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Moran fits right into Quincy lineup
Roy Koenig, Sports Writer
Roy Koenig, sports wrap, steele county times

Anni Moran was nervous for her college lacrosse debut in February. Her Quincy University squad was playing at Concordia University-St. Paul. The 2023 OHS grad told Owatonna Live Beyond the Game host Todd Walkingstick that being close to home helped ease her mind.

“It was really cool to have my first college game back here in Minnesota. I had a lot of friends and family that were able to come. So, that was really special. That made me feel more supported and it was just fun to have everyone there,” she said.

She scored her first goal the next game at Northern Michigan.

“We were down at the time, so it was kind of like we needed to score, and the shot clock was running out. I just remember that when I scored all of my teammates ran over to me and hugged me because they were all excited for me.”

Moran had 24 goals in 19 games for the Hawks. She scored 176 goals for the Huskies during her high school career.

Being part of a team at college eased the transition of being six hours away from her hometown. “I think having the team helped a lot because you had that instant connection,” said Moran.

Moran believes she’ll fill a bigger role next season with Quincy graduating numerous seniors.

“I want to keep gaining confidence in my playing and just continue to take what I had from Owatonna and continue to be that leader now on my college team,” she said.

She enjoyed the chance this spring to watch her sister play.

“I love coming to their games and watching. It makes me feel so proud watching them out there. It makes me want to play with them again.” Moran used to coach her sister’s team.


Pickleball at OCC

Owatonna Country Club members can now knock around a small plastic ball too.

“We’re all excited. We put in brand new pickleball courts this spring…Four courts back-to-back with a nice little social area in the middle. We’re going to have open play times and reserve times, and we’re going to do some yearly tournaments,” said general manager Dan Jacott.

“I don’t have to tell you that pickleball is the biggest craze going on right now. We have a big group of members that expressed this is something we need to do,” said Jacott on Owatonna Live’s Business Talk.

The site used to be tennis courts, but they were taken out about 20 years ago.

“Our membership is really excited about it. It’s a brand-new amenity,” he said. “We worked with Mohs Construction on the whole project. And they did a fantastic job constructing the pickleball courts for us.”

That included removing soil from the spot and building a new slab. Federated Insurance supported the project and assisted in bringing in new golf carts.

“They have rain hoods on the back. When it’s kind of drizzly and rainy, you can unzip it and you can pull it down and then it keeps your clubs dry. And now it has a USB port,” said Jacott.

OCC has a fitness center and pool and takes pride in its dining and banquet facilities. The pro shop has expanded its lines and now features pickleball equipment. Hear more from Jacott at


Tops for town ball

Tink Larson can be considered an expert on town ball, though he might have a biased view after more than 60 years of being involved.

“Minnesota has the strongest amateur baseball program in the country. Other people can’t believe we have that kind of a thing going on here. The state tournament draws very well. The state championship game, there were, I think 1,500 people, which is a nice crowd. It packs the grandstand,” said Larson.

Joining Owatonna Live during a rain delay this spring, he said, “Everybody that has the state tournament – three of four sites every year – they spend thousands of dollars fixing up their parks. Every year you get parks that are just beautiful.”

The 2024 state tournament is in Jordan, Belle Plaine, Green Isle and Shakopee from Aug. 16 through Labor Day. He says at one time there were about 900 teams across the state. The current number is about 350 but several new teams form each year.

Larson, who is a member of more than ten Halls of Fame, manages the Waseca Braves town ball club which plays at Owatonna on Wednesday, July 3. He assists with Minnesota State University at Mankato, the high school Bluejays, the Legion, VFW and a 10-and-under team. He says it’s still a step back from when he used to be the head coach for four teams. Larson started managing at age 19 and is now in his 80s. He still gets into a few games each year and even caught a 45-year-old last year, leaving him to wonder if that was a record age for a pitcher-catcher battery.

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