Spending time at state girls’ basketball in the cities never gets old for me. Once again the Minneota Vikings girls qualified for the state tournament and I am lucky enough to be able to broadcast their games on KLQP. What I like the most about being at state is visiting with people I see every year at Williams Arena.
Thursday it was raining as I walked from my car to Williams Arena. The information I received earlier in the week from the Minnesota High School League was that the doors were going to open at 9:30. So I met Josh Goblish from Marshall radio and Chase Christensen from Christensen Broadcasting outside Williams Arena at 9:30 and found that the doors were not open for media. A few Mt Iron Buhl radio guys told us that they were told the doors weren’t going to open until 10am, which made us upset. Tipoff is at 11am and it takes a while for us to set up our equipment and get on the air and some of us have a half hour pregame show. Time was going to be tight! However, a MSHSL official listened to our pleas and let us in early. We found our spot at Maturi Pavillion and got on the air in time for the quarter final game between Minneota and Mt Iron Buhl.
Before the game started my friend, John Millea stopped by to visit with me. I always look forward to visiting with John at state. He is a fantastic writer and covers high school sports state wide. He is employed by the league and writes Johns Journals. He also does a podcast and is on WCCO radio often. I see John once in a while during the year at high school events, but mostly at state. John is a real down to earth guy and I could visit with him all day. I was surprised when John told me Thursday that he enjoys reading my Raymo Ramblings blog each week. I was kind of embarrassed and thanked him for taking the time to read my blog. I also wanted him to know that I am not a professional writer like him. He then shocked me when he told me that I was a good writer. Best compliment I think I have ever gotten.
I mentioned this during my broadcast of the Minneota and Mt Iron Buhl game. Each time Minneota’s Faith Myhre shot the basketball I remembered what she told me after the section championship game in Marshall during the post-game show. Faith is a good three-point shooter and sometimes the shots go in and sometimes they don’t. Faith told me that her grandfather had recently passed away and that she had a very close relationship with him and he was one of her biggest supporters. Her grandfather said to her when the first couple of shots miss, just keep shooting Faith. Just keep shooting! So when Faith’s first shot missed, I remembered what she told me and I said on the air just keep shooting and the shots will fall and they did. Her grandfather would be so proud.
Williams Arena is a special place and I like being there. Lots of history in that building. The teams are awful lucky to be able to play on that floor. I just enjoy walking around the place. It’s an old building that has character and is well kept up. I bought a Mac and Cheese bowl for $12. I don’t think they served that back in the 40’s and 50’s. But it’s the people that I get to meet and visit with at the Barn that makes it special.