Chris Murphy is a sports reporter for the Forum. He's covered high school and college sports in Chicago, North Dakota and Minnesota since 2009 and, for some reason, has been given awards for doing so.
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FARGO — Bismarck Legion coach Mike Skytland doesn’t believe in baseball upsets even if it is against a team that has lost four times in 55 games. “I would say baseball is one of those games where you never know what an upset is,” Skytland said. “If you make plays you usually have a chance to beat any team and if you don’t they can beat you. (Omaha Westside) is a very good team, but we thought if we played our game we’d have a shot and we did.” If any team had Thursday’s performance from Bismarck pitcher Dalton Feeney they would win.
There’s not a trace of racing in his blood, but that has not stopped Cody Erickson. “My dad doesn’t know a thing about racing,” Erickson said. “I picked it up over the last 10 years. When you’re interested in something, you try that much harder and try to learn and pick stuff up that much quicker.” Now, Erickson finds his name next to the name NASCAR and in the national spotlight.
FARGO – It’s only July, but the Fargodome was kind of partying like it was a Saturday in September at the 41st annual North Dakota Shrine Bowl on Sunday. Among the best high school senior football players from North Dakota and parts of Minnesota were six future North Dakota State Bison getting accustomed to their future home. The last time future Bison defensive end Stanley Jones was on the Fargodome turf, his Bismarck squad was watching Fargo South celebrate a state title with a 42-34 win.
FARGO — Austin Arneson was tired of hearing his younger brother, Casey, gloating about having the biggest check on the wall of his father’s garage at Dell Arneson Inc. Last season, Casey took home two $10,000 payouts in B-modified races. The 22-year-old Fargo Oak Grove High School graduate didn’t mince words about the year of mocking from his 19-year-old brother. “I was tired of him giving me crap that I didn’t have a check on the wall,” Austin said.
MOORHEAD — Minnesota Wild left winger Matt Cooke has reportedly dissected his past hits in order to be physical within the NHL rules and rid himself of the goon persona since before the 2011-12 season. It’s not as easy as it looks. The first wide-eyed young boy to walk up to Cooke outside the Moorhead Youth Hockey Arena on Tuesday for an autograph at the Minnesota Wild Road Tour said, “So what did you think about your suspension in the playoffs?” The suspension the boy was talking about was the seven-game suspension Cooke received for a knee-on-knee check to Avalanche defenseman Tyson Barri
Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Gaylord Perry sat in a golf cart on the No. 9 hole at Rose Creek Golf Club and made comments on incoming shots in a southern drawl that would have made Foghorn Leghorn jealous. Perry putted and chatted with incoming golfers and signed autographs. As to why Perry was willing to spend his day putting with strangers at the 31st annual Roger Maris Celebrity Benefit Golf Tournament. He had a simple answer. “Maris was a very quiet guy, family man, high-class guy,” Perry said.
Between 2001 and 2011, the Roger Maris Celebrity Benefit Golf Tournament did not have to dip into its assets in order to donate money to Fargo Shanley High School, the hospice of the Red River Valley and the Roger Maris Cancer Center as much as it did in 2012. According to tax forms, the organization gave a total of $110,000 away in 2012 despite revenue of $107,697 and expenses of $113,804.
FARGO — The death of a 19-year-old Fargo South High School student pulled unconscious from a school pool during a swimming class this year was accidental, police said Friday. “It’s a tragic accident that resulted in the death of a young person, but there’s no criminal attachment to it,” said Lt. Joel Vettel of the Fargo Police Department. “We could find no charges that could be appropriate in this case.” Frederic Ndereimana died 18 days after he was found unconscious in the deep end of the pool Feb.
FARGO – Three former North Dakota State Bison football players signed undrafted free agent deals with NFL teams on Saturday. Ex-Bison quarterback Brock Jensen signed with the Miami Dolphins, while defensive backs Marcus Williams and Bryan Shepherd inked deals with the Houston Texans and Washington Redskins, respectively. Williams said the last few days have been long, but not getting drafted won’t slow him down. It just adds a chip on his shoulder the all-time leader in interceptions in NDSU history will take with him to Houston. “It just adds fuel to the fire,” Williams said.
FARGO — Shiloh Christian guards Gabby Wilkinson and Jaye Two Bears have played together since fifth grade. Nothing represented that bond better than the no-look bullet pass from Two Bears to Wilkinson in the final minutes of the Skyhawks’ 52-43 win over Beach in the Class B state girls basketball semifinals on Friday at the Fargodome. “Me and Gabby know each other very well,” said Two Bears, who finished with 15 points and eight rebounds against Beach. “We have that connection, and we just feed each other. It’s a bond we have.