Minnesota United FC signed forward Christian Ramirez for the 2014 North American Soccer League season.

The 6-2 Californian played for Concordia University in Irvine, Calif., and had 44 goals and 18 assists in his career. He was an NAIA All-America selection in 2012.

He played for the Charlotte Eagles of the USL PRO in 2013, scoring 12 goals in 26 matches. He trained with United last year after the Eagles' season ended.

"We feel he has a ton of potential and he is going to add a lot to the attack of our team," United coach Manny Lagos said.

"I'm really excited to get back to Minnesota and put on the uniform," Ramirez said. "I'm really thankful for the coaching staff for believing in me and bringing me on board and can't wait to see some of the guys I've met."

Local freeskier in finals

Bloomington native Keri Herman led Wednesday's qualifying round in women's slopestyle freeskiing at the U.S. Grand Prix in Breckenridge, Colo., earning a place in Friday's finals.

Herman topped the field of three with a score of 88.66 points. The event is the third of four selection events for the U.S. Olympic freeskiing team that will compete in the Sochi Winter Games next month. The team will be named Jan. 18.


•Ten days of on-ice activities leading up to the Hockey City Winter Classic on Jan. 17 at TCF Bank Stadium will start at 5:30 p.m. Thursday with Gophers athletic director Norwood Teague and coaches Don Lucia and Brad Frost of the Gophers men's and women's hockey teams shooting pucks on the outdoor rink in a Light the Lamp ceremony. Former Gopher players will skate on the rink afterward.

• Sophomore Bethany Hasz of Alexandria High School was named the Gatorade girls' cross-country runner of the year. She won the Class 2A individual state title last fall. She also took first place in the 2013 Nike Heartland Regional and placed 13th in the Nike Cross Country Nationals. "Bethany Hasz is a focused and intense student-athlete," said Mark Nelson, her high school coach. "She has become a student of the sport of cross country at a very young age and is extremely coachable."

• Anoka-Ramsey (13-3) is rated No. 4 and Northland (10-1) is No. 10 in the National Junior College Athletic Association's Division III women's basketball ratings this week.

•Minnesota State Mankato forward Tracy McCann is the WCHA's offensive player of the week. She had three goals as the Mavericks went 3-1.

• Omaha forward Josh Archibald, a junior from Brainerd, Minn., was named the National Collegiate Hockey Conference's offensive player of the week.

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