American Family Insurance
THOUGHT FOR TODAY
“I sometimes think that God, in creating man, overestimated his ability.”
— Oscar Wilde
Pierre Post 8: At the Region 3A tournament at Hyde Stadium, Post 8 opened play with a 5-0 shutout of Rapid City Post 320. Maguire Raske allowed only two hits in seven innings and struck out 11. After Pierre gained an early 2-0 lead, River Iverson contributed an RBI double and Andy Gordon a two-run single to open up the game. In the winners’ bracket game on the second day Pierre lost to Rapid City Post 22, 7-5. Down by 7-2, Post 8 scored three in the sixth to come close on Jake Mayer’s double and a Rapid City error. Jack Van Camp took the loss, allowing five hits and striking out six in five innings on the mound. In an elimination game Post 8 won over Rapid City Post 320. With a 2-0 lead in the second inning and a 3-1 lead after five, a strikeout by Grey Zabel with the tying runs on third and second bases was the key play of the game. Zabel allowed only two hits over 5+ innings. Matt Lusk came in in relief with two out in the sixth, got an inning-ending groundout on one pitch, then got the save in the seventh on a fly ball, a hit and two strikeouts. The win assured Pierre of going to the state tournament. In the Region 3A title game Pierre lost to Post 22 for the sixth time this season, 7-2. Pierre’s runs came on RBI hits by Garrett Stout and Lusk.
State Legion tournament: In the opener last Friday, Renner got off to a 3-0 start in the first inning and held it throughout the game for a 5-3 win that put Post 8 in the losers’ bracket right from the start. On the second day Post 8 stayed alive with a 2-0 win over Harrisburg, thanks to Grey Zabel’s complete-game pitching performance, a three-hitter with 11 strikeouts. Matt Lusk had an RBI in the game as Pierre took advantage of two Harrisburg errors for its runs. The end of the season came on the third day as Pierre lost to Brandon Valley, 8-4. Pierre was down 4-0 after three innings. Despite an RBI hit by Andrew Coverdale, Pierre still trailed 6-1 into the bottom of the fifth. A bases-loaded walk and a bases-loaded hit batter cut the gap to 6-3, and a double-play ball scored another run. But Brandon Valley added single runs in the next two innings for an 8-4 win as Pierre stranded 11 men on base. The Post 8 season ended with a 21-21 record. Renner stayed undefeated through the tournament and won the state championship, beating Rapid City Post 22 on championship day Tuesday, 6-4.
Legion baseball Central Plains Regional at Sioux Falls Stadium: Opening games next Wednesday—Iowa champion vs. Wisconsin runner-up, 9 a.m.; Minnesota champion vs. North Dakota champion, 12:30 p.m.; Renner vs. Wisconsin champion, 4 p.m.; Sioux Falls East vs. Minnesota runner-up, 7:45 p.m.
State Little League tournament: In the Capital City Little League’s first-ever venture into postseason play at the state tournament in Rapid City, the Pierre boys started with a 10-2 win over Brandon Valley. Dawson Goetz pitched 4 1/3 innings of one-hit ball. Sawyer Sonnenschein, Carter Sanderson and Lincoln Houska scored two runs each. In the winners’ bracket game the Pierre team lost to Canyon Lake, 7-2, as the Rapid City team manufactured runs on walks, errors and a few timely hits. No Pierre runner passed second base until the sixth inning. The Capital City runs came on a sacrifice fly and a bases-loaded walk. In an elimination game the Pierre club couldn’t handle Brandon Valley this time, losing by 15-5. Sanderson had an RBI triple, Jake Mikkonen an RBI double and Northrup an RBI single. Later in the weekend the Canyon Lake team advanced as South Dakota’s champion into the Midwest Regional at Indianapolis.
State U14 tournament: The baseball season isn’t over in Pierre quite yet. Hyde Stadium and Kelley Field will host this tourney this weekend with 12 teams participating Friday through Sunday. The Pierre team coached by Connor Gerber and Landon Badger will play pod games at 7:30 p.m. Friday vs. Sioux Falls West and noon Saturday vs. Aberdeen, both at Hyde Stadium. Pod play will feature six games at each field—four on Friday starting at noon and two on Saturday starting at 9:30 a.m. After that bracket play takes over with the four pod champions playing in the Gold Bracket, the four pod runners-up playing in the Silver Bracket and the four pod third-place teams playing in the Bronze Bracket. The state championship game will be at 3 p.m. Sunday at Hyde Stadium. Here are the teams in each pod: Pod 1, Watertown, Renner, Brookings; Pod 2, Huron, Brandon Valley, Sioux Falls East; Pod 3, Mitchell, Harrisburg, Yankton; Pod 4, Aberdeen, Sioux Falls West, Pierre.
Four Corners baseball: The Four Corners amateur team out of the Pony Hills League has won its way into the state tournament to be played in Mitchell next week. They beat Miller-Wessington, 11-1, in district play over the weekend, then took down Wessington Springs, 8-2, to qualify for state. Four Corners played Plankinton for the district championship last night, but both teams go to the state tourney.
Pierre Trappers: The Expedition League regular season is down to its final week. The Trappers stand at 31-28, three games behind Badlands with five games left. Pierre will be at Souris Valley (Minot) Thursday through Sunday, then home for the final game of the regular season against Badlands Monday. The league’s four-team playoffs begin Wednesday with two games, and those two winners will play in the best-of-three championship series Aug. 9-10-11. In the past two weeks the Trappers lost three straight to Badlands, got a 16-strikeout performance from Tyler McDonald in a win over Hub City, beat Hub City again on a 12-strikeout game from Connor McDonald, took three of four games from Spearfish and lost two of three to Fremont.
Thursday—at Miami, 11:10, FSN.
Friday—Kansas City, 7:10, FSN.
Saturday—Kansas City, 6:10, FSN.
Sunday—Kansas City, 1:10, FSN.
Monday—Atlanta, 7:10, FSN.
Tuesday—Atlanta, 7:10, FSN.
Wednesday—Atlanta, 12:10, FSN.
Thursday—Cleveland, 7:10, FSN.
Aug. 13-14—at Milwaukee.
Thursday—at St. Louis, 6:15.
Sunday—Milwaukee, 1:20, TBS.
Thursday—at Cincinnati, 6:10.
Aug. 9-10-11—at Cincinnati.
Aug. 13-14-15—at Philadelphia.
Friday—San Francisco, 6:40.
Saturday—San Francisco, 6:10.
Sunday—San Francisco, 1:10.
Tuesday—at Houston, 6:10.
Wednesday—at Houston, 12:10.
Thursday—at San Diego, 8:10.
Aug. 9-10-11—at San Diego.
Sioux Falls Canaries: In the past two weeks the Birds lost two to Sioux City, took two of three from Kansas City, were swept in three games by Lincoln and won the opener of another Kansas City series Tuesday. Through that game the Canaries stood at 31-37 in fourth place, 10 games behind division-leading Cleburne. Sioux Falls will be on the road to Cleburne, Texas and Lincoln through Aug. 11 while their home park is used for the Legion baseball regional. Next home games will be Aug. 12-13 vs. Sioux City.
“Men are by nature merely indifferent to one another, but women are by nature enemies.”
— Arthur Schopenhauer
1 day: Sturgis motorcycle rally (Aug. 2-11).
6 days: Legion baseball Central Plains Regional, Sioux Falls (Aug. 7-11).
7 days: Sully County Fair, Onida (Aug. 8-11).
9 days: Casey Tibbs Rodeo Center 10th anniversary celebration (Aug. 10).
15 days: State 4-H finals rodeo, Fort Pierre (Aug. 16-18).
15 days: Black Hills Playhouse’s “Steel Magnolias” (Aug. 16-25).
15 days: Pierre soccer openers (Aug. 16).
18 days: Pierre boys golf opener (Aug. 19).
21 days: Capital Area United Way campaign kickoff (Aug. 22).
22 days: BluntFest (Aug. 23-25).
22 days: Stanley County and Sully Buttes football openers (Aug. 23).
22 days: Pierre girls tennis opener (Aug. 23).
28 days: State Fair, Huron (Aug. 29-Sept. 2).
29 days: Pierre volleyball opener (Aug. 30).
29 days: Pierre cross country opener (Aug. 30).
30 days: Pierre football opener (Aug. 31).
30 days: Pierre competitive cheer opener (Aug. 31).
32 days: Labor Day (Sept. 2).
35 days: NFL opening night (Sept. 5).
36 days: Riggs High Class of ’69 50-year reunion (Sept. 6-7).
38 days: Minnesota Vikings season opener (Sept. 8).
39 days: Riggs High homecoming coronation (Sept. 9).
43 days: Riggs High homecoming day (Sept. 13).
43 days: Dakota Western Heritage Festival (Sept. 13-15).
44 days: Stirling Family Memorial Ranch Rodeo (Sept. 14-15).
46 days: Sanford International golf tournament, Sioux Falls (Sept. 16-22).
51 days: Trojan Day at Dakota State (Sept. 21).
57 days: Pierre Players’ “Dracula” (Sept. 27-29, Oct. 3-5).
58 days: Swarm Day at Black Hills State (Sept. 28).
58 days: Halo Day at Presentation College (Sept. 28).
58 days: “M” Day at School of Mines (Sept. 28).
PGA Champions Tour (Tom Byrum): Tom did not play in the Senior British Open. The next stop on the Champions Tour is the Dick’s Sporting Goods Open at Endicott, N.Y., Aug. 16-18.
Minnesota United FC: The Loons fought to a 1-1 draw vs. Real Salt Lake and did the same against Vancouver, 0-0. Minnesota hosts Portland on both Sunday and Wednesday next week.
WORDS OF WISDOM
“If music be the food of love, play on.”
— William Shakespeare
Minnesota Vikings preseason schedule:
— Aug. 8, at New Orleans, 7 p.m.
— Aug. 18, Seattle, 7 p.m., Fox.
— Aug. 24, Arizona, noon, NFL Network.
— Aug. 29, at Buffalo, 6 p.m.
Denver Broncos preseason schedule:
— Aug. 1, Atlanta, 7 p.m., NBC.
— Aug. 8, at Seattle, 9 p.m.
— Aug. 19, San Francisco, 7 p.m., ESPN.
— Aug. 24, at Los Angeles Rams, 8 p.m.
— Aug. 29, Arizona, 8 p.m.
NFL live telecasts in the next two weeks:
— Aug. 1, Denver vs. Atlanta, 7 p.m., NBC.
— Aug. 8, New York Jets vs. New York Giants, 6 p.m., NFL Network.
— Aug. 8, Los Angeles Chargers vs. Arizona, 9 p.m., NFL Network.
— Aug. 9, Tampa Bay vs. Pittsburgh, 6:30 p.m., NFL Network.
— Aug. 10, Dallas vs. San Francisco, 8 p.m., NFL Network.
Aug. 19: Lane Severyn/Anne Marie Holter.
Aug. 31: Devin Maki/Karlie Warne.
July 18, 2020: Jace Anderson/Hannah Lorenz.
PARKER’S PERSONAL NOTES
- I say it every year. The Kennedy Center Honors program is the best entertainment two hours on television. This year’s honorees on CBS-TV on Dec. 15 will be actress Sally Field, conductor Michael Tilson Thomas, singer Linda Ronstadt, “Sesame Street” and the Earth Wind & Fire band.
- It’s only four weeks from today when our first football contest of the new season will be here in the Midweek Update.
- I wish I were back in central South Dakota next week to see the presentation by the Peterson Farm Brothers at the Sully County Fair in Onida on Saturday morning, Aug. 10. I have been following them on their Facebook page ever since they released their first farming parody video seven years ago. What a fantastic family they are as they promote the agriculture industry and its community! Thanks to Doug and Clarie Marsh for bringing the Petersons up from Kansas to the county fair. If you’re in the area, you should stop by the fairgrounds for their presentation and to meet them personally.
- The Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City has announced its Broadway Series for 2019-20: “The Simon & Garfunkel Story,” Oct. 16-17; “Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical,” Dec. 7; “Million Dollar Quartet,” March 8; “Beautiful: The Carole King Musical,” April 10-11; “Chicago,” June 5-6. Ticket information is available at www.gotmine.com.
- This will be the last bit of “vacation” for The Midweek Update. We will have one more two-week break before resuming the weekly issues two weeks from today on Thursday, Aug. 15.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures, until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear.”
— President Harry S. Truman
Thursday, Aug. 1:
Charlotte Hofer, Craig Eichstadt, Brooke Bjorneberg, Scott Heibel, Camden Vogel, Ryan Merriam, Dustin Bonnett, Loni Shoup, Galen Stolp, Kevin Hall.
— 4th anniversary, Hunter/Cait Johnson.
— 4th anniversary, Kristen Job/Cindy Royer.
— 15th anniversary, Eric/Danielle (Scott) High Bear.
— 16th anniversary, Jay/Ann (Schroyer) Schwartz.
— 4th anniversary, Sam/Morgan (McLain) Willard.
— 10th anniversary, Blake/Randi (McQuistion) Norman.
Friday, Aug. 2:
Matthew Hardwick, Parker Linn, Rachel (Lundeen) Bailey.
— 16th anniversary, Matthew/Kayla (Crawford) Fisher.
We fondly remember Rapid City police officers Nick Armstrong and Ryan McCandless, who were fatally shot while on duty 8 years ago today.
Saturday, Aug. 3:
Karen (Strickland) Jones, Faun Van Bockel, Robyn Thorpe, Brad Urbach, Eric Titze, Scott Bailey.
— 34th anniversary, Guy/Kim DiBenedetto.
— 17th anniversary, David/Jennifer (Lomheim) Sieveking.
— 17th anniversary, Richard/Lynn (McQuistion) Siedschlaw.
— 45th anniversary, Chuck/Kathy Anderson.
Sunday, Aug. 4:
Jessica Olson, Sadie Lund, Laurel Holcomb, Mike Powell, Kimberly (Bartels) Malone, Kellen Casanova, Karen Palmer, Kayla Trebesch.
— 7th anniversary, Luke/Kirsten Edwards.
Monday, Aug. 5:
Lukas Erlenbusch, Sara (Schneider) Odden, Gabe Vogt, Rachel Guthmiller, Derik Wright, Jerry Jarvis, Tanner Steele, Shirley Doyle.
— 2nd anniversary, Travis/Nicole Rinehart.
— 2nd anniversary, Brian/Tara White.
— 13th anniversary, Ross/Anna (Van Duzer) Yost.
— 14th anniversary, Hunter/Stephanie Roberts.
— 52nd anniversary, Milt/Dawn Morris.
— 47th anniversary, Jerry/Myra Duba.
Tuesday, Aug. 6:
Patti (Mercer) Jordre, Tenley Fitzke, Janet (Schuh) Fulk, Boston Bryant, Nick Bengs, Justin Williams, Lynette McCarty, Chris Brinkman, Matthew Booth, Kipp Stahl, Michelle Dvorak, Greg Byrum, Ryan Yackley, Lincoln Schoenhard, David Perry, Lois Byrum.
— 3rd anniversary, Scott/Bailey (Armstrong) Wagner.
— 14th anniversary, Travis/Becky Lindekugel.
— 42nd anniversary, John/Mary Hoover.
— 53rd anniversary, Jim/Judy Ulmen.
— 8th anniversary, Jacob/Chez Shoup.
— 14th anniversary, Mike/Corinna (Bevers) Christopher.
Wednesday, Aug. 7:
Sylvia Jo Imsland, Reese Fisher, Sam Fjelstad, Jeremy Hamm, Jane Naylor, Leighton Hoover, Judi West, Suzanne Stahl, Tate Rinehart, Bob Tobin, Rick Swanson, Chev Hackett.
— 43rd anniversary, Myron/Deb Bryant.
— 43rd anniversary, Myron/Anita Rau.
— Anniversary, John/Jan Artz.
— 15th anniversary, Josh/Jessica (Wilson) Bosma.
— 54th anniversary, Ken/Diane Stofferahn.
— 15th anniversary, Benjamin/Shannon (Dykstra) Herbert.
— 15th anniversary, Roby/Krista Bass.
— 36th anniversary, Geoff/Beth (Pospisil) Simon.
— 10th anniversary, John/Laura Williams.
— 10th anniversary, Justin/Stacey Briese.
— 9th anniversary, Lucas/Mary (Holm) Keahey.
— 9th anniversary, Wayne/Melissa (Stewart) Crawford.
— 9th anniversary, Chad/Winter (Nicholas) Hendrickson.
— 9th anniversary, Garrett/Kelsey (Bartel) Glynn.
Thursday, Aug. 8:
Drew White, Mike Herman, Korina Deal, Roger Johnson, Molly Kreycik, Patrick Gengler, Declan Pope, Daniel Timmons, Sam Holden, Dantae Dvorak, Dylan Dowling, Kristen Job, Brady Mullett, Marla Willard.
— 4th anniversary, Ryan/Cassie Blake.
— 4th anniversary, Ali/Rachel (LeBeau) Hachem.
— 21st anniversary, Jonathan/Andrea (Viken) Urbach.
— 21st anniversary, Nathan/Jill (Storsteen) Weber.
— 10th anniversary Max/Lisa Huber.
Friday, Aug. 9:
Brynn Sogaard, Remington Reilly, Mary Sieck, Megan (Joachim) Jaeger, Jenny Hallenbek-Orr, Rebecca (Zebroski) Neises, Collin Livermont.
— 33rd anniversary, Jeff/Lisa Mammenga.
— 5th anniversary, Ryan/Kelly (Lingle) Royer.
— 22nd anniversary, Chuck/Hope (Hoover) Brenny.
— 11th anniversary, Justin/Stephanie (Mutschler) Pierson.
— 16th anniversary, Nick/Brittany (Bailey) Jarecke.
— 55th anniversary, John/Linda Knox.
— 44th anniversary, Terry/Janet Hofer.
— 16th anniversary, Chris/Jenny Derry.
— 22nd anniversary, Chris/Sarah (Kringel) Hibbitts.
Saturday, Aug. 10:
Kyndal Van Zee, Gracie Weinheimer, Sue Light, Christopher Nath, Stella Lindbloom, Stephanie Bengs, Ron Lutz, Laynee Brandt, Kaydee (Hewlett) Withers, Liv Smith.
— 17th anniversary, Toby/Amber Bryant.
— 50th anniversary, John/Margaret Ellefson.
— 17th anniversary, Brett/Stacy Anderson.
— 17th anniversary, Joseph/Michelle (Maskovich) Soulek.
— 17th anniversary, Thomas/Dulcie (Bellander) Stotts.
— 7th anniversary, Dustin/Cidna Pitlick.
Sunday, Aug. 11:
Courtney Sheffield, Terry Becker, Mike Snyder, JoAnn Nelsen, Scott Lamb, Tom Opoien, Susan Quinn, Alex Ludemann, Archie Haag.
— 1st anniversary, Nick/Sasha (Kean) Bishop.
— 1st anniversary, Steve/Cassie Long.
— 19th anniversary, Mark/Meghann (O’Day) Kjolsrud.
— 7th anniversary, Jim/Lindsey (Jungwirth) Costello.
— 12th anniversary, Jonathan/Sarah (Yackley) Ploeger.
— 12th anniversary, Austin/Lindsey Schneider.
— 12th anniversary, Clinton/Missy (Drew) Figland.
— 13th anniversary, A.J./Amanda (Huck) Stoeser.
— 34th anniversary, Dave/Denette (Eisnach) Becker.
Monday, Aug. 12:
Lindsay Ambur, Cooper Hogan, Courtney Zander, Taylor Murtland, Molly Wilbur, Mary (Holm) Keahey, Bo Rosane, Kari Anderson.
— 2nd anniversary, Chris/Ashlee Voller.
— 40th anniversary, Dave/Marcia Mack.
— 19th anniversary, Eric/Amanda (Weaver) Sprenkle.
— 13th anniversary, Tim/Lindsey (Simons) Ferber.
— 19th anniversary, Christopher/Jessica (Yost) Cox.
— 19th anniversary, Kevin/Julie Lors.
— 13th anniversary, Jeff/Jamie (Stokke) Lemire.
Tuesday, Aug. 13:
Kory Davis, Misti (Currier) Baumberger, Sam Herrscher, Charissa Howard, Bobbi (West) Meyer, Andi Mancuso, Finn Meiners, Leto Knudson.
— 3rd anniversary, Jerry/Aly Bollinger.l
— 8th anniversary, A.J./Tisa Wharton.
— 8th anniversary, Cody/Raelynn (Foss) Dewell.
Wednesday, Aug. 14:
Ethan Harder, Wyatt Rumrill, Eloise Cermak, George Summerside, Kristi Barnhart, Andrew Johnson, Mike Walton, Mike Zellmer, Rebecca Cruse, Tim Maher, Michaela Stroup, Jordyn Ripperger, Jackson Goodman, Heath Stoeser, Jonathan Pfleger, Gay Rhoades, Spencer Thomas.
— 49th anniversary, Mike/Diana Vogel.
— 9th anniversary, Chris/Victoria Bell.
— 9th anniversary, Justin/Jill Gilmore.
— 38th anniversary, Tony/Shiela Mangan.
— 14th anniversary, Nate/Tracie (Seyfer) Vogel.
— 15th anniversary, Rick/Katie (Skrondahl) Melius.
— 32nd anniversary, Doug/Deb Smith.
We fondly remember Phil Trautner, who passed away 16 years ago today.
Thursday, Aug. 15:
Kathy (Hoover) Pautz, Meredith (Lee) Roebuck, Hunter Roberts, Jason Christenson, Danny Snow, Jesse Nystrom, Heath Houdek, Jack Steece, Brian Kemnitz, Jared Dutton, Ellie Knudson, Dianne Weyer, Autumn Iverson.
— 39th anniversary, Mark/Glennis Zarecky.
— 10th anniversary, JD/Amanda Lauing.
— 12th anniversary, Sam/Amber (LaBrie) Shaw.
THOUGHT FOR THESE TIMES
“As my friend Maud once said, ‘There are times when you must speak, not because you are going to change the other person, but because, if you don’t speak, they have changed you.”
— Melissa Maewan
NEWS OF PEOPLE AND EVENTS
Dave and Jan Snyder’s Pathways spiritual sanctuary marked its 10th anniversary on July 17. The themes of the sanctuary near Lead are love, compassion, tolerance and forgiveness. People can walk the pathways to enjoy the natural beauty of this very sacred place. The sanctuary is open from 8 a.m. to dusk daily through October. For information go to the Pathways Spiritual Sanctuary page on Facebook.
Services for Lyle Ebert, who died July 20, were held at the Onida Presbyterian Church on July 25. He was raised in the Fielder Bottom area north of Pierre. He attended high school in Pierre and joined the U.S. Navy at the age of 17. He served in the South Pacific during World War II. Lyle married Beverly Spaid in 1949. They farmed in Sully County for more than 60 years. He served on various boards in Sully County; was active in the VFW, American Legion and the local bowling scene and owned Okobojo Goose Camp. Among his survivors are his daughters, Carol Newcomb and her husband Frank of Pierre and Nancy Baker of Pierre; three grandchildren, six great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild. Among those who preceded him in death were his wife, his twin brother Lynn, two sisters and two half-sisters.
Matt Blake and his wife, Alaina, who live in suburban Des Moines, announced last week they are expecting their first child—a son—in January. He will be the first grandchild for Matt’s mom, Lisa (Brinkman) Blake.
Chloe Ryan and 385 other new sailors graduated from U.S. Navy boot camp at Naval Station Great Lakes in Illinois July 19. Among those able to attend were her mother, Cindy Ryan; her grandmother, Joyce Sack, and relatives who live in that area. Chloe had nine hours of liberty after the ceremony before reporting for a flight the next morning to her next duty station in California. (News courtesy of The Onida Watchman)
John and Margaret Ellefson will be honored for their 50th wedding anniversary from 10 to 11:30 a.m. (after the 9 a.m. service) at Oahe Presbyterian Church this Sunday, Aug. 4.
Wade Pexa, who grew up and attended high school at Agar, died at the age of 79 on July 24. A veteran of the U.S. Army, he was buried Tuesday at Black Hills National Cemetery.
Pierre native Michael Tveidt, who works in the Sioux Falls office of Fischer Rounds & Associates Inc., is one of 57 nominees for the Young Professional Network’s inaugural “4 Under 40” awards. Young Professional Network is a program of the Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce. The “4 Under 40” winners will be announced Aug. 15.
Tate Gabriel completed 13 1/2 years of employment with First National Bank on July 19. The following Monday he began work on the staff at Pierre Indian Learning Center.
Pierre native Chad Grunewaldt, who owns and operates The Old Lumber Company Grill and Bar in Vermillion, was featured on a recent “Member Minute” post by the South Dakota Retailers Association.
Margaret Stanton, 77, Pierre, died July 19 at Avera St. Mary’s Hospital. Services were held July 26 at the Isburg Funeral Chapel. She grew up in White River. She and her first husband, John Harrowa, were married in 1960 and raised three children. She married David Stanton in 1978, and they had one child. Mrs. Stanton worked in retail, then from 1986 to 2006 she worked for the Pierre school district. She is survived by her husband, David Stanton; her children, Jerry Harrowa of Pierre, Jeremy Stanton of Pierre, Sonny Harrowa of Fort Pierre, and Kenda Nutter of Fort Pierre; seven siblings and five grandchildren.
Mitch Kleinsasser and Guy Ferris were among five friends who successfully swam San Francisco Bay from the Alcatraz prison island to San Francisco on July 20.
Sixty-nine soldiers from 29 towns in the 152nd Combat Sustainment Support Battalion of the South Dakota Army National Guard were activated in a ceremony in Pierre last Saturday as they prepare for a nine-month deployment to the Middle East. The soldiers will go first to Fort Hood, Texas, to spend several weeks in training for work in that particular part of the world prior to going overseas.
Mass of Christian Burial for Margaret Ludemann, 87, Fort Pierre, was celebrated July 23 at St. John’s Catholic Church. She died July 16. A native of Spencer, Neb., she married Allen Ludeman in 1950, and they settled in Fort Pierre in 1961. She worked at the Chuckwagon Cafe, then was a lunch lady at the Stanley County school for 20 years. Mrs. Ludemann is survived by her children, Rick, Terry and Greg, all of Fort Pierre, and Steve and Laurie, both of Pierre; four grandchildren, five great-grandchildren, one great-great-grandchildren and two brothers. Among those who preceded her in death were her husband, her son Larry, and three siblings.
The music on the deck at the Legion cabin this Sunday evening starting at 5:30 will be provided by Hank Harris. On Aug. 11 the featured musicians will be the Hidden Timber Band.
Chad Grunewaldt and Ann Burbach of Vermillion became the parents of a son, Axton Lee Grunewaldt, on July 20. The baby boy weighed 7 pounds, 12 ounces.
Arvilla Greene, 89, Rapid City, died July 15 at Westhills Village Health Care. Services were held July 23 at Kirk Funeral Home in Rapid City. Mrs. Greene graduated from Rapid City High School in 1947. As a military wife she and her husband lived in Cheyenne, Wyo.; Japan; Moses Lake, Wash., and Sumter, S.C., before settling back in Rapid City. Among her survivors are her children, John Henderson and his wife Vera of Pierre, George Greene Jr. of Rapid City and Robert Greene of Vancouver, Wash.; five grandchildren, including Dawn Holmes and her husband Cory of Rapid City; and seven great-grandchildren.
The Blood-Washed Band from New Life Assembly of God will conduct the service at the Oahe Chapel at 8 a.m. this Sunday, Aug. 4. On Aug. 11 Resurrection Lutheran Church is in charge of the service at the chapel.
The Sully County Fair opens in Onida next Thursday night, Aug. 8, with a Barstool Boys concert at 7 p.m., a watermelon feed at 8 and an outdoor movie at 9. The Friday schedule includes a cornhole tournament at 1 p.m., a kids’ play day at 1, a pedal tractor pull at 4, cow pattie bingo at 4:30, and the PRCA Sutton Rodeos Catfish Stampede at 7:30.
On Saturday the annual alumni reunion for rolls and coffee takes place at the Phoenix Center at 8 a.m. On the fairgrounds that day there will be a Dakota Riders timed event in the rodeo arena at 8:30 a.m., a kickball tournament at 9, an appearance by the noted Peterson Farm Brothers from Kansas at 10 a.m., laser tag at noon, a chili cookoff all afternoon, a youth talent contest at 1:30, a frying pan and tire toss at 3:30, cow pattie bingo at 4:30, the chili cookoff feed at 5 p.m., and another rodeo performance at 7:30. The fair concludes on Sunday, Aug. 11 with gospel music at 9:30 a.m., a community church service at 10:30, an alumni/community potluck picnic at 11:30 and an antique tractor pull at 1 p.m.
Former Pierre residents Pat and Patty (Schlekeway) McClemans of Watertown are new grandparents. Ashtin (McClemans) and Carter Evans are the parents of a son, Cason Garrett Evans, who was born July 21, weighing 8 pounds and measuring 21 inches. The Evanses live in Aberdeen. Ashtin is a special education teacher at an elementary school. Carter is a former basketball player at Northern.
Jeff Runyan, who is the husband of the former Taya Dockter, has begun a new job as the construction and operations manager for the city of Pierre.
The Sully Buttes Class of 1999 will have its 20-year reunion get-together on the afternoon of the Sully County Fair (Saturday, Aug. 10) at the swimming pool park in Onida. Nate Grueb is the contact person at 605-200-0208.
The Sully Buttes Class of 1979 will get together for a 40-year reunion at the Blue Goose in Onida on Saturday, Aug. 10, from 4 to 7 p.m.
The Sully Buttes Class of 1974 will have the “second part” of its 45-year reunion at Gary Johnson’s home in Fort Pierre at 6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 9. The “first part” of the reunion took place in San Antonio earlier this year.
Mike Sargent, who grew up in Fort Pierre and graduated from Stanley County High School in 1956, died at the age of 80 on July 17 at Roseview Assisted Living in Surprise, Ariz. The son of Lee and Nellie Sargent had been a resident of Wickenburg, Ariz., since 1965. He married his wife Tootie there in 1968. His work as an electrician took him all over Arizona and the Southwest until his retirement in 1998. He is survived by his wife; daughter Julie Sparks of Chandler, Ariz.; son Jeff Sargent of Big Timber, Mont.; his sister, LaVonne Fluharty of Brookings; six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. No services are being planned.
Karl and Joan Adam and all of their family enjoyed a vacation and celebration of son Conrad’s 24th birthday starting in Seattle last week. They continued on up to Alaska.
Larissa Fasthorse’s original play, “The Thanksgiving Play,” will be the subject of a staged reading hosted by Black Hills Community Theater at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 9, at BHCT’s Studio Theater in Rapid City. Larissa’s play will have a fully-staged production by Augustana University’s theater department in November.
Minneapolis-St. Paul area readers: A reading of Larissa Fasthorse’s new play, “The Dakota Project,” will take place at noon this Saturday, Aug. 3, at the Minneapolis American Indian Center at 1530 E. Franklin Ave. in Minneapolis. There is no admission charge, and everyone is welcome for the 90-minute reading. Everyone there is invited to share feedback and join in the creative process. Following the play reading there will be a dialogue with the playwright herself. There will be a similar reading event in Mankato on Sunday at 12:30 p.m. at the Greater Mankato Diversity Council, 127 S. 2nd St.
A book written by life-long Hughes County resident Charlotte Hyde, “Chapelle Creek Memories: Growing Up During the Great Depression in South Dakota,” is available for sale at the Prairie Pages bookstore in downtown Pierre.
It had been four years since Mike and Jean Denton and all of their family were together in one place, but they were able to do it recently at Aaron’s home in southern California.
All four children—Aaron, Paul, Anne and Tom—and Aaron’s and Paul’s wives and all three Denton grandchildren joined Mike and Jean in Anaheim.
Caleb Huxford, oldest child of Kevin and Caren (Howard) Huxford of Rapid City, four years ago challenged himself to run a 5K in each of the 50 states. This summer he added three states to his total and now has run a 5K in 30 different states. Caleb, who turned 17 on July 25, will be a junior at Stevens High School beginning this month. His grandparents are Kay Huxford, now of Rapid City, and Dick and Carol Howard of Pierre.
Kirk Albertson rode again this year with the U.S. Air Force cycling team in the RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa). On Day 1, after dipping their tires into the waters of the Missouri River at Council Bluffs, the cyclists rode 57 miles to Atlantic through rain. On Day 2 they had cool and clear weather for their 68-mile ride to Winterset. The third day saw an easy 40-mile ride to Indianola. Day 4 was tougher, a 117-mile hike to Honey Creek Resort. On Day 5 they rode 67 miles to Fairfield, which included 2,710 feet of climbing. That day Kirk and a partner changed seven flat tires and also directed traffic around a bad accident until EMS personnel arrived on the scene. On Day 6 the cyclists rode 69 miles to Burlington, and the Air Force team had their team dinner and last camp together that night. Day 7 concluded the RAGBRAI with a 63-mile drive along the Mississippi River to Keokuk, and they dipped their tires into the waters of the Mississippi before embarking on their bus trip back across the state.
Daisha (Seyfer) Finke was another Pierre native who rode across Iowa in the RAGBRAI last week.
Riggs High alumnus Torry Zeller will be one of this fall’s inductees into the University of Sioux Falls Athletic Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony will take place during homecoming weekend on Friday, Oct. 4, at the Washington Pavilion. Zeller participated in cross country and track for USF from 1998 to 2001. He was part of three 4×800 relay teams, both indoors and outdoors, which rank in the top three all-time in USF history. He also ran on a distance medley team, which set a mark that ranks fifth all-time at USF. Zeller set school records in the indoor mile and 3,000-meter run. He earned All-American honors in the indoor season for a 25th-place finish at the national NAIA meet in the 3,000 in 2000 and an eighth-place finish there in 2001. He won individual events to become a conference champion in both the SDIC and GPAC conference meets. Zeller earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education with a minor in special education. He taught fifth grade for four years and was head coach of the Riggs High School cross country teams from 2002 to 2004. Zeller and his wife, the former Carrie Ward, live in Pierre with their two children, Ella and Mason. He is training director for the state Department of Corrections.
The Dairy Queen store in Pierre sold 6,702 blizzards on Miracle Treat Day, which meant a contribution of $6,702 to the Sanford Children’s Miracle Network.
In Blunt residents of the community are coming together to transition the Blunt Senior Center into a community center in order to be all-inclusive so as to continue operating and meet the needs of the town. Elected as the initial officers of the new community center are Janet Bartlett, president; Sharon Metzinger, treasurer, and Rachel Comes, secretary. The next meeting will be at the center on Aug. 13 at 7:30 p.m. when the discussion will include how to convert to a community center and other issues. Everyone in the Blunt community is welcome. (News courtesy of The Onida Watchman)
Shawn and Rebekah (Hartmann) Hlavacek are the parents of a daughter, Brynle Jo, who was born July 26, weighing 7 pounds, 5 ounces. She is the first grandchild for Randy and Jodi Hartmann.
Dennis and Joyce Williams celebrated their 54th wedding anniversary on June 12 at—of all places!—Victoria Falls deep in the heart of Africa. The Williamses were part of a group of 20 people in their tour group. They started at Cape Town, South Africa, and took a cable-car ride to the top of Table Mountain and a scenic drive down to the Cape of Good Hope (the very southern tip of the African continent) and Cape Point. They enjoyed many exciting game drives in South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana. In an interesting letter Joyce wrote, “There were early (5:45) drives with hot water bottles under our blankets and evening drives with headlights. The front of the Jeeps have pull-down tables for short stops for coffee and tea in the morning and beer, wine or gin-and-tonic at sundown. The weather was great. It was their last week of fall.” Joyce described one of their meetings with wildlife: “Just as we were approaching the top of a hill, our tracker got down from his high perch above the hood of the Land Rover and got in beside our driver. As we crested the hill and started down, we could see eight lions relaxing in the sunshine. Even though I told the driver to stop so I could use the zoom on my camera, he continued down the hill and parked beside the eight lions, which were on my side of the Jeep. They stretched, yawned and flipped their tails as the six of us in the Jeep took pictures without zooming in.” The group saw many other animals—a leopard, a cheeta, elephants, zebras, hippos, hyenas, wildebeests, giraffes, impalas, baboons and more.
Former Sully Buttes football players Alex Thorson and Clay Feller played this season with the Watertown Rebels of the Southern Plains Football League, an adult amateur football league that operates in southern Minnesota and eastern South Dakota. The Rebels had a 7-1 regular-season record, then won their playoff opener over the South Central Hawgs of Fairmont, Minn., 40-32. The Watertown team thus qualified for the league’s championship game played last Saturday at St. Peter, Minn., but they lost to the Sioux Empire Crusaders of Harrisburg, 42-33.
The Tales on the River program series sponsored by Short Grass Arts Council continues tonight (Thursday) with a program on his organic farming experience by Mark Venner. Next Thursday, Aug. 8, noted historian/author/photographer Paul Horsted from Custer will be here. His books are noted for his historical photographs and matching photographs from today of the same settings in the Black Hills. The programs are held at the Moose Lodge in Fort Pierre at 7 p.m. each Thursday, and there is no admission charge. A $5 supper is served there from 6:15 to 7 p.m.
Our sympathy to Charlene Reed and her husband Sonny as well as all of the Raue family. Charlene’s brother, Jack Hansen, died at the age of 81 at the hospital in Philip on July 26. Services were held Wednesday. Mr. Hansen was also the brother of the late Shirley Raue.
Toby Bryant coached and his daughter, Dessa, played on the softball team which last week won the USA 14U Northern Nationals championship at Rochester, Minn. Toby and Dessa were both part of the USA 12U national champs last year. Their Metro Select team from the Sioux Falls/Harrisburg community went 2-0 in pool play with wins by scores of 11-3 and 11-2. In bracket play the team won by 13-1, 10-5, 5-4 and 4-1, then took down a team from Marshfield, Wis., 4-1 in the championship game.
Conor Cruse, son of Brandon and Melanie (Bunkowske) Cruse of Rapid City, played on the Canyon Lake Little League team which won the 11U state championship last weekend.
In that same 11U state tournament Tyler Bryant coached the Sioux Falls Little League team on which his daughter, Macy, plays. They went 2-2 in that tournament, beating Spearfish and Rushmore and losing to Timberline and Harney. Tyler also umpired behind home plate at the 10U state tournament held in Rapid City at the same time. In that tournament the team on which Tyler’s son, Boston, plays won their state title. Boston slugged an inside-the-park home run all the way to the wall in the championship game, which his team won by a 7-1 score.
Nate Sprenkle, son of Eric and Amanda (Weaver) Sprenkle of Sioux Falls, played on the Renner Post 307 team that won the state Junior Legion tournament in Rapid City ending Tuesday. On Monday the Renner team eliminated Post 320, 9-4, to reach championship day. They had to beat the Post 22 Expos twice to win it all, and they did. Eric and his three boys were in Rapid City for the whole tournament. Amanda went out with them, but she suffered a medical setback while there, and her parents, Prentice and Susan Weaver, brought her back to Sioux Falls where she has been hospitalized at Sanford this week. Meanwhile, Eric’s parents, Randy and Bev Sprenkle, stayed in Sioux Falls to watch the family’s dogs so they all could go to Rapid City.
There is more to the Sprenkle story this week, and it is a nice story. According to a Facebook post from a Renner Post 307 parent: “So we had some big news this weekend with becoming the state Junior Legion tournament champs! However, the most impressive play of the game and the true champions came from Rapid City Post 320 Shooters parents and fans. They caught wind of a difficult situation happening on our team. We have a player whose mom is fighting for her own victory. On opening day of the tournament she needed medical advice and ended up needing to head back to her medical staff and seek further evaluation and treatment in Sioux Falls. This mom has three boys and absolutely loves watching them play their sports and hardly missed a baseball game this summer, no matter how she felt. Post 320 took it upon themselves to help in a very big way. They gave a huge monetary gift (which was most if not all of their profits from that day) to this family. Yes, Renner ended up with the trophy, but it’s the ones that you can’t see that mean the most. Thanks again, Post 320, for your outstanding performance. You are truly a class act team, family and fans. You hosted a beautiful tournament as well. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you!”
Pierre Music will sponsor “Music on the Missouri” starting at 11 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 3, at the Oahe Downstream campground on the west side of the river below the dam. Burgers and brats will be grilled, and entertainment will be provided. Among the performers will be the Pierre Children’s Chorus, the Purple Phaze band, the Full Send band, Corinne and the Key of G, Little E and the AJ’s, Calico, KIngsway and more. Everyone is welcome.
Karon Schaack of Rapid City; her children, Katie Olsen, Ann Humphery and Jon Schaack; their spouses and their children spent the last week of July in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. They were delighted to discover that Dakota Blonde (Pierre native Mary Huckins’ band) was performing one night for guests at the YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park, the Schaack family’s location. According to Karon, “Part of the evening’s banter was a segment where Mary introduced each band member, requesting that, if members of the audience were from the same state, please shout out! She introduced herself last. Imagine the fun when she noted she was from Pierre, South Dakota. She told us to stay afterwards so we could visit.” Karon said the show was great, including original compositions, and Mary played at least six of the 12 instruments on the stage. Her music made many references to South Dakota, the Missouri River and Oahe Dam. “A night to remember for sure!” Karon concluded.
Mary Huckins’ Dakota Blonde has its own Facebook page, and Mary has her own Facebook page as well. In addition there is information at www.dakotablonde.com. For our readers in Colorado and those who might be visiting down there, Dakota Blonde has an upcoming show at 7 p.m. Aug. 17 at the Stage Door Theatre in Conifer; an 11 a.m. performance Sept. 14 at the High Peaks Festival in Westcliffe and a 7 p.m. show Sept. 21 at the Georgetown Heritage Center’s concert hall.
Pierre native Casey Hight has joined the Sully County sheriff’s department as a deputy sheriff. Casey was a Pierre police cadet during his teen-age years, then served in Iraq with the U.S. Army for two tours of duty. After his discharge he worked for a security firm in Montana and at the women’s prison in Pierre. After a stint in the private sector as a DirecTV representative, he became a dispatcher for the Pierre police department. But he wanted to get back out on the streets, so he jumped at the chance to take the open deputy position in Sully County. (News courtesy of The Onida Watchman)
Jackson Schumacher and Katie Plooster became engaged this week.
Robert Anderson, 78, died July 29. Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m. this (Thursday) morning with the funeral service at 11 at the Isburg Funeral Chapel. A native of Mitchell and a U.S. Army veteran, he attended Dakota Wesleyan University and the University of Missouri and taught at USD. He worked in research and administrative positions in state government in Pennyslvania and Arizona. From 1991 to 2006 he was director of research and program applications for the National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors. Among his survivors are his wife Sandy of Pierre; a sister, Elaine Bauer, and his mother-in-law, Lois Schmidt.
Hunter Roberts, who graduated from Riggs High School in 1998 and earned his MBA and law degrees from USD, will become secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources effective next Monday. He succeeds the retiring Steve Pirner, who has been DENR secretary since 2000. Hunter has been a division director in the Department of Labor and Regulation.
At the South Dakota state long-course “A” championships swim meet in Sioux Falls, Pierre Swim Team had several individual champions in their respective age divisions. Nick Loe won both his 100- and 200-meter breast stroke events. Dani Zeeb was first in her 400-meter individual medley race. Ella Ward-Zeller won the 100-meter backstroke. David Stagg was champion in the 50-meter freestyle event. PST swimmers who will be part of Team South Dakota at the zones championships in Fargo will be David Stagg, Mason Ward-Zeller and Michelle Weiss. Meanwhile, Ella Ward-Zeller and Caleb Huizenga will compete at the USA Swimming Futures Championships in Des Moines.
The column below has been reprinted several times—probably five, 10, 15 and 20 years after the event it describes happened in 1994. Now suddenly we’re 25 years later!
This was the Legion baseball situation that August: The state tournament was at Hyde Stadium, but the Central Plains Regional was in Rapid City, so Post 22, regardless of how that team did in the state tournament, would be in the national regional as the host team. Thus the state champion (or the next-best team at the state tournament if Post 22 won it) would also be going to the Central Plains Regional.
The state tournament began on Saturday. By the end of Tuesday night’s play one-loss Pierre Post 8 had eliminated Mitchell in the fourth round. The only two teams left were Post 8 and Post 22; thus, both would be advancing to the Central Plains Regional. Yet there was still the state championship to be decided. Pierre would play Post 22 on that Wednesday afternoon and with a win would require another championship game that evening.
In those days Post 22 won the state championship every year. The previous summer the Hardhats had won the national championship, and Ben Thomas was named National Player of the Year. Post 22 never ever lost to a fellow South Dakota team. On the rare occasion they lost games, it was to out-of-state teams.
So Post 8 had the luxury of knowing it would still go to the national regional, regardless of what happened on that Championship Wednesday in 1994. But the game became a classic—one of the most legendary games Post 8 has ever played. I know some of you were there. Others of you remember the details so well that you may now think you were there.
The players on Scott Raue’s club in that state tournament were Chance Stoeser, Ryan Merriam, Tyson Lindekugel, Dave Gordon, Derek Larson, Nate Kuchta, Clint Fouts, Jason Sulzle, Kirk Van Roekel, Jeff Larson, Brandon Conzemius, Tom Pier, Toby Bryant, Nathan Weber and Justin Gilmore.
A few days after that memorable Wednesday, I wrote the following column in the Capital Journal. In that summer of 1994 major league baseball was trying its best to kill itself. A players’ strike began at the first of August, and the rest of the season was not played. There was no World Series. But baseball was anything but dead at Hyde Stadium. So (I promise!) for the last time, we take you back 25 years ago to “One Wednesday in August”:
There was magic at the ballpark . . .
ONE WEDNESDAY IN AUGUST
Never mind, for the time being at least, all the crud and slime associated with sports on the big-time level these days.
The place to which the sports fan can cast his gaze instead is the hometown sports scene where, once in awhile—and more often than we realize—there comes along an instant so glisteningly pure, so absolutely perfect when everything that is wonderful about athletics comes together and creates a moment to be savored, a scene ensconced in our memory bank, a happening to be recalled with joy, a lump in the throat and yet another tear in the eye, over and over for a lifetime.
There was the 1991 Lady Govs state basketball tournament that totally defied any logical explanation. There were Toby Bryant’s and Chance Stoeser’s state wrestling championships last winter with their dads at mat-side, the kind of stuff about which they write movie scripts.
And then there was Wednesday afternoon in the midday sun of beautiful old-turned-new Hyde Stadium.
The third inning became the fourth and the fourth became the fifth, and still the underdog home boys were playing the gods of American Legion baseball dead even. A Miracle on Ree Street was in the making.
In the early going a play great enough for “Plays of the Week” kept Post 8 even. With a man on second base, a sharp ground ball went third to first and back to third—Ty to Ry to Ty—for a marvelous double play to wipe out an early Rapid City threat.
But one knew it wouldn’t continue. It couldn’t possibly continue. Something would happen. After all, what were the odds? This was Rapid City Post 22 in the red uniforms, the national champs, the best team in this country or probably any other, a team that certainly doesn’t lose a big game to a fellow South Dakota ballclub. There was their ace on the mound, the best player in the whole nation, for heaven’s sake, sent to the hill on this day to close out the whipper-snappers who dared to believe they might be good enough to even stand on the same diamond with Post 22.
He wouldn’t have, because really they’re rather nice people out there and they wear their baseball tradition well, but if a Rapid City player or fan had tapped me on the chest with his finger and said “You can’t beat us, and you won’t beat us because we’re better than you are,” I probably would have said, “Yes, sir; sorry, sir,” and sat down.
Ten to 1? 100 to 1? What were the odds that these kids we know in blue jeans and T-shirts as well as in Post 8 green and black could handle this insurmountable challenge? Three days earlier they had been somewhat embarrassed by the same team, 12-2, in a game that lasted only five innings. Post 22 had, in fact, taken over the 10-run rule as its own personal piece of baseball legislation, clubbing anybody and everybody into submission, doing it to perfection and doing it early.
But nobody has yet devised a way to place odds on the hearts and souls and potentials of young athletes. So they go ahead and play a game, even when its final result is a foregone conclusion.
So here we were on this midweek afternoon—some of us with weightier things on our minds because it was also “pull the plug on the video lottery” day, and a rather large number of us were taking a busman’s holiday from the office. In fact, a stadium full, would you believe! And as the 2 o’clock hour wore past 3, that foregone conclusion was nowhere to be found. Rhyme and reason had also taken a holiday.
Rapid City had gone ahead, but only 1-0, in the fifth, but there before our very eyes in the sixth were Chance Stoeser and Dave Gordon churning around third on Ty Lindekugel’s blast to the right-field wall on an 0-2 count. Pierre led Rapid City, 2-1, in the sixth inning? This late in the game?
The Black Hills bombers were set down in order in the sixth.
Across the city people must have begun to pay closer attention to their radios. The crowd continued to grow. The Capitol Avenue bridge railing became lined with people, elbow to elbow.
And in the seventh after Rapid City’s leadoff man got aboard, Justin Gilmore retired three in a row on fly balls.
The breaks between half-innings became time to recover from having held one’s breath for 10 minutes without daring to exhale. Time to squeeze together because here were some more fans entering the park. Time to forget about announcements of lucky-number pizza and gas winners. Time to pat the arm of the player’s parent in the next seat who was holding her hands over her face or clenching his sweaty fist.
It went to the eighth, and who would you want coming up to the plate when having another base runner was crucial! Gordon, of course, and he waited out a 3-2 pitch for a walk. And Derek Larson did the same thing to advance Gordon to second. Nervous? Impatient? Heck, these kids were cool as cucumbers.
With two out and Gordon begging to be brought home, Lindekugel came through again, and, good grief, it was 3-1.
A Pierre crowd reserved and conservative? Sometimes, but not on this day! There was the Pierre crowd, believe it or not, roaring on every pitch.
There was a lanky blond named Gilmore staring down the barrels of Post 22’s artillery as he pitched the game of his life while his dad, the sportscaster upstairs, said to his colleague, “If I faint, you take over.”
There were the players’ buddies from high school, just above the dugout in the territory to which they had staked claim early in the tournament, up out of their lawn chairs, on their feet, yelling support.
There was their fiery coach, his face beet red as usual from sunburn or intensity or both, a chap who doesn’t demand a whole lot from his players except that they never let up, that they use their heads as well as their physical abilities, and that they, not for a second, do anything less than strive to do their best.
So there came the top of the ninth. The home kids (playing as the visiting team in this game) threatened to score but for the life of them couldn’t punch across any more insurance. But after that half-inning anyway, they were carried back to their defensive positions on the wings of another roaring standing ovation.
Suddenly it was the bottom of the ninth. Of course, if it were to happen at all, it wouldn’t come easily. Of course Rapid City put its first batter on base. Of course the tying run came to the plate.
But there was a well-stroked fly ball to center, and that’s Gordon’s ground. One out!
And then there was another fly to center. Two outs!
And just like in the big-league parks, when there is only one out to go, the home crowd rose to cheer.
Even the players’ fathers who have to pace, pace, pace to keep their sanity stopped pacing, frozen to the pressbox floor.
Was it my imagination, or had the traffic on the streets come to a halt?
If, at that precise moment, the bottom had fallen out an the bubble had indeed burst, it would have been heartbreaking for these kids, to be sure, but it wouldn’t have mattered. They had triumphed in this game long before the ninth inning arrived.
If I had been on that field at that moment with a glove on my hand, I most certainly would have been praying aloud, “Please, God, don’t let them hit it to me.”
Whom they hit it to was Derek Larson at shortstop, and that’s not a bad choice. He scooped it up and fired it straight and true to first where Ryan Merriam would have caught it in his teeth if necessary.
Then the young pitcher came off the mound. By the time he reached the baseline, his teammates mobbed him and each other. They broke away to parade single-file for handshakes with the opponents. Then their broad smiles returned on their way to the dugout as the bleacher crowd roared.
There were hugs—player’s mom with player’s mom, not needing to say anything to each other. After years of dirty uniforms, coping with disheartened kids who had struck out with the tying run at third, after years of hot, sticky evenings on hard Little League bleachers, they knew. Words were unnecessary.
There were the young kids with the foul balls, taking them down for autographs from the patient Post 8 heroes. Eighteen-year-old sports stars are, after all, role models to 10-year-old LIttle Leaguers, whether they feel comfortable in that role or not. Somewhere in Pierre later that day, a kid burst into the house and held up a ball saying, “I got their autographs, Dad!”
There was the winning pitcher, grinning sheepishly as he autographed a pretty girl’s left arm.
And there were some of the rest of us just standing around, absorbing it all, too swept up in the moment to leave.
Yes, I know that victory didn’t do anything except require that a second championship game be played in the evening.
Yes, I know that the sun would have risen Thursday morning no matter whether the outcome was 3-1 or 33-1.
Yes, I know that it was just a ballgame and that Rapid City went ahead and won the night game, starting with Mark Ellis’ leadoff homer, and that Post 8 was going to the regional tournament anyway.
I also know, however, that in a few days that game will not have been dismissed as history. It left an indelible memory on anybody closely connected with it—player, mom, dad, coach, friend.
Some day when Coach Raue is bald and fat and his players have grand kids, they will have a reunion. The likes of Kuchta and Fouts and Sulzle, Gordon and Van Roekel and Lindekugel, Merriam and Stoeser and Larson, Gilmore and Bryant and Conzemius, Pier and Weber and Larson will tell tall tales about that Wednesday in August when they played Rapid City in the state tournament.
No matter how exaggerated their recollections become, they will never be able to improve on the way it actually was that day.
There will be other victories and certainly defeats for these young athletes in the real world. But for a couple of hours out of their young lives, they were part of a moment of sheer perfection.
And thankfully so were a thousand or so of the rest of us.
(Editor’s note: That 1994 Pierre Post 8 team lasted four days at the national regional in Rapid City. They eliminated the state champions from Iowa and Minnesota. They stayed alive five hours longer than Post 22 did. Eventually they lost to the Omaha team that went on to the Legion World Series.)