Ringer Digest
November - December 2015
Official Publication of the Minnesota Gopher State Horseshoe Pitchers' Association
Bloomington Club league results
by Gene Gross

The Tuesday Night Singles League is a three game night of 50 shoes each. Sara Otto again won this league with 21 wins and 8 losses. She edged out Jim David by percentage points as he had a record of 23 wins and 9 losses. This is the second straight year where Sara edged out Jim. Van Vanyo finished third. 

Tuesday Night Awards
Best Win/Loss Record: Sara Otto (21 wins, 8 losses)
High Game: Sara Otto (72%)
High Game Over Average: Robin Constance (38%)
High Average: Sara Otto (61.59%)
Most Improved: Sara Otto (57.00% to 61.59%)

The Wednesday Night Team League, consisting of six, three-person teams completed their season Aug 26. Most teams included a fourth person as a sub. A new team won this year consisting of Rob Rehm, Jeannie White, Dave Wetzlich and Larry Wilkins. It was an usual finish to the split season as three teams tied which led to a complex playoff. Two teams tied the second half and it was  decided rather than have another night deciding the second half winner we would just have all three teams in the playoff.  A complicated playoff schedule was created and it worked out well. Bill Lundholm again did a great job of the league secretarial duties.

Wednesday Night Awards
Best (Personal) Win/Loss Record: Dave Wetzlich (24.5 wins, 6.5 losses)
High Game: Larry Miller (48%)
High Game Over Average: Dave Wetzlich (38%)
High Average: Larry Miller (29.33%)
Most Improved: Dave Wetzlich (9.27% to 16.39%)
Rookie of the Year: Keith Boerger

We had a great turnout at our Year End Club Tournament with all new

Club Tournament Winners
Class A: Larry Strandquist (1st), Van Vanyo (2nd)
Class B: Fred Extrand (1st), Robin Constance (2nd)
Fred pitched earlier in the year with two unmatched shoes. One of his had broken so he substituted an old one he had. Bill Lundholm spotted this late in the summer and had an old pair of his which he then sold to Fred. Fred then improved his game immensely so was really tough to beat in this tournament.
Class C: Jeannie White (1st), Mary Knoblach (2nd)
Jeannie White won Class C with an 18.13%, outstanding for this class.

At our banquet we discussed switching from 50 shoe games to 40 shoes. This will be decided in our spring 2016 meeting but the consensus seemed to be to keep 50 shoe games for both leagues.
Players wanted: Dan Patch, Savage, MN League 
by Mike Berger

The Savage League is looking for more players for next year. We play Monday nights. Start time is 7pm. Three games are played each night. If you are interested please email Mike Berger at; [email protected] 
Offseason thoughts
by Robin Constance

After a successful and fun 2015 summer horseshoe season, I have a few observations and thoughts about how the past season will go into the books.

At the state tournament, in the three adult classes we had two first time winners. 

In the women's division the winner was not a surprise, Janet Larson has won before and might well win again. She and Sara Otto were undefeated going into the final game and Janet again prevailed. I do think in the future that Tiffany Syring, Cheri Newcombe, Kayla Yeager, Sylvia Burggraff, Ginger O`Brian, Marlys Timm, as well as some of the up and coming pitchers from other parts of the State will have something to say about who brings home the top prize for the hard fought women's division. 

The men's elder division was won by Bill Danielson over Sig Armigtage. This might have been a surprise to many of us but those who have watched Bill pitch the last few years since he has moved up have seen him steadily improve. I do think that most people know that Mr. Armitage and Mr. Ray Volkers as well as some of the others in the Elder division are definitely not conceding the next few state titles to "Big" Bill.

In the Men's 40 foot class we are wondering if a new era has dawned with the first adult state title that Josh Olson has won - and he still being in his early twenties. I do suspect that Mark, Dustin, Alan, Dick, the Jerrys, Nathan as well as some of the men who had sub-par state tournaments will have some say in the Josh Olson era. I would bet that Mr. Lipovsky might not be finished with his horseshoe career. 

So stay tuned for future State Tournaments and seed what unfolds.
As for the Bloomington Club leagues we had some of the same people atop the list in the Tuesday singles league; Sara Otto, Harold Bishel and Jim David. On the Wednesday night team league we had some new blood as the winners. Jeanne White and her team consisting of Rob Rehm, Larry Wilkins and Dave Wetzlich unseated Lyle Abeln and his team as well as the perennial winning team of Maxine Abeln. Of course we are all looking forward to next season so good luck to all and Happy Holidays.
NHPA Benefit Tournament
by Jerry LaBrosse

Where/When: Upsala  Arena, Saturday, January 30th, 2016

8 man classes, 40 shoe games. Handicapped classes if spread is greater than 10%. Concessions on site. 50-50 drawing. Limited to the first 32 PAID entries. Entry deadline is Jan. 23rd. Schedule posted online by Monday, Jan. 25th. Schedules mailed upon request. Come on out for a Saturday of fun!

Sanction #23-16-001
Tournament Director: Jerry LaBrosse  612-819-7353
Blizzard Open
by Rob Hagman

Where/When: Upsala Arena, Feb. 20th

8 person classes handicapped if needed. 50/50 drawing included. Concessions on site. Entry Fee is $30. 1st 32 paid entry's are in. 

Sanction # 23-16-002
Send entries to: Rob Hagman, 652 Cross St. Anoka, MN 55303
Phone 612-600-3777

(Click the link above to see all upcoming tournaments.)

Tournament Results
Click on any of the tournament names below to see how players placed. 
(Listed by date played.)

MN Team (coming soon)
Upsala Fall Tournament


MGSHPA President
Cathy Ziemann

Happy Holidays! 

Thanksgiving and Christmas always remind me of family gatherings and celebrating with loved ones.  I hope that everyone has a happy & healthy holiday season.  
Just because fall and soon winter are upon us, doesn't mean the Horseshoe season ends.  Upsala and Greenfield have leagues throughout the winter months.  Additionally, the Isanti Club/Shawn Warnemunde is working with Junction Bowling Alley to install some portable courts.  It is hopeful that the portable courts will be set up and ready to be used in January 2016.  We are anticipating using this location for some winter tournaments also.  
Just a reminder that any clubs who are interested in submitting a bid to host the 2017 & 2018 Minnesota State Singles or Doubles Tournaments; bids must be submitted to the President by July 1, 2016.  Additionally, there will be 2 District Vice-Presidents Offices up for election in 2016, South West VP and the North West VP.  Interested parties must submit their candidacy intent to the President and the Ringer Digest Editor by June 1, 2016.  Both will be voted on at the annual Fall Membership meeting, held Labor Day Weekend.

Don't forget the upcoming fall & winter tournaments.  In order to qualify for the 2016 World Tournament in Montgomery, Alabama you need 4 sanctioned events before May 1, 2016 and our upcoming fall & winter tournaments are great ways to get your events in.    If you plan on playing in any winter tournaments in early 2016, don't forget to get sanctioned before you play.  Send sanction fees to Bonnie Holland.

Hope to see you at a tournament soon.
Historic MN
 TOURNAMENT Averages (90-100%)
submitted by NHPA Statman

Check out all the MN pitchers who have recorded tournament games with 90%-100% ringer averages and the first year the average was recorded

Phyllis Negaard
Dale Lipovsky
Phyllis Negard
Mark Baumann
Dave Hughs
Matthew Korpela90.00'04
Lance Albrecht90.63'01
Frank Stinson

2015 Perpetual Trophy Update
by Jerry LaBrosse, Perpetual Trophy Coordinator

I want to make sure that all State Tournament pitchers are clear about our state tournament "perpetual trophy" policy.

The trophies I am describing are a beautiful 12" x 15" with double laid plates commemorating the location, year, class, and place finished of your State Tournament accomplishments.

We award these trophies to the top three class winners in all divisions except juniors. If you are a trophy winner at State, there is another trophy option. If you would like to have a tag on your trophy for every year you play in the state tournament, we can make that happen! Each tag would be a historical record of your state tournament achievement, no matter what place you took in your class, all on one beautiful plaque. If this is what you would like, then we ask that you purchase your trophy.

As you all know, the perpetual trophy program is designed to save the state association money on trophy expenses, and allow us to pay out cash awards at the state tournament. To date, 309 trophies have been awarded. Of those, 167 members have purchased their own perpetual trophy, and we thank them all. Please remember that the state does not make any profit from the sale of these trophies, in fact we are picking up the sales tax and shipping. The way we save money is when someone buys their own trophy, or is awarded one, and then they win at future State Tournaments. All active State Tournament pitchers are encouraged to purchase this trophy as a way of supporting your state organization. The success of this program has enabled us to award cash prizes at the state tournament along with these trophies.

The cost of this trophy is a mere $30 each, and must be pre-paid. There is no more cost to you at all, everything is included. Many members who have purchased their trophy have had all years they pitched recorded on the tags as a way to remember their pitching history. Some members are only placing their "trophy years" on the plaque. Remember one thing....if you do not buy your own trophy and are awarded one at the State Tournament, we will only supply the tag for the trophy you just won. If you wish to add tags to remember other years, there will be additional costs.

So if you are a regular state tournament pitcher, please consider buying your trophy. They're beautiful, not expensive, and will help us out.

Please contact me with any questions you may have regarding these trophies
MGSHPA winter board meeting minutes
submitted by Cathy Ziemann, MGSHPA President

November 14, 2015

Cathy welcomed the Board Members to the Forest Lake VFW.  Minutes of the State meeting were accepted as published in the Ringer Digest.

Financial Report - Bonnie reports that the State balance is $6,200.

Officer Reports - NHPA Regional Dustin Dahl is requesting that all tournament directors submit their tournament dates to him ASAP. He issues the tournament sanction number and will supply directors with appropriate award patches. Dustin sent a Tournament Date Reservation form to all of the 2015 Tournament Directors. (Email [email protected] for an additional copy if needed.)

Northeast VP, Shawn Warnemunde reported that the Isanti Club is working with Junction Bowl to have portable courts installed to be used throughout the winter for league and tournament use. The plan is for the courts to be ready in January 2016.  

Ringer Digest - the Board approved the motion to change the MGSHPA website to WIX hosting services.  Kayla will work with the company and present a mock up for the new website. Kayla was asked to work with Jerry LaBrosse (current Webmaster) and Rob Hagman with the transition.  

2015 State Singles tournament recap - Sylvia Burggraff sent information to the Board that the Morrison County, Rice and Santiago Clubs made a profit of $2,727 after expenses. 

Additionally the Board discussed issues that came up during the 2015 tournament. These included conduct of players and dress code. Bids for the 2017 & 2018 State Tournaments must be submitted to the President by July 1, 2016. Voting will be done at the Annual Fall Membership Meeting during Labor Day weekend. 


All past Ringer Digests will soon be available through the MGSHPA website. The MGSHPA had 25 scoreboards available for sale.  Jerry LaBrosse will be putting an ad in the NHPA forum.  If any club is interested in purchasing them, please contact Jerry.   

A suggestion was made that the District Vice Presidents hold district meetings and invite club officers in their districts to it. Those present thought that was a good idea so that club officers can bring concerns, issues, and ideas to their District VP and have an opportunity to get to know their VP. Cathy encourages all District VPs to try this method to reach out to the membership.

The following Vice President Offices will be up for election/reelection in 2016:  NorthWest, currently held by Jerry Werk and SouthWest, which is currently vacant due to Sig Armitage stepping down. Any interested candidate must submit their intention to the President and Ringer Digest Editor by June 1, 2016.
Bylaw change
submitted by Gordy Schmidt, Constitution and Bylaws

The following change is being submitted for the MGSHPA Bylaws.

By-Law pages 13-14 . 
Item 1. Assistant Regional Director Duties.

d. NHPA sanctioned league ringer percentages for league play of 400 (four hundred) or more shoes pitched can be used as one qualifying event for the World Tournament. Statistics of sanctioned league results are to be submitted to the NHPA 3rd Vice President - Sanction Club/League Director:
Lorraine Sternberg
W 206, N 13520 Woodside Lane 
Richfield, WI. 53076 
From these statistics, patches, certificates and awards earned will be issued. Encourage league statisticians to submit league results as soon as possible after the season ends to insure that the items earned are received in time for presentation at the club awards banquet.

Submit that Lorraine Sternbergs name and address is changed to that of the new NHPA 3rd Vice President as follows;

Jerry Smith
2850 S. Benecia Way
Nampa, Idaho
About Us
MGSHPA's Ringer Digest is the official newsletter of the Minnesota Gopher State Horseshoe Pitchers' Association. It is free to members of the MGSHPA and other interested partieis. Changes of email address can be sent directly to [email protected].

All submissions subject to editing, available space, and must be received by the 10th of the month preceding the date of issue.
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The MGSHPA is a charter member of the National Horseshoe Pitchers' Assocation (NHPA)