Minnesota State University

...now browsing by tag

 
 

Santa Dan Delivers Early Christmas Present For Ball Cap Bob

Sunday, December 9th, 2018

DAN NESSLER sent me eight fastpitch softball and baseball caps, including front row, left to right, a Mankato Bethany Lutheran College Lancers softball cap, a Happy Chef cap, WBSC Jr. Men’s Softball World Championship cap, along with my Farm Tavern cap. The second row includes Dan’s gifts of which the MSU cap is from the 2012 Mavericks baseball team that finished third in the NCAA Div. II baseball national championships. On the top row is another BLC cap sandwiched by my 1995 ISC World Tournament cap, left, and 2017 NAFA World Series cap.

YUCAIPA, Calif. – I’m a sucker for caps. Doesn’t matter if it’s softball, baseball, football – any kind of stylish ball cap will hook me into reaching for my wallet.

In the back window of my car, there’s perched a Chicago Bears’ cap. I’m not a Bears fan, so why’s it there? I just like the way the “C” is prominently displayed on the crown. And if I forget one of my caps when I leave the house, “Da Bears” is my backup.

I’ve also got NASCAR hats, my son’s Tyree Oil cap, my grandson Cam’s Spirit Aerosystems cap, Case, Farmall and John Deere hats, three Marine Corps caps…

And a bunch of softball caps – 33 in all, and of course, only of the fastpitch variety.

Click to continue reading “Santa Dan Delivers Early Christmas Present For Ball Cap Bob”

Minnesota State softball team advances to nationals

Monday, May 22nd, 2017

The Mankato Free Press
May 21, 2017

SEARCY, ARK. — It took two days to conclude the game, but the wait was well worth it for the Minnesota State softball team.

The Minnesota State University Mankato Mavericks on Sunday afternoon scored four runs in the final two innings and defeated Harding 7-6 to win the NCAA Division II Central Super Regional and claim a berth into the national championship tournament May 25-29 in Salem, VA.

The Mavericks (59-7) and ranked No. 6 in the coaches’ poll, open play against No. 9 Southern Indiana (46-12) Thursday at 4 p.m. (ET).

“It took every ounce of energy and every ounce of fight to come through and get this game,” coach Lori Meyer said. “What can I say about this team? They’ve just been phenomenal. They’ve been fighters all year.”

Continue reading in the Mankato Free Press

Memories of 1970s Mankato State Men’s Intramural Fastpitch League

Tuesday, July 12th, 2016

1998-StPaulHofF.1lr

1998 St. Paul Oldtimers Fastpitch Hall of Fame Inductees
Front row, from left, Gene Berglund, Jerry O’Connor Jr., George “Buzz” Connor, Jack Clemens, Kathleen Gallagher Schmidt. Back row, from left, Russell Hansen, Norm Thurmer, Whitey Schaffer, Randy Walker, Dan Gallagher and Pat Gallagher.

MANKATO, Minn. – In the fall of 1972, I enrolled at Mankato State University in Mankato, Minnesota (since changed to Minnesota State University).

I didn’t know at the time, but I was about to meet and compete against some of the best young fastpitch pitching talent in the state and upper midwest.

Starting their college educational journey with me at the time were Craig Brown, Bob Chicos, Dave Cummings and Randy Walker. We were all in our early 20s and very passionate about our chosen sport.

Click to continue reading “Memories of 1970s Mankato State Men’s Intramural Fastpitch League”

Long Lost Fastpitch Friends Reunite

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

otto.bob.9web

YUCAIPA, Calif. – Reuniting with old friends is such a wonderful feeling. 1995 marks the last time I had seen or heard from Craig Brown. And shortly after the 2000 ISC World Tournament in St. Joseph, MO, Merle Brendeland fell off my radar as well.

But thankfully we three have revived our friendship through a phone call from Craig, and my email to Merle a few years a go.

I found out that a lot had changed in their lives. Not all pleasant. Both had divorced. Both had lost extremely successful careers when the economy tanked, and so on.

But both have bounced back in fine fashion, which hales the toughness of their backbone.

Craig, now remarried, is semi-retired and living in Florida, and Merle is back to his roots, farming in Iowa.

As for fastpitch, Craig is one of the best pitchers in Minnesota history, and maybe the state’s best lefthander all-time. And Merle – like myself – was of average ability, but loves the game like I do.

More importantly, both men are my two best friends.

Click to continue reading “Long Lost Fastpitch Friends Reunite”

Fastpitch connections lead to three good careers

Tuesday, July 16th, 2013

otto.bob.9webThrough two chance meetings threaded to fastpitch softball, Bob Otto has enjoyed three careers in insurance, newspaper and freelance reporting, and photography.

YUCAIPA, CA – While out covering ball games I sometimes run into former insurance clients who ask, “How did you ever get into newspaper work?”

The better question would be, “how did someone like you ever get into the insurance business?”

It all started when I walked into the field house at Minnesota State University (then Mankato State) in 1973. In the far corner I spotted a left-hander windmilling a softball.

In the dead of winter – December – with the season five months away.

So I stopped to watch. I could tell he was pretty good. “Whap! The ball exploded into the catcher’s glove.

“Who do you pitch for?” I asked.

Click to continue reading “Fastpitch connections lead to three good careers”

Southern Californians don’t know cold

Thursday, January 17th, 2013

manurespreader

YUCAIPA, CALIF – It’s 34 degrees this morning and Southern Californian’s – accustomed to sunshine and warmth – are bitching about the cold. Many of my fellow Yucaipans are bundled up in stocking caps and scarves, mittens and long underwear.

“Brrrr, it’s freezing!” they exclaim. Little do they know real cold – much less FREEZING temps where the thermometer plunges well below zero. I’m a farm-raised Minnesotan. I can tell you about unbearable winter weather, and so I will.

Click to continue reading “Southern Californians don’t know cold”