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View from the cheap seats

View from the cheap seats View from the cheap seats

A weekly perspective on sports

It was nice on Friday night to cover the Stratford versus Athens boys basketball game, not only because it was a competitive first half but also because my uncle Andy Krautkramer’s refereeing crew from Marathon handled this game. It’s fun to joke around with uncle Andy and the other referees Randy Rasmussen and Larry Buchberger during team timeouts.

Uncle Andy has invited my father,

Jerome Krautkramer, to travel with his referee crew to their boys and girls basketball games this season, now that my dad and uncle Paul Krautkramer are semi-retired after selling their dairy cows on April 17. Randy’s father, Roger Rasmussen, also rode along with my father and the referee crew to the Stratford boys basketball team’s home game against Athens.

Roger sat next to Athens head football coach Todd Diethelm on his right side and my father on his left side in the bleachers. Todd and his wife were at the game to watch their son, Dayne Diethelm, play against the Tigers.

Todd and Steve Janke both wrestled for Athens High School, but now their sons are playing basketball for the Bluejays. Steve’s son, Aiden Janke, is a talented freshman post player for Athens this season. Of course it helps Aiden that his first cousin, Cameron Ford, is another skilled big man in the post for Athens.

Cameron’s father, Terry Ford, is one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet but you won’t find him sitting in the bleachers at basketball games, because he gets too nervous to sit and instead prefers to stand near the gym doors.

Before Friday’s basketball game, I jokingly asked my friend and Stratford game announcer Scott Bauman to announce the Marathon referee crew’s names. Scott figured this wasn’t a good idea because both the Athens and Stratford basketball fans might begin booing the referee crew, for the only reason because they reside in Marathon.

It’s nice to still see longtime Marathon girls and Stratford junior varsity boys basketball coach Bill Knetter still on the sideline. I’m sure Bill has a large stock of Sun Drop on hand to drink during this basketball season. I’ll admit Sun Drop in a glass bottle is one of the most refreshing drinks I’ve ever consumed.

I still remember attending Raider Camp as a young boy growing up in Marathon, and during camp breaks, former Red Raiders head boys basketball coach Jack Culhane would offer us ice cold glass bottles of Coke, Pepsi and Mountain Dew to keep everyone hydrated.

Culhane now lives back in his home state of Minnesota, and high school athletes today are consuming more healthier options than soda, such as Gatorade and water. I wish all our dedicated readers a Happy New Year!