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Abrahamson tournament set for this weekend

Braun Park is usually a busy place, but expect the softball complex to be buzzing this weekend.

That’s because the 15th Annual Ashley Abrahamson Memorial Softball Tournament is set for Saturday and Sunday in Cloquet, one of the area’s most popular events.

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The two-day tournament is in honor of Ashley, a talented three-sport, student-athlete who loved to play softball, but was tragically killed in a car accident in Illinois in 2000 at age 13.

Since then, classmate and close friend Sarah Wondrasek and her father, Ron Tondryk (also Ashley’s former coach), have organized the event annually, creating countless memories.

This year, 14 teams will be in the 14-and-Under division, while nine teams will participate at the U-12 level. Overall, 65 games will be played, starting at 8 a.m. Saturday. Opening ceremonies are also Saturday and Ashley Awards Sunday.

“There’s just something about playing for Ashley, seeing the Abrahamson family and having people come together,” said the 27-year-old Wondrasek. “It’s always fun to see.”

“In 15 years now, probably 4,000 girls have come through here,” added Tondryk. “It’s just an awesome tournament.”