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Tag Archive | "Grace Bible College"

Maddie Brown named NCAA player of the week


Maddie Brown, a Grace Bible College sophomore from Cedar Springs, Michigan, and graduate of Mount Pleasant High School, has been named Student Athlete of the Week by the NCCAA for her performance in the Tigers’ season-opening week of women’s soccer.
Brown scored the Tigers’ first ever goal against Aquinas College to take a 1-0 lead in an eventual 3-1 defeat on Tuesday night. Brown then scored 2 goals to lead Grace Bible College in a 4-2 win over Holy Cross College. On the week, Brown had 10 shots with 8 on goal.

Maddie is the daughter of Pastor Chad and Tracy Brown, of Cedar Springs.

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Nick Wolfe joins basketball staff at Grace Bible


 

The Grace Bible College men’s basketball program is excited to announce the addition of their newest Assistant Coach, Nick Wolfe.

Nick had a storied career as a player, beginning at Cedar Springs High School from 1990-1994, where he earned First Team All-State honors in Class B in his junior and senior years and averaged 31 points per game. He then went on to the Upper Peninsula and Lake Superior State University (NCAA DII), continuing to make an impact on the basketball court from 1995-1999, closing his career as the Lakers’ career 3-point leader. He was also a two-time captain and a two-time All-League selection. His 1996 team brought home the GLIAC League and Tournament Championship.

Nick spent the year in 2000 as a Graduate Assistant at LSSU before returning to the court as a professional player in Portugal in 2001 and 2002. He then returned to the coaching ranks just recently at Cedar Springs High School as the Varsity Assistant in 2016.

Grace Head Coach Gary Bailey has known Nick for decades, and he attested that he will be a fantastic addition to the men’s basketball program.

“Nick brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the team. I have known Nick since he was a kid and he is a great person to have around our staff and our players. He had an outstanding basketball career in college and overseas. The players will benefit greatly from having Nick with us.”

Nick has been married for 15 years to his wife Krista and they reside in Rockford, MI with their two children – Sienna (9) and Eli (7). He currently is a Senior Case Director at The Robison Group and owner of Enviro-Master of West Michigan, a commercial hygiene company.

“I’m thrilled for the opportunity to be a part of the Grace basketball family,” commented Nick. “Coach Bailey and his staff have done an amazing job with this program and I’m honored to be a part of it.”

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Dan George honored by NCCAA


Dan George with Ben Belleman, NCCAA Director of Member Relations.

Dan George, Cedar Springs resident and Associate Head Coach for the Grace Bible College men’s basketball team, was honored with the NCCAA Game Plan 4 Life Award this past week in Louisville, KY. This is the highest honor given to an athletics staff member in the NCCAA at the end of each year. Here he is shown with Grace Head Coach Gary Bailey.

Dan George, Grace Bible College’s Associate Head Coach for men’s basketball, was honored Thursday night, June 1, at the National Christian College Athletic Association’s National Convention in Louisville, Kentucky, with the “Game Plan for Life Athletic Staff Character Award.” It is the highest honor given by the NCCAA to athletic staff and is awarded to one male and one female athletic staff member in the nation each year. Dan is the only assistant coach to receive the award in its history. The purpose of the award is to honor athletic staff members who epitomize the Christian character qualities of Love, Integrity, Faith, and Excellence. Dan has served Grace with Head Coach Gary Bailey in a program that has won 10 regional championships and 5 national championships during that time. But the GP4L award is prestigious because of its emphasis on more than winning games. It honors those who have a lasting impact on people they serve.

In nominating Coach George for this award, Coach Bailey said, “Dan agreed to be an assistant coach for a year in which I took the job for one season to help them [Grace] out while they looked for their full time coach. That one year has turned into 12 (and going) and Dan has come along side each and every year in leadership of this team.  He is the only assistant coach in the Grace Athletic Hall of Fame. Dan has invested in kids and students’ lives for over 40 years working in either college or K-12 school settings. He currently is the Superintendent at a local charter school [Creative Technologies Academy]. He has served on numerous boards including his home church and Pineview Homes, a home for abused, neglected and delinquent boys for 42 years.  A year ago Dan started a chapter of Polestar Outdoors in west Michigan, a national organization that mentors youth in the outdoors. He is very active in other community service projects in and around his home town of Cedar Springs, Michigan.”

Dan is also a good role model for the players. “He is the ultimate ‘lead by example’ man,” said former player Caleb Combs. “Although many coaches and teachers will often get caught in the ‘do as I say, not as I do’ mentality, Dan walks the walk. This is evident not only while he is on the court, but more importantly, off the court.”

Grace President Ken Kemper spoke about the difference that Dan has made. “Dan has full time employment elsewhere, and volunteers an enormous amount of time to mentor and work with the young men on our campus. His love for the game, and even more so, his love for ministering to young men through the game of basketball has made a huge impact on many young men and their families.”

Finally, long time coaching rival and NCCAA National Chair for men’s basketball, Jon Mack, whose University of Valley Forge teams lost in three national championship games to Gary Bailey and the Grace Tigers, had this to say about Dan George:  “I have been privileged to compete against Dan George and the Grace Bible College Men’s Basketball team over the past decade. Many of those competitions were for NCCAA national and regional championships. Although we have been winless in postseason competition against Grace Bible College, I have personally experienced great spiritual victories that have shaped my faith and purpose with God through the direct and indirect influence from Coach Dan George. Coach George has reflected love, integrity, faith, and excellence regardless of the result. It is very evident that the central focus of his heart is Christ and it’s reflected in how he influences people. I have personally experienced his love for me by his encouraging words during discouraging moments in my life over the past years, including the present. I am forever grateful to Coach George for his eternal investment in my life through the game we call basketball.”

Congratulations, Dan, and thank you for the impact you make on the community around you!

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March Reading Madness


Senator Peter MacGregor read to young students.

Senator Peter MacGregor read to young students.

Senator Peter MacGregor stopped by Creative Technologies Academy for a visit the morning of March 13 and read to the kindergarten, first, and second grade students. He read Bobby Bramble Loses His Brain by Dave Keane. Senator MacGregor discussed the difference between fiction and nonfiction books with the young students and encouraged them to read with their peers, siblings, and adults. He made sure to allow time to answer the many questions the students had, such as: How did you get elected? Who’s your boss? What do you like to read? What’s your favorite color?

Players from the Ferris State University Girls Basketball team take time to pose with third grade student, Aiden Dood, after reading with his class.

Players from the Ferris State University Girls Basketball team take time to pose with third grade student, Aiden Dood, after reading with his class.

Ferris State University’s women’s basketball Coach, Kendra Faustin, and Assistant Coach, Sharonda Hurd, brought a few of their players to the CTA elementary in order to spend time reading with students during March is Reading Month. The coaches and players also visited with the middle and high school students in an assembly to share powerful lessons about the importance of personal responsibility and accountability in everyday life.

CTA’s middle school students were visited by the Grace Bible College Tigers basketball team. The students watched a video, produced by MAPSA and Buddy Morehouse, about the story of Curtis Jones. Jones was widely considered the greatest basketball talent ever to come out of the city of Detroit, but his dreams died and his life spiraled downward because he couldn’t read and write. After viewing the video, team members led small group discussions with CTA students about lessons to be learned from Curtis Jones, specifically, about the importance of getting the best education possible.

Players from the Ferris State University Girls Basketball team pose with several middle school students.

Players from the Ferris State University Girls Basketball team pose with several middle school students.

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Lady Chargers Take WMAES Tournament Title


Lady Chargers: Front: Holly Fahling; 2nd Row: Grace Alverson, Elizabeth Jahns, Cameron Medwayosh, Hannah Hofstra, Faith Watson, Autumn Watson 3rd Row: Sierra Medwayosh, Zoe Roesner, Torie Wierda, Molly Wortz, Brin Calkins, Devin Slocum, Kaela Bucholz, Gabby Fahling Back Row: Coach Steve Washington

Lady Chargers: Front: Holly Fahling; 2nd Row: Grace Alverson, Elizabeth Jahns, Cameron Medwayosh, Hannah Hofstra, Faith Watson, Autumn Watson 3rd Row: Sierra Medwayosh, Zoe Roesner, Torie Wierda, Molly Wortz, Brin Calkins, Devin Slocum, Kaela Bucholz, Gabby Fahling Back Row: Coach Steve Washington

The Lady Chargers continued to improve on their season by competing in the West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science (WMAES) Basketball Tournament. The ladies took on the host WMAES Eagles in the first round and jumped out to an early lead and never looked back while charging to a 31-10 victory. It was CTA’s relentless pressure that enabled the team to force 36 turnovers in the game. Faith Watson led the Lady Chargers with eight points, freshman Hannah Hofstra threw in an additional six points. All of this was supported by senior point guard Holly Fahling who had five points, four rebounds and four assists.

In the Championship games, CTA faced the Grand Rapids Thunder for the the Tournament title.

The Lady Chargers played an aggressive player-to-player defense. Stifling pressure frustrated the Thunder team forcing 32 turnovers which created numerous fast break opportunities for the Lady Chargers’ 37-13. Holly Fahling stepped it up and scored 14 points with five steals and four rebounds. Faith Watson threw in an additional 11 points with Junior Autumn Watson cleaning up the boards with 8 rebounds. All players were able to get into both games and first year players Kaela Bucholtz, Elizabeth Jahns and Molly Wortz also logged points in the tournament. “It is great when when can play good team defense and get all 14 girls significant court time,” stated coach Steven Washington. “All of our players had the opportunity to contribute to a good team win.” With the wins, the Lady Chargers are 5-7 for the year and play this Friday, February 17th at Grace Bible College hosting the Wellspring Academy Wolves.

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Chargers Finish on High Note, Sweep Senior Night


 

CTA Boys Basketball Team: Front (L to R): Casen Armstrong, Bailey Hawkins, James Hofstra, Jarod Bouma, Collin Bishop, Mason Dood, James Bishop. Back (L to R): Dawson Armstrong, Isaiah Piskun, Coach Scott Bultman, Charles Wortz, Brandon Beck, Luke Hubbard, John Wortz, Jackson Bowers

CTA Boys Basketball Team: Front (L to R): Casen Armstrong, Bailey Hawkins, James Hofstra, Jarod Bouma, Collin Bishop, Mason Dood, James Bishop. Back (L to R): Dawson Armstrong, Isaiah Piskun, Coach Scott Bultman, Charles Wortz, Brandon Beck, Luke Hubbard, John Wortz, Jackson Bowers

In their only home games of the year, the Creative Technologies Academy boys and girls basketball teams came up with great performances, winning both games against West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science (WMAES).

In the first game, the Lady Chargers battled throughout, trailing by as many as 8 in the fourth quarter. Senior Aubrey Slocum and junior Holly Fahling came up with big baskets to give the Chargers their first lead of the quarter with only two minutes remaining. Stifling defense by 8th graders Hannah Hofstra and Faith Watson shut down WMAES, and the Lady Chargers went on to win their final home game at Grace Bible College, 34-30.

CTA Girls Basketball Team: Front (L to R): Gabriela Fahling, Bridget Lass, Zoe Lehman, Faith Watson, Holly Fahling, Autumn Watson, Cameron Medwayosh, Molly Wortz. Back (L to R): Assistant Coach Danielle Davies, Hannah Hofstra, Kaleigh Keech, Aubrey Slocum, Brianne Calkins, Shauna Russell, Tori Wierda, Sierra Medwayosh, Devin Slocum, Coach Steve Washington

CTA Girls Basketball Team: Front (L to R): Gabriela Fahling, Bridget Lass, Zoe Lehman, Faith Watson, Holly Fahling, Autumn Watson, Cameron Medwayosh, Molly Wortz. Back (L to R): Assistant Coach Danielle Davies, Hannah Hofstra, Kaleigh Keech, Aubrey Slocum, Brianne Calkins, Shauna Russell, Tori Wierda, Sierra Medwayosh, Devin Slocum, Coach Steve Washington

It was the last home game of the careers of Slocum, Kaleigh Keech, and Shauna Russell. Many tears were shed, but it was exactly the way the seniors had hoped to go out, with many hugs passed around after the game. The girls’ team showed great improvement throughout the season, ending with a 4-10 record.

The CTA boys team came out with great intensity after the senior festivities had ended. Junior Brandon Beck and sophomore Dawson Armstrong got started early, and the Chargers never looked back, holding a comfortable double digit lead throughout the majority of the game, winning by 15.

The Chargers varsity team finished with their best record in four years, at 8-6. With no seniors on the team, and growth and maturity expected over the next year, the Chargers could be an extremely dangerous team come next November. Congratulations on a great season, Chargers!

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CTA Family Strong Fundraiser


 

When people think of CTA, one of the first things that comes to mind is that it is like a small family, so when one of the “family members” was in need, CTA stepped up to the plate. The Bishop family recently received a cancer diagnosis for one of their daughters and CTA designated them the recipient of the #CTAfamilystrong treatment at a recent CTA basketball game at Grace Bible College. Not only did the CTA basketball teams put their best foot forward and win for both the boys and girls games, there were fundraising games for the kids as well as a silent auction to raise money for the Bishop family. In all, the CTA Family Strong fundraiser raised almost $6,000 for the family to put towards transportation and medical costs as they move forward with treatment. A heartfelt thank you to all involved to make this benefit such a huge success!

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Cedar Springs duo leads Tigers to regional championship


Two Cedar Springs men, Gary Bailey (right) and Dan George (left) are the head coach and assistant coach for the men’s basketball team at Grace Bible College in Grand Rapids. Last weekend they celebrated their ninth regional championship.

Two Cedar Springs men, Gary Bailey (right) and Dan George (left) are the head coach and assistant coach for the men’s basketball team at Grace Bible College in Grand Rapids. Last weekend they celebrated their ninth regional championship.

Gary Bailey, Dan George continue to build Grace basketball tradition

Two Cedar Springs men continue to build the basketball tradition at Grace Bible College—winning nine regional championships in 11 years of coaching. But the twist in the tale is this: in the beginning, they didn’t intend for the coaching jobs to be permanent.

When Gary Bailey, of Cedar Springs, took over as head coach of the Grace Bible College men’s basketball team in 2005, his intention was to take the job for a year. His son, Kirby, was a senior and an All-American for the Tigers, and Bailey saw his role as a transition one for that one year. He called his former college coach and long time friend, Dan George, currently school leader and superintendent at Creative Technologies Academy, and asked him to be his assistant.

Reflecting on that request, Dan explains, “I said, OK, I’ll do it for a year.” But the Tigers surprised everyone that first year, transforming a mid-season mediocre record to an overtime regional championship victory, and then went on to shock the national tournament’s #2, #3, and #1 seeds in successive games and won the national championship on a last second buzzer beater tip in by former Cedar Springs High School player, Jimmy Booth.

I think we got hooked,” says Dan, with a smile, “so we decided to hang around for more than that one year.”

The Grace Bible Tigers celebrated winning the regional championship last weekend, and are poised to win it all this season.

The Grace Bible Tigers celebrated winning the regional championship last weekend, and are poised to win it all this season.

One year has been extended to 11 and the two show no signs of retirement, yet. This past Saturday, the Tigers won their ninth regional championship in those 11 years with a dominant 79-49 win over Maranatha Baptist University. Bailey was named regional coach of the year for the seventh time to go with two national coach of the year awards and the prestigious Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan College Coach of the Year in 2011.

Bailey and George added a run of four consecutive national championships in 2009-2012, which included a streak of 69 consecutive NCCAA victories, a record that most people in the NCCAA say will never be broken, and brought their total to five rings in 10 years, and this year’s Tigers appear poised to challenge for a sixth.

The Tigers have become a highly respected small college program with a reputation of a willingness to play anyone, anywhere, and being competitive when they do. Signature wins in the last eleven years include victories over Ferris State University, Davenport University, Cornerstone University, and perennial MIAA powerhouses Calvin College and Hope College.

Although the small school does not give athletic scholarships, their schedule annually includes a number of high profile programs that do give athletic scholarships, and Bailey and his coaches have been able to assemble and develop some outstanding talent in the last 11 years. This year’s schedule included Coastal Carolina University, an NCAA Division 1 national tournament team last year, several NCAA Division II schools, including two in Honolulu, Hawaii, and Grand Valley State University, Northern Michigan University, and Saginaw Valley State University, and several NAIA programs. The Tigers also played a preliminary game at the Palace of Auburn Hills on the night the Pistons retired Chauncey Billups’ jersey. The guarantees provided by playing these larger schools help fund the Tigers’ ambitious travel schedule and the tough schedule helps them attract and develop talent that other schools have overlooked.

One of those overlooked players was Allen Durham who played high school ball at Wyoming Park High School, won three national championships at Grace, spent most of this year with the Dallas Mavericks organization, and is now starring in professional play in France. Most of Grace’s high profile games are played early in the season and toughen the Tigers in preparation for the very difficult NCCAA games and end of the year tournaments.

There is little doubt that the success of the men’s basketball program has had an impact off the court as well. The college was recently recognized as the fastest growing Bible college in the United States. The coaching staff has also emphasized community service and the team tackles several projects a year. One of their favorites is an annual visit to Pineview Homes, a home for delinquent, abused, and neglected boys in Evart, Michigan. Each Christmas season, the Tigers spend several hours with the boys in an afternoon and then attend their Christmas party and dinner. Pineview Director Paul Derscheid, says it is something the boys talk about weeks before in anticipation and months afterward they are still wearing their autographed Grace shirts.

Both coaches are members of the Grace Athletic Hall of Fame with Bailey being inducted in 2013 and George being inducted in 2014. While acknowledging satisfaction in the accomplishments and appreciation for the awards and recognition, Bailey is quick to give credit to those who have assisted in this journey.

For George, it is more than the rings and thrill of championships that keeps him going. “It’s the relationships you build along the way, with fellow coaches, with players, and even opponents,” says Dan, “and it’s the opportunity to mentor and influence young men in the things that are more important than basketball.”

Bailey echoes that sentiment. “Our rewards are far beyond wins and losses. It’s the opportunity to see young men develop on and off the court, and become outstanding husbands, fathers, and contributors to society.”

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Algoma Christian grad makes athlete of the week


Charisa Becker, an Algoma Christian grad and freshman at Grace Bible college, was named student-athlete of the week in Div. II by the NCCAA.

Charisa Becker, an Algoma Christian grad and freshman at Grace Bible college, was named student-athlete of the week in Div. II by the NCCAA.

Charisa Becker

Charisa Becker

Charisa Becker, a woman’s soccer player from Grace Bible College, was named Div. II student athlete of the week by the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) last week.

Becker, a 2015 Algoma Christian grad, scored the game tying goal in a 1-1 tie with Andrews University on October 22, and played solid defense throughout the match. The freshman defender/goalkeeper from Algoma Township was sent forward late in the game and responded by beating the Andrews keeper after a nice move in the penalty area. On Saturday, October 24, Charisa stepped into the goal and held a tough Cleary team to 2 goals, making 10 saves along the way.

Becker is the daughter of Tod and Rebecca Becker, of Algoma Township.

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Bailey named regional Coach of the Year


Gary Bailey, of Cedar Springs, and head coach of the Grace Bible College Tigers mens basketball team, was named Regional Coach of the Year. The Grace Bible Tigers won their regional championship and will play in the national tournament this week. They are coached by Cedar Springs resident Gary Bailey, (second from left.) CTA principal Dan George (second from right) is an assistant coach at Grace.

Gary Bailey, of Cedar Springs, and head coach of the Grace Bible College Tigers mens basketball team, was named Regional Coach of the Year.

The Grace Bible Tigers won their regional championship and will play in the national tournament this week. They are coached by Cedar Springs resident Gary Bailey, (second from left.) CTA principal Dan George (second from right) is an assistant coach at Grace.

The Grace Bible Tigers won their regional championship and will play in the national tournament this week. They are coached by Cedar Springs resident Gary Bailey, (second from left.) CTA principal Dan George (second from right) is an assistant coach at Grace.

Gary Bailey, Cedar Springs resident and head coach of the Grace Bible College Tigers men’s basketball team, was awarded his second consecutive NCCAA DII Midwest Regional Coach of the Year honor last weekend.

This is the sixth time Coach Bailey has received the award in his 10-year collegiate coaching career. He has led the Tigers to a 19-13 record so far this season, including a Regional Championship Title and an appearance to the upcoming NCCAA National Tournament on March 12-14.

The Tigers clinched their regional championship last weekend, when they defeated Maranatha Baptist University 80-65. The win earned the Tigers a guaranteed bid to the NCCAA DII National Tournament held in Circleville, OH at Ohio Christian University.

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