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Howie's Wednesday Prep Sports Notebook

Duluth Denfeld's young, ultra-talented girls basketball team defeated host Silver Bay 61-52 on Tuesday night, improving to 1-1 overall. Hunters practice photo, 2023-24 preseason. Howie /

Updated Top-5 Team Rankings

Boys Basketball

1. Cherry

2. Duluth Denfeld

3. Esko

4. Hermantown

5. Cloquet

Girls Basketball

1. Cloquet (3-0). Hosts Grand Rapids Saturday.

  1. Grand Rapids (4-1). At Cloquet Saturday.
  2. Esko (2-2).

4. Duluth East

5. Hermantown

Boys Hockey

1. Hermantown

2. Cloquet

3. Duluth East

4. Superior

5. Grand Rapids


Boys Basketball

Duluth Denfeld 83, Hermantown 77 – Junior point guard Marnaries Ferguson scored a game-high 33 points for the visiting Hunters (2-1) to open a home-and-home series between Section 7AAA kingpins. The Hawks slipped to 0-3.

Esko 73, Rock Ridge 55 – Senior guard Koi Perich had 24 points for the Eskomos.

North Branch 73, Cloquet 69 – Junior guard Jack Battaglia had a game-high 22 points for the host Lumberjacks.

Two Harbors 75, McGregor 62Cash Williams (21 points), Isaiah Hietala (20) and Jace Gomez (19) combined for 60 points for the host Agates.

Girls Basketball

Duluth Denfeld 61, Silver Bay 52 – Maurissa Hendricks had 18 points and Victoria Nylund 17 for the visiting Hunters.

Cloquet 56, Duluth East 28Ava Carlson had a game-high 19 points and Carly Johnson chipped in 12 for the host Lumberjacks.

Boys Hockey

Hibbing-Chisholm 6, Duluth Denfeld 2 – Linemates John Scott and Valtteri Luhtalampi scored goals for the powerful Class 2A Hunters.

Duluth East 5, Forest Lake 3 – Kyle Peterson scored twice and Thomas Gunderson added a goal and two assists for the host Greyhounds. Goaltender Drew Raukar stopped 28 of 31 shots for Duluth East.

On Campus: Free machinist tools at Lake Superior College

Lake Superior College CNC (computerized numerical control) Machine Tool students will benefit from a combined investment of $13,500 from the Gene Haas Foundation from California and Moline Machinery in Duluth. The grant dollars will purchase eight toolboxes full of tools needed by students for their hands-on program at LSC.

Representatives of the Gene Haas Foundation at Productivity, Inc. in Plymouth, Minn. will visit LSC’s Downtown Center on Thursday at 10 a.m. to see the newly purchased tools. Selected students will be assigned a toolbox at the beginning of their 2-year program and when they complete their studies, the toolbox will be gifted to them. The volunteers in the program advisory committee will review applications from students and make selections.

“We’re grateful for the commitment the Gene Haas Foundation makes to manufacturing students nationwide including our CNC Machine students at LSC,” said Nathan Zobel, Machine Tool program instructor at Lake Superior College. “Moline Machinery also has been a longstanding local supporter of our program both with dollars and knowledge-sharing.”

In addition to tuition and fees required to enroll in the program, students purchase their own set of tools that will be part of their collection they take to their job after graduation. Tools can be $1,400 or more. Purchasing tools is sometimes a barrier for students in need. Each toolbox will include 27 items used throughout at various stages of the program. Industry partners like Haas and Moline make it possible for more students to start their journey as machinists.