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Sports Columns

Tourneys, TV coverage all the rage

Tournaments for both adult and youth bowlers are coming up soon in the Upper Peninsula, but first, let me give you an update on bowling on TV.I mentioned in this space two weeks ago how the PBA will return for four Sunday afternoons starting April 17 on ESPN, then how CBS Sports picks up the ...

Are Tigers ready to rebound in 2016?

There's really no reason why the Detroit Tigers can't do well this season, perhaps even contend for the American League pennant and a World Series championship.They've got a solid starting pitching staff, a potent offense and some depth up and down the lineup.Still, some questions remain, most ...

Wildcat icers won national title 25 years ago today

Twenty-five years ago today, Northern Michigan University earned probably its greatest athletic achievement.The Wildcats hockey team went to triple overtime before defeating Boston University 8-7 in what some have called the best college hockey game ever.It's Northern's first and only hockey ...

Spring has sprung for high scores

Hopefully it hasn't been such a bad spring in flood-prone areas so I can say without offending anyone that the dam burst on the bowling lanes last week.That was especially true at Red Rock Lanes in Ishpeming, where just one 800 and I think two 300s had been bowled there all season going back to ...

Future bodes well for Jets

Thinking out loud on a seasonable Easter Sunday morning: The scary thing about North Central High School's boys basketball team for both future Upper Peninsula and downstate opponents is coach Adam Mercier is losing just three players to graduation from a 15-member roster. Class D state Player ...

It’s time for college hockey Sweet 16

Last week was full of surprises for Michigan's college sports teams.First, Michigan State got bounced in the first round of the NCAA basketball tournament by Middle Tennessee State, a school most people have probably never heard of.On paper, it appeared as if Spartans' head coach and Upper ...

Bowling on TV most of spring and all summer

If you're a fan of watching bowling on TV, I can only say one thing - I hope you like basketball, too.Once we get through the March Madness NCAA and NIT tournaments the first weekend of April, there will be about 13 days to wait for bowling to appear on TV every week through the end of ...

Tournament time always topsy-turvy

A few reflections on the Upper Peninsula high school boys and girls basketball tournaments just concluding: Westwood's playoff run in the boys' tournament has been refreshing, as well as great for the program and school.It goes to show you anything can happen come tournament time as the ...

‘Back to the Future’ for Seeke

I didn't think to ask if Marquette Senior High School math teacher Tom Seeke is a fan of the movie "Back to the Future," but one facet of his perfect bowling night last week brought up that movie's theme.Seeke, 49, rolled his fifth career 300 game in the Tuesday Mixed League at Superior Lanes ...

Megatron was one of a kind

Detroit Lions' fans have seen it before: A team superstar still in the prime of his career decides to call it quits and retires with seemingly two or more good years left.Running back Barry Sanders shocked the Lions, the team's fans and the NFL in 1999 by walking away from the game after ...

Hemmila tops high schoolers at state finals

Senior Tucker Hemmila of L'Anse had the longest run of any area singles bowler at the MHSAA Individual Finals held at four Lower Peninsula centers on Saturday.Hemmila not only made it out of a 60-boy qualifying round in 10th place, but he won a match before being eliminated in the knockout ...

Will MSU continue to surge?

Battling a severe back and spine problem the past three weeks or so enabled me to watch a lot of televised sporting events from my recliner.The Michigan State men's and women's basketball teams, the Red Wings, the Pistons - even the Tigers earlier this week - were all available for my ...

High school stars head to state finals

It's been such a good two weeks on the lanes for high school bowlers, I had to make a list of their accomplishments before I set out with today's column.Here's the highlights: All four area teams - Marquette, Ishpeming-Negaunee, Westwood and L'Anse - qualified at least one bowler for the MHSAA ...

Germany’s Filor makes impression on US lanes

He's been mentioned in this space once or twice already this season, so it isn't that surprising that Rene Filor has again made a name for himself in Marquette County bowling circles in the short time he's been here.Filor, a visiting student at Northern Michigan University coming from Germany, ...

Solka puts exclamation point on senior year

Even though his season may have three weeks left to it, Lucas Solka can still say he went out on top.The Ishpeming-Negaunee high school senior bowled nine out of 14 games over 200 as he survived a marathon Saturday to win the Upper Peninsula Bowling Conference boys singles finals at Bowl-A-Rama ...

Wildcat women showing promise

T hinking out loud on a cold February morning:Troy Mattson would no doubt have liked his Northern Michigan University women's basketball team to be better than its 12-3 overall record and 11-8 GLIAC mark this season.But the Wildcats' head coach has to be pleased with what his team has managed ...

Stephens inspires 1st-time 300 shooter

Considering the timing, it might seem like Justin Stephens took inspiration from the 300 bowled on Tuesday at Red Rock Lanes in Ishpeming.That was because Stephens turned around the next night and pulled off the same feat in a league at Superior Lanes in Marquette.But if anything, the ...

‘Prop’ bets best enjoyed with humor

There must be a cottage industry in figuring out what all of the "prop" bets are and how to make money at them for the Super Bowl.I tried a Google online search of "prop bets 'super bowl'" and got 10 pages of results - as a start.Even on that 10th page I saw a result listed as "Bet on Beyonce? ...

Stephens shoots 4th ‘3’ of season

You could forgive Justin Stephens if he's excited for the 11th annual Marquette County U.S. Bowling Congress Association tournament to begin in about two weeks.Stephens, 37, just rolled his fourth perfect 300 game of the season on Wednesday at Superior Lanes in Marquette.He opened with his ...

Should NBA change free throw rules?

There's no getting around it: Andre Drummond of the Detroit Pistons is horrible shooting free throws.In his last 13 games prior to Wednesday night's contest against the Philadelphia 76ers, the Pistons' center had made just 26.9 percent of his charity stripe attempts.In the last two games of ...