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Tag Archive | "Cedar Springs Youth Football"

Cedar Springs loses heartbreaker to Catholic Central

By Judy Reed

Red Hawk senior quarterback Aiden Brunin runs with the ball. He had 98 yards rushing against Catholic Central. Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

The win (and possible share of the conference title) was within their grasp. It was so close that the Red Hawks and their fans could taste it. With 38 seconds left on the game clock, Ryan Miller scored the touchdown that brought them within one point of the Catholic Central Cougars. Would they get the 2-point conversion to seal the win?

In what was being called a showdown for the title in the OK Gold conference, Cedar Springs hosted Catholic Central at Red Hawk Stadium last Friday, October 15. Both teams were 5-0 in conference. The Cougars have not lost a conference game since 2016, and were state champions in Division 5 in 2020, and in Division 4 in 2019, 2017, and 2016.

But no team since 2018 has scored as many points against Catholic Central as Cedar Springs did Friday night.

“I thought our offensive line played one of the best games I’ve ever witnessed,” said Cedar Springs Coach Gus Kapolka. “They were dominant from beginning to end. Our special teams were solid as well, with a kick return for a TD, and two blocked PAT’s (point after touchdown kicks).”

Red Hawk junior Antwuan Nicholls scored on an 80-yard kick off return against Catholic Central. Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

Cedar Springs hit the scoreboard first, when with 6:52 left in the first, Ryan Mitchell ran 10 yards to the left to score. The 2-point conversion was no good.

Catholic Central then scored with 2:40 left in the first, when quarterback John Passinault ran right for a four-yard touchdown. The point after kick by John Meyer was good.

With 2:27 left in the first, Catholic Central then kicked off to Cedar Springs. Antwuan Nicholls got the ball on the Cedar Springs 20-yard line and ran it 80 yards down field to score the next touchdown. Alex Ream’s run for two more points was good.

With 1:23 left in the first, CC scored again, when Passinault threw to Nolan Zeigler for a 14-yard touchdown. The Red Hawks didn’t allow Meyer to attempt the point after kick.

At the end of the first quarter, it was CS 14, CC 15.

Cedar Springs scored twice more in the second quarter, on a 10-yard run by QB Aiden Brunin and a 1-yard run by Alex Ream. Brunin ran in the 2 points after Ream’s TD.

Catholic Central scored again, when Passinault threw to Devin Fridley-bell for a 25-yard touchdown. The Red Hawks blocked Meyers point after kick.

The score at half was CS 28, CC 23.

Catholic Central held the Red Hawks at bay in the third and came back with three touchdowns. Passinault scored on both a one-yard run and a 67-yard run and threw a pass to Fridley-bell for a 7-yard touchdown. They scored 2-point conversions after two of the touchdowns.

Catholic Central runs with the ball. Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

After three quarters, it was CS 28, CC 41.

In the fourth quarter, Cedar Springs not only had to play catch up, they had to hold back Catholic Central. Cedar Springs drove down the field and scored on a two-yard run by Brunin with 8:26 left on the clock. Brunin’s pass to Josh Kriekaard for extra points was no good. It was now CS 34, CC 41.

Catholic Central started their next drive on their 20-yard line. They made it to the Cedar Springs 33-yard line, and on 4th down and 3, Passinault tried to run up the middle but was stopped by Antwuan Nicholls for no gain. Cedar Springs took over on their 33-yard line.

Cedar Springs drove down the field and made it the Catholic Central 3-yard line. Ryan Mitchell ran left for the 3-yard touchdown. It was now CS 40, CC 41, with 38 seconds on the clock. Cedar Springs called their third time out. They needed a two-point conversion to win the game, and a possible share of the conference title.

Brunin rolled out with the ball but couldn’t make it in to the endzone.

Cedar Springs kicked off, and tried an onside kick, but it was picked up at the 50 by Catholic Central. They made one play to lose two yards, and the game was over. Final score CS 40, Catholic Central 41.

“I’m proud of the way our guys battled all the way down to the final play on Friday night,” said Kapolka.   “We are obviously disappointed with our effort, but I am pleased with how we competed. The game came down to us making 2-3 critical plays at crucial times, and we just couldn’t make them.”

Cedar Springs racked up 327 yards on the ground. They were led by Aiden Brunin with 98 and 2 TDs, Ryan Mitchell with 72 and 2 TDs, Carter Falan with 57, Antwuan Nicholls with 52, Alex Ream with 39 and one TD, and Kyle Hoort with 9. Nicholls also had an 80-yard TD run on a kickoff return.

The Cedar Springs Red Hawk senior football players made their walk across the football field Friday night. From L to R: Jacob Rocafort (32); Carter Bayink (2); Landon Demorest (31); Jordan Victorson (67); Kyle Hoort (15); Alex Ream (20); Brennen Porter (58); Tate Ringelberg (50); Aiden Brunin (28); Cam Heiss (75); Alex Kramer (51); Logan Johnson (52); Blake Scheer (81). Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

Catholic Central had 170 yards rushing between three players: John Passinault had 104, Jack Rellinger had 53, and Ronin Russell Dixon had 13.

Passinault also threw for 256 yards, including three touchdowns.

Cedar Springs is now tied for second place in the OK Gold with South Christian High School. They will battle them this week at East Kentwood High School.

We asked Coach Kapolka what challenges that game will bring to the Red Hawks.

“South Christian will present similar problems to Grand Rapids Catholic Central. They are big and athletic, and they will try to spread us out and throw the ball,” he explained. “We have to fix some things defensively this week to be ready for their dynamic attack.” Make the trip Friday to East Kentwood High School to cheer on your Red Hawks! Game time is 7 p.m.

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Donations rescue youth football program

Vanderhyde Ford presented a $9,000 check to the Cedar Springs Youth Football League. From left to right are CSYFL board members Jason Bravata, Eric Prins, April Victorson, Shawn Kiphart; Vanderhyde Ford reps Keith Waligora and John Williamson; and CSYFL board member Amy Gillette. Photo courtesy CSYFL.

By Judy Reed

The Cedar Springs Youth Football (CSYFL) program is back in the black thanks to donations from the community.

Board members found earlier this year that about $12,000 was missing from their account due to an embezzlement, and that not only would they not be able to buy the kids the new jerseys they had saved for, but they were also in debt for last year’s equipment. As soon as word got out, the community stepped in and began to donate individually and through fundraisers. And one Cedar Springs business—Vanderhyde Ford—ran ads in the paper stating that they would donate $100 for every vehicle sold. They made a sizable donation to the group a few weeks ago that gave the program a real shot in the arm—$9,000.

The CSYFL board wants everyone to know how well they are doing and how grateful they are for the support. “On behalf of the CSYFL Board, we’d like to extend a thank you to the community for all of the generous donations that we have received,” they told the Post. “These donations enabled us to start moving in a positive direction by paying off debts and making improvements to our facility. We’d especially like to thank Vanderhyde Ford for their amazing donation of $9,000. With their donation we were able to follow through with our promise to purchase new jerseys for our children and pay off the remaining debt.”  

The group had a successful flag football season and is looking forward to the Rocket football season, which begins this week with practices. The first games will be Saturday, September 8. “With all of the support from our community, we are able to move forward in a positive light, and it will be an exciting season of Rocket Football for us all,” they said.

CSYFL board members include Eric Prins, President; April Victorson, Vice President; Amy Schoenborn, Secretary; Chrissy Simons, Treasurer; Shawn Kiphart, Field Director; Amy Gillette, Concessions & Spirit Wear Coordinator/Trustee; Jamie Oliver, Trustee; Kevin DeWeese, Trustee; Brad Austin, Trustee; Mike Nienhuis, Asst. Field Director; and Jason Bravata, Asst. Field Director.

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Tips pour in about Skinner Field vandals

This photo shows just a portion of the damage done in the Skinner Field locker recently. Courtesy photo.

By Judy Reed

Police say that four juveniles, ages 15-16, are allegedly responsible for the malicious destruction of property in the locker room at Skinner Field the weekend of March 24.

The vandalism was discovered on Sunday, March 25, and police were called. According to Shawn Kiphart, president of the Friends of Skinner Field, the locker room has large steel doors that you cannot get into, so the suspect(s) broke out a small daylight window that sits about seven feet off the ground. Nothing appeared to be stolen, but the vandals smashed and destroyed toilets, urinals, 11 new first aid kits, showerheads, football equipment and more. Two of the toilets were brand new. They also burned a flag in the sink. 

Cedar Springs Youth Football uses the locker room, and photos of the damage were posted to their page. According to Kiphart, tips began pouring in from the community. By Wednesday, March 28, police were interviewing the suspects. 

“This shows that the community will not stand for this type of behavior,” said Kiphart. “It really was the community that caught them.” He was also complimentary to the Kent County Sheriff Department. “We are very happy with the police department in how quickly they got on it, how many were involved, and how quickly they solved it. They did a great job,” he said.

The case has been forwarded to the Kent County Prosecutor’s Office for review.

Earlier that same week, the concession stand was also vandalized. In that incident, the vandals dumped cleaning supplies on the floor, then put paper on it and tried to burn it. The floor will need to be replaced. The police have not yet closed that case.

Kiphart said they have had an outpouring of community support to help clean up, as well as replace and repair what was damaged. A gofundme page at https://www.gofundme.com/skinner-field-fund has raised just over $2,300, and they have gotten several people in the community who are skilled laborers (such as plumbers) who have volunteered to come out fix things like the urinals, and donate their time. The Cedar Strong Facebook group also approached them about organizing a cleanup day for the lockeroom and concession stand. “We have not yet started on the cleanup and upgrades because we couldn’t get into the buildings while the investigation was going on,” explained Kiphart. “We’ve only just been able to get into the locker room this week, and we cannot yet get into the concession stand, so a cleanup date has not yet been set.” He hopes they will be able to set one soon.

While he’s pleased that the suspects in the locker room incident have been identified, it’s kind of a bittersweet victory.

“I’m very happy that the suspects were caught, but saddened that there seemed to be no rhyme or reason for what they did, and because they seemed to be local,” said Kiphart. “While they need to be punished, I also hope they get the help that they need.” 

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First annual CSYFL community charity games


In an effort to give back to the local community, which has supported the Youth Football Program, Cedar Springs Youth Football is hosting their first annual Community Charity Games, on Saturday, October 21, at Red Hawk Stadium. 

The Cedar Springs 7th grade football team will take on South Christian 7th grade at 5:30 p.m., and the Cedar Springs 8th grade will play Caledonia at the conclusion of the 7th Grade game.

Admission is $3 per adult, $2 per child, and 3 and under free.

Proceeds from the games will go to the Ricker and Orr families.

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Hometown Happenings

 articles are a community service for non-profit agencies only. Due to popular demand for placement in this section, we can no longer run all articles. Deadline for articles is Monday at 5 p.m. This is not guaranteed space. Articles will run as space allows. Guaranteed placement is $10, certain restrictions may apply. You now can email your Hometown Happenings to happenings@cedarspringspost.com please include name and phone number for any questions we may have.

CS Youth Football Sign-ups

July 21: Cedar Springs Youth Football sign-ups will be held on Thursday, July 21st, Tuesday, July 26th and Thursday, July 28th  from 6-7:30 pm at Skinner Field Concession Stand or sign up online @ www.cedarspringsyouthfootball.com. Rocket: 3rd – 6th grade, Middle School, 7th  – 8th. Contact April Victorson 616-890-5869, a_victorson@yahoo.com. #29, 30p

AYSO Registration

July 28: The American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) Registration for the Fall season TODAY. Visit www.ayso902.org. Registration ends Thursday, July 28th. #29,30p

July CS UMC Sesquicentennial Event

July 31: The public is invited to an Old Fashioned Hymn Sing and Ice Cream Social on July 31st at 4 pm at the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church on the corner of Church and Main Street. This event of singing and fellowship is part of the church’s 150th Anniversary Sesquicentennial celebration. Everyone is welcome! #30

Dinner at the Legion

Aug. 1: The American Legion, 80 S. Main St. Cedar Springs, is hosting a Roast Beef & Onions dinner on Monday, August 1st , from 5 – 7 pm. Included will be mashed potatoes and gravy, veggies, salad, roll, drink and dessert. The cost is $9 for adults, children (15 and younger) $4.00. Come and enjoy home cooking. Take out is available. 616-696-9160.  #30p

Craft It Up at KDL

Aug. 1: Refashion old t-shirts into headbands, bracelets, gladiator sandals, dog toys, tank tops and more. Please bring a pair of flip-flops. Monday, August 1st at 1:30 p.m., Nelson Twp./Sand Lake KDL Branch, 88 Eighth St., Sand Lake. #30

Free Basketball Camp

Aug. 2-5: Gowen Bible Church will host its free annual basketball camp for kids 3rd – 8th grade from 9 am to 12:30 pm on August 2 – 5 at its Meddler Campus, 16415 Meddler Ave., Sand Lake. Register online at www.gowenbible.org or call 616-984-2525. Contact this number for more information. #30

God’s Kitchen in Cedar Springs

Aug. 2,9,16,23,30: Join us for dinner every Tuesday. God’s Kitchen – Cedar Springs welcomes families from Northern Kent County and the surrounding area to a Tuesday Evening Meal. No charge – no registration required!  Served from 5:30 – 6:30 pm at the St. John Paul II Parish, 3110 – 17 Mile Rd., Cedar Springs. For more information, call the Church office at 616-696-3904. #30

Heritage Festival

Aug. 4-6: the 30th Annual Heritage Festival is August 4 – 6 at Montcalm Heritage Village on Montcalm Community College’s Sidney campus. The three day celebration features historical displays, refreshments and must for all ages. Visit www.montcalm.edu/heritage-festival for more information about Montcalm Heritage Festival. #30

Help Promote Literacy

Aug. 4,10,19,23: The need is urgent at this time! The Literacy Center of West Michigan has scheduled  information sessions for prospective volunteer tutors. These sessions last one hour. It allows persons interested in becoming volunteer tutors to find out more about the Literacy Center and its programs. At the end of the session there will be a chance to sign up for tutor training. Sessions are Thursday August 4th at 2 pm, Wednesday August 10th at 6 pm, Friday August 19th at 10 am and Tuesday August 23rd at 2 pm. By training people to be tutors, the Center can offer one-on-one reading help to adults asking for assistance in reading or English as a Second Language (ESL). You do not need to speak another language to tutor ESL. The Literacy Center of West Michigan is located at 1120 Monroe Ave., NW, Suite 240, Grand Rapids. Please call 616-459-5151 (ext. 10) or email us at info@literacycenterwm.org to register. #30

Free Lake Effect Concert

Aug. 7: Free Lake Effect Concert featuring the band “Round Brown Suitcase” will be held on Sunday, August 7th from 12 to 3:30 pm (band starts at 12:30 pm). The concert will be held at Bostwick Lake UCC Church, 7979 Belding Rd. NE, Rockford. Donations and food sales will benefit Pause with a Cause. Contact Lisa Atchison, 616-634-6459 with any questions. #30,31p

Celebrate Curious George’s 75th Anniversary with a Day of Discovery

Aug. 10: Make a yellow hat to wear as you learn about space, rainbows, the senses, the sun and the ocean through various crafts and hands-on activities. Note that while we celebrate his character, Curious George will not be in attendance. Wednesday, August 10th at 10 a.m., Spencer Twp. KDL Branch, 14960 Meddler Ave., Gowen. #30

Rummage Sale at CS UMC

Aug. 10,11: The Cedar Springs United Methodist Women will hold a rummage sale in the fellowship hall on the corner of Main and Church Streets. August 10, Wednesday, from 9 am to 7 pm and August 11, Thursday, from 9 am to 2 pm. There will be a bag sale on Thursday. Proceeds go toward their mission projects. #30,31p

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