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Tag Archive | "state finals"

Bowers medals in two events at state meet

All-stater Corey Bowers pictured with coaches Andrew Wittland (L) and Justin Jones (R).

Three Red Hawk track and field athletes competed at the MHSAA Division 1 State Finals held at East Kentwood High School on Saturday, June 5, with the goal to secure All-State honors. Cedar Springs senior Corey Bowers brought home two All-State medals.  

“These three athletes worked incredibly hard to get to the state meet this year and we couldn’t be more proud of being represented by them on Saturday,” said Coach Justin Jones.  

Junior Gabe White competed in pole vault. He didn’t have his best day and unfortunately was not able to place.  “Gabe reached an elite level of vaulting this year, and still has so much potential to reach. He’ll be one of our more exciting returners next year. He obviously excels in pole vault but he’s also arguably our most versatile athlete on the team. He’s an absolute technician on the pole, we are proud of the work he puts into his craft. His goals are set high for next year,” said Jones.

Junior Alyssa Detweiler placed 15th overall with a jump of 5 feet 2 inches. “Alyssa proved very quickly to me to be one of the best jumping talents our school has ever seen. She was able to tie our longest-standing school record in the high jump thanks to some coaching help from our boys’ high jump record holder Tim Hullinger,” said Coach Jones. “She might be the most level-headed field event athlete I’ve ever seen. She caught the eyes of lots of college coaches this year as well. Looking forward to seeing how high she can fly next spring.”

Senior Corey Bowers earned All-State medals in two events.  He finished the 1600-meter race in a time of 4:17.51, placing 2nd behind a high school olympic qualifier from Ann Arbor Skyline. He was seeded 9th going into the race. Bowers also ran the 800-meter race and placed 8th with a time of 1:58.50.  This also earned him a spot on the podium.  

On May 26, Bowers broke the school record for the 800-meter race at the Michiana Timing Metro Health Scholarship Invite.  He finished the race in first place in a time of 1:54.25, which was a personal best for him.  

“Corey finished his career off runner-up to the best miler in U.S. history and followed up by sneaking in as All-State in the 800m as well. He was one of very few athletes to pull off all-state in multiple events. He’ll be missed beyond measure, but he is more than prepared to hit the ground running at a high level as a college athlete. He’ll also compete for Team Michigan in the Meet of Champions next weekend in the 3200m,” said Coach Jones.   

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Bowlers to head to state finals

The Lady Red Hawks bowling team took second place at regionals last week Picture from L to R is Coach Crystal Morales, Omani Morales, Hailey Begeman, Nicole Baker, Chloe Gisk, Katelyn Paige, Kayla Walters, and Coach Tim Jackson. 

These bowlers will go to the state finals as individuals: L to R: Katelyn Paige 4th, Isaiah Waite 9th and Omani Morales Division 2 Regional champion.

The Lady Red Hawk bowlers took 2nd place at Regionals last week and will now to advance to state finals this coming weekend.

Three Red Hawk bowlers also will advance to state finals as individuals: Isaiah Waite was 9th for the boys; Katelyn Paige 4th for the girls, and Omani Morales was the Division 2 Regional champion. 

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Red Hawk cheer team headed to state finals

The Cedar Springs Varsity Competitive Cheer team finished 3rd in regional competition last weekend, and will compete at the state finals this Saturday, March 7. Courtesy photo.

For the second year in a row, the Cedar Springs Varsity Competitive Cheer Team will compete at the Division 2 State Finals at the Delta Plex on Saturday, March 7, after finishing third at the regional finals at Portage Northern on February 29.

Twelve teams arrived at Portage Northern High School with the same goal in mind: to place in the top four and advance to State Finals. They came prepared to battle and ready to capitalize on mistakes made by their opponents to climb towards the top of the scoreboard.  

The Lady Red Hawks executed a solid round one performance and earned 231.7, the third highest score of the round. The ladies performed strongly in round two, but mistakes resulted in the team earning a score of 219.76. The team held onto third place, but only by 1.34 of a point. Determined to not let the score of round two be a source of discouragement, the squad took the mat for round three and gave it all they had and redeemed themselves by earning 314.9, the highest round three score of the competition.

The team leaped to their feet in excitement when they heard their name announced as earning third place with a combined round three score of 766.36, only .9 of a point behind the second-place team. 

An enthusiastic coach Anne Olszewski praised her team. “These girls really rocked out round three! They definitely left that entire gym talking. I have a song in my heart!” 

A special thanks to the Sea of Red—the amazing fans who supported the girls last Saturday. Good luck Team 2020. Hold the rope…row the boat!

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Equestrian team takes 8th at State

Congratulations to the 2019 Cedar Springs Equestrian team, who for the first time in over a decade, had an opportunity to compete in the state finals last weekend and finished in the top 10.

Top row (L to R): Carly Dunham,Paige Oosting, Melana Kettler, Taryn Troupe, Gloria Alverez, Chloe Myers, Grace Pavelka, Sam Waite, Morgan Chaffin, Emily Eagan and Casey Fiske. 
Courtesy photo.

The team ended their season with an 8th place finish in Division B at the State Finals held this past weekend in Midland, Michigan.

The team competed at three district meets at the beginning of September, which earned them the title of Reserve District Champions and advanced the team to regionals. Regionals was a three day competition held the last weekend of September in Mason, Mich. 

“The weather was not favorable and the team struggled to find their groove but the girls were determined,” said Coach Katie VanDyke. They came from behind and were able to claim the reserve regional champions in Division B and advanced the team to the state finals. 

“It had been 12 years since Cedar had qualified for state,” remarked VanDyke.

 The state competition was spread out over four days with multiple events each day. “We had a few factors that made our trip to state difficult,” explained VanDyke. “Two of our team members’ horses were hurt and unable to compete. The weather was rainy and cold but the girls didn’t let that get in their way! 

“The heart and sportsmanship that this team has is absolutely amazing. I would like to congratulate our top three point earners from State:  junior Chloe Myers, junior Melana Kettler and senior Carly Dunham. I would also like to thank our many sponsors and parents who supported us. Without you we wouldn’t be able to do this,” said VanDyke.

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State finals and Nationals

State and National Champion Tatianna Castillo. Courtesy photo.

By Barbra Chong

West Michigan Pursuit travelled to Kalamazoo for the 2019 State Finals the weekend of March 29. WMP entered 21 grapplers to compete and 17 earned All State recognition. 

43 lb Kooper Witte, 4/6 age group finished 7th. 90 lb Xavier Carpentier, age 13; 80 lb Harper Cheng, age 11; 81 lb Tyler Parmeter, age 10; 58 lb Dylan Russo, age 7; 66 lb Kellen Weckesser, age 10 and 55 lb Blake Werkema, age 8 all finished 5th. 80 lb Alex Buskirk, age 11 and 49 lb Brody Compau, age 8 both finished 3rd. 69 lb Evan Andrews, age 10; 54 lb Carter Giles, age 9; 75 lb Luke Egan, age 11; 85 lb Ayden McClurken, age 11 and 70 lb Josh Vasquez, age 12 finished 2nd. 

State Champions are 72 lb Quinten Cassiday, age 10; 100 lb Blake Peasley, age 11 and 58 lb Tatianna Castillo, age 8 in the All Girls division. WMP would also like to recognize Blake Peasley on his fourth State title and Tatianna Castillo’s back to back State title in the Girls Division. April is Autism Awareness month. It was a wonderful surprise to have my team show up to the State Finals all wearing singlets and gear that represent Autism Awareness. The cause is near and dear to my heart. They raised over $200 to donate to this amazing cause under my son’s name.

West Michigan Pursuit travelled to Lansing for the 2019 NUWAY Nationals this past weekend. WMP entered 10 grapplers to compete and all 10 earned All American status. 51 lb Carter Giles, D3 and 65 lb Kellen Weckesser, D3 finished 7th. Giles ended his season with a record of 40-15 and Weckesser finished his season with a record of 39-11. 58 lb Dylan Russo, D2 finished 6th. Russo finished his season with a record of 40-29. 68 lb Evan Andrews, D3; 80 lb Alex Buskirk, D4 and 72 lb Josh Vasquez, D4 finished 4th. Andrews finished his season with a record of 44-12, Buskirk finished his season with a record of 45-15 and Vasquez finished his season with a record of 62-6. 71 lb Quinten Cassiday, D3 finished 3rd. Cassiday finished his season with a record of 62-7. 100 lb Blake Peasley, D4 finished 2nd. Peasley finished his season with a record of 62-12. National Champions are 58 lb Tatianna Castillo, 8U Girls division and 49 lb Brody Compau, D2. Castillo ended her season with a record of 63-15 and Compau finished his season with a record of 57-11. 

“A wrestling season is built on preparation, determination and heart,” said Head Coach Dave Andrus. “It is difficult to achieve personal success without the support of each wrestler’s family. Every wrestling family knows you give it your all. A season is not defined on wins and losses but rather watching your athletes move in a positive direction. For a coach, it is the greatest joy to have an athlete run off the mat and into your arms after achieving their goal,” he added.

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Boys cross country team headed to state finals

The boys cross country team took second at regionals and are headed to state finals.

The Cedar Springs Boys Cross Country team is headed to the MHSAA Division 2 State Finals. The team placed 2nd out of the 15 teams that competed at the Division 2 Regional 10 meet at Michaywe Pines Golf Course in Gaylord, Michigan, on October 27.  

The boys were led by Corey Bowers who finished 3rd overall, breaking the 16 minute barrier for the second time this season in a time of 15:59. Jaydon Moleski had the biggest personal record of the day running a 30-second lifetime best and  finishing in 6th overall in a time of 16:14. Bowers and Moleski each earned All-Regional honors. Dilan Sargent just missed his lifetime best coming in 16th overall in a time of 16:44. Austin Mann ran a personal lifetime best time of 16:53 finishing in 19th overall. Gavin Braciak had a season best time of 17:09 to finish in 29th overall. Daniel Vermulm had his second best race of the year coming in 53rd overall in a time of 17:52. Carter Moleski ran well in his first meet of this importance coming in 64th overall in a time of 18:15.

 “Our boys’ team ran a hard fought race at regionals to finish 2nd and qualify for the D2 state finals at Michigan International Speedway this weekend,” said Coach Garrett Lacy. “We lost to a phenomenal Fremont team, who is one of the best teams in the state. We are excited about our potential moving forward to the state meet next weekend as well. Chelsea and Fremont look to be the top two teams in the state at this point, but after that I see it being a hard fought battle amongst several teams for spots 3-10. We are hoping for a top 5 finish to improve upon our 10th place finish at the state meet a year ago.” 

L to R: Marjorie Hosking, Tonya Tepin, Isabel VanDusen, Lily Howland, Maggie Prins, Ally Ladd, Carolanne Merlington, and Coach Melinda Stressman.

The girls team had a great day of season and personal bests. The team placed 10th out of 14 teams. Senior Carolanne Merlington led the Lady Red Hawks and placed 31st in a time of 20:30 and earned herself a season record. Maggie Prins placed 38th with a time of 20:46 to finish out her season with a lifetime personal best. Coming in next for the Red Hawks was Tonya Tepin, who placed 57th with a time of 21:35, and  also earned herself a lifetime personal record. Continuing with the trend of earning lifetime personal bests, Isabel VanDusen kept the streak rolling placing 64th in a time of 22:03. Following closely was Lily Howland placing 68th with a time of 22:25.  Aslo achieving a lifetime personal best was Marjorie Hosking with a time of 22:47. She placed 76th.  Finishing 84th was Ally Ladd in a time of 23:04. She also earned herself a lifetime personal best.  

“I was so happy with how the girls performed. They ran hard and continued to push each other in the race to move up as it went on. We had a lot of them reach their lifetime PRs and that’s great! The course was pretty fast. We were hoping for a better place but honestly they went out and did what they were supposed to do. I’m very excited for this program. There is so much talent and they work hard, now we just have to keep applying it in the competitions more and more as we go. I’m so proud of them, they’ve really come more together as a team,” said Coach Melinda Stressman.

The boys will travel to Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn on Saturday, November 3, and compete at 1:30 p.m. Let’s go Red Hawks!

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Marching band to compete in two competition tracks


By Judy Reed

Cedar Springs marching band students and their parents were surprised last week Monday, August 20, when it was announced that the band would be competing in the Scholastic Marching Band (SMB) competitions and not the Michigan Competitive Band Association events. The MCBA events can lead to the state finals.

Parents asked the administration to reverse the decision. As it turns out, the decision was made last May, but not communicated to band students. Principal Ron Behrenwald sent out a letter last Thursday, August 23, to students letting them know that because of the problem with communication, they would move forward with a competition schedule that would include both the SMB and MCBA events. 

“This provides you an opportunity to earn a chance to compete in the 2018 MCBA State Finals. One of our aims has and still remains to provide our marching band students with adjudicated performance opportunities that will enhance your experience and showcase your talent as a musician,” he wrote.

He said that at the end of the competitive season, “a review of the marching band experience and overall program success criteria will be conducted with input from a variety of stakeholders. Please be assured that we will pass along any changes for the 2019 competition season to you and your parents/guardians as soon as those decisions are made, but no later than May 2019.”

He then apologized for the frustration of the timing of the announcement.

The band has not always competed in MCBA events. For many years they competed only in SMB competitions. They have been competing in MCBA events since 2009.

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Red Hawk Odyssey of the Mind team to go to World Finals

Odyssey of the Mind held State Finals on March 17, the second step for creative teams competing their way to the World Finals. State Finals hosts the best teams from the entire state of Michigan and Cedar Springs sent two teams this year. The teams, made up of up to seven members, choose a challenging, open ended “problem” to solve and then test their solution against other teams in the same age division. Teams must use their creativity, ingenuity, acting, artistic talents and recycle, rework, and create, using teamwork and solving solutions on the spot to advance. 

Life skills are learned in abundance here.

To earn the right to advance, teams must place first or second against the best, most creative kids in Michigan.

Placing in second and earning the right to advance to world finals is our team from Red Hawk Elementary coached by Michelle Wiles and Traci Slager.

Team members are: Aiden Lake, Brielle Sarniak, Jade Yowtz, Nate Slager, Annalise Elliot and Coryn Wiles.

The team is busy now creatively fundraising for their upcoming trip. At world finals over 16 countries and more than 35 states have teams competing! It will be an amazing memory maker for this creative team! Good Luck to you! 

If you would like to donate, you can visit their gofundme page at https://www.gofundme.com/om-world-finals.

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WMP wrestlers to advance to state

WMP qualifiers for the state finals. Photo by B. Chong.

By Barbra Chong

West Michigan Pursuit entered 21 grapplers to wrestle at regionals last weekend, and 20 are advancing to the state finals in two weeks. Of the 20 qualifiers, 13 are Regional Champions. As a team, they are currently ranked as follows: 

#5 for Most Pins/Least Time with 27 pins in 42.11. 

#1 for most Tech Falls/Least Time with 8 tech falls in 22.16. 

#3 for most Pins/Tech Falls/Least Time with 35 in 64.27. 

#4 for Most total match points 413 points and #1 for Winning Percentage 58 wins/11 Losses 82% win ratio. 

Individual placements are as follows: 52 lb Tatianna Castillo, 7/8 age group finished 5th Place. 95 lb Blake Hammer, 2004 age group; 100 lb Isa Starr, 2007 age group and 67 lb Kamden Witte, 2007 age group finished 3rdPlace. 55 lb Kaleb Pautke,7/8 age group; 58 lb Aaiden Vasquez, 7/8 age group and 59 lb Kellen Weckesser, 2008 age group finished 2nd Place. 

2018 Regional Champions are 67 lb Evan Andrews,2008 age group; 70 lb Xavier Carpentier, 2005 age group; 63 lb Quinten Cassiday, 2008 age group; 75 lb Harper Cheng, 2007 age group; 43 lb Brody Compau, 7/8 age group; 67 lb Luke Egan, 2007 age group; 64 lb Drew Moro, 7/8 age group; 75 lb Tyler Parmeter, 2008 age group; 85 Blake Peasley, 2007 age group; 138 lb Aaron Smith, HS; 80 lb Isaiah Sostenes, 2007 age group; 65 lb Josh Vasquez, 2006 age group and 49 lb Blake Werkema, 7/8 age group. 

We also want to recognize some grapplers who have practiced with us full time all season but do not currently wrestle under WMP: 

63 lb Hunter Eek, 2008 age group finished 3rd Place; and 80 lb Alex Buskirk, 2007 age group finished 2nd Place. 

2018 Regional Champions are 55 lb Tanner Cowles, 7/8 age group; 75 lb Ian Cook, 2006 age group and 75 lb Ayden McClurken, 2007 age group. 

WMP also recognizes the hard work of the following grapplers: Quinten Cassiday and Brody Compau, who earned their back to back Regional Championships; Tyler Parmeter, Josh Vasquez and Blake Werkema earned their 3rd consecutive Regional Championship; Ayden McClurken, Drew Moro and Blake Peasley earned their 4th consecutive Regional Championship; and Luke Egan earned his 5th consecutive Regional Championship. 

“These kids continue to exceed my expectations week after week,” said head coach Dave Andrus. “They have diligently pushed themselves and each other to get where they are right now. Going into the State Finals in a few weeks, I have the highest of confidence on their performance. A very special thank you to Bill, Aaron and all of my supportive parents. We are not coaching an elite group of All Stars. We are showing them the path it takes to realize their hard work come to fruition to be recognized as an All Star. This is what I strive for.” 

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Odyssey of the Mind

Red Hawk Elementary 1st place

Saturday, February 24, rang with creativity at the regional Odyssey of the Mind tournament in Greenville, for Region 2 West Michigan teams. The halls were filled to the brim with costumed creatures ready to “hang out” at a stellar location, vehicles ready to TRI their wheels and skills at Olympic sized events, Emoji faces, and classical characters galore! Charlotte’s web? We spun it. Gulliver’s travels? We journeyed through, and down the rabbit hole with Alice, plus so much more. 

Red Hawk Elementary 2nd place

We had primary (K-2nd grade) cooking classes and balsa wood structures holding 100s of pounds!

Creativity, teamwork, perseverance, hard work and a whole lot of fun was the common thread of the day. The best part is the students do it all by themselves. Hands off adults! If one way doesn’t work there are many other ways to try. That’s one of the best life skills of Odyssey of the Mind. 

Building confidence and leadership while embracing creativity and problem solving. Our world needs our O.M.ers! 

Cedar Springs sent three teams.

Cedar View Elemenatary 5th place

Cedar View Elementary – coached by Dena Fisk and Jennifer Redes (honorable mention 5th place) problem 3 div 1.

Red Hawk Elementary – coached by Michelle Wiles and Traci Slager (placed 1st and advancing to State FInals) problem 3 div 2

Red Hawk Elementary – coached by Rahnda Bordeaux and Matt Robb (placed 2nd and advancing  to State FInals) problem 4, div 2

Congratulations and best of luck at State Finals on March 17 at Thornapple Kellogg School.

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High School Track successful at State

Brandon Sawade with Coach Lett.

Cedar Springs senior Tara Tepin, junior Brandon Sawade, and senior Alex Douglas all competed at the MHSAA Division 2 State Track finals.

Coach Rob Neier, senior Tara Tepin, and Coach Covey.

On Saturday, June 3, at Zeeland Stadium, three members of the boys and girls track team competed in the MHSAA Division 2 State Finals Track Meet.

Senior Tara Tepin placed in both the 100 and 300 meter hurdles and earned all state honors. Tara lowered her school record in the 100-meter hurdles in the prelim race to 15.26 to qualify for the finals, where she placed fifth with a time of 15.34. Tara ran the 300 hurdles in 46.79, just short of her school record in that event, for eighth place. Tara also earned academic all state in both events.

Junior Brandon Sawade and senior Alex Douglas competed in the meet for the boys team. Brandon placed fourth in the pole vault with a jump of 13 feet 7 inches and earned all state honors. Alex competed in the 110-meter hurdles and ran a time of 15.52 in his preliminary race, but did not advance to the finals in the event. Alex placed 12th overall in the event.

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Odyssey of the Mind state finals

Three Odyssey of the Mind teams from Cedar View Elementary traveled to Thornapple Kellogg High School on Saturday, March 18, to compete in the state finals.

The team that competed in Odd-a-bot Div I (the robot problem) finished fifth.

The team that competed in the problem It’s time, OMER Div I finished 10th.

The team that competed in Catch us if you can Div I finished 9th.

“It was a very tough competition at this level,” remarked Michelle Wiles, one of the team coaches. “We are very proud of all their hard work, team building skills, and creative minds put to work in a new challenging way.”


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