Local Sports Archives for 2021-06

Wild rookie Kirill Kaprizov wins Calder award winner

The National Hockey League (NHL) today announced Minnesota Wild forward Kirill Kaprizov is the recipient of the 2020-21 Calder Memorial Trophy. The Calder Memorial Trophy is presented annually to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition. Kaprizov is the Wild's first-ever Calder Memorial Trophy winner.


Kaprizov, 24, led the Wild and NHL rookies with 51 points (27-24=51) in 55 games this season. He also led the team and League rookies in goals, even-strength goals (19), power-play goals (8) and shots on goal (157), ranked T-1st in overtime goals (2), second in assists, even-strength points (38) and power-play points (13), T-3rd in plus/minus rating (plus-10) and T-4th in game-winning goals (3). Per NHL Stats, the 5-foot-11, 201-pound forward is one of four rookies since 1992-93 to lead a team in points during the regular season, while helping them qualify for the playoffs: Auston Matthews (2016-17), Filip Forsberg (2014-15) and Trent Hunter (2003-04). He set franchise rookie records for most goals, PPG, EVG, OTG, assists, points, EVP and multi-point games (13). The left-shot winger also set franchise rookie records with a three PPP night (2-1=3) April 7 vs. COL, a six-game point streak (5-5=10) from April 29-May 8, a four-game multi-point game streak from May 3-8 and a five-game goal streak (6g) from April 17-24. The native of Novokuznetsk, Russia began the season with three points (2-1=3) in his NHL debut at LA on Jan. 14 to become the third player in NHL history to score an OT goal in his debut while his three points were the most by a Wild player in his debut. He netted his first career hat trick on March 12 vs. ARI to become the second Wild rookie to do so (Justin Fontaine, 1/9/14) and the third Wild player to score all three goals in the same period (Zach Parise, 3/24/16 in the first & Jason Zucker, 11/9/17 in the third). He was named NHL's First Star of the Week on Jan. 18 and the Second Star of the Week on May 10.

Kaprizov collected three points (2-1=3) in seven Stanley Cup Playoff games. He made his Stanley Cup Playoff debut on May 16 at VGK and scored his first playoff goal in Game 5 on May 24. He became the seventh Wild rookie to score a playoff goal, second to net a PPG and ranks T-2nd in playoff goals and T-3rd in playoff scoring amongst Wild rookies.


Kaprizov was selected by the Wild in the fifth round (135th overall) of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. Since 1970, he becomes the 10th Calder Memorial Trophy winner to be drafted in the fifth round or later of the NHL Entry Draft, first since 1998: Willi Plett (Round 5, No. 80 in 1975), Steve Larmer (Round 6, No. 120 in 1980), Gary Suter (Round 9, No. 180 in 1984), Luc Robitaille (Round 9, No. 171 in 1984), Sergei Makarov (Round 12, No. 231 in 1983), Pavel Bure (Round 6, No. 113 in 1989), Daniel Alfredsson (Round 6, No. 133 in 1994), Evgeni Nabokov (Round 9, No. 219 in 1994), and Andrew Raycroft (Round 5, No. 135 in 1998).

Alex Nedeljkovic (CAR) and Jason Robertson (DAL) were the other finalists for the 2021 Calder Memorial Trophy. Members of the PHWA submitted ballots for the Calder Memorial Trophy at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The trophy was first awarded in 1932-33 to Detroit's Carl Voss. From 1936-37 until his death in 1943, NHL President Frank Calder purchased a trophy each year to be given permanently to the League's outstanding rookie. After Calder's death, the NHL presents the Calder Memorial Trophy in his memory.

Two area NFL athletes to host free football camp in Aberdeen

Two NFL football players originally from the upper Midwest will be holding a free football clinic in Aberdeen this summer.  Minnesota Vikings fullback CJ Ham and Philadelphia Eagles tight end Dallas Goedert will host a Sanford POWER clinic beginning at 10:00 a.m. on July 6th.  The camp will take place at Northern State and be for children entering grades 4-8.  There is no cost to attend, but participants must register online.  Ham is a Duluth Minnesota native who played college football at Augustana in Sioux Falls while Goedert is a Britton native who played college football for South Dakota State. 

Detroit Pistons win the 2021 NBA draft lottery

The NBA draft lottery took place last night and the first 14 picks are now set.  The Minnesota Timberwolves had a nine percent chance at getting the top overall pick and did not.  Winning the lottery was the Detroit Pistons who will pick first at the upcoming draft.  The Minnesota Timberwolves got the seventh pick which will now go to the Golden State Warriors.  The Warriors received the rights to Minnesota’s first round pick this year, unless in the top three as part of the Andrew Wiggins, D’Angelo Russell trade.  The other top five picks include Houston at #2, Cleveland at #3, Toronto at #4 and Orlando rounds off the top five. 


Picks include:

1) Detroit Pistons
2) Houston Rockets
3) Cleveland Cavaliers
4) Toronto Raptors
5) Orlando Magic
6) Oklahoma City Thunder
7) Golden State Warriors
8) Orlando Magic
9) Sacramento Kings
10) New Orleans Pelicans
11)  Charlotte Hornets
12) San Antonio Spurs
13) Indiana Pacers
14) Golden State Warriors

Aberdeen Wings fall in Robertson Cup championship game

The Aberdeen Wing’s record setting season ended in disappointment last night in Blain Minnesota.  The wings lost the Robertson Cup championship game to the Shreveport Mudbugs.  The final was 4-2.  The game was scoreless heading into the second period.  That’s when Shreveport would score the first goal of the game, less than a minute into the period.  They would get one more before Aberdeen’s Liam Fraser got the Wings on the board.  In the third Shreveport would add two more goals, including an empty netter and Fraser would get his second 3 minutes into the period.  For Shreveport, it was their first Robertson Cup championship. 

Wolves rookie Anthony Edwards named to NBA first team all-rookie

Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards has been named to the 2020-21 NBA All-Rookie first team.  Edwards led all qualified rookies in scoring with 19.3 points per game, the largest rookie scoring average in Wolves history.  He was the only rookie to play in all 72 games and ranked first amongst rookies in total points, 1392, second in total three pointers 171, second in total steals 82, third in total rebounds 336 and fifth in total assists 211.   

Wild assistant GM Tom Kurvers passes away at 58

Minnesota Wild assistant general manager Tom Kurvers passed away Monday at the age of 58.  Kurvers passed away after a 2 and ½ year battle with lung cancer.  He leaves behind four children and his wife.  Kurvers had served as an assistant GM in Minnesota since 2018.  He won the Hobey Baker award in 1984 while with Minnesota-Duluth.  The award is given annually to the top college hockey player in the nation.  He played 11 NHL seasons between 1984 to 1995 with the Canadiens, Sabres, Devils, Maple Leafs, Canucks, Islanders and Mighty Ducks before moving into a front office role.

USD track star Chris Nilsen qualifies for Tokyo games

South Dakota track and field alum Chris  Nilsen has qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.  The Kansas City native and former Coyote cleared a height 9-4 ¼ in the pole vault winning the qualifying heat in the process.  He is a 2020 graduate of the University of South Dakota and was  three-time NCAA champion at USD.  He heads to Tokyo ranked fifth in the world this season.  He is also the second Coyote to represent the United States in the Olympic games after Derek Miles who qualified for three Olympic games. 

Augustana says it will start offering Division I hockey

Augustana University has announced plans to launch a Division I hockey program.  According to an Augustana spokesperson, the move is part of the Universities “Viking Bold: Journey to 2030” program.  The program will be the first ever Division I hockey program in South Dakota and make Augustana one of just 60 schools across the country offering Division I hockey.  In 2018 Augustana announced plans to move all its athletics to the Division I level.  That was put on hold after the Summit League announced it was not planning on inviting the Vikings into the league. 

Vikings to induct defensive tackle Kevin Williams to Viking Ring of Honor

The Minnesota Vikings will induct former DT Kevin Williams into the club’s Ring of Honor in 2021.


“We are so proud to have Kevin Williams take his place in the Vikings Ring of Honor this fall,” said Vikings Owner/Chairman Zygi Wilf. “He was one of the greatest defensive players in team history, and he very much deserves this honor.”


“Kevin’s impact on the Vikings during his 11 seasons went well beyond his play on the field,” said Vikings Owner/President Mark Wilf. “His lead-by-example approach, toughness and production made him a highly respected teammate and set the tone for some of the best defenses in team history.”

Williams was the #9 overall draft pick in 2003 and went on to earn All-Rookie honors and set the team rookie record with 3.0 sacks in a game at Arizona. He went on to start every game he played for the Vikings over his 11 seasons, 177 games including playoffs. Williams played in 2014 with Seattle and 2015 with New Orleans, starting in Super Bowl XLIX for Seattle. For his NFL career, Williams started 202 of his 212 games, including playoffs.


Williams earned Associated Press 1st-Team All-Pro honors in five seasons (2004, 2006-09), was named to the NFL’s Team of the Decade for the 2000s and had six Pro Bowl berths (2004, 2006-10). Williams and John Randle are tied for 2nd in team history for Pro Bowl berths by DTs (6) behind only Alan Page’s 9 honors. Williams’ 60.0 sacks as a Viking rank behind only Randle and Page among DTs and he is tied for the franchise record with four defensive touchdowns (2 INTs, 2 FRs). As a cornerstone of the Vikings defense, Williams led a unit that ranked #1 in NFL run defense in three consecutive seasons (2006-08), the first time a defense achieved the feat since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger.


The addition brings the Vikings Ring of Honor to 26 members. Current members include: Fran Tarkenton, Alan Page, Jim Finks, Bud Grant, Paul Krause, Fred Zamberletti, Jim Marshall, Ron Yary, Korey Stringer, Mick Tingelhoff, Carl Eller, Cris Carter, Bill Brown, Jerry Burns, Randall McDaniel, Chuck Foreman, John Randle, Scott Studwell, Chris Doleman, Matt Blair, Joey Browner, Ahmad Rashad, Randy Moss, Dennis Green and Steve Jordan.

Minnesota Wild will pick 21st and 25th in upcoming NHL draft

T he NHL has announced the 2021 NHL draft order picks one through 27.  The first 16 picks were announced on June 2nd following the NHL draft lottery.  The other picks now set came as teams were eliminated from the playoffs.


The Minnesota Wild will pick 21st overall and 25th overall.  The Wild got the 25th overall pick from the Pittsburgh Penguins.  The Penguins traded that pick to Minnesota in February of 2020 in exchange for forward Jason Zucker. 


The draft order goes as follows:

1. Buffalo Sabres

2. Seattle Kraken

3. Anaheim Ducks

4. New Jersey Devils

5. Columbus Blue Jackets

6. Detroit Red Wings

7. San Jose Sharks

8. Los Angeles Kings

9. Vancouver Canucks

10. Ottawa Senators

11. Chicago Blackhawks

12. Calgary Flames

13. Philadelphia Flyers

14. Dallas Stars

15. New York Rangers

16. St. Louis Blues

17. Winnipeg Jets

18. Nashville Predators

19. Edmonton Oilers

20. Boston Bruins

21. Minnesota Wild

22. Detroit Red Wings (from Washington Capitals)

23. Florida Panthers

24. Columbus Blue Jackets (from Toronto Maple Leafs)

25. Minnesota Wild (from Pittsburgh Penguins)

26. Carolina Hurricanes

27. Colorado Avalanche

28. Semifinal losing team with fewest points

29. Semifinal losing team with most points

30. Stanley Cup Final losing team

31. Stanley Cup winner

Vikings resign defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson

The Minnesota Vikings announced Tuesday the team is bringing back defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson.  Richardson spent one season in Minnesota in 2018 and his return will help fortify an already stout defensive line.  Richardson has 31.0 career sacks in eight seasons.  He had 4.5 sacks and 16 quarterback hits his one season in Minnesota.  


Richardson says the Vikings are a perfect fit...





Richardson also says he is looking forward to working with Vikings defensive coordinator Andre Patterson once again.  A man Richardson says had a big impact on his career...





Richardson says he believes the Vikings as a team are ready to take the next step and get back to the playoffs...



Aberdeen Central's Megan Fastenau named Gatorade South Dakota girls Soccer Player of the Year

Aberdeen Central star soccer player Megan Fastenau has been named the Gatorade South Dakota girls Soccer Player of the Year.  She is Central’s first Gatorade soccer player of the year honoree and joins four other players on the list going back to the 2016-17 school year.  The award is given annually to not only the most outstanding soccer player, but also to those who succeed in the classroom and who show great character.  She is now automatically a finalist for the Gatorade National girls Soccer Player of the Year award to be announced later this month.  She has already signed a national letter of intent to player college soccer at Northern State. 

Wild head coach Dean Evason named finalist for Jack Adams award

The National Hockey League (NHL) today announced Minnesota Wild Head Coach Dean Evason is a finalist for the 2020-21 Jack Adams Award. The Jack Adams Award is presented annually to the coach adjudged to have contributed the most to his team's success.


Evason, 56, led the Wild to a 35-16-5 record in 56 games in his first full season as the head coach of the Minnesota Wild - the second-most wins and team points through 56 games in franchise history. The team's .670 points percentage is the highest in team history. The Flin Flon, Man., native led Minnesota to a 21-5-2 record in 28 home games this season to record its highest home point percentage in team history (.786), including a franchise-best 11-game home win streak from Jan. 31-March 25. The 2020-21 season marked the first campaign in franchise history the Wild never had a losing streak (regulation and OT/SO) longer than two games. Under Evason, Minnesota recorded three win streaks of five-or-more games in a season for the third time in team history (2014-15, 2011-12), was one of eight NHL teams with eight double digit goal scorers and was one of three NHL teams to have 12 players to record at least 20 points. The Wild ranked T-8th in the League in total goals scored (non-shootout) - the second time in team history Minnesota finished in the top 10 of the NHL (second in 2016-17) and ranked second in the League in goals scored at home (101). He was named interim head coach on Feb. 14, 2020 and is 43-20-5 (.670) in 68 regular season career games and 4-7 (.364) in 11 career Stanley Cup Playoff contests with Minnesota. Evason joined the organization as an assistant coach on June 6, 2018.


Prior to joining the Wild, Evason spent six seasons (2012-18) as head coach of the Milwaukee Admirals in the American Hockey League (AHL), leading the team to a record of 242-161-53 (.588). He spent seven seasons as an assistant coach with the Washington Capitals (2005-12), in which the Capitals went 294-206-74 (.576) and claimed four straight Southeast Division titles, advanced to the Stanley Cup Playoffs in each of his last five seasons (2008-12) and won the 2010 Presidents' Trophy. The former NHL forward also spent six seasons as a head coach in the Western Hockey League (WHL) with the Calgary Hitmen (2004-05), Vancouver Giants (2002-04) and Kamloops Blazers (1999-02).


Evason is the Wild's second Jack Adams Award finalist, also 2003 winner, Jacques Lemaire. The Wild has four finalists for this year's awards, the most in a season in team history. The winners of the 2021 NHL Awards, presented by Bridgestone, will be revealed during the Stanley Cup Semifinals and Stanley Cup Final, with exact dates, format and times to be announced.


Evason could become the 12th coach, since the Jack Adams Award was first presented in 1973-74, to win the award in his first NHL season as a head coach (full and midseason replacements): Bobby Kromm (DET, 1977-78), Pat Quinn (PHI, 1979-80), Gordon Berenson (STL, 1980-81), Tom Watt (WPG, 1981-82), Orval Tessier (CHI, 1982-83), Mike Keenan (PHI, 1984-85), Pat Burns (MTL, 1988-89), Marc Crawford (QUE, 1994-95), Bill Barber (PHI, 2000-01), Bruce Boudreau (WSH, 2007-08) and Patrick Roy (COL, 2013-14).


Rod Brind'Amour of the Carolina Hurricanes and Joel Quenneville of the Florida Panthers are the other finalists for the Jack Adams Award. Members of the NHL Broadcasters' Association submitted ballots for the Jack Adams Award at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The Jack Adams Award was presented by the NHL Broadcasters' Association in 1974 in honor of the late Jack Adams, longtime coach and general manager of the Detroit Red Wings.

Aberdeen Wings win NAHL Central Division Championship, will continue Robertson Cup championship

The Aberdeen Wings defeated the Bismarck Bobcats Friday and won the central division championship in the process.  The Wings will continue the Robertson Cup playoffs this weekend.  All the Division Champions are re-seeded and will travel to Blaine Minnesota this weekend for games at Fogerty Arena.  Aberdeen has been given the #1 seed in the Robertson Cup semifinals and will take on the Minnesota Magicians in a three game series.   The winner of that series will move on to face either Maine or Shreveport for the Robertson Cup Championship.  Puck drop Friday and Saturday will be at 4:30 p.m.  Game three will be June 20th at 3:00 p.m. if necessary. 

Northern State softball coach Jenny Fuller resigns to join Pittsburgh State

Northern State University head softball coach Jenny Fuller has resigned her post effective June 21, 2021. Fuller spent four seasons at Northern State, posting an 85-80 record overall. She departs NSU to lead the program at Pittsburg State.


“It is with mixed emotions that we will be leaving Northern,” explained Fuller. “While looking forward to new opportunities, my family and I will miss our experiences here. I am very proud of our program’s accomplishments over the last four years and the willingness of the team to pursue the Gold Standard. I would like to thank Josh Moon, Terri Holmes, and Ashley Gauer for their unwavering support of us in the pursuit of a new level of excellence.”


“We are very excited about this next step for Coach Fuller,” said Josh Moon, Director of Athletics. “She has done a great job elevating our program and she will do well in the MIAA. We will miss the entire Fuller family in Aberdeen, but we will be cheering them on in the future.”


In her tenure with the Wolves, Fuller coached four NSIC All-Conference performers and one CoSIDA Academic All-American. In addition, 17 school single game, season, and career records were broken under Fuller’s direction.


Fuller added, “My family and I are also grateful for the many opportunities living in Aberdeen provided us. Aberdeen is a very family-oriented city that welcomed us with open arms, and we will miss the many friendships we have made.”


The Wolves went 15-4 in the spring of 2020, prior to the cancellation of the season due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The 15-4 start was the best for Northern State in program history, as the Wolves opened the year on a 10-game win streak. Northern went 18-34 overall in Fuller's second season at the helm in the spring of 2019.


She opened her NSU career with a 29-22 record overall and 18-10 mark in the NSIC, finishing fifth overall in the league. Offensively the Wolves came up just one point shy of tying the single season school record with a .312 team batting average, which was the first season average above .300 in over two decades.


Prior to her time at NSU, Fuller was the head coach at Cardinal Stritch for two seasons. She coached eight All-Conference performers, five Academic All-American student-athletes, and one second team All-American honoree. She also made coaching stops as an assistant at University of Texas at Dallas and McLennan Community College.


Northern will begin a national search for Fuller’s replacement immediately.

Minnesota Wild hire Ray Shero as special advisor to GM

A new study released by the web site “WalletHub” says South Dakota is the best state in the nation for jobs. According to the results, South Dakota is 5th in the nation for job oportunities, 1st in employment growth, fifth in unemployment rate, 29th in median annual income, 1st in average commute times, 16th in job satisfaction and 4th in COVID-19 positive tests in the past week per capita. According to the Department of Labor and regulation, South Dakota has over 20,000 available jobs across the state, with less than 3,000 people claiming unemployment.

Aberdeen Wings dominate Central Division post-season awards

The Aberdeen Wings dominated the NAHL's Central Division seson star awards.


First, four Wings were named to the All-Central Division team, Fowards Clayton Cosentino and Payton Matsui, defenseman Nico deVita and goaltender Jake Sibell. Aberdeen took up four of the six spots on the team.


Matsui was also named central division forward of the year for his 12 goals and 48 assists. Consentino was named the central division community service award winner, Sibell was named the central division MVP and goaltender of the year.


Head coach Scott Langer was named the central division coach and general manager of the year and the Wings organization was named the central division organization of the year.

Wild recap exciting season, look forward to tough offseason

After being down 3 - 1 in the first-round series to the Las Vegas Golden Knights and forcing a game seven, the Wilds season is over. With this season being a surprise to most people in the sense that the Wild were not expected to make the jump, many in and outside of the organization view it as a success.


The Wild held post-season press conferences over a multitude of topics with the General Manager of the Wild, Bill Guerin,  being the first to address the media.


Bill Guerin was extremely happy with the team and how well they competed over the season.....






As well, their second-year head coach, Dean Evason, talked about his role on the team.....






Wild Star Rookie Kirill Kaprizov is very excited for the future of the team and what it holds...


Kirill Sound

Aaron Rogers holdout now official, reportedly does not report to team mandatory minicamp

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rogers appears to officially be holding out. The star quarterback did not report to the team's mandatory minicamp this morning at 8:30a.m. According to Tom Pelissero fo the NFL Network. Rogers has been making criptic comments about his status with the team since the Packers lost the NFC Championship game in January. The Packers are adamant they will not trade the star quarterback and Rogers can still report to the team to begin the season.

Todd Neuendorff resigns as Mitchell boys basketball coach

Todd Neuendorf has resigned as the Head Boys Basketball Coach for the Mitchell School District after serving in the position for the past four years. Coach Neuendorf rebuilt the Mitchell Kernel Boys Basketball program, leading the team to the state tournament this season for the first time since 2012.


“I want to thank Todd for his tireless work, sacrifice and dedication to bring Mitchell Kernel Boys Basketball back to relevance. Todd is one of the best basketball coaches in the state of South Dakota, and I am grateful for his efforts over the past four years and the experiences I was able to share with him. We will miss him and his family but wish them nothing but the best in the future.” – Cory Aadland


“I would like to thank Mitchell Athletic Director Cory Aadland, the Mitchell School District and the Mitchell community for the support the past four years. A special thanks goes out to my assistant coaches and all the athletes who put in the time and effort to rebuild and re-establish Mitchell Basketball at the top, where it belongs. The opportunity to be closer to family weighed heavily in our decision.” – Todd Neuendorf A search to find a replacement will begin immediately.

Two Wild players named finalists for league awards

Two Minnesota Wild stars have been named finalists for league awards. First, Wild rookie forward Kirill Kaprizov was named a finalists for the Calder Memorial Trophy. The calder is given annually to the top rookie in the league. Kaprizov is 24 years old and led the Wild and all NHL rookies with 51 points, 27 goals and 24 asissts, in 55 games this season. Kaprizov is the Wild's first ever Calder trophy finalists. Next, Minnesota Wild defenseman and team captain Jared Spurgeon has been named a finalists for the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy. The Lady Byng is presented annually to the player who exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct, combined with a high standard of playing ability.


Vikings sign CB Bashaud Breeland

The Vikings have made another addition to their secondary.


Minnesota announced Friday that the team has agreed to terms with cornerback Bashaud Breeland, a veteran who has more than 100 total games of NFL experience.


The addition of the 29-year-old Breeland strengthens the mix of experienced and up-and-coming cornerbacks on its roster.


Patrick Peterson and Mackensie Alexander were signed as free agents this offseason, while youngsters such as Jeff Gladney and Cameron Dantzler are looking to take another step forward after their rookie seasons.

Aberdeen native Hannah Kastigar swims at Olympic trials

Northern State alum and Aberdeen native Hannah Kastigar qualified for the finals in the 400 invidvidual medley Saturday at the US Olympic Trials in Omaha Nebraska. In the end she finished 11th overall and swam her fourth fastest career time at 4:51.28. With her competing in Omaha, Kastigar becomes the first NSU swimmer to make the finals of the US Olympic Trials.



Mount Marty head coach Lorensen resigns

Mount Marty head men's basketball coach Todd Lorensen has resigned from his position. Lorensen resigns after two seasons in charge of the Lancer basketball program. Lorensen went 31-29 during that time, including leading the Lancers to a GPAC tournament championship game birth last season. In a statement from Lorensen he said its time for a change of pace for him personally and professionally. Lorensen served as the athletic director at Mount Marty as well. A search will begin to find his replacement.


Buffalo Sabres win NHL draft lottery

The Buffalo Sabres won the 2021 NHL draft lottery Wednesday night.  That means the Sabres will hold the first overall pick in the upcoming NHL draft.


The Sabres finished with the worst record in the NHL this past season, going 15-34-7 and had the best lottery odds at 16.6 percent.  It is the first time since 2018 the team with the best odds to win the lottery actually did so.  That last time was again the Buffalo Sabres.  They selected Swedish defenseman Rasmus Dahlin with that pick. 


New expansion team, the Seattle Kraken, which will play its inagural season next year, was given the second overall pick.  


The top 15 picks have been announced and it will go in the following order:

1.) Buffalo Sabres
2.) Seattle Kraken
3.) Anaheim Ducks
4.) New Jersey Devils
5.) Columbus Blue Jackets
6.) Detroit Red Wings
7.) San Jose Sharks
8.) Los Angeles Kings
9.) Vancouver Canucks
10.) Ottawa Senators
11.) Chciago Blackhawks
12.) Calgary Flames
13.) Philadelphia Flyerse
14.) Dallas Stars
15.) New York Rangers

Wings select three players in supplemental draft

The Aberdeen Wings took part in the 2021 NAHL supplemental draft Wednesday.  In that draft the Wings selected three players who will join the roster for the upcoming 2021-22 hockey season.  The three players include goaltender Jed Balotti of New Canaan Connecticut, taken 28th overall.  Hugo Lindman Gustavsson of Ostervala Sweden, taken 55th overall and finally forward Felikss Egils Gavars of Riga Latvia taken 71st overall. 

Duke Blue Devils head men's basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski to retire after one more season

Longtime Duke University head men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski reportedly plans to retire after this upcoming season.  No official announcement has been made on the matter as of yet.  Krzyzewski is 74 years old and has been the head coach at Duke since 1980.  During that time he has won five NCAA National Championships, made 12 final fours, won 15 ACC tournaments, was named the College coach of the year three times and helped team USA win Olympic gold medals in 1984, 1992, 2008, 2012 and 2016.  Duke failed to make the NCAA tournament this past season, the first time the Blue Devils missed March Madness since 1995. It is believed longtime Krzyzewski assistant Jon Scheyer will take over as the next Duke head coach.

Wolves prospect Lenadro Bolmaro named top player in Spanish league

Minnesota Timberwolves prospect Leandro Bolmaro has been named the Spanish ACB League’s Jugador Mas Espectacular” or the league MVP.  The Spanish ACB League is Spain’s top professional basketball league.  Bolmaro is 20-years-old and was selected by Minnesota 23rd overall in the 2020 NBA draft. The Argentine born basketball star shot 53 percent from the floor and45.3 percent from beyond the three point line in 33 Liga ACB games.  It is possible Bolmaro could come to the United States to join the Wolves this offseason, but more likely he will need to spend another season in Spain due to his current contract and buyout options. 

Northern state head swim coach Nicole Monanian resigns

Northern State University head swim coach Nicole Monanian has resigned her post effective June 9, 2021. Monanian spent four seasons with the Northern State program and will department Aberdeen for an assistant position at Purdue University.


“Leading a program is like a relay. It takes different coaches with different techniques and philosophies to bring the best out of a program,” explained Monanian. “I am excited with what NSU swimming has accomplished in my time here and what is in store for the Wolves in the future. I am so grateful to Josh, NSU, and Aberdeen for taking the chance in allowing me to lead these amazing young women for the past four years. I was blessed to open my coaching career at Northern State.”


In tenure, Monanian coached four Olympic trial qualifiers, two all-conference performers, two NSIC Champions (one multi time champion), two national qualifiers, two All-Americans, and one National Champion. In addition, in her time at the helm ten school records and four freshman records have fallen.


“We are thrilled for Nicole with this next opportunity at Purdue,” noted Josh Moon, Director of Athletics. “She has truly elevated Wolves swimming during her time here, and we’d like to thank her for all of her hard work and dedication to our student-athletes. We will miss her high energy and positivity around the office and look forward to following her future successes in the coaching profession.”


In 2021, the Wolves took sixth at the NSIC Championships, recording their highest finish since the move to nine competing teams and surpassing MSU Moorhead for the first time in school history. Northern placed seventh as a team from the 2019-20 NSIC Championships, with 157 team points. In addition, Monanian kicked off the Water Wolves swim lessons program in her third season at the helm. 


In 2018-19, Hannah Kastigar qualified for the NCAA National Championships in the 200 IM, 400 IM, 200 fly, and 200 breast, swimming to All-American performances in each event. She won the 400 IM National Championship and broke two of her own school records in the 400 IM and 200 breast. In her first season at the helm, Monanian coached her first NCAA All-American in Edda Skoric, who finished third overall in the 200 back from the NCAA National Championships.


Northern State will begin a national search for Monanian’s replacement.

Aberdeen Central Briana Kusler named Pierre head boys basketball coach

Wednesday afternoon, the Pierre Governor basketball team knew who its new head coach would be and it is a historic moment. Brianna Kusler is the new Governor boy’s basketball coach becoming the first ever woman to coach a Class AA boys basketball team.


Kusler was part of the coaching staff in 2020-2021 for Pierre under former head coach Terry Becker. Because there was not a JV team, Kusler was the sophomore head coach.


In college, Kusler finished her career with 1,129 points at Northern State. She had 332 assists which was fifth in school history and ninth in school history with 124 steals. She was also named to the All-NSIC team in her final two years.  In her senior campaign in high school, Kusler led the Aberdeen Central Golden Eagles to both a volleyball and basketball state title while being named Miss Volleyball and Miss Basketball for the year.


Brian Moser, Pierre athletic director says it was a no brainer…





Kusler says she’s excited for this coaching opportunity…






Being the sophomore coach last season, Kusler says it’s an advantage heading into this season…

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And Kusler says it means a lot to be the first woman head coach in AA boys’ basketball history…

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Pierre finished the season at 7-13 in 2021. The Governors graduate four seniors from this year’s team but return all-state guard Lincoln Kienholz. Pierre basketball can be heard all year on Today’s KCCR, and available to watch on YouTube at KCCR Sports.