Shooting barrage carries Polaris to consolation championship

Shooting barrage carries Polaris to consolation championship The Vermillion Polaris sixth- grade basketball team netted eight 3-point baskets to carry them to the consolation championship at the Haas Memorial Tournament this past weekend in Yankton. Broc Gauer and Jordan Boots sank four apiece in the 42-33 victory over the Remsen Hawks.

This victory completed a 19-11 season, which included two second place finishes and two consolation championships. The team also participated in the Opportunities Unlimited league in Sioux City throughout the winter.

Leading the way in the Remsen game was Gauer with 20 points and five rebounds. Other scorers were Boots 12, Alex Schaack 4, Daniel Storm 2, Jordan Merrigan 2, and Jesse Kirkpatrick 2. Merrigan also cornered five rebounds.

In the qualifying game early Saturday, Vermillion beat Yankton Rexall 44-34. This was a close game throughout with a third period tied score of 25. However, the victors connected for 19 points in the final quarter to complete the win.

Boots had a team high 15 points followed by Gauer with 10. Other players in the scoring column were Merrigan 8, Schaack 6, C.J. Haakinson 3, and Storm 2. Storm led the team with five rebounds.

Friday night's initial game was controlled by Huron from the start. Their full court press propelled them to a 9-2 first quarter lead. The locals were not able to narrow the margin despite several steals by Boots in the 40-28 loss.

The Polaris team had a balanced scoring attack with Boots 8, Schaack 7, Haakinson 4, Gauer 3, Mikal Ustad 2, Kirkpatrick 2, and Merrigan 2.

Merrigan was the leading rebounder in this contest with three.

HEAD:Vermillion Friends of NRA to hold annual banquet April 4

The Vermillion Friends of NRA Committee will hold its seventh annual banquet and fund raiser Thursday, April 4 at the Eagles Club. The fundraiser includes the auction and raffle of limited edition NRA merchandise. Doors open at 5 p.m. with the prime rib dinner served at 7 p.m. Ticket prices are $25.00 for adults and $15.00 for youth age 17 and younger. Tickets are for sale in advance by contacting a committee member or call Bruce Plate at 624-8418. Tickets will not be sold at the door.

For the past seven years, the Vermillion Friends of NRA Committee have been raising funds to support the shooting sports locally, statewide and nationally. The Friends of NRA is a national program under the National Rifle Association Foundation. Monies raised locally come back to the state in the form of grants to qualified local, state and national shooting sports programs. Since 1996, the Vermillion committee has raised in excess of $35,000. During this same time period, programs in the area have received grants totaling over $16,000.

Local groups that have received grants include the Clay County 4-H Shooting Sports Program, the Clay County Sportsman's Club, the Yankton Sharpshooter's Club, and the Yankton County 4-H Shooting Sports Program. Projects that have received funding include: Equipment for youth marksmanship and safety programs, an automatic clay target thrower, shooting range improvements and funding to host Youth Sportsfests which introduce young people to various outdoor oriented activities including the shooting sports.

During 2001, Friends of NRA committees in South Dakota raised $45,000 that enabled over 20 shooting sports groups to receive funding. Nationally, funding goes to five major areas: Youth Programs received an estimated 52.8 percent, Range Development and Improvements receives 26.3 percent, Education and Training receives 15.7 percent, Wildlife & Natural Resource Conservation receives 1.75 percent and State Fund Endowments receive 3.5 percent.

In one of the most dominating performances in Dan Lennon Relay history, distance runner Kristin Hansen of Okoboji High School was named the Girls' Class A Most Valuable Athlete as she set three Dan Lennon Relay records and defended two Dan Lennon titles at the Class A events held March 25 at the DakotaDome.

In one of the most exciting races of the day, Hansen broke her own Dan Lennon record (2:18.80) with a clocking of 2:16.7 in the 800 meter run and passed Kati Grady of Le Mars High School on the final backstretch.

Hansen started the day with a 11:01.73 in the 3,200-meter run, shaving nearly 25 seconds off the previous record held by Jaime Kubel of Yankton High School. In that race, Hansen outdistanced the second-place time by 50 seconds.

In the 1,600-meter run, Hansen ran 5:07.59 to break Anne Schadle's (South Sioux City High School) record of 5:10.24 established in 2000. At last year's event, Hansen won the 800 meter dash (2:18.80) and the 1,600-meter run (5:17.60).

The Boys Most Valuable Athlete was Ralston High School's Shawn Swan who broke a 20-year old record in the long jump with a mark of 22-11 1/2, eight inches over the former mark of 22-31/2 set by Doug Vlasman of Madison High School in 1982. Swan also ran a :10.88 in the boys 100-meter dash finals, breaking the record held by Artis Garris of Bellevue East, who ran a 10.90 in 1992.

Seven total records were set or tied on the day. Other record-setting performances were made by Ben Delay of Bellevue

West High School with a 4:24.33 clocking in the 1600 meter run, beating the 16-year-old mark of Kevin Nelson of Brandon Valley (1986).

Brittany Speirs of Huron High School tied the Lennon meet record mark of 10-0 in the girls pole vault event.

Kimberly Hilton, also of Huron, originally set the mark in 2000.

During a special presentation at the meet, the Dan Lennon Award was presented to the 2002 recipient Jim Miner. Miner directed Yankton High School track and field teams to seven state titles and was instrumental in the start of the girls pole vault event in South Dakota.

"This is so special because track and field is a special sport. You run against opposition and against history. It is nice for me to be acknowledged for this same sport," Miner said at the award presentation.

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