Austin Packer senior Tommy Olmsted gained statewide and worldwide notoriety in the Minnesota State Tournament because of his beard, which gained its length and prominence due to the Packers’ 30-game winning streak. With the season over, now Tommy has shaved his beard for baseball season. See the before and after below:
At the annual awards banquet last night we closed with a video featuring our seniors, a look back at their start as first-graders playing YMCA ball at Holy Cross, on to their 7th grade experience at Ellis Middle School and then selected highlights from the last couple of years.
The Aase cousins (Joe and Tom), Tommy Olmsted and Collin Weisert provided leadership for a team that went 53-7 in the last two years, including this season’s 30-1 mark and second place finish in the Minnesota State High School League Class AAA Tournament.
With two returning starters and two more players who saw extended varsity action, and bringing up JV players who posted a 17-7 record this year, the future for the Packers remains bright.
But here’s a look back at the Class of 2013 and how they have grown over the years:
The Packers had a huge contingent of fans on hand for the state title game against DeLaSalle (click the image above to enlarge), and they got off to a good start with an early 5-0 lead, but their perfect season came to an end on a less-than-perfect note in a 50-33 loss to the top-ranked Islanders.
Tom Aase led the Packers with 14 points, while Zach Wessels added 8. Collin Weisert scored 5, while Joe Aase, Bret Lukes and Ajuda Nywesh had 2 each.
See the stories in the Austin Daily Herald and Rochester Post-Bulletin.
That’s what the Austin Packers will be tomorrow night when they square off against top-ranked Minneapolis DeLaSalle.
Austin is 30-0 and therefore obviously hasn’t lost all season. DeLaSalle is 28-1 and hasn’t lost to any team from Minnesota. The Islanders’ only loss this year was to a top team from Kansas. And considering that they are the defending Class AAA state champions, their winning streak against Minnesota competition is now 39 games, dating back to February 7, 2012.
When Austin last came to the state tournament with an undefeated team, it was the 1981 Packers (22-0) facing another undefeated defending state champion from Minneapolis, the North Polars. North was riding a 41-game winning streak and was heavily favored.
Underdog Austin trailed by seven points at halftime. Here’s what happened in the second half:
The next day, Austin beat another undefeated team, Chaska, to advance to the championship game against Anoka. The Packers lost that game and finished 24-1.
DeLaSalle obviously has a great team and deserves its top ranking. The 2013 Packers have faced lots of challenges, and this will be the biggest one. The 1981 Packers join all Austin alumni and the whole community in support of the Packers and in hoping they have their best game yet.
This just in from the Austin High School Activities Director, Lisa Quednow-Bickler:
We will be having a welcome home celebration for our boys basketball team on Sat. night in Knowlton Auditorium.
The doors (#1, #5) will be open to the public at 10:30 pm
The celebration will begin when the team arrives home.
A chance to recognize and celebrate a great season for our Austin Packer Boys Basketball team and community of Austin.
Please join us for the game at 6 p.m. Saturday, whether you ride the bus or take a carpool. If you can’t make it in person, the game will be broadcast in the Austin area on KAAL-TV Digital 6.2 or you can listen to the call from Dan Bettlach and Jim “Voice of the Packers” Lemar on KAUS AM 1480. For Packer expatriates, you can watch it live on Prep45.com or listen to the KAUS stream.
Then come out at 10:30 for a great community celebration of a season to remember!
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