Matt Steichen has been the sports editor at the Farmington Independent and Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communications from Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa. He has previously been a sports writer at the Sioux City Journal and Le Mars Daily Sentinel and the sports editor at the Austin Daily Herald.
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Standout individual performances led the Rosemount boys and girls track teams to matching third-place finishes at last Wednesday’s South Suburban Conference Championships. The Irish girls were in the running for the team title, but placed just over a point behind runner-up Lakeville North with 111 points. Host Lakeville South won the meet with 129 points.
The Rosemount baseball team will take a four-game losing streak into the Section 3AAAA tournament after dropping another pitcher's duel in the regular season finale Monday, May 22. Three pitchers combined to hold Northfield in check in a 4-2 loss that left the Irish with a record of 9-11 heading into their Section 3AAAA opener Thursday, May 25, against Simley (3-13).
After winning four straight games by a total of six goals, the eighth-ranked Rosemount boys’ lacrosse team finally got the chance to catch its collective breath last week. The Irish stretched their winning streak to six games by pulling away from Burnsville 10-2 and Apple Valley 11-2 in back-to-back South Suburban Conference games at Irish Stadium. “It was nice to be able to work on some things in preparation for this week,” Rosemount coach Lance Kuehn said.
Dan Hegberg tossed 5 1/3 innings of one-hit ball in leading the Rosemount Pipers baseball team past the Minnetonka Lakers 5-0 May 18 in Minnetonka. Hegberg struck out eight and left with a five-run lead after he walked and scored on a fielder’s choice in the top of the sixth. Reliever Jeremy Belisle got the final five outs to complete the shutout for the Class A senior men’s defending state champions.
The Rosemount softball team advanced in the Section 3AAAA tournament by knocking off East Ridge 9-4 in the opening round Monday, May 22, at The Cove. Maria Back paced the Irish at the plate, going 3-for-4 with a career-high six RBI. Bri Hollenbeck and Renee McKinnon each went 3-for-4, as well. Gabby Sprang got the start on the mound and struck out eight East Ridge hitters. Hailey Sickler came in to get the final three outs. The Irish (1-9), the fourth seed in the section, took on top-seed Park of Cottage Grove (15-4) in the second round Wednesday, May 24.
The Rosemount boys made the most of their last chance to compete before the South Suburban Conference meet. The Irish placed 1-2-3-4-5 in the 300 hurdles and won six other individual events while racking up 144.5 points May 18 at the Ron Thelen Classic at Tiger Stadium in Farmington. In addition to giving athletes a chance to make the lineup for the conference meet, which was held Tuesday, May 23 at Lakeville South, the second-year meet also provides athletes with an opportunity to try something new.
The Rosemount girls track team hung right with the other top teams in the state in its first appearance at the True Team state meet in 30 years. The Irish scored 654 points in the meet at Stillwater High School Friday night to place sixth behind state champion Minnetonka, Wayzata, South Suburban Conference rival Lakeville South, Mounds View and Alexandria. They finished 44 points off the pace of Alexandria in the battle for fifth, but over 60 points ahead of seventh-place White Bear Lake.
The Rosemount boys tennis team closed out the regular season by winning two out of three matches last week, improving its record to 6-9 heading into this week's section tournament.
Rosemount physical education teacher Tracy Cassano received Dakota County's Emergency Medical Services Lifesaver of the Year award at a ceremony May 11 at Brackett’s Crossing in Lakeville. Cassano was nominated by fellow Rosemount teacher Chris Orr, whom she helped resuscitate after he suffered a heart attack during class in Irish Gym on March 3.
A day after learning it had won the South Suburban Conference Relays for the first time ever, the Rosemount girls track team ran away with its first True Team section title since 1987. The Irish won six individual events and totaled six events where they placed three athletes in the top 10. That depth helped them amass 967.5 points, over 100 more than runner-up Prior Lake in the eight-team field May 9 at Prior Lake High School.