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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FERGUS FALLS, Minn. — Heidi Fisher cries when she talks about her bowling team at Moorhead, Minn. She's been the coach of the adapted bowling team for the Spuds since the program began two years ago. The tears come from thinking about people like Katie Cragg, who said she had never waved and said good luck to a bus with her son Mitchell on it until he joined the team. Katie estimates she or her husband are with Mitchell 90 percent of the time. Mitchell is a seventh-grader and has a chromosomal condition called trisomy 13. He's nonverbal and has physical impairments.
MINNEAPOLIS—Connie Petermann walked into the post-op room at University of Minnesota Masonic Children's hospital Monday to find her first-born son weeping. Wahpeton (N.D.) High School sophomore Jacob Petermann had warned his mother he wouldn't be able to look at what remained of his left leg after the amputation. For 40 minutes he wept. Connie didn't know what to do. This was his fifth surgery since a cancerous tumor was found in his left leg after he broke it during warmups in a Jan. 12 boys basketball game. He had never come out of surgery like this.
FARGO — On the first day back in the states after winning an Olympic gold medal in South Korea, Grand Forks natives Monique Lamoureux-Morando and Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson were about to go on the ice at the Staples Center. The U.S. women's hockey team was being honored before a February matchup between the Los Angeles Kings and Vegas Golden Knights.
MOORHEAD, Minn.—Former Moorhead hockey standout Will Borgen grew up dreaming of playing in the NHL. He used to tell his dad he didn't know what he would do if he couldn't play hockey. He won't have to worry about that for awhile, as he signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the Buffalo Sabres on Sunday. "Pretty cool. It's always been a dream of mine," Borgen said. "I signed this morning. It's been a lot to do. I've been on the phone all day and packing."
FARGO—For the fifth time in the past seven seasons, Bismarck Century's girls basketball team is headed to the North Dakota Class A championship game. The Patriots topped Bismarck St. Mary's 55-48 Friday, March 9, in the semifinals at North Dakota State's Scheels Center for a spot in the title game at 6 p.m. Saturday. Century has lost in its last two appearances in the championship game. Junior guard and University of North Dakota commit Lilly Keplin has been part of both of those teams.
FARGO—With less than a minute to go in overtime, the ball was in the hands of West Fargo senior Joe Pistorius. The Class A quarterfinal matchup at North Dakota State's Scheels Center was tied. Earlier in the day Pistorius was named North Dakota's Gatorade Player of the Year. And in the final minutes of regulation his technical foul began a Jamestown comeback that had West Fargo eyeing defeat.
FARGO—Fargo Shanley had no answer for Mandan's big men in Thursday's North Dakota Class A boys basketball quarterfinal matchup at North Dakota State's Scheels Center. Behind 6-foot-6 Camren Steckler, his 6-4 twin brother, Trae Steckler, and 6-6 Elijah Klein, Mandan topped Shanley 68-53. Mandan coach Brandon Schafer had a puzzled look on his face when asked what game plan he would come up with if he faced the Steckler twins and Klein. He was happy he didn't have to answer that question.
FARGO—When the Fargo Force score a goal, associate head coach Pierre-Paul Lamoureux always does a fist pump. It's quiet and subtle. On a couch at his home in Fargo, Lamoureux did the same quiet fist pump when his sister, Monique Lamoureux-Morando, scored late for the U.S. women's hockey team to tie Canada in the Olympic final that ended early Thursday morning local time. He did the same when his sister and Monique's twin, Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson, did a move she calls "Oops, I did it again" in a shootout that proved to be the game-winner to capture the gold medal for the U.S.
FARGO—Lisbon senior Jordan Urbach almost didn't wrestle. When he was in eighth grade his older brother Dylan, who wrestles at North Dakota State, convinced him to try it, even though Jordan wanted to play basketball. Five years and five trips to the North Dakota Class B wrestling tournament later, Jordan was capping one of the most dominant seasons possible with a state title at 220 pounds at the Fargodome on Saturday.
FARGO—South Border co-head coach Josh Hoffman had a sly smile when he was asked a question he seemingly was waiting someone to ask. His unseeded Mustangs were behind him celebrating a North Dakota Class B dual championship on Friday, Feb. 16. Do seedings mean anything? "Obviously not," Hoffman said. "It's the state tournament. You got to show up, you got to wrestle, and that's what we did. We wrestled hard."