Notebook: Mike Fritze is UM Crookston’s interim football coach

Mike Fritze, who retired as Apple Valley High School’s head football coach after the 2012 season, will be on the sideline as a head coach in 2013 at the University of Minnesota, Crookston.

He was appointed the Golden Eagles’ interim head coach when Paul Miller – also a former AVHS head coach – took a leave of absence for health reasons. The nature of Miller’s health concerns was not disclosed.

Fritze was to be the team’s defensive coordinator this season. He had planned to join the Golden Eagles after the 2011 high school season before deciding to stay at Apple Valley one more year. In 2012, the Eagles went 8-3 and reached the state playoffs for the first time since 1993, when Apple Valley won its second state championship with Miller as head coach and Fritze as an assistant.

The Golden Eagles have several players from local high schools on their roster, including defensive back Lethzee Calderon (Eastview), tight end Adam Eyton (Burnsville), offensive lineman Joe Machacek (Eagan) and defensive lineman Drew Selvestra (Eagan). Jake Neubauer, an offensive lineman from Bismarck, N.D., who played his final high school season at Rosemount, also is on the Crookston roster.

The team will open its season with a home game against Upper Iowa on Sept. 6.

Macura gets Gophers offer

A few weeks ago, Richard Pitino did not have a Minnesotan on the University of Minnesota men’s basketball roster. The new head coach appears to be setting out to change that.

Pitino recently signed forward Joey King, a former Eastview High School standout who played last season at Drake. King is expected to petition the NCAA for permission to play in 2013-14 because his transfer was for family reasons. If the petition is denied, he would not be eligible to play next season.

Last week, Lakeville North senior-to-be J.P. Macura said he received a scholarship offer from Minnesota. The Gophers will have competition for Macura; other schools to offer him scholarships include Purdue, Butler and Iowa State.

The 6-foot-4 guard had a breakout season in 2012-13, averaging 25.4 points for a Lakeville North team that reached the state Class 4A tournament. He scored 70 points in two regular-season games against eventual state champion Apple Valley.

AV volley coach

Heather LaChapelle was named Apple Valley High School’s volleyball coach this week. Her name should be familiar to those who follow high school volleyball in the south metro; she played for Eagan’s 2001 and 2003 state championship teams.

After graduating from Eagan in 2004, LaChapelle went to Carleton College where she was the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year in 2004 and All-MIAC in 2007. She played in 355 out of a possible 357 games while at Carleton.

LaChapelle is a social studies teacher in School District 196. She replaces Shelly Lundin, who stepped down after one year as head coach because she will move to Kazakhstan where her husband, former Apple Valley High School hockey player Mike Lundin, is playing professional hockey next season.

Wolff on Team USA

Eagan High School defenseman Nick Wolff is on the USA Hockey Under-18 Select team that will play in the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament beginning Aug. 5 in Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

Wolff (6-foot-4, 195 pounds) is one of six Minnesota players on the U.S. roster. He had four goals and 19 assists for Eagan last season.

Teams from Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Slovakia, Sweden and Switzerland also will play in the Hlinka tournament.

Heck goes to Jr. PGA

Eagan resident and Visitation golfer Anni Heck finished first at the Minnesota Section Junior PGA Championship on July 11-12 at Chaska Town Course. The victory means she will represent Minnesota at the national Junior PGA tournament beginning July 30 in Potomac Falls, Va.

Heck shot 69 in the first round of the 36-hole Minnesota tourney and held a five-stroke lead. She shot 79 the second day but birdied two of her final three holes to win by one stroke.

She finished third in the Minnesota State Junior Girls Championship on July 8-9. In June, she tied for seventh at the state high school Class AA tournament.

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