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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FARGO -- The yearly drive to Willmar, Minn., for a cross country meet is not something Fargo North sophomore runner Josh Beck has ever done on the bus with the team. He drives separately with his parents because he needs a pillow to bury his face into when signs for Exit 55 or Exit 67 appear heading west on Interstate 94. There are five signs along the way that can send Beck into what his mother refers to as a meltdown. Beck readies his iPod to blast the band Imagine Dragons into his ears as the signs approach.
FARGO — Bismarck senior forward Jordyn Kisse was originally used as more of a defensive forward and on the penalty kill when she first started with the Blizzard. On Friday, Feb. 22, her offense sent the Blizzard to the championship game of the North Dakota state girls hockey tournament. The defending champs had their backs against the wall, as Fargo Davies tied Bismarck late in Friday's semifinal at Scheels Arena.
FARGO — The champions remain to defend its crown, as Bismarck topped Minot 1-0 in the North Dakota girls hockey quarterfinals Thursday, Feb. 21, at Farmers Union Insurance Center at Scheels Arena. The Blizzard will play in the semifinals at Scheels Arena. Bismarck has won the last four state titles and five of the last six. The Blizzard don't plan on giving up their run without a fight. "There's a lot of pressure because every team wants to beat us as bad as they want," Bismarck senior forward Kenley Anderson said. "We have to keep calm and take one day at a time."
MOORHEAD, Minn. -- Chris Ellingson has been a high school basketball referee for 15 years and a baseball and softball umpire for 12 years in Minnesota . He’ll never forget coming out of the dressing room, after waving off a basket at the buzzer, to three people holding a video camera yelling at him about the call. He remembers every detail from the experience, but he keeps the school, the teams and the names of the people out of the story.
CASSELTON, N.D. — Central Cass senior Jonah Lietz always wanted to be a wide receiver. But since he was one of the smartest kids in his class, he was put into the quarterback position in fourth grade. He loves to study plays and look at the details. His memory of each play in a football game is almost picture perfect.
MINNEAPOLIS — Kale Griffeth's wish for his seventh birthday was to go to a Minnesota Vikings game with his mom and dad at U.S. Bank Stadium. That was supposed to happen Sunday, as West Fargo graduates Katy, 34, and Randall Griffeth, 35, paid more than $900 for flights from their Hawaii home and about $250 each for a ticket to Minnesota's home opener against the San Francisco 49ers.
FARGO — Fargo Davies hockey standout Cade Stibbe has a list of goals on his door of his bedroom. When the forward was about 8 years old, one goal was to shoot 10,000 pucks in the offseason. It moved to 15,000 as he got older. Currently, it's broken up into different kind of shots. He also has how many hours he wants to spend in the weight room and on the ice. The goal at the bottom is Division I hockey. And it's circled. That goal will remain circled at the bottom of his door despite the fact he committed to play hockey for Arizona State on Thursday.
FARGO — Artificial turf has become almost a fictitious character thought to have the answers to all of life's problems for athletic directors. It symbolizes a hope for less injuries to athletes and a safe haven from Mother Nature. But is it the answer? "We couldn't be happier with our decision to add turf to our stadium," Moorhead athletic director Dean Haugo said. "It has been a complete game changer for our activities." The usage and upkeep
MOORHEAD, Minn.—Matt Cullen laughed when the question was asked of him Sunday, July 1. It's something the former Moorhead High School standout and three-time Stanley Cup champion hasn't had the answer to since he began playing hockey in his living room at the age of 2 in Virginia, Minn. What's it going to take for you to stop playing?
FARGO—North Dakota State senior quarterback Easton Stick doesn't remember if the area code on the phone call in April was Mississippi or Louisiana. He was about to go to sleep and he likes to get to bed early, so he let the call go to voicemail. He woke up the next morning to a message from former NFL quarterback Archie Manning. After listening to the voicemail, he walked across the hall to show his roommate and NDSU wide receiver Darrius Shepherd. "Shep, you gotta listen to this," Stick said that morning. "I don't know if I'm hearing this right."