Outside Looking In

Bringing it back

With fall sports soon getting underway, it triggered a memory of something I had read in one of the back issues of the Mascot while I was searching for a different piece of history. In 1929, Minneota High School was considering returning football to the field after having been played briefly before World War I. Because of economic hardships, however, many of the town's taxpayers were against the sport resuming. But despite the protests, the sport did return, and the school board approved the purchase of 22 new uniforms that they were able to get at a special rate of $20 apiece. Minneota hired Leander Knaus to be the team's coach and the first game that year took place in neighboring Ivanhoe on a windy Friday afternoon in late September. No one expected Minneota to field a good team that year with so many young and small kids on the squad. Even the sports editor for the school newspaper predicted Ivanhoe would dominate and that it would take a miracle for Minneota to win. And those predictions rang true as Ivanhoe clobbered the local team by a score of 73-0. Minneota took consolation in the fact that it limited its opponent to only three touchdowns in the second half, while allowing eight in the first half. Ivanhoe was coached by Horace Frisby, who held that position for over 40 years. Minneota's starting offensive lineup for the opening game was Adolph Kolflat, left end; Orval Orsen, left tackle; Richard Steenhoven, left guard; James O'Connor, center; James Kiley, right guard; Joe Peterson, right tackle; Cecil Peterson, right end; Glen A. Hoag, quarterback; Selmer Glaim, left halfback; Bjarne Grong, right halfback; Carl Christianson, fullback. Others on the team that year were Harry Tillemans, Phil Tillemans, Ed Ahern, Eric Sanderson, Joe Josefson, Carl Swanson, Edward Buretta, Edward Severson, and Phil Grandpre. Minneota finished with only one win that season, 34-13 over Hendricks in the fourth game. But that was the start of what has developed into one of the most powerful and consistent teams of any size in the state. Minneota opens the football season on Thursday, Sept. 2 against Adrian. The volleyball team opens on Sept. 2 at Lakeview (Cottonwood), and the boys and girls cross country teams begin the season on Monday, Aug. 30 with a meet at Lakeview. More events Following the success of Belgian-American Days in Ghent, this week features the Lyon County Fair (Aug. 11-14) in Marshall, Ivanhoe's 50th annual Polish Days (Aug. 13-15), Porter's Harvest Fest (Aug. 21-22), the Minnesota State Fair (Aug. 26-Sept. 6) and Minneota's Boxelder Bug Days (Sept. 10-11). The Lyon County Fair, which was not held last year, will again feature things for the entire family to do. The free events include the midway, a one-man band, Silly Miss Tilly, Ralco Enrichment Center, pig races, a strong man performance, pedal tractor contest, baton twirlers, Champions Forever basketball dribbling family, and Wheels of Agriculture. Bands scheduled to perform are the White Sidewalls, Cody Hicks Band, Hicktown Mafia, Jason Pritchett, and Red Dirt Road. And, of course, there are the 4-H exhibits and animals that began back in July and the ribbon awards will be held on Saturday, Aug. 15. There are still plenty of things to do this summer, but it's winding down quickly. It's been a much more enjoyable summer with the county fairs and town festivities returning from last year's pandemic shutdown.

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The Minneota Mascot
Address: 201 N. Jefferson
Minneota, MN 56264

Phone:(507) 872-6492