Jeff Kolpack covers North Dakota State athletics, the Fargo Marathon and golf for The Forum. His blog can be accessed at www.bisonmedia.areavoices.com. On the radio, Kolpack & Izzo sports talk show runs from 9-11 a.m. every Saturday morning. April through August, the WDAY Golf Show with Jeff Kolpack runs from 8-9 a.m.
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FARGO — For almost 20 miles, David Tuwei and Bernard Too were almost like buddies running around the streets and bike paths of Fargo-Moorhead. It was a different story the last six. Saturday, Tuwei broke away to win his second men's Scheels Fargo Marathon in three years finishing with a time of 2 hours, 28 minutes, 4 seconds. The breakup came fast, just as the runners were approaching Nativity Church on Fargo's southside. In a matter of a couple blocks, the gap went from nothing to about 20 seconds.
FARGO — Two Scheels Fargo Marathons. Two convincing and dominating performances by the hometown kid. Fargo South High School graduate Semehar Tesfaye, now living and training in Boston, went wire-to-wire in taking the women's division Saturday with a time of 2 hours, 38 minutes, 9 seconds. She labored at the end, but still finished 38 seconds ahead of second place Shawnta Everett of New Town, N.D. It hasn't been the healthiest of recent months for Tesfaye, whose last race—a half-marathon three weeks ago—didn't go so well.
FARGO --- There's a lot of Boston in David McGillivray, from his accent when speaking in front of a room full of people at the Fargodome, to the several references of Fenway Park and the professional sports franchises in that city. And why not? He's the director of the Boston Marathon who has had quite the running career himself. He once ran across the United States in 80 days, a route that took him from Medford, Ore., to Medford, Mass. He's Boston strong.
FARGO—It's debatable whether an elephant could fit through the big double doors at Bentson Bunker Fieldhouse on the North Dakota State campus, but figuratively speaking it has left the room. That cloud that surrounded the head volleyball coach's contract not being renewed after this upcoming season? That left the building, also.
FARGO — Rolf Slen was a navigator on a B24 bomber in World War II that flew 40 missions over the Pacific Ocean, with targets in the Philippines, China and Japan. The last mission came a few days before Japan surrendered. So when it comes to the Fargo Marathon 5K Hero Run/Walk on Friday night, May 19, that starts at the Fargodome, Rolf is certainly as qualified as anybody.
FARGO—The Scheels Fargo Marathon has gone through some changes in its 13 years of existence, mostly in the form of route changes and an increasing number of participants. The timing company that has kept track of all the runners and walkers has also seen some adjustments over the years. ChampionChip Minnesota Inc. has something new in store for this year: a smaller timing chip to attach to each runner. "It's a real thin strip of foam," said ChampionChip owner John Magnuson, one of those behind-the-scenes guys at the Fargo Marathon.
FARGO—The high school softball statistics of North Dakota State sophomore Vanessa Anderson look like something out of a video game. She hit .607 her senior year and left Byron High School in the southeastern corner of Minnesota with seven state prep records. She had all of nine at bats as a freshman at NDSU. It was a striking change of pace for a player who was used to dominating opponents. She was also a different type of recruit for NDSU, which routinely attracts players from across the country who have played in high-level summer programs.
FARGO—A running club out of Coon Rapids, Minn., that annually brings a handful of native Kenyan competitors to the Scheels Fargo Marathon, is struggling with overseas travel issues this year. The result will be a slimmed-down representation at this weekend's 13th annual Fargo event. Bill Kosgei, founder of the Duma Runners Club, said he does not know why at least four Kenyans were denied entry into the United States. "They never say why. It's hard to tell," he said. "I know it's something we've not experienced before, but now it's becoming an issue."
FARGO—At this rate, North Dakota State may have to consider expanding its indoor track and field facility. They're running out of room to hang all the banners. The Bison women continued their onslaught on the Summit League winning the outdoor title for the 10th consecutive season Saturday, May 13 at Ellig Sports Complex. NDSU has won all 20 indoor and outdoor titles since joining the conference, a dynasty that is as dominant as it gets in any sport.
FARGO—It was a warm day at the men's Summit League Outdoor Track & Field Championships Saturday afternoon, May 13. The heat was applied by North Dakota State. The Bison capitalized on a dominant performance by their throwers with enough firepower on the track to take their eighth straight conference championship. "I think being at home helps," said head coach Don Larson. "The senior leadership was key for us this year and the way they were mentors to the underclassmen."