John's Journal
A Day In The Life Of A Guy With A Notebook …11/8/2012
A timeline of my day Thursday, split between the state volleyball tournament quarterfinals at Xcel Energy Center and state football quarterfinals at the Metrodome ….

7:25 a.m.: Walking the dog. Hurry up buddy, I got stuff to do today.

7:40: Breakfast arrives, delivered through a small window and into my car.

8:05: Traffic at a near-standstill on Interstate 35E heading into downtown St. Paul. Didn’t panic. Bottleneck loosened up.

8:49: Inside Xcel Energy Center, pulled the state tournament program out of my bag. Began leafing through it, not realizing at first that it was the state football tournament program.

9:03: A mouse scooted under my courtside table at volleyball. My computer mouse. It’s wireless. I dropped it.

9:02: Answering emails as the first volleyball matches begin.

9:04: The first Facebook comment on a photo I’ve just posted says this: “Let’s go North!” It was posted by the Lakeville South High School Deans. Nice.

9:17: A match is interrupted briefly while a slow, aging journalist tries to fish out the volleyball that has rolled under his table. Sorry, everybody. That’s as fast as I go.

9:32: Earplugs. Do I have earplugs in my bag? These bands are REALLY LOUD.

9:48: Post my first incorrect Twitter score update of the day.

10:07: The first of 33 matches over three days ends as Lakeville North defeats Anoka in the Class 3A quarterfinals.

10:41: “Heads up! Heads up!” A Blaine player warns me during warmups that an inflated projectile is coming my way. The ball bangs off the table in front of me, narrowly missing my laptop.

11:35: Shakopee coach Matt Busch, talking about how the noise level from the fans affected his players during the Sabers’ 3-2 victory over Roseville in 3A: “They could barely hear each other, even when they were yelling.”

12:17: Taylor Swift’s “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” can be heard inside the Bethlehem Academy locker room as the Cardinals prepare for the1A quarterfinals.

12:25: I hear a female voice holler at me, “Hey sweet cheeks! How are you?!” Sadly, it is not Mrs. John’s Journal.

1:55: The “what to drink” debate cranks up in my head. So far I’ve had two bottles of water. I knuckle under and have a Diet Coke on the rocks. And a donut ... no ice.

2:10: The Bethlehem Academy cheerleaders pose for a photo in front of the door to the Minnesota Wild’s locker room, a door that hasn’t seen much use lately.

2:15: Bethlehem Academy coach Franz Boelter says “I don’t think we played great, but we played OK” in a 3-0 victory over Martin County West.

2:20: As the North Woods volleyball players wait to go onto the court, they are performing a series of very loud, very choreographed cheers/chants/dances. As I make my way down the corridor, one of the Grizzlies tells her teammates, ‘Wait.” I walk past their smiling, silent faces … and then the fun resumes.

3:45: Pack up my gear, leave the Xcel Center and head for the Metrodome, nine miles away.

3:55: Pass a school bus from Nevis on Interstate 94.

4:05: Arrive at the Metrodome to the sounds of the Edina band limbering up in the parking lot.

4:12: I’m greeted in the press box with these words: “You’re looking good for an older gentleman.” Thanks.I think.

4:31: On the field at the Metrodome, I am congratulated on the fact that the MSHSL Facebook page has the second-most fans in the nation among high school governing bodies.

4:58: As I was purchasing a Diet Mountain Dew from a vending machine in the loading dock, a fellow snapped a photo of me. Sorry, Diet Coke (which isn’t available in the Metrodome).

5:02: Kickoff between Edina and Rosemount in the Class 6A state quarterfinals.

5:15: I hear the magic words, “You want sauerkraut with that?” Why yes I do want sauerkraut on this bratwurst from the concession stand.” Thank you very kindly.

5:43: I'm trying to keep my sports straight while watching football in front of me and tuning into the Prep45 webcast of the volleyball tournament on my computer.

6:00: The Edina dance team performs an excellent halftime show. I say to the guy sitting next to me in the press box, “Man, that was a fine brat!”

6:40: I post an incorrect score on Twitter from the first football game, writing that Edina and Rosemount are tied 10-10 late in the third quarter. The actual score is Rosemount 14, Edina 10. My next Tweet says this: “Third quarter has ended and the score is Rosemount XIV, Edina X.”

6:56: In the Edina student section, a large cardboard Barack Obama is held high in the air.

7:19: Unseeded Rosemount beats top-seeded Edina 14-10 in the 6A football quarterfinals.

7:28: Rosemount coach Jeff Erdmann tells his exuberant players: “Nobody knows who we are! Nobody (in the media) talked to us! The only people who believed in us are right here and up in the frickin’ stands!”

7:57: The football game between Prior Lake and Lakeville North begins … three minutes ahead of schedule.

8:20: Twelve hours into my workday, and I’m back to the concession stand for a “Quarterback Dog.” Let’s see what happens…

9:13: Lakeville North and Prior Lake are tied 3-3 early in the second half. So far, so good on that Quarterback Dog.

9:20: Learn on Twitter that the Class 2A football playoff game between BOLD and Holdingford at St. Cloud State is going into a second overtime.

9:31: Final score from St. Cloud: BOLD beats Holdingford 23-20 in double OT.

9:58: Feeling sleeeeepy. Another Diet Pepsi? Naw, then I’d never sleep tonight. Gotta be back at volleyball in the morning.

10:07: Final score is Lakeville North 22, Prior Lake 3.

10:22: Pack up and exit the Metrodome. Gotta get home and walk the dog.

*Schools/teams John has visited: 313
*Miles John has driven: 3,947
(*During the 2012-13 school year)

--Join the MSHSL on Facebook by clicking on the Facebook button on the right side of John Millea is on Twitter @MSHSLjohn
Class 6A Football: Rosemount Shocks Edina, Lakeville North Beats Prior Lake11/8/2012
In the first game of the 2012 state football tournament, the result was a big surprise. Rosemount, which went 4-4 in the regular season and was unseeded in the tournament, knocked off top-seeded Edina 14-10 at the Metrodome. In the second game, Lakeville North beat Prior Lake 22-3. You can read Luke Sleeper's story by clicking here
We’re Ready For A Big, Busy Stretch Of Fall Championships11/7/2012
Here we go, starting a big week of state tournaments and looking ahead to the culmination of fall sports for 2012. The soccer, cross-country and girls tennis seasons have come to an end, and volleyball, football, girls swimming and diving and adapted soccer are in the postseason.

Here’s what we are looking forward to…

--The state volleyball tournament will take place at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, with play in all three classes beginning Thursday. Quarterfinals will be contested that day, with semifinals (and consolation rounds) on Friday and championship, third-place and fifth-place matches on Saturday.

--The state football quarterfinals will be held Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 16 sites around the state. The busiest single site will be St. Cloud State’s Husky Stadium with one game Thursday, two on Friday and three on Saturday. All four Class 6A quarterfinals will be played at the Metrodome, with two games Thursday and two on Friday.

--Girls swimming and diving will complete section tournaments this week in preparation for the state championships Nov. 15-17 at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center.

--And adapted soccer teams are gearing up for the state tournament, as well. That tourney will take place at Stillwater High School on Nov. 16-17.

Before you know it, winter sports will be in full swing. Practice is already underway for girls hockey and dance team, and Monday, Nov. 12, is the first day of practice for boys hockey, girls basketball, gymnastics and alpine and Nordic skiing.

And away we go!

*Schools/teams John has visited: 289
*Miles John has driven: 3,907
(*During the 2012-13 school year)

--Join the MSHSL on Facebook by clicking on the Facebook button on the right side of John Millea is on Twitter @MSHSLjohn
Another Honor For Shakopee's Maria Hauger11/6/2012
Maria Hauger, the Shakopee cross-country star who became only the second four-time state champion in Minnesota history on Saturday, has received another honor. She has been named the Old Dutch High School Athlete of the Week.

The senior runner capped a record-setting high school cross-country career in dominating fashion Saturday at St. Olaf College in Northfield. Hauger won her fourth consecutive Class 2A state championship, joining legendary Dawson-Boyd runner Carrie Tollefson as the only Minnesota athletes to win four titles. Hauger also set an all-time course record of 13 minutes, 42 seconds in winning with a 15-second margin over the rest of the field.

Hauger finished ninth at the state meet as an eighth-grader before beginning her four-year championship reign. She has narrowed her list of college choices to five, and the University of Minnesota is among the five.

Congratulation to Maria as the first two-time winner of the Old Dutch High School Athlete of the Week Award as she also won on Oct. 2 after winning the prestigious Roy Griak Invitational cross-country meet in course-record time.
Volleyball’s Best, With A State Berth On The Line11/5/2012
When the top two teams in the Class 3A volleyball rankings squared off to determine which one would go to the state tournament, the atmosphere matched the action. Read Brian Jerzak's story by clicking here