Winter Sports Coming to an End

The weather is finally starting to warm up which brings change to school sports. Many sports seasons are finishing allowing spring sports to kick off. Dance, wrestling, boys and girls hockey, alpine skiing, boys swim and dive, gymnastics, and finally boys and girls basketball have already or are coming down to the end.

This year, the dance team made it to state with their jazz and kick teams. This year Orono Dance Team history was made and the jazz team came in at 3rd place at state whereas the kick team came in at 7th. The jazz team competed on March 12 and the kick team competed the next day.

“I am going to miss it so incredibly much but knowing I left it all out on the floor my very last time dancing was so rewarding. I can’t imagine not stepping out on the floor again and feeling that rush, ” senior Grace Garthwait said.

The wrestling season is winding down and individual sections are this week and then any state participants will compete on March 26th. This year there have been some changes on how individual sections and state works. Usually, there is a 16 man bracket for state but this year the number of kids who will attend have been cut in half so there will only be an 8 man bracket.

Both boys and girls basketball have both finished their regular season. The girls’ basketball team ended with second place in the Wright County East Conference. The boys had senior night one game before their last against Jordan, 8 seniors on the team and 3 senior managers were celebrated.

“I think this season was interesting with the limited capacity and masks, it was not ideal but it was still very fun and a great way to end my Orono career,” senior basketball player Michael Wojciechowski said.

Girls hockey begins their sections this week on March 16th with a game against Pine City Area at home. The following week is when state is. The boys’ team will begin their sections on March 18th against Southwest Christian at the Richfield Arena.

“We’ve had our backs against the wall all year and I think we’ll thrive as the underdog. It’ll be a matter of controlling our nerves how much we want it,” senior hockey player Patrick Grady said.

The alpine ski team went to state with Harrison Anderson qualifying as an individual competitor and the girls’ team. The girls’ team finished second place at state on March 10th with Kyler Burrows in 4th place. Harrison Anderson finished 48th in the boys’ individual race.

The gymnastics team is going to sections with senior Brigette Albertson leading the way and being joined by Libby Engebretson and Ania Fernandez.

And finally, boys swim and dive completed their sections on March 13th with Henry Luetmer, Vasili Nicklow, John Fort, Josh Pusch and Nick Fogle all qualified for the state meet. The swim state meet is Saturday, March 20th.

“This year we have the most people going to state in several years, so I think we will do pretty well. There are two relay groups going and five people going for six different individual events. Most of the team is seeded in the top 16 for their events so I think we have the chance to do really well,” Nicklow said.