ON THE BENCH
By Byron Higgin, Mascot Sports
Barry Meyer, Minneota Mudhen player, softball player and Lincoln HI football coach, played softball last weekend at Belgian American Days in Ghent.
No surprise there.
But Barry told me some startling things about the football program of which he is the head coach.
Meyer is the ONLY coach on the Lincoln HI squad, composed of Ivanhoe and Hendricks players. He has NO assistants. Budget cuts and the like have forced him to “go it alone.”
He said, “It starts and ends with me.”
On top of that,
Lincoln HI is a nine-man program in the Pheasant Conference and they have a five-game schedule against Underwood, Brandon-Evansville, Wheaton, Eagle Valley and Verndale.
Meyer said this is a pivotal year in Rebel football.
“We don’t have any sophomores. If we don’t have better numbers this year, it will probably be the last year for the football program,” Meyer said.
Meyer, an avid softball player and now baseball player, is a good athlete who is trying desperately to keep the program going — but he knows it won’t be easy to do it himself.
Canby football moving ahead
There were rumors earlier this summer asking if Canby was going to have a football team.
Those rumors were, of-course, false. There was no intent to drop football.
However, after a tough couple of years and a turnover in sports, it was reasonable to question the Lancers’ chances of getting a new coaching staff together.
A new coach will guide the team this year. He is Nick Kockelman of Canby. Returning to his staff are Ryan Arbdt and Dave Lepke. New is Jay Christianson. “It’s nice to be returning to the football program,” said Kockelman. He was assistant baseball coach last year. “We’re very excited.” he said.
A year ago they won three games — “The most we’ve won since 2004 so we hope it’s on the upswing,” he said.
School opens August 23 this year in Minneota instead of after Labor Day.
The sports schedule begins very soon, with teams starting practice on Monday, August 16.
The Minneota Vikings football team will begin its quest for a second straight state championship when they open the regular season at 7 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 2 at Adrian.
That should be a good matchup of rivals, in a tough place to play, and the fact Minneota beat them for the state title in the last game of the season only adds intrigue to the opening game.
The Vikings then play at home Sept. 10 against Fulda, go on the road to Lakeview, then play Canby; MACCRAY at home; at Dawson-Boyd, then at Renville County West and will host Ortonville to complete the regular season.
The Viking volleyball team will open the season early by hosting Murray County Central on Tuesday, August 31.
Then they travel to Kerkhoven Sept. 7 and host Russell-Tyler-Ruthton Thursday, Sept. 9. They will also play in the Marshall Tournament Friday and Saturday, Sept. 10 and 11.
The Canby-Minneota Cross Coutry team also opens its season on Monday, August 30, at the Morris Pomme de Terre Golf Course.
After that they run at Tracy, then Marshall and will host the Canby Invitational on Sept. 21.
The Minneota Mascot will publish its Fall Sports Preview in the Wednesday, Sept. 1 edition.
We know the volleyball team and cross country teams will have had one game and meet, but time constraints prohibit us from coming out earlier.
If you’d like your company to be included as an advertiser in The Fall Sports Section, let The Mascot know by calling us as soon as possible.
Complete schedules will also be printed in that edition and upcoming games will be listed in the weekly sports section of the Minneota Mascot.
Watch for the fall edition.