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Rachel Blount

Reporter/Columnist | Sports
Phone: 612-673-4389
Location: Minneapolis
Other languages: None

Rachel Blount is a sports reporter for the Star Tribune who covers a variety of topics, including the Olympics, Wild, college sports and horse racing. She has written extensively about Minnesota's Olympic athletes and has covered pro and college hockey since joining the staff in 1990. 

An Iowa native, Blount is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and holds a master's degree in journalism from the University of Missouri. She has won numerous state and national writing awards. Her favorite stories to tell are those that convey the emotion and humanity of sports. She lives in Minneapolis with her husband, Pat Borzi, who also is a sportswriter.
Recent content from Rachel Blount
Penn State's Anthony Cassar scored on a take down over Minnesota's Gable Steveson during the Big Ten Championships at Williams Arena earlier this mont

Score to settle: Steveson enters NCAAs looking to avenge only loss

Apple Valley's Gable Steveson didn't waste time feeling sorry for himself after losing in the heavyweight title match at the Big Ten tournament, his only defeat after 30 victories.
After placing 63rd in the 500-yard freestyle in her first Big Ten Championships, the Gophers' Chantal Nack won that event in her final conference meet

Nack can top off 'incredible' Gophers career at NCAA swimming meet

Chantal Nack started slow, now is a Big Ten champ competing in the NCAAs.
Katie Mcgovern, left, and Jonna Curtis celebrated Lee Stecklein's (2) overtime goal at Tria Rink on Sunday

'Can you believe it?' Whitecaps work OT to win NWHL championship

Lee Stecklein scored 49 seconds into overtime for the winner, sparking a loud celebration at Tria Rink in St. Paul as the Whitecaps beat the Buffalo Beauts.
A sellout crowd took in the Minnesota Whitecaps win over the Metropolitan Riveters in the WNHL semifinals Friday

Whitecaps' first season leads to title game and other successes

Minnesota's National Women's Hockey League team has been a boon to the league.
Whitecaps goalie Amanda Leveille stopped a shot by the Riveters’ Madison Packer during the third period. Leveille made 35 saves. win over the Rivete

Whitecaps reach NWHL final in their first year in the league

The Whitecaps defeated the Metropolitan Riveters 5-1 in the Isobel Cup semifinals at Tria Rink. That put the Whitecaps into Sunday's championship game against Buffalo.
Gophers goalie Sydney Scobee makes a save last Sunday against Wisconsin at Ridder Arena.

Gophers prep for Princeton, one win from Women's Frozen Four

Minnesota is 9-1 in the NCAA quarterfinal home games, and this one is back at Ridder Arena.
“The more rest, the better,” said Jason Zucker, center. But the Wild’s winger said Wednesday’s practice was “needed.”

In a six-game rut, Wild works to right its power play

The Wild enters Thursday's game against Dallas one point out of a wild-card berth yet without a power-play goal in six games. The first faceoff is vital, and it's something we've been lacking lately," Bruce Boudreau said.
Penn State’s Anthony Cassar leaned into a decisive two-point takedown of No. 1-ranked Gophers heavyweight Gable Steveson in the title bout in the Bi

U heavyweight Steveson loses for first time in Big Ten title match

After going 30-0, U freshman Gable Steveson lost 4-3 to Penn State's Anthony Cassar in the finals. Here's the full story and video of the title match.
The Minnesota Whitecaps (shown gathered around co-head coach Ronda Engelhardt during an October practice) have secured the top seed and home ice for t

Whitecaps eager for semifinal after tickets sold out in 25 hours

In their first NWHL season, they secured the top seed and home ice for playoffs.
Gophers heavyweight Gable Steveson (shown in a January match vs. Iowa) advanced to Sunday's finals.

Gophers' Steveson reaches Big Ten heavyweight final

The unbeaten freshman is the only Gopher still in contention for a title.
The Gophers' Nicole Schammel skated against Wisconsin in last year's Frozen Four.

Schammel still thriving for Gophers, even with Olympic teammates back

Gophers coach Brad Frost worried the senior might ease up, but she keeps delivering.
Penn State’s Mark Hall, an Apple Valley native, is 23-0 this season and the top seed at 174 pounds.

Big Ten wrestling tournament at Williams Arena: What to watch

Unbeaten Penn State heads the Big Ten field; the Gophers, led by Gable Steveson, seek a top-five finish.
Minnesota Duluth goalie Maddie Rooney.

WCHA Final Faceoff preview

A look at this weekend's tournament at Ridder Arena.
Olympic gold medalist skier Jessie Diggins was recognized at a Vikings game in October. Diggins is currently competing for gold at the world champions

Olympic gold medal set a new course for Diggins

Currently fifth in the World Cup overall standings, Jessie Diggins, 27, said it has been "a year of learning" as she figures out how to pace herself off the snow as well as on.
Brad Hunt and the Blues' Vince Dunnfight for the puck during a game last week.

Wild newcomer Hunt gains confidence in regular role

Former Bemidji State standout Brad Hunt is 'more relaxed' after coming to the Wild in a trade.
Gophers coach Bob Motzko watched from the bench during a game last month. Minnesota lost Friday night, 3-2 to Notre Dame.

Gophers hockey turns in 'very poor effort' in loss to Notre Dame

Minnesota lost 3-2 despite holding a 2-0 lead after the first period in the opener of the final Big Ten series of the season.
Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk, who stopped the Devils’ Nico Hischier in a Feb. 9 game, said he hasn’t lost confidence in his game during the team’s s

Wild goalie Dubnyk hasn't lost confidence, gets vote of support

Devan Dubnyk's self-esteem has remained unshaken, and he is expected to be back in the net Tuesday against Anaheim as the team wraps up a four-game set at Xcel Energy Center.
Ryan Saunders, center, at 32-years-old is the youngest head coach in the NBA — one of several coaches under 40 of local major-sports teams.

Game-changers: Big things expected from major move to young coaches

Five of the people hired to coach high-profile Twin Cities sports teams in the last few years are still in their 30s, part of an unprecedented move toward hiring leaders with different skills than were once expected from leaders.
The Wild were booed off the ice after losing 4-1 to Edmonton in its last home game.

Stung by booing fans, Wild seeking to regain winning form at the X

"I don't understand it,'' goaltender Devan Dubnyk said. "Ever since I've been here, playing at home has been a huge advantage for us."
Lindsey Vonn poses in 2010 with Olympic medals and Women's World Cup skiing trophies

Conqueror of mountains: Vonn to race for final time

Lindsey Vonn's final race is Sunday morning. The Buck Hill product will leave the sport with 82 World Cup victories, the most by any woman in history, and the only Olympic downhill gold won by an American woman.
Wild right wing Mikael Granlund fired a bad-angle shot, with a predictable result, at Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot in the third period Thursday.

Granlund, in need of a lift, moved to center for slumping Wild

Zero goals since Jan. 7 for winger Mikael Granlund prompted Wild coach Bruce Boudreau to make bold switch.
Wild center Kyle Rau (37), who saw action in a preseason game against Dallas in September, was called up from Iowa and practiced Monday.

Wild recalls Kunin and Rau; assigns Prosser and Brown to Iowa

Kyle Rau, the former Eden Prairie star and Gophers captain, has a team-leading 14 goals and 16 assists in 45 games at Iowa.
Burnsville’s Lindsey Vonn was a downhill bronze medalist in her last Olympics, in South Korea last year.

'She was good for America': Vonn's skiing accomplishments celebrated by many

Injuries took a toll on Burnsville native Lindsey Vonn; next week's stop in Sweden will be the last for the only American woman to win an Olympic gold medal in downhill skiing.
Goalie Devan Dubnyk has been a big part of the Wild’s success as the team plays a stretch of 12 games in 21 days.

Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk piles up All-Star evidence

The goalie is 4-0 since being selected for the Western Conference.
Zach Parise celebrated a goal against Toronto on Jan. 3.

Zach Parise not elected for final NHL All-Star spot

Gabriel Landeskog will be the Central Division's last representative thanks to fan balloting. Goalie Devan Dubnyk is the Wild's representative.
The Wild's Zach Parise (11), Jared Spurgeon (46) and Eric Fehr (21) celebrate a goal against the Winnipeg Jets during the third period Saturday.

Back home after a win, Wild gets an attitude boost

With the weight of a five-game losing streak lifted off its shoulders, the Wild showed up in high spirits Sunday for practice.
Gymnast Maggie Nichols of Little Canada is the Star Tribune's Sportsperson of the Year for 2018.

Maggie Nichols, courageous champion, is Star Tribune Sportsperson of the Year

After identifying herself as "Athlete A" in the USA Gymnastics sexual-abuse scandal that sent team doctor Larry Nassar to prison, Maggie Nichols of Little Canada won the NCAA all-around championship competing for the University of Oklahoma. 'I found out how strong I really am.'
Stanford's Audriana Fitzmorris (12) spiked the ball past Nebraska outside hitter Lexi Sun

Stanford, Nebraska made NCAA championship must-see volleyball

Stanford and Nebraska treated 18,000-plus at Target Center to a thrilling final.
Stanford celebrated after defeating Nebraska in five sets to win the NCAA volleyball championship on Saturday at Target Center.

Stanford beats Nebraska in five sets for NCAA volleyball title

Both rival coaches expected a great final — and it was that, going the distance at Target Center.
Nebraska's Lauren Stivrins celebrated her point in the final set against Illinois.

Husker love: Record-setting Nebraska volleyball fans cheer on a 'state treasure'

Seeking its sixth NCAA title and its third in the past four years, Nebraska rules the college volleyball world in other ways as well, including a 29-station radio network.
Junior middle blocker Taylor Morgan (12) is one of five returning Gophers volleyball players who earned All-Big Ten and All-Region player honors this

As pain subsides, Gophers cherish superb volleyball season

The sudden end didn't diminish Hugh McCutcheon's pride in a season that will be remembered as one of the Gophers' best ever. The team finished 19-1 in the Big Ten and recorded the most league victories in program history.

Peaking Nebraska beats Oregon to return to volleyball Final Four

After sweeping its first three foes in the NCAA tournament, Nebraska did it again Saturday, defeating Oregon 25-22, 25-23, 25-17 in the regional finals at Maturi Pavilion to reach its fourth consecutive Final Four.
Coach Hugh McCutcheon says the Gophers were “a work in progress” when they lost 3-1 to Oregon on Sept. 7 on a neutral court. The rematch is Friday

Twice as nice? Ducks aiming to upset Gophers volleyball again

Oregon was one of only three teams to beat the Gophers this season.
(From left) The U’s Regan Pittman, Adanna Rollins and Samantha Seliger-Swenson are two victories from the Final Four.

Assume nothing: U volleyball needs to battle through regional

As fans grow more excited at the possibility of watching the Gophers make the Final Four at Target Center, coach Hugh McCutcheon is trying to manage those expectations.
Gophers volleyball coach Hugh McCutcheon and Samantha Seliger-Swenson were both honored by the Big Ten on Wednesday.

Seliger-Swenson, McCutcheon win top Big Ten volleyball honors

Gophers senior setter Samantha Seliger-Swenson was named Big Ten MVP while coach Hugh McCutcheon nabbed another top honor.
St. John's quarterback Jackson Erdmann during practice.

St. John's star quarterback Erdmann fights for social justice

Jackson Erdmann has passed for 40 touchdowns this season, second most in the nation, and his 2,727 passing yards lead the MIAC. It is off the field, though, where Erdmann considers himself a true warrior.
The Blackhawks’ Alexandre Fortin battled for the puck with Wild defenseman Matt Dumba (24) and Ryan Suter on Sunday. Dumba and Suter were on the ice

Wild's top two pairs on defense split up after Suter, Dumba struggle

The second pair, Jared Spurgeon and Jonas Brodin, has become an exceptional shutdown tandem through the first 21 games, but coach Bruce Boudreau is willing to reshuffle the top four.
Kirill Kaprizov celebrated a goal for Russia against the Czech Republic in the Karjala Cup in Finland last Sunday. Kaprizov is “as good as anybody t

Back from Russia, Wild GM Fenton impressed by top prospect Kaprizov

Kirill Kaprizov, 21, was drafted by the Wild in and is perhaps the team's most highly anticipated prospect. "He's going to be a terrific player for us,'' Paul Fenton said.
Gophers outside hitter Alexis Hart spiked the ball in the second set Saturday against Purdue.

Not to miss: Gophers stay undefeated in Big Ten

The third-ranked Gophers made quick work of the error-prone Boilermakers in a packed Maturi Pavilion on Saturday, a night coach Hugh McCutcheon skipped his International Volleyball Hall of Fame induction.
Frehsman libero and defensive specialist CC McGraw, who was Minnesota’s Ms. Volleyball at Prior Lake last season, leads the Gophers volleyball team

Freshmen McGraw, Rollins find role right away with Gophers volleyball

As the successful regular season winds down, freshmen CC McGraw and Adanna Rollins have been key to the Gophers' success.
The Wild’s Eric Staal, a veteran of 1,100-plus NHL games, is one goal away from the 400 mark. ...

Wild's Staal citing discipline as goal milestone nears

Eric Staal has 399 career NHL goals, and his next will make him the sixth active NHL player and 96th overall to reach the 400-goal mark. It could come as soon as Saturday
Minnesota players, including defensive specialist Lauren Barnes (2), celebrated a 3-0 sweep over Penn State in September. The Gophers defeated Nebrask

Gophers volleyball stays perfect in Big Ten with win over Nebraska

Freshman Adanna Rollins had 20 kills and 14 digs to lead the way for the third-ranked Gophers, and Stephanie Samedy added 13 kills against the No. 5 Cornhuskers.
Minnesota head coach Hugh McCutcheon addresses his team during a match earlier this season.

Powerhouse Gophers volleyball team not talking about Final Four at home yet

The Gophers enter Saturday's match against No. 5 Nebraska with a 15-2 record, sweeping eight of their first nine Big Ten opponents. But there's five weeks to go before the 64-team NCAA tournament field is announced.
Gophers volleyball coach Hugh McCutcheon talked to his players earlier this season.

U volleyball continues to roll in Big Ten, dominating No. 7 Illini

The Gophers opened a homestand with another victory over a top opponent.
Coach Bruce Boudreau and winger Zach Parise are trying to solve the Wild's offensive woes.

Parise, Boudreau press for solutions to Wild's sluggish start

The Wild was outshot 82-51 in a loss at Colorado and shootout loss to Las Vegas.
An announced sellout crowd of 1,200 saw the Whitecaps win their inaugural game, 4-0 in St. Paul.

'Incredible' packed house sees Whitecaps win first NWHL game 4-0

Former Minnesota Duluth forward Katie McGovern scored the Whitecaps' first goal on a power play, much to the delight of a 1,200-fan sellout.
15-year old Tierney Wolfgram of Woodbury, running her first marathon, finished the Twin Cities Marathon in a time of 2:40:03, good for sixth place amo

Woodbury 15-year-old finishes sixth in Twin Cities Marathon

Tierney Wolfgram, the two-time defending Class 1A cross-country champion, was the youngest woman in the top 25 by eight years, and one of two Minnesota teens to finish in the top 50.
Rebecca Walker approached the finish line as the women’s champion in the wheelchair division. Walker, of Little Canada, finished in 3:01:13.

TC 10 Mile winner Shadrack Kipchirchir pushes himself to add an extra $10,000

Faced with a classic dilemma — and with little time to consider his choices — Shadrack Kipchirchir asked himself: Should I stay, or should I go?
Jane Kibii, winner of the women’s race at the past two Twin Cities Marathons, enjoys running in Minnesota. “There’s something magic here,’’

Photo-finishers in TC 10 Mile all returning

Shadrack Kipchirchir, Leonard Korir and Sara Hall hit the finish line almost simultaneously at last October's TC 10 Mile. All will be back on Sunday morning.
Charlie Coyle watched practice drills at Wild camp on Sept. 14 at Xcel Energy Center.

Shoot more, score more: Coyle gets boost from players summit

This summer, Charlie Coyle some intensive study in the art of creating more quality chances — and putting them in the net
Wild winger Jordan Greenway (18) and center Joel Eriksson Ek, right, celebrated Ek’s goal in Monday night’s 5-3 preseason loss to the Stars in Dal

Wild's Eriksson Ek ready for 'big-sized jump' this season

Knowing what to expect in the NHL has allowed the young Wild forward to think only about showing he is ready to make a significant leap.
Wild defenseman Matt Bartkowski got his stick a little high on Winnipeg’s Mathieu Perrault during Monday’s preseason game.

Put him in, coach: Bartkowski hopes to stick with Wild

Veteran defenseman Matt Bartkowski has remained positive despite some idle times while playing for NHL teams.
Stephanie Samedy spiked the ball against Penn State for one of her 14 kills on Wednesday night.

No. 7 Gophers sweep No. 4 Penn State in Big Ten volleyball opener

In a loaded conference — seven Big Ten teams are ranked in the top 18 in the country — this match was just as fierce and thrilling as coach Hugh McCutcheon expected.
Gophers volleyball player Taylor Morgan last week at Maturi Pavilion. In her fourth year on campus, Morgan has taken advantage of her opportunity to p

Taylor Morgan thriving with U volleyball after getting chance to start

After four knee surgeries and a lot of sitting, Taylor Morgan has turned into a force.
Jordan Greenway (18) was among Wild players greeting Matt Hendricks (15) after the lone Wild goal in Monday’s 2-1 loss in Winnipeg.

Wild considers keeping Jordan Greenway at center

The big rookie skated between Joel Eriksson Ek and Charlie Coyle in Monday night's game in Winnipeg.
Nate Prosser

As usual, Nate Prosser fighting for spot with Wild

The veteran defenseman continues to be a mentor for his younger Wild teammates as he prepares for his ninth pro season.
Gophers Sara Nielsen and CC McGraw, right, celebrated a winning point in their season-opening victory over Florida State at Target Center.

Big-time battle: No. 1 U volleyball team to meet former No. 1 Stanford

The Gophers are heading to the Pac-12/Big Ten Challenge at Stanford, where they will play No. 18 Oregon on Friday and No. 4 Stanford on Sunday.
John Shuster, who skipped the U.S. curling team to Olympic gold, got high-fives last week before taping “Curling Night in America.”

Minnesota, Wisconsin curlers get rock star treatment

Life hasn't been the same for Team Shuster since winning Olympic gold in curling.
Leandro Goncalves enjoyed a fairly easy trip aboard star colt Mr. Jagermeister, finishing 4½ lengths ahead of five other horses Sunday afternoon in t

Mr. Jagermeister's runaway highlights Canterbury Park's Festival of Champions

Call heavy favorite Mr. Jagermeister's triumph another growth spurt for the Minnesota colt.
Three-year-old colt Mr. Jagermeister is a favorite of owner Valorie Lund and a heavy favorite in Saturday’s Minnesota Classic Championship at Canter

Above and beyond: Mr. Jagermeister heavy favorite in Festival of Champions feature

Mr. Jagermeister is being hailed as one of the best Minnesota-bred thoroughbreds in years. The bay has won five of seven starts at Canterbury, including three blowout victories in state-bred stakes.
There were thousands of empty seats at the 2017 season opener, and Gophers football fans will see more of those Thursday.

Gophers athletic department alarmed by plunging ticket sales

University of Minnesota leaders are launching new strategies to entice fans amid a multimillion-dollar drop in vital sports like men's basketball, football and men's hockey.
St. Thomas linebacker Dylan Andrew (12), the Tommies’ leading tackler last year as a senior, is one example of how well the team matches players to

Powerful Tommies thirst to dominate even more in MIAC football

St. Thomas, which has won 28 consecutive MIAC games and three straight conference titles, is tied with St. John's for the longest string in league history.
Gophers outside hitter Alexis Hart spikes the ball over Florida State middle blocker Deja Williams

Deep Gophers volleyball roster shines in season-opening victory

The Gophers got a match-high 14 kills from sophomore Stephanie Samedy against Florida State at Target Center, the most potent weapon in a balanced attack.
The Gophers volleyball team, ranked No. 4, opens the season this weekend hosting matches in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge. Wisconsin, North Carolina and F

Gophers volleyball opens national title quest tonight at Target Center

National-power Minnesota opens the season against tough opponents this weekend at Target Center, where the volleyball Final Four will be held in December.
Minnesota Wild GM Paul Fenton

Wild GM Fenton: Three key injured players should be ready for season

Ryan Suter, Zach Parise and Luke Kunin are all recovering from different injuries. New GM Paul Fenton wouldn't reveal specifics but said each is progressing.
Under coach Hugh McCutcheon, the Gophers volleyball team enters the season as the nation’s No. 4 team. The Final Four this year is at Target Center.

Volleyball's 'Coach K': U's McCutcheon has a winning formula

Hugh McCutcheon, 48, already has coached the American men to an Olympic gold medal, the U.S. women to silver and the Gophers to two Final Fours.
NWHL Commissioner Dani Rylan, center, watched as deputy commissioner Hayley Moore spoke when the Whitecaps joined the league in May.

Wild, Whitecaps announce alliance

The NHL team will assist the NWHL team with marketing, promotions and practice rink hosting.
Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve said of the ever-changing WNBA standings: “We’re not going to ride that rollercoaster.”

Lynx ignoring jammed-up standings as they open rugged schedule stretch

The Lynx have one of the WNBA's toughest remaining schedules, reducing the margin of error for a team that has struggled to find its footing.
Chicago Sky guard Allie Quigley signed autographs for fans as she arrived at Target Center.

Chicago Sky sharpshooter Quigley's perseverance pays off

Former castoff Allie Quigley honored her late father with on-target shooting in Saturday's WNBA All-Star Game and the three-point contest
Team Parker forward Maya Moore posed for a photo with WNBA league president Lisa Michelle Borders

WNBA president wants to see players paid more

WNBA president Lisa Borders said she wants to see the league's players paid more, adding that both the fans and the league are responsible for making that happen.
National Women’s Hockey League founder and commissioner Dani Rylan, left, spoke as Gov. Mark Dayton looked on as the Whitecaps franchise joined the

St. Paul-based Whitecaps announce 16-game hockey schedule

The newest NWHL team also signed American standout Kendall Coyne Schofield.
Tamika Catchings, a former star of the Indiana Fever, poses for a portrait inside Tea’s Me Cafe in Indianapolis in 2017.

After playing careers end, WNBA stars must get about their business

The average career in the WNBA is only 3½ years, and 2018 salaries range from about $41,000 to $115,500. Having a plan for life after basketball is a message spread by the league's veterans.
Chad Kerley saved his best tricks — including a few new ones – for his second run in the X Games’ BMX Street Final on Friday.

Kerley finally returns to top of X Games BMX Street podium

Chad Kerley conquered pressure, dethroned BMX Street champ.
Ronda (Curtin) Engelhardt starred for the Gophers and coach Breck School to the 1A hockey title in February.

Former U women's hockey star will share Whitecaps coaching duties

Ronda (Curtin) Engelhardt, the former head coach at Breck School, will coach the NWHL team along with Jack Brodt. Robb Stauber, head coach of the gold-medal winning U.S. women's team, said he "decided not to take the job."
Gophers AD Mark Coyle

AD Coyle offers glowing report on Gophers athletics progress

Gophers AD Mark Coyle on Wednesday briefed the U of M Board of Regents about athletic and academic achievements. "It's nice when you have good news to tell," he said.
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