Sports | | Brainerd, Minnesota

Golf Course openings


Crosswoods Golf Course and Emily Greens are open.
Cragun’s driving range is open with its courses opening Wednesday.
Here is a list of area courses and when they hope to open. I stress hope as these dates are dependent on the weather. Please call the respective pro shops to verify the courses are indeed open.

Birch Bay, Lake Shore May 10

Black Bear Golf Complex, Pine River May 8

Breezy Point Resort
Whitebirch May 3
Traditional May 3
Deacon’s Lodge May 3

Cragun’s Legacy Courses
Dutch Legacy May 1
Bobby’s Legacy May 1
Driving Range open

Just what the Vikings look for in a quarterback...

When I saw this morning that the Chiefs had released Matt Cassel, my immediate thought was "Please don't let anyone from the Vikings learn of this", we've tasted other teams leftovers for too many years.

Unfortunately, Cassel has just the stats that seem to invigorate the Viking's "We can rehabilitate this guy and he'll be good again" attitude that has rarely proved itself.


I have always considered myself to be fairly athletic. A dedicated sports nut, whether it be watching or playing, I have embraced all that sports have had to offer for as long as I can remember.

Soccer, basketball and lacrosse were my main focuses, with bouts in fast pitch softball, volleyball, track and field and even golf; the latter of which has been my enemy since those summers in the junior golf league at Oak Glenn in sixth and seventh grade.

A lost ball and green eggs

Thursday I was forced to play nine holes of golf for a segment the Brainerd Dispatch is putting together for the Brainerd Lakes Marketplace.
Eric Peterson, director of golf at Cragun’s Legacy Courses in East Gull Lake, was kind enough to accommodate me and Dispatch reporter/Sideline View co-producer Jessi Pierce for the afternoon. Mitch at the front desk was trusting enough to believe me when I told him this unbelievable scenario and ushered us off1 to the back nine of Dutch’s where we wouldn’t offend or disturb any of the important — read paying — clientele.

My new adventure

Grand View Lodge’s Cru restaurant in Nisswa will be the setting tonight.
I’m heading there to experience the talents of chef Paul Fitzpatrick and enjoy the atmosphere created by manager Christine Ianelli.

A winning season, two years too late

Being an avid Minnesota sports fan, I'll admit I'm used to defeat. The Vikings, Gophers, Wild, Timberwolves and Twins tend to end their seasons in similar fashion year after year, never quite reaching the epitome of sports stardom with a victory dance as championship title holders and leave me hanging my head and stomping my jersey every time.

State titles

Of course they will need to get there first, but of the numerous quality wrestlers in the Brainerd lakes area, who has the best shot for gold next weekend at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul?

Last year, Pierz's Clint Poster won his second state title and Crosby-Ironton's Hayden Zillmer picked up his third straight. Both young men have graduated so who is next?

Twins Caravan causes general soreness

Attending the Twins Caravan on Wednesday caused me to come down with a case of general soreness. About 170 fans turned out to see outfielders Ben Revere and Rene Tosoni, along with TV broadcaster Dick Bremer and Twins legend Tony Oliva. I think fans might have been as disappointed with the caravan as I was. The delegation was 15-20 minutes late arriving from Bemidji. Each caravan member talked for a few minutes, then a few questions were answered, and a few prizes were given out. No autographs. No season highlight video (it probably would have been quite short for the 2011 season).

Whale of a Warrior game

If you haven't been to a Brainerd Warriors boys basketball game in a while this would be a year to head back to the gym and take a peek. At the midpoint of the season Brainerd is 8-4 overall for the first time since Jan. 16, 2007. On Tuesday the Warriors scrapped back from a 14-point first-half deficit to nip Little Falls 80-78 on two Jagar Hanson free throws with five-tenths of a second remaining. It was Brainerd's first win over the Flyers since March 5, 2010. This year's team can go 10-deep, can shoot the three, bang underneath and plays chest-to-chest defense.

Who are the players

My boys basketball season starts tonight with the Brainerd vs. Pequot Lakes game at Brainerd High School. It's an odd beginning to the season with three new coaches. It's going to be hard to get used to not seeing Lynn Peterson, Kurt Stumpf and Wade Haapajoki on their respective sidelines. I enjoyed working with all three coaches and felt the later two could have created something similar to what Peterson enjoyed for so many years in Staples.