Freddy vs. EK: The Rivalry

by Emily Sarjeant

He was talked up to be an amazing high school basketball player. He was said to have perfect shots, amazing dribbling skills and sped up and down the court. But he was a transfer student, so he had to be benched for part of the season.

Frederick Baker, junior and starting guard on the Grandville varsity basketball team transferred this year from East Kentwood. His first game playing for the Dawgs was on January 26 at home. versus, oddly enough, the Falcons of East Kentwood, Bakers old team.

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Baker shoots a free-throw during his first game playing for Grandville and against his previous team, the East Kentwood Falcons.

Most people would imagine that the transition alone would be a challenge for him and on top of that playing against your old team and boys you called family for your first game of the season.

“The transition wasn’t easy at first, but it helped that everyone accepted me and offered help if I needed it,” Baker said. “East Kentwood and Grandville are two different worlds, but the love and unconditional support from the Grandville community won me over.”

The Dawgs won over East Kentwood, 73-67. This was a huge win for the team and the Grandville community is proud of these boys.

Bakers presence at this game helped the Dawgs come out on top. Senior and Varsity captain Ethan Rycenga noticed Bakers determination to beat his old team.

“He brought the intensity and we could tell that he wanted to beat his old team,” said Rycenga. “It made the rest of the team want it more too.”

The whole team was striving to defeat the falcons and they did exactly that.

“We knew it was a big night for Freddy, and we all wanted to support and be there for him to help him achieve his goal,” Rycenga added.

The Dawgs play the Falcons again tonight, February 23 at East Kentwood.

 

Wrestling back for another strong season

by Kenny Champion

Every year the Grandville wrestling team roster always seems to have a few wrestlers that are ranked, no matter how many seniors they lose. They still continue to produce great wrestlers who have the ability to compete at a higher level than most. We’ve interviewed Coach Bubba Gritter, Coach Aaron Grifhorst, and Jake Paganelli (varsity ranked wrestler). 

How long have you been coaching?

Coach Gritter, the varsity head coach, has been a wrestling coach for 10 years two of those years were at the college level. Coach Grifhorst, the middle school head coach, has been coaching for 16 years. He has been at Grandville for 15 years, and 14 of those years were at the middle school level. He also coached at Lakeshore Middle School in Grand Haven where they had their first undefeated season in the history of their program.

What do you teach at a young level to get successful wrestlers in the long run?

Coach Grifhorst views middle school wrestling only as a stepping stone to get young wrestlers prepared for high school.

“I really don’t care about wins or losses or if we have undefeated seasons. My goal is to make sure each wrestler has the right building blocks to help them be successful in high school wrestling.”

In 16 years of coaching, Coach Grifhorst hasn’t had a losing season or really even close to having a losing record. Coach Gritter believes that if he can instill a good work ethic into his wrestlers and continuously test their ability to compete, then they’ll be successful wrestlers. Both coaches agree heavily that wrestlers need to perfect the basic positioning, moves, and wrestling knowledge before learning more advanced moves.

Do you practice the same series of techniques all the way up to the varsity level?

Usually, each coach typically has his own specialties and methods for teaching technique. However, they do try to align with one another. Coach Grifhorst tries his best to ensure the moves and even the names of moves to match up with the High School as much as possible to have a seamless transition into the High School program.

Why is the experience so important in wrestling? Coach Gritter says that in order to be successful, wrestlers have to be able to feel when moves are available in live matches, and trying things is the only way to really know whats right and wrong.  Jake Paganelli is currently ranked 8th in the state at 171 pounds he has been wrestling for 10 years and started when he was 7 years old.  Even though his wrestling career isn’t over yet, even he knows that without experience it is hard to get success. Without experience and knowing how to work your way through positions and take given opportunities during a match, a wrestlers success is limited.

 

Leaders in women’s athletics seek change

by Chloe Deckrow

The goal of the Women’s Athletic Leadership Club at Grandville high school is to bring more awareness to female athletics and female issues. There tends to be a big concern that female athletes don’t get the same treatment, all the props, and the fans as do boys sports.

Club co-advisor Mrs. Peterson said, “It has everything to do with the inequities of boys sports verses girl sports.”

She went on to say it’s not just Grandville High school, it’s the society and culture that girls sports are not as valued as boys sports. Girls are just as guilty of not giving the support to girl’s sports, too.

Woman athlete and club member Kaitlyn Orme started her career in the sports world young.

“I’ve always wanted to play softball and my parents kind of pushed me into it, so I started T-ball and instantly fell in love with the sport,” Orme said. “I started playing basketball through one of my friends who convinced me to play and loved that sport also.” Orme is also now committed to play softball at Ferris State University. Kaitlyn felt like the WALC was a perfect fit for her because of her passion for sports.

Girls in the club are going to girl’s event and bringing slips provided by the club that they fill out and give feedback on how they felt about the sport and what they liked that they saw during the game. These slips are then given to the coaches of the sport and they read it to the team. null

According to Mrs. Peterson they have gotten really good responses from the teams that they have done it with so far.

The club is also not only just focusing on the women athletes but also on women rights and issues in general.

Something they plan to do is make some kind of drive for women who are out on the streets going through the hardships of having to deal with their menstrual cycles and not being able to afford things like tampons and pads . They’re still working on the details, but they think it is gonna be after the holidays where everyone in the club brings money or pads that they will then donate.

Julia Veenkamp says, “Yes, you have to be an athlete and a girl to join the club but you don’t have to be involved with specifically Grandville sports,” and Emily Anglim said, “ It is not too late to join!”

 

 

What motivates you to lift?

by Pat Clark

Motivation is needed for many aspects of life, whether it be school, working a job or in this case weightlifting.

Thanks to Coach Tully, who is changing the culture around weightlifting, lifting has become a big part of athletics here at Grandville High School here at Grandville.

But, there needs to be something that drives an athlete to get in the weight room and grind multiple times a week. The idea of motivation had never occurred to many students until they were asked the question, “What motivates you to lift?” and they were forced to reflect.

Senior Matthew Clark said, “whenever I’m in the weight room my motivation comes from me wanting to be the best athlete I can be for me and my teammates.”

Senior Bret Chesla said his motivation came in his sophomore year, to be exact. He said “freshman year I came in not knowing my place in the weight room. I wasn’t that motivated. But what motivated me was to become the best baseball player I could.”  

Now it was time to ask the man who runs all the weightlifting sessions for the school, Tully Chapman or as most people call him “Coach Tully.”

Tully said his motivation came from a middle school coach.

“I started in middle school with a guy named Jim Fast who taught me how to lift weights,” Tully said. “I learned how to lift weights, and all of my friends did that, so I started doing it and really loved it.”

He also credited his high school football coach

“[He was] a good strength coach, I wouldn’t say everything we did was right, but we didn’t have the research we have now.”

Tully said his main motivation came from following his l football coach’s path.

“He played division 1 football at Michigan State and I wanted to follow in his footsteps,” Tully said.

As you can see, people have different reasons as to why they lift weights.  Find yours and the drive to become a better athlete, person, or classmate becomes easier. 

Marcus Igo: Student-Athlete Struggles

by Levi Houtman

Being a student-athlete is one of the most stressful yet rewarding things ever. The number of difficulties you face while attempting to maintain several different activities at once is overwhelming. Being apart of any sports team requires practice every school day of the week, additional training, game days, meeting with coaches and more.

Student-athletes have much more to prioritize than the average student. Not only do athletes have to attend their classes as well as practice, but they also have to try and maintain a social life, and sometimes even a job. I was able to sit down with Marcus Igo, a senior at Hudsonville high school, on how he manages his time wisely. He participates in cross country, the dive team, school plays, is active at his church and even manages to work roughly 20 hours every week while maintaining a 4.16 GPA. unnamed-2

A lot of students usually don’t work a job while participating in sports, due to not having the time to work or their schedule just doesn’t allow them to.

“I’ve learned to utilize time,” Igo said. “Most of the time at lunch or in between classes I do my homework.” By completing his homework at school he’s able to not be interrupted during sports or to worry about it after getting out of work.

“Managers and coaches are a really big factor when it comes to allowing me to have a flexible schedule to work around,”Igo said.

“That man is insane, his work effort and dedication to sports, work, and everything else he does is something I’ve never seen before,” Igo’s coworker and friend Matt Pietrzak said. “I can see why people would envy him.”

Igo’s grind doesn’t stop in the classroom, and even outside of it he is always putting in 100% effort and dedication to whatever task is at hand.

One of his managers Emilie Kurnat stated, “It’s really insane and it’s cool that he does that, because most people can’t. It’s something to be proud of.”

Igo shows others that if you are in a sport during high school, you don’t have to designate all of your time towards it. You are still able to maintain an insane GPA, work during school, and also be involved in your community.

Is Fantasy Football a problem?

by Mitchell Karcher

Every Sunday, around 33 million are frantically looking at their fantasy lineup in hopes that their fantasy team will produce a win for them. Whether they are involved in a league concerning money, or just simply love the competition, it is fair to assume that fantasy football is one of the most addicting games out there.

For those who don’t know what fantasy football is, essentially around ten people in a league draft players from the NFL to play for their fantasy team. In turn, every yard, completion, and a touchdown that player gains, gives their team a certain amount of points, which adds together with the rest of the players on the team.

Though many criticize the game for taking the team aspect and interest out of the game, the $70 billion dollars made yearly off fantasy leagues would argue otherwise. Obviously, a lot of people are playing this game, which generates $11 billion towards the NFL. It’s a great business, however, the real question is whether or not this game is good for NFL players?

GHS Miles Balley, JV football player, had an interesting take on if the game is actually good for the player.

“This year I had the first round pick in my fantasy football league. Having knowledge of the players, I went after and got David Johnson. Unfortunately, the first game of the season he broke his wrist, ending his season along with my hopes of winning my fantasy football league,” Balley said. “My immediate reaction was anger towards him until I came to my senses and realized he’s just a normal guy who got hurt in a football game. So in relation to is it good for players, I would have to say it can’t be great if people are getting mad at NFL players for losing their fantasy season for them. It just doesn’t seem like a healthy fan relationship.”

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Interesting enough it seems as though many NFL players have this same opinion. Being the ones that are risking their physical health, many of the players feel that it is unfair to judge a player based on what he can do for their fantasy team. In response to being asked what he thinks about fantasy football, Richard Sherman, cornerback for the Seattle Seahawks gave his honest opinion.

According to The Seattle Times, he said, “You are thinking oh man, he’s messing up my fantasy team, but they don’t care how it affects your fantasy team, because they are real players, and this is real life.”

However, not everyone had the same opinion that Miles and Richard had on the subject.  Aiden Herrema, JV cornerback, made a counter to the previous comments.

“When I used to watch football when I didn’t play fantasy, I knew pretty much the players on the Lions and the superstars of the league, but after I started playing I would honestly say I more than doubled my knowledge of players playing in the league, people I never knew existed all of a sudden popped up on my roster, and I started to acknowledge more players.”

There really seems to be two trains of thought on this matter as other students  essentially said the same exact thing. People have very little knowledge of the players before they start playing fantasy.

In a fast-paced constantly changing world, people feel the need to be in control. Fantasy football allows average people to feel that they have some sort of control in the football world, but whether this helps the NFL player’s reputation or damages it is still up for consideration.

 

 

Hockey Season 42 Begins

by Patrick Underwood

On October 30th, the Grandville varsity hockey team held their 42nd annual tryouts.

Head coach Joel Breazeale is happy that “all the returners and prospects have put the time in the offseason.”

The Grandville varsity hockey team has been in the weight room 5 days a week during the summer and fall.

Senior Chris Northouse states “the boys have been grinding every week and are very dedicated to the team.”

Senior Hunter Cunningham says “the team has been putting in a lot of work in the offseason and I think it will be a good year for them.”

Coach Breazeale described the character of the team.

“When teams play us, they know what to expect,” Breazeale said. “Highly energetic, respectful, and plays to win every period.”

The team’s first game is on Saturday, November 18 at 7:30 vs team rival GRCC at Southside ice arena. The team’s hardest regular season is coming up and it would be great to see some support for the boy’s hard work and dedication to the sport.