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Soccer Team Wraps Up First Season

Front (L to R): Joey Hanes, Austin Fisk, Evan Besmer, Aaron Wright, Carson McSorley, Jesse Benson, Sawyer Marek, Ivan Winters. Back (L to R): Assistant Coach Kyle Knarr, Tom Guerrato, Jeff Marek, Avery Bishop, Kaden Winters, Jake Perry, Landon Winters, Ryan Rypma, Matt Willis, Parker Tompkins, Head Coach Mark Winters. Not pictured: Binh Nguyen.

The soccer team had a good run for its first-ever team in school history. The team, comprised mostly of underclassmen, went up against some tough varsity teams and held their own. Under the direction of coaches Mark Winters and Kyle Knarr, the team has improved tremendously this season both offensively and defensively. We look forward to the team growing together over the next few years and becoming a leading competitor. We are very proud of the first-ever soccer team at CTA!


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Cedar Springs runs over Lowell

The Cedar Springs Red Hawks ran all over the field in their 50-0 win over Lowell last Friday. Courtesy photo.

Secures playoff bid

The Cedar Springs Red Hawks Varsity football team ran away with the win last Friday, October 6, on their way to a spot in the playoffs, when they hosted Lowell in their annual pink out game.

The Red Hawks tore up the field in their 50-0 win over the Red Arrows, raking up over 500 yards, with two players getting over 100 yards, and three other players getting 55-plus. Much of it was in the first half.

“As far as we can tell, the 473 yards rushing in the first half was a school record,” said Coach Gus Kapolka. “It’s the second time we’ve two players o over 100 yards this season.”

Ryan Ringler set a record on defense when he broke the previous school record of 301 career tackles. At the end of the game he had 304 career tackles, spanning from the 2015 to 2018 seasons.

The first score of the game came with 10:47 left in the first quarter, when Sage Serbenta ran right for a two-yard touchdown. QB Kolby Swank then ran it in for the extra two points.

Serbenta scored again with 5:41 left in the first quarter when he ran for a 62-yard touchdown. Swank’s pass to Serbenta was no good.

Cedar Springs scored again with :56 seconds left in the first when Lucas Pienton ran left for a two-yard touchdown. Ethan West’s run in for the extra points was no good. The score at the end of the first quarter was Cedar Springs 20, Lowell 0.

The Red Hawks scored again in the second quarter with 9:25 left on the clock when Ryan Ringler ran up the middle for an 85-yard touchdown. Pienton’s run in for the extra points was good.

The Red Hawks scored twice more in the second quarter. With 4:27 left, Zack Schmid ran right for a 10-yard touchdown, and Swank’s run into the end zone for extra points was good. They scored again with 1:16 left when Ben Shaw ran up the middle for a 42-yard touchdown. The two-point conversion attempt was no good, and the half ended with the score Cedar Springs 42, Lowell 0.

Cedar Springs scored once more in the fourth quarter, with 10:20 left on the clock, when Ethan West ran 49-yards for a touchdown. West then passed to Justus Larsen on the two-point conversion attempt and it was good. The final score was Cedar Springs 50, Lowell 0.

The Red Hawks rushed for 512 yards, netting 505 after penalties. Serbenta rushed for 130; Ringler 128; Shaw 73; West 72; Pienton 55; Landon Totten 24; Swank 19; and Schmid 13. Pienton also had an interception.

On defense, Gage Gardner had the most tackles with 8; followed by Zack Schmid and Xavier Anderson with 6 each; Ringler with 5; and several others with 3 or less.

 “I’m happy with our performance and I thought our guys played well and we were able to play a lot of our bench guys who haven’t gotten a lot of playing time this season,” said Coach Kapolka. 

Cedar Springs is now 4-0 in conference, and 6-1 overall. They are in first place in the OK-White, with Northview a close second (4-1, 5-2). There are two weeks left in the regular season. The Red Hawks travel to Grand Rapids Ottawa Hills (0-5, 1-6) this Friday, October 12, and then host Forest Hills Northern (2-2, 4-3) on October 19. Come out and cheer on your Red Hawks!

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Third conference win for boys cross country

Sophomore Austin Mann setting a new PR of 17:20

After 10 days off from racing and looking a little rusty, the Cedar Springs boys won their third OK Conference meet at Greenville, coming in first over second place Forest Hills Central with a score of 43 to 53. This meet took place on October 3 at Brookside Golf Course, and there were seven schools competing.

The team’s top three runners all finished further back than they have been in the previous league races, though only by a couple of spots. Corey Bowers finished 2nd overall in 16:31, just barely getting out-kicked in the final 100m by the top runner from Forest Hills Central. Dilan Sargent and Jaydon Moleski started off further back than they typically do, but managed to still finish 6th and 7th overall in times of 17:02 and 17:18. Austin Mann stepped up and set a personal record on the course, the only boy to do this at this meet. Mann finished 8th overall, his best conference finish of the season, with a time of 17:20. Mann’s finish in the top 10 was what was needed in order to get the win.

Freshman Carter Moleski finished inside the top five runners for the first time this season and 26th overall in a time of 18:14. He was closely followed by Gavin Braciak in 27th overall in a time of 18:19. Daniel Vermulm was 39th (19:06), Gabe White 43rd (19:09), Cayden Steinebach 46th (19:15), Justin Voskuil 69th (20:23), Alex Nylaan 72nd (20:32), Caleb Menefee 83rd (20:48), Sam Kleynenberg 92nd (21:23), Gabe Minnich 94th (21:26), and Logan Douglas 102nd (21:51).

The girls placed 6th overall as a team. Sophomore Maggie Prins ran her lifetime personal best of 21:44 placing 23rd, the only Red Hawk girl to PR for the day. Isabel VanDusen placed 46th with a time of 23:43 and Lily Howland placed 54th with a time of 24:25. Tonya Tepin helped close the gap placing 55th with a time of 24:27 and Marjorie Hosking placed 61st running a time of 24:48. Antonia Eigemann placed 70th (25:37), Paige Marsman placed 78th (26:04), Madison Golliver 94th (30:06), and Hannah Helton placed 101 overall (36:49).

“I was proud of our girls. Temperatures were warmer than usual and with the course still being soft, we ran well as a group. Times weren’t fast, but I didn’t want them to focus on that. The goal was to just keep moving up and helping their teammates fill that gap,” said Coach Melinda Stressman.

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Boys finish fourth at Portage invite

The Cedar Springs boys and girls cross country teams traveled to Portage on Saturday, October 6, for the biggest invitational in the state. Early morning storms came through creating muddy sections on an already relatively difficult course containing hills.

The boys’ varsity team finished 4th overall, but was only 15 points from 2nd and 3 points from 3rd. There were nearly 320 runners representing 46 schools in this race. The team proved they are capable of running right up there with the best teams in the state, with wins over other state ranked teams. 

Corey Bowers led up front with a 6th place finish in a time of 16:03. Dilan Sargent and Jaydon Moleski gave two more low finishes as they finished in 22nd and 25th overall in times of 16:46 and 16:49. Bowers, Sargent, and J. Moleski all earned medals for placing in the top 50. Gavin Braciak had a great comeback race finishing in 62nd overall in a season best time of 17:17. Austin Mann rounded out the top 5 finishers coming in 89th in a time of 17:39. Freshman Carter Moleski performed admirably in his first race of this caliber finishing in 133rd in a time of 18:07. Daniel Vermulm had a season best time of 18:19 finishing in 152nd.

JV medalist Freshman Cayden Steinebach

The boys JV team finished 14th overall out of 27 teams. Cayden Steinebach led for the Red Hawks finishing 39th overall in a time of 19:10 earning a medal for a top 50 finish. Alex Nylaan just missed a personal lifetime best coming in 67th overall in a time of 19:38. Caleb Menefee finished 101st overall in a time of 20:14. Justin Voskuil ran a 20:33 and placed 125th. Logan Douglas had a personal lifetime best of 20:39 (133rd). Sam Kleynenberg ran a 21:33 (184th) and Gabe Minnich 23:05 (278th).

“I am ecstatic about how our boys competed in what is the biggest invitational in the state of Michigan, against the top competition in the state, on what is a challenging course normally, but even tougher this past Saturday with the amount of rainfall we received creating many muddy sections on the course. To finish 4th in a meet of this caliber is a great step forward for our boys program. We had wins over several state ranked teams, including previously #2 ranked Spring Lake. We still have a long way to go, but I have great expectations for this team at the state meet this year,” said Coach Garrett Lacy.

The Varsity Lady Red Hawks placed 35th of 45 teams with 297 girls competing in their race. Leading the varsity was Maggie Prins with a time of 22:08 (141st). Tonya Tepin ran her lifetime personal best of 22:39 (166th). Isabel VanDusen ran a 22:42 placing 169th. Lily Howland and Ally Ladd ran lifetime personal bests of 23:19 (202nd) and 23:55 (233rd) respectively. Marjorie Hosking ran 24:46 (261st) and Paige Marsman ran her season best of 25:26 placing 281st.  Maddie Golliver competed in the JV race running a 25:09 and placing 181st.

“With weather and course conditions, each girl ran very well. It was the biggest invite in the state, so with having them run against some pretty good competition, they stuck to it and ran more competitively. Tonya Tepin ran a lifetime PR of 22:39 and she really improved on moving up to close some gaps. Paige Marsman ran her season PR of 25:26. Very proud of her breaking through the pack at the end to help her get to that point. Ally Ladd just got back to competing from having a slight injury and she looked great. All the girls did their part so now we just have to keep moving forward with that same momentum,” said Coach Melinda Stressman. 

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Cedar grad signs with Davenport to bowl

The above photo shows Joshua Hamilton, a 2018 graduate of Cedar Springs High School, signing at Davenport University as an NCAA Men’s bowling and Academic Scholar. He is standing with Coach Mike Eaton. Signing was June 20, 2018. Josh is the son of Dave and Kelli Hamilton. Congratulations, Josh!

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Be the Referee

By Mark Uyl, Asst. Director, MHSAA

What officials don’t do 

Game officials at all levels have a lot of responsibilities. But there are some critical things that take place at local high school games where officials don’t have the authority that some folks think they do. Let’s start with injuries – specifically concussions. Concussion management starts and ends with the local school. If an official suspects a concussion–or any injury–all he or she can do is notify the coach of the team. The school makes the decision about whether or not a player stays in the game. We often get calls about whether or not an official is responsible for enforcing MHSAA Handbook rules. Again, it’s up to the school, which agrees to follow and enforce the rules when joining the Association. Even if the official suspects an ineligible player is in the game, it’s not his or her role to enforce that rule. It’s all on the school.

Be the Referee is a weekly message from the Michigan High School Athletics Association that is designed to help educate people on the rules in different sports, to help them better understand the art of officiating, and to recruit officials.

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Volleyball falls in two matches


The Cedar Springs Varsity volleyball team fell in two tough 0-3 matches to the Huskies of Forest Hills Northern on Tuesday night, October 3, and to the Red Arrows of Lowell on Wednesday night, October 4. With the losses, the Red Hawks fall to 7-19-1 overall and 1-6 in conference action. The Lady Red Hawks Wednesday match was part of Pink Out week at the High School. 

“Overall, on our Pink Week, sponsored by CSHS Athletics, we raised over $4,100, with money still coming in,” said Athletic Director John Norton. “This money will be going to the The Cure starts Now, in honor of Brison Ricker. This organization is aggressively battling for a cure for Pediatric cancer. This donation will help offset the lack of federal funding from our government as it relates to this important health concern. 

“Our Wednesday Pink out Volleyball match was a huge part of pink week, and a huge contributor to the funds we raise,” said Norton. “It was a very emotional event, and we were able to recognize those that have, or have battled cancer, as well as raise money and awareness for an important cause.” 

Leading on the night against the Red Arrows was outside hitter Kyla Andres with 4 kills, 11 digs and 10 serve receives, followed by Grace Pavelka with 3 kills and 2 blocks. Arianna Rau added 2 kills and a block while Kaylie Andres contributed 2 kills and 18 serve receives. Setter Michelle Brennen tallied 10 assists, 3 aces and 6 service points, while Elizabeth Fettig stepped up and had 10 dgis and19 serve receives. The JV team fought hard against Lowell falling 24-26 and 23-25. 

Volleyball returns to action Tuesday night when they travel to Ottawa Hills, and host Forest Hills Central Thursday night. Freshman and JV start at 5 p.m. followed by Varsity. 

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Red Hawks pull off big win over FHC

The Cedar Springs Red Hawks earned their fifth straight victory last Friday, September 28, when they took the win over Forest Hills Central at the Rangers’ homecoming. Photo by Kelly and Rob LaLone.

By Judy Reed

The Cedar Springs Red Hawks kept their winning streak alive last Friday, September 28, when they upset Forest Hills Central 24-14, on the Rangers’ home turf. However, it was a bit of a nail biter for Red Hawk fans, when the Rangers defense did something no other teams’ defense has been able to do this year: they kept the Red Hawks scoreless in the first half.

“This was a big win for us,” said Coach Gus Kapolka. “Being down at the half and fighting our way back really makes me proud as a coach. Our guys hung tough together and found a way to get it done.”  

The first score of the game came with :36 seconds left on the clock in the second quarter, when Forest Hills Central’s Cameron Deines ran right for a 4-yard touchdown, and the extra point kick was good. So Cedar Springs went into the locker room at half down 0-7.

The Red Hawks came out with renewed vigor in the second half, and scored with 7:08 left in the second quarter, when QB Kolby Swank passed to Kaden Liggett for a 10-yard touchdown, and then passed again to Sage Serbenta for another two. They led 8-7 at the end of the third quarter.

The Red Hawks scored again in the fourth, with 8:28 left, when Serbenta ran to the right for a 5-yard touchdown, and then he ran it into the end zone again for the extra two points. 

The Rangers hit the scoreboard again just a couple of minutes later (6:53 left) when Cameron Deines ran to the left for a 19-yard touchdown. The extra point kick was good. The score was now 16-14, Red Hawks, and plenty of time for it to go either way.

Cedar Springs sealed the win with 2:04 left on the clock when Lucas Pienton ran left for a 1-yard touchdown, and then Swank passed to Serbenta for the extra two points.

“We really controlled time of possession in the second half (20 minutes – 4 minutes), and we converted all three of our two-point conversions in the second half,” noted Kapolka. “I felt that was the difference in the game.”

The Red Hawks rushed for a net total of 295 yards, with Serbenta running for 99 on 14 carries; Pienton had 89 on 17 carries; Ringler 77 on 19 carries; and Swank had 23 on 5 carries. Ethan West and Zach Schmid also contributed. 

Cedar Springs also garnered some passing yardage, with Swank completing 5 out of 8 passes for 47 yards. Receivers included Pienton, Serbenta, West, Liggett, and Nate Webb.

FHC had a total of 75 yards rushing, with Deines getting 39 yards on 7 carries; and Jimmy Scholler 30 yards on 12 carries. 

Ranger QB Jimmy Scholler racked up 148 yards on 14 of 20 passes. 

On defense, Ryan Ringler led with 8 tackles; Pienton had 7; Schmid had 6; Gage Gardner and Xavier Anderson both had 5. Pienton also had an interception. 

The Red Hawks lead the OK White Conference with a record of 3-0 in conference and 5-1 overall. One more win will guarantee them a spot in the playoffs. On Friday, the Red Hawks will host Lowell (1-2, 1-5 overall) in their annual pink game at Red Hawk Stadium at 7 p.m. 

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Equestrian ends season on a high note

The Cedar Springs Equestrian team took fourth at regionals last weekend. Courtesy photo.

The Cedar Springs Equestrian Team had three competitions this year and finished second over all in District A on September 16, at the Kent County Fairgrounds. The top two teams in each division then went on to regionals.

On September 28-30, 11 riders and their mounts traveled to Mason, Michigan for the Regional competition at Ingham County Fairgrounds. They finished fourth in the Region with 256 points. 

“It was a long, chilly weekend competing against some of the top riders in the state. I am so proud of our team coming in fourth at Regionals!” said Coach Katie VanDyke. 

The team competed in Hunt Seat, Saddle Seat, Western, Trail and Speed divisions. They had 45 placings in 15 events, taking first in Saddle Seat Pattern, Western Equitation, Western Bareback, Saddle Seat Pattern and Flag Race.  

If you are interested in competing next year, please check out Cedar Springs Equestrian Team on Facebook or ask in the Cedar Springs High School Athletic Office. 

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Be the Referee

By Mark Uyl, Asst. Director, MHSAA

Always first and goal during overtime

In Michigan, football overtime for each team starts with first and goal at the 10-yard line. Other states which allow overtime begin anywhere from the 10 to the 25-yard line, and in some of those states, you could actually pick up a first down while on offense.

But Michigan is always first and goal. Even in those situations where a dead ball foul from the end of the first team’s possession in an overtime may start the second team’s series at the 25, it is still first and goal.

The only way a team on offense can pick up a first down in overtime is on a penalty providing yardage plus an automatic first down, and those are only the roughing calls: roughing the passer, the kicker, the holder and the long snapper.

Be the Referee is a weekly message from the Michigan High School Athletics Association that is designed to help educate people on the rules in different sports, to help them better understand the art of officiating, and to recruit officials.

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