, St. Michael graduated so many runners and were not expected to be this strong," said co-head coach Jill Hanson. "We thought it would have been easier earlier in the season to win this title, but they came along really well."

During the race, Hensel knew there were a lot of his teammates and STMA runners towards the pack. Knowing that, he knew he had to run the race of his life. The 17:24.78 was a personal record.

"I wasn't thinking about my time at all during the race," Hensel said. "It was all about beating those two STMA kids behind me."

Seven of Buffalo's eight runners in the varsity race earned all-conference honors, which goes to any runner among the top-20. This was Hensel's first all-conference honor.

Hensel, along with the rest of his teammates felt the pressure to step up their game with one of their top runners no longer available.

"Absolutely we felt the pressure," he said. "I was thinking all week that it was 'next man up.' This is my first year of doing cross country, but from my experience so far, this time of year is fun to run."

Even with last year's conference title and state appearance, Knutsen marked this particular race on his calendar as one of his most memorable ones.

"I've coached 23 years and I've never been more proud of a group of boys than I am right now," Knutsen said. "We had somebody make a dumb decision, and as a group, they decided to step up and not have that take their success away. They all stepped up and said 'not today.' They took down a very good team."



There was not change from last year's top-3 finishers in the girls' race.

St. Michael-Albertville cruised to its fourth consecutive girls' conference title with a score of 19. Monticello was runner-up at 74. Buffalo finished third for a second straight season at 107.

Buffalo finished with three all-conference runners. Senior Amanda Montplaisir was fifth (19:55.42), sophomore Alexis O'Malley was sixth (20:00.58,), and senior Meredith Reynolds was 17th (20:55.07).

Knowing STMA was pretty much the heavy favorite to repeat, the Bison's third-place finish still came with mixed emotions.

"We were looking to go after Monticello," Hanson said. "We're still strong with our top-2 runners. I thought (senior) Meredith Reynolds ran a good race. She always kind of steps up this time of year. Our other runners have come so far this year, but those were the ones we were hoping could push us above Monticello. It just didn't happen today."

STMA placed the top-4 runners, including junior Annalise Davis, who was medalist in 18:59.08. Monticello's ability to place two runners among the top-30 was the difference between second and third in the team standings.

Buffalo's other two scorers included a 33rd place (22:19.44) from sophomore Emma Latcham-Reiter, and 42nd place (22:54.35) from sophomore Danielle Ruhr.

"We knew we weren't going to beat St. Michael, but we're a little disappointed we didn't beat Monticello," said Reynolds, who along with Montplaisir, are the two senior captains on the varsity team. "Just the fact we have three all-conference girls was a step up from last year. Amanda and I were the only two a year ago."

Both Buffalo teams get another week off to prepare for the upcoming Section 2AA championship meet next Thursday, Oct. 26 at Gale Woods Farm in Minnetrista.

Reynolds says she looks forward to this time of year with less meets, but bigger ones.

"It's a little more stressful this time of season, just because the meets mean more," she said. "I think it's fun though, because we have time between races to prepare."


Mississippi 8 Meet (Boys)

(Tuesday, Oct. 17 at Bertram Park)

Team scores: 1. Buffalo 31; 2. St. Michael-Albertville 33; 3. Big Lake 89; 4. Cambridge-Isanti 110; 5. St. Francis 176; 6. Monticello 181; 7. Princeton 208; 8. North Branch 224; 9. Rogers 228; 10. Chisago Lakes 232.

Medalist (81 runners): 1. Isaac Basten (Buffalo) 16:20.89.

Bison places-overall (All-Conference = Top 20; Honorable Mention 21-30): 1-1. Isaac Basten 16:20.89; 2-5. Nick Oak 17:06.44; 3-6. Braden Benson 17:10.18; 4-8. Ryan Russek 17:13.19; 5-11. Alexei Hensel 17:24.78; 6-15. Joey Anderson 17:47.12; 7-17. Jadon Boots 17:57.73; 8-26. Austin Willey 18:19.41.


Mississippi 8 Meet (Girls)

(Tuesday, Oct. 12 at Bertram Park)

Team scores: 1. St. Michael-Albertville 19; 2. Monticello 74; 3. Buffalo 107; 4. Princeton 119; 5. Rogers 138; 6. Cambridge-Isanti 155; 7. Chisago Lakes 156; 8. St. Francis 177; 9. North Branch 277; 10. Big Lake 279.

Medalist (84 runners): 1. Annalise Davis (STMA) 18:59.08.

Bison places-overall (All-Conference = Top 20; Honorable Mention 21-30): 1-7. Amanda Montplaisir 19:54.42; 2-8. Alexis O'Malley 20:00.58; 3-17. Meredith Reynolds 20:55.07; 4-33. Emma Latcham-Reiter 22:19.44; 5-42. Danielle Ruhr 22:54.35; 6-49. Lily Hanson 23:14.33; 7-56. Sarah Volden 23:42.51; 8-70. Josie Lavato 24:07.26



Bison suffer season-ending loss to Brainerd

Buffalo exits in first round with 3-1 loss to Warriors

By Rob LaPlante

Sports Editor

First-half goals by Regan McElfresh, Gabbie Smith, and Lexi Roby gave Brainerd all the offense it needed in its 3-1 home win last Thursday over Buffalo in a Section 8AA playoff girls' soccer game.

The Warriors, the No. 3 seed in the section, opened the scoring early when McElfresh scored just 3:02 into the contest.

Smith made it 2-0 for Brainerd, converting on a breakaway goal with 16:42 left in the first half. Roby's goal with 7:26 left in the half made it 3-0 on a perfectly-placed header. 

The Bison were held without a shot the first half. With Brainerd going into a prevent defense, Buffalo had more possession in the final 40 minutes and spoiled Brainerd goalie Molly Rudolph's shutout bid when senior Lauren Quiring converted a penalty-kick goal at the 31:12 mark.

"Our girls gave a great effort, especially in the second half," said Bison head coach Sarah Rodenwald.

The goal by Quiring was her team-leading ninth of the season. With no more offense to follow, Quiring edged senior teammate Sydney Johnson as the team's leader in goals (9) and tied Johnson in points (23).

Both Johnson and Quiring missed time due to injury. Quiring missed five games late in the season. Buffalo went 1-4 and was shutout twice during Quiring's 5-game absence. Johnson missed two games early in the year. Buffalo went 1-1, but the offense struggled in both games scoring only once.

Junior goalie Carly LaPlant, who made 22 saves on 25 shots in last Thursday's playoff game at Brainerd, has also been dealing with nagging injuries. The injury-bug to key players continues to plague the team in both of Rodenwald's years as head coach. A year ago she lost senior captain Cadyn Luedemann in the team's fifth game.

As frustrating as it is, Rodenwald tried to keep a level head.

"To say that injuries affected the outcome of this season would be making excuses," Rodenwald said. "The girls on this team, especially the seniors, deserved more success.

Brainerd's win setup a showdown Saturday night against No. 2 seed St. Michael-Albertville. This time it was the Warriors' turn to have their season end with a 5-1 loss Saturday at St. Michael-Albertville. The No. 2 seeded Knights were at No. 1 seed Rogers Tuesday for the section title.

For Buffalo, its season ended once again in all-too-familiar fashion – another first round exit. This marked the seventh straight year the Bison have been bounced in the opening round of the playoffs. Ironically, the last playoff win came in a 3-1 road win Oct. 16, 2010 at Brainerd.

The Bison (6-10 overall) graduate seven seniors, which leaves Rodenwald very little offense heading into next season. Of the 28 total goals scored this year, 22 came from seniors. 

Rodenwald credits this year's senior class for leading a young Bison squad that had a number of first-year varsity players. Sophomore Hannah Helmbrecht's stepped up in her first full year of varsity and finished with three goals and 12 points.

 "I do feel the girls on this team, especially the seniors, deserved more success. The season is so short, as a coach you want more time with these kids," Rodenwald said. "The wins and losses are one thing, but the experiences that the girls had together as a team will be memories they carry with them into their lives."


Section 8AA Quarterfinal

Brainerd 3, Buffalo 1

(Thursday, Oct. 12 at Buffalo)

Buffalo0  1   -  1

Brainerd3  0   -  3

Goal Scoring:

First Half: BR -- Regan McElfresh; BR -- Gabbie Smith; BR -- Lexi Roby.

Second Half: B -- Lauren Quiring (PK).

Assists: B -- None.; BR -- Annika Patrick, Meghan Lacy.


BR - Molly Rudolph (win) 3 shots, 2 saves; B - Carly LaPlant 25 shots, 22 saves.



Seniors take charge in final home match

By Rob LaPlante

Sports Editor

With one final regular-season home match in their high school volleyball careers, Bison seniors Aivary Bouman and Kari Zumach made it a memorable one.

Zumach set career highs with 37 kills and 25 digs. Bouman also set career highs with 17 kills and 18 digs.

Their individual efforts sparked a much needed 3-2 (23-25, 25-18, 17-25, 25-22, 17-15) victory last Thursday over Waconia.

"That match was so much fun to coach," said head coach Jenn Peterson. "We knew Waconia would be a good battle, so it was no surprise it went to a fifth game."

Buffalo battled from a 2-1 deficit in the match. It was only the second time this season the Bison played to a fifth-set tiebreaker. The first time resulted in a 3-2 loss at Rocori. Last Thursday's win was the first time Buffalo had won a tiebreaker point. They went 0-6 in tourney play where tiebreakers are decided in the third set. 

"It was finally our time to be successful in a long match," a relieved Peterson said.

Sophomore Nicole Odeen dished out a career-best 55 set assists for Buffalo.

Buffalo's former setter enjoyed her best night statistically as a middle hitter. Bouman's double-double was the first time in her career she's had a kills-digs combination.

"I'll do whatever is best for my team," Bouman said.

Bouman, Zumach and senior Payton Dannewitz set the tone for the match early.

"Our seniors had such a great attitude and energy stepping onto the court," Peterson said. "Aivary, Kari and Payton had the first three kills of the match, which was a great way to start the night."

Buffalo's other senior, Jade Schrupp, has missed the majority of the season due to injury.

The victory was third straight and fourth in the past five games for the Bison.

Having played her final home match of her high school career came with mixed emotions for the four Bison seniors.

"It was a little emotional, but I'm really happy with the way it ended," Bouman said. "I'm happy how we fought back into that game and how all the seniors played."



Buffalo finished the regular season 13-13 overall following a 3-0 road win Tuesday at Cambridge-Isanti.

Odeen finished the night with 29 assists. One of those assists was her 1,000th career setup.

The home team and the home crowd momentarily stopped the match to honor her accomplishment.

Next up for Buffalo is the Section 5AAA tournament beginning with play-in rounds Tuesday, Oct. 24. Brackets for the tourney were not available at deadline.


Buffalo 3, Waconia 2

(Thursday, Oct. 12 at Buffalo)

Waconia25  18  25  22  15  -  (105)

Buffalo   23  25  17  25  17  -  (107)

Bison stats:

Kills: Kari Zumach 37, Aivary Bouman 17, Lauren Ehlers 4, Kennedy Sohler 4, Nicole Odeen, 3, Payton Dannewitz 1.

Set Assists: Odeen 55, Zumach 3, Maddie Johnson 1.

Service Aces: Odeen 4, Zumach 4, Bouman 2, Dannewitz 1.

Digs: Zumach 25, Bouman 18, Odeen 16, Johnson 12, Ehlers 6, Demi Mills 5, Sohler 4, Dannewitz 1.

Blocks-solo: Zumach 2-1, Dannewitz 2-0, Odeen 1-0, Bouman 1-0, Sohler 1-0.


Buffalo 3, Cambridge-Isanti 0

(Tuesday, Oct. 17 at C-Isanti)

Buffalo25  25  25  -  (75)

C-Isanti   16  19  19  -  (54)

Bison stats:

Kills: Kari Zumach 19, Lauren Ehlers 6, Aivary Bouman 3, Payton Dannewitz 2, Kennedy Sohler 2, Nicole Odeen 1.

Set Assists: Odeen 29, Dannewitz 1.

Service Aces: Bouman 3, Zumach 2, Odeen 2, Dannewitz 1, Maddie Johnson 1.

Digs: Zumach 17, Bouman 9, Johnson 6, Odeen 6, Demi Mills 3, Ehlers 1, Sohler 1.

Blocks-solo: Sohler 2-0, Odeen 1-0, Zumach 1-0, Bouman 1-0, Dannewitz 1-0.



Tech shuts down Bison

By Rob LaPlante

Sports Editor

The road struggles continued as the Buffalo boys' soccer team suffered a season-ending 2-0 playoff loss last Thursday at St. Cloud Tech.

Road losses at St. Francis and Brainerd to end the regular season resulted in the Bison receiving the No. 6 seed in Section 8AA, and a first-round date with their arch-nemesis in St. Cloud Tech.

Tech's win Saturday was the second straight year the Tigers ended Buffalo's season.

Buffalo stood toe-to-toe with Tech, but two costly miscues in the first half led to both of St. Cloud's goals.

Tech's first goal came at 21:23 of the first half when Ismail Ismail scored the first of his two goals after beating a Bison midfielder to a loose ball. Ismail then blew by two Bison defenders and fired a shot high to the net past senior goalie Noah Raisanen.

Ismail made it 2-0 with 10:28 left in the first half when a cross pass landed in the middle of the goal area for an easy tap in.

"We had a couple careless turnovers that they capitalized on, but I thought we played them tough, especially in the second half," said head coach Joe Pokorney.

The recent lack of scoring, mixed in with a strong playoff opponent, left very little window of opportunity for the Bison. Buffalo mustered only three shots on Tech goalie Nathan Hilbert.

It was the second shutout in a row Buffalo suffered and the fourth of the season.

"A team like Tech doesn't give you any margin for error," Pokorney said.

Buffalo finished the season 5-10-1 overall. The Bison graduate 11 seniors.

"It's frustrating to end any season with a first-round loss," Pokorney said. "But I'm proud of our guys and the way they battled all year. We played with class and fought until the end."


Section 8AA Quarterfinal

St. Cloud Tech 2, Buffalo 0

(Thursday, Oct. 12 at SCSU)

Buffalo0  0   -  0

St. Cloud Tech2  0   -  2

Goal Scoring:

First Half: SCT -- Ismail Ismail; SCT -- Ismail Ismail.

Second Half: None.

Assists: SCT -- N/A.


B - Noah Raisanen (loss) 7 shots, 5 saves; SCT - Nathan Hilbert (win) 3 shots, 3 saves.



BHM staff members support their colors

By Rob LaPlante

Sports Editor

The month of October is time for colors to change and temperatures to drop. It's a perfect time for staff members to show off their own colors.

Each Tuesday this month, staff members in the Buffalo-Hanover-Montrose School District can be seen wearing college apparel in support of 6th annual College Knowledge Month (CKM), started in 2011 by the Office of Higher Education.

The purpose of CKM is to encourage students across the state to take a significant step toward college by providing assistance and building excitement for the application process. Annually, the program brings secondary and postsecondary educators together to engage students in exploring, planning and applying for college during the month of October.

Tuesdays are also Triva Day. Students are able to participate in trivia about colleges each week, and have the opportunity to win some great college gear that was donated from many colleges in the state. Fridays are also Fun Fact Fridays. Fun facts about colleges are shared during morning announcements.

Jennifer Blair, a school counselor at Buffalo High School, has coordinated CKM at the school the past three years.

"My goal with College Knowledge Month at BHS is to engage the whole student body and staff in conversations about college and post-secondary planning," Blair said. "We bring speakers to present to students information on a number of topics."

Some of the topics include: Financial Aid, Support for Writing Their College Application Essay, ROTC Information (military), NCAA Information (athletics), an Alumni Panel, and a week of College Application Help.

A new and fun event added this year was a flashback wall.

"Teachers submitted pictures of themselves from when they were in college," Blair said. "Each teacher included the name of their college they attended, and an activity they participated in on campus. The names of the teachers were hidden, to give the students (and other teachers) a chance to figure out who each person is."

With this week being fall break, the student body at BHS is encouraged to explore college campuses. Many colleges offer special events, as they know that high school students are on break during this time. 

CKM finishes off with a week of college application help each day in the BHS computer lab. Many state colleges participate in CKM by waiving their application fee for the entire last week (Oct. 23-27). An application fee can cost anywhere from $20-$80 per school.


BHS Publications receive state honors

By Rob LaPlante

Sports Editor

Buffalo High School publications, Tatanka Yearbook and The Hoofprint, a student-run newspaper/magazine, both took home top honors at the 2017 Minnesota High School Press Association Convention last Oct. 10 at the University of Minnesota.

With over 500 students and advisers gathered for an afternoon to celebrate journalism, the fall convention concluded with the awards presentations. Tatanka Yearbook and The Hoofprint were named Best of Show, the highest honor awarded at state.

Win or lose, BHS yearbook adviser Ryan McCallum says each year is a great experience for the hundreds of like-journalists in attendance.

"It's really important for the students. We live in a society that is negative on media, negative on journalists, and surrounded with a lot of fake news," McCallum said. "To have a chance to celebrate the craft of journalism in a group like that was a positive thing."

McCallum has led the yearbook staff to an incredible run of six straight years of winning Best of Show.

With each year bringing in a new crop of young talent, McCallum credits the students for much of the program's success.

"There's so many really strong programs in this state," McCallum said. "I feel lucky every time we win this. It's a new group of kids every year. Some of them were telling me that when they met with the other editors, some of their advisers are hands on and they don't get a lot of freedom. When this group wins an award, it's what the kids do."

Seniors Ella Shuherk and Jack Oistad are this year's Editors-in Chief for Tatanka Yearbook. While this year's awards were a reflection on last year's work, Shuherk says this year's crew puts in countless hours trying to continue the legacy at BHS.

"Last year we had work nights that would go on for seven hours," Shuherk said. "After that, every day for at least an hour you're working until you ship it out. I can't put a number on the hours put in, it's just an endless amount of work."

Shuherk is also involved with The Hoofprint, which finished third a year ago in Best of Show Magazine category. This year's editors are Lindsey Kauffman and Hannah Park. The adviser for The Hoofprint is Brad Palmer.

"To get Best of Show for the school newspaper was super exciting," Shuherk said. "We got a new adviser last year, so (Palmer) had a lot to take on. None of us were really expecting us to win, so the reaction on all our faces that were at the awards banquet was awesome. To see we were getting recognized for something we worked super-hard on felt great."

Along with the school accolades came a number of individual achievements.

The Hoofprint had five members from last year's staff receive All-State Gold certificates including: Oistad (Newsmagazine Story), Carter Barton (2nd place-Newspaper Page One Design), Mason Schmidt (4th place-Newspaper Sport Story), Lauryn McAlpin (4th place-Newspaper News Photo), and Karin Beck (3rd place-Newsmagazine Center Spread Design).

 All-State Gold winners for Tatanka Yearbook included: Oistad and Braun (1st place-Student Life Copy), Samantha Westrum and Ali Tokkesdal (1st place-Yearbook Academic Copy), Westrum (1st place-Sports Copy), Staff (3rd place-Theme and Concept Package), Noah Buystedt (3rd place-Student Life Photo), Elijah Locke (4th place-Yearbook Spread Design), Aly Pachan (1st place-Yearbook Spread Design & 2nd place-Feature Photos), Mac Loomis (3rd place-Yearbook Sports Photo), Mitch Bunting (3rd place-Yearbook Academic Copy), Calista Susa (3rd place-Academic Photo), Lily Hershley and Cece Miller (1st place-Student Life Copy), and Bailey Braccini (1st place-Yearbook Sports Copy).

With a lot of this year's award winners having graduated, McCallum is confident that the continued success with both school publications will remain top-notch.

"These kids work all summer. They do yearbook camp in Dallas and summer meetings. This year's book we started last February. They take it real seriously," McCallum said. "The quality of photography they are capable of is better than I've ever seen – they are everywhere taking pictures. I just think sometime we're going to run out of luck or talent. But this year's group looks to be extremely talented."

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