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Spirit Lake boys dominate rival Pioneers in Milford

In a nonconference boys basketball battle between Dickinson County rivals Spirit Lake and Okoboji, the Pioneers’ northerly neighbors earned intracounty bragging rights with a 26-point victory on Thursday, Jan. 11. Spirit Lake topped Okoboji 71-45 in Milford.

Okoboji/HMS wrestlers compete at Sibley

The Okoboji/HMS boys and girls wrestling teams competed at a triangular hosted by Sibley-Ocheyedan on Thursday, Jan. 11. Both squads went 2-0 on the night.

In their 51-24 win over Sibley-Ocheyedan, the Okoboji/HMS boys won five of nine contested matches.

Spirit Lake Park girls wrestlers perform at Sibley

The Spirit Lake Park girls wrestling team competed in a pair of duals Thursday, Jan. 11 in Sibley. The Indians went 0-2 on the night — despite winning six of seven contested matches — falling to Sheldon/Sibley-Ocheyedan and intracounty rival Okoboji/HMS.

Wolves defeat Generals in Lake Park

Harris-Lake Park’s boys basketball team earned a nonconference home win over Sibley-Ocheyedan on Thursday, Jan. 11. The Wolves defeated the Generals 66-60 in Lake Park.

Sibley-Ocheyedan took a 15-10 lead after one quarter. Harris-Lake Park cut the halftime deficit to one with an 18-14 score in the second. The two squads played to a 15-15 tie in the third quarter before the Wolves stormed back to take the win with a 23-16 score in the fourth.

Spirit Lake K of C crowns youth free throw champions

Nearly 20 girls and boys ages 9-14 participated in the 2024 Knights of Columbus Free Throw Championship held Sunday, Jan. 7. Seven earned the right to compete at the district level. Iowa Great Lakes Council 5043 in Spirit Lake sponsored the local competition at the Bedell Family YMCA, drawing kids from Spirit Lake, Okoboji and Milford.

Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation secures 132 acres on east side of Big Spirit Lake

The Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation (INHF) recently completed the purchase of 132 acres on the east side of Big Spirit Lake (to the east side of 270th Avenue) from the Gruhn family. The property will eventually be sold and transferred to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and opened to the public.

Leave the lead out

Ice fishing opportunities have been limited in my part of the world so far this ice fishing season. Warmer than usual temperatures have created inconsistent ice conditions. It’s been challenging to find a place to safely go ice fishing.

DNR sets public meetings to recap hunting, trapping seasons and to discuss possible rule changes

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is hosting a series of town hall-style meetings in 18 different sites where local staff will provide updates on recently completed hunting and trapping seasons, discuss possible changes to hunting and trapping rules and regulations, and address other topics as requested.

Researchers looking for insight into wild turkey population decline

The reintroduction of wild turkeys to Iowa’s landscape has been celebrated as a conservation success story for the past 25 years. But Iowa’s turkey population is showing troubling signs: the numbers are down, nests are failing and fewer poults are surviving. And it’s not just an Iowa problem – turkey populations are declining in all states in the Midwest and across the eastern half of the United States.

JERRY HENTGES DUAL TOURNAMENT: Spirit Lake Park boys wrestlers compete at home dual tournament


The Spirit Lake Park boys wrestling team hosted its annual dual team tournament on Friday, Jan. 5. The Indians went 1-3 in four duals against Central Springs, Sioux City North, MOC-Floyd Valley and West Lyon at the 2024 Jerry Hentges Dual Tournament in Spirit Lake.

In their first dual of the night, the Indians fell 48-33 to Central Springs. They picked up three individual wins in eight contested matches.

Sluggish start leads Pioneers to loss against E-Hawks


Okoboji’s boys basketball team showed some holiday rust in its first game of 2024. The Pioneers struggled to score early in a 63-44 home loss to Emmetsburg on Thursday, Jan. 4.

“We were not ready to play,” Okoboji coach Alex Spielman said. “We were not aggressive offensively. We lacked urgency on defense. We need to make sure we are ready to play before the tip.”

Okoboji girls drop home game to Emmetsburg


Okoboji’s girls basketball team struggled to put the ball in the basket in a nonconference home loss to Emmetsburg on Thursday, Jan. 4. The E-Hawks topped the Pioneers 41-33 in Milford.

Harris-Lake Park girls drop nail-biter to Royals


Harris-Lake Park’s girls basketball team held a lead heading to the fourth quarter, but a late scoring surge by MMCRU put the Royals out front when the final buzzer sounded on Tuesday, Jan. 2. MMCRU defeated the Wolves 51-49 in Lake Park.

Okoboji/HMS wrestlers compete at Clear Lake


The Okoboji/HMS boys wrestling team was a bit shorthanded at a tournament hosted by Clear Lake on Saturday, Jan. 6. The Pioneers totaled 85 points and placed seventh on the day.

James Gellerman earned Okoboji/HMS’ best individual finish, placing second at 175 pounds.

Spirit Lake boys hoops tops Tigers


Spirit Lake’s boys basketball team earned a tough road victory over Lakes Conference rival Spencer on Friday, Jan. 5. The Indians topped the Tigers 50-43 in Spencer.

No. 12 Indians demolish rival Tigers in girls hoops


Spirit Lake left no doubt in a dominant road victory over Lakes Conference rival Spencer on Friday, Jan. 5. The 12th-ranked (3A) Indians trounced the Tigers 57-26 in Spencer to push their current win streak to four games.

Spirit Lake outscored Spencer 21-4 in the first quarter and 20-7 in the second to take a 41-11 lead into the half. Scoring slowed in the second half, as Spirit Lake edged the Tigers 16-15 over the final two quarters to salt away the win.

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