Fun on the Ice
Cassie DeSisso of Gilman takes a spin on the newly opened Grinnell Community Ice Rink at Ahrens Park while her three boys, Blake, Daymen and Channing, enjoy playing on the ice on Jan. 28, the first day the rink was open. The ice rink was donated by the Iowa Wild and Wells Fargo as part of the community rink program. Installation of the 80-foot by 40-foot ice rink was done through a partnership of the Ahrens Foundation and the City of Grinnell Parks and Recreation Department. The rink is located on the south end of Ahrens Park, west of the sledding hill. Hours for hockey are dawn to noon and ice skating are noon to dusk. Skaters need to bring their own skates and skating is free. A sign noting if the rink is open (green) or closed (red) is posted by the rink. Officials ask that people stay off the rink if it is closed.
"We are thrilled the Iowa Wild and Wells Fargo have generously donated an outdoor ice rink to Grinnell,” said Jordan Allsup, Grinnell’s Parks and Recreation Director. “The city’s previous ice rinks were well-received by the community and we expect this one to be as well.”
Grinnell’s Eli Rose will wear the red and white this fall as he suits up for Jeff McMartin and the Central College Dutch. Eli recently signed a letter of intent to play for the Dutch beginning with the 2021 season. Joining him at the signing were his parents, Chad and Kelly Rose, and brother, Jarrett.
Grinnell’s Dodge Sauser recently signed a letter of intent to play football for Matt Campbell and the Iowa State University Cyclones starting with the 2021 season. Joining Dodge, middle, at the signing, were his parents, Brian and Mandy Sauser, brother, Dallas, left, and sister, Emma, at right.
Four young ladies are wrestling for the BGM Bears and Coach Wyatt Baumann this year. Pictured are, from left: Karlee Bellenger, Haley Pierson, Chole Etten and Kyla Andrews. All four wrestlers competed at the Iowa Wrestling Coaches and Officials girls’ state wrestling tournament at Xtream Arena in Coralville, Jan. 22-23, with Etten placing sixth in her weight class.
BGM’s Chloe Etten stepped on the mat at the Iowa Wrestling Coaches and Officials Association (IWCOA) girls’ state wrestling tournament at Xtream Arena in Coralville, Jan. 22-23, with one goal, to improve on her mark from a year ago.
At 138 pounds, the sophomore, who has been wrestling since she was in the fifth grade, finished last year’s state tournament one match away from placing.
At the 2021 tournament, the third year for the girls’ state tournament, Etten did just that, placing sixth in her weight class.
“She has been hungry to return to show everyone what she can do,” said her coach, Wyatt Baumann. “She puts in extra time in the mornings to guarantee her weight is managed and her conditioning continues to improve.”
This year’s girls’ state wrestling tournament drew 457 wrestlers in 13 weight classes from more than 100 different schools. That is up from 350 a year ago and only 87 in 2019, the tournament’s inaugural year. According to the National Federation of State High School Association, 683 girls are participating in wrestling this year in the state of Iowa.
Etten is one of four female wrestlers who take to the mat for the BGM Bears. The others, Karlee Bellenger, Kyla Andrews and Hailey Pierson, all freshman, who joined Etten at the state tournament but didn’t place in their first trip, are helping build the girls’ wrestling program at the school.
“The strides that all three have made in these last two seasons are astounding,” said coach Baumann of the freshman. “You can see the highs and lows of emotion after each match on their faces, and that shows that they have bought into the idea of always wanting to improve. They come to us (coaches) to ask what they need to do to get better, and there is nothing more you can ask for from one of your athletes than the desire to improve.”
Coach Baumann said Etten has been a great role model for not only the other female wrestlers, but the whole varsity team.
“I enjoy being on a team that feels like a family,” said Etten.
“I like how aggressive it is,” added Bellenger, who started wrestling mid-season of her eighth grade year and competes in the 113-pound class. “I like the family we have as a team.”
“I like the adrenaline I get when I first step on the mat,” said Andrew, who wrestles in the 138-pound class.
And Pierson, who wrestles in the 126-pound class, said she likes the friendships she has formed with her teammates.
“I like winning in a boys’ sport,” she said. “It proves I can do it.”
“I hope that these four will inspire more girls at not only BGM, but other schools around the state to try the sport of wrestling,” noted Coach Baumann. “It has been mind-blowing at how quickly this side of the sport has grown and there is no end in sight.”
Members of the Grinnell Tiger Paws Dance Team area all masked up as they proudly show off the hardware they earned at the 45th Annual Iowa State Dance Team Championship held Nov. 15-17 at Wells Fargo Arena. The team placed fifth in Class V Hip-Hop, fourth in Class III Jazz and third in Class IX Pom. Pictured are, front row, from left: Kylie Cline, Lindsey Hollibaugh, Megan Hollingsworth, Lydia Roudabush Not pictured: Megan Sieck. Middle row: Brielle Sherman, Jenna Mintle, Sopha Tyler, Jenna Davenport, Olivia Blankenfeld. Back row: Lily Schmidt, Bela Hoffman, Jaedyn Arment and Daria Kline. Photo by Haley Loftin, Tiger Paw alum.
The Grinnell Tiger Paws dance team participated in two competitions this past fall, placing in the top five at both events.
At Stack the Stands, which was held at Cedar Rapids Prairie High School on Saturday, Oct. 24, the Tiger Paws entered the competition virtually, placing third in Varsity Hip-hop, second in Small Varsity Pom and earning first place honors in Small Varsity Jazz! This was the first time the dance team had performed at Stack the Stands.
In addition to the team dance routines, soloists Lindsey Hollibaugh, Megan Hollingsworth, Lydia Roudabush, Jenna Davenport, Sophia Tyler, Jenna Mintle, and Olivia Blankenfeld competed for judge’s comments in preparation for state solo competition.
The Tiger Paws hit the dance floor for a second time at the 45th Annual Iowa State Dance Team (ISDTA) Championship, held Nov. 17-19 at Wells Fargo Arena.
As with the first dance competition, Grinnell performed and recorded the dance routines in the GHS gym and were judged virtually. Grinnell placed fifth in Class V Hip-Hop, fourth in Class III Jazz and received third-placed honors in Class IX Pom.
Soloists Lindsey Hollibaugh, Megan Hollingsworth, Lydia Roudabush, Jenna Davenport, Sophia Tyler, and Jenna Mintle competed for a panel of three judges and all soloists were awarded a medal for their Division I rating.
The dance team was also awarded plaques for their excellence in community service and their distinguished academics, as well as recognition for their fundraising efforts for this year’s Susan G. Komen MORE THAN PINK walk.
“The Tiger Paws dance team continued to work hard, strive for success, and maintain positivity all season in the face of continuous uncertainty of what both their performance and competition schedules would look like this year,” said dance coach, Molly Loftin. “Their success at both competitions is a direct result of the dedication the girls have for their team!”
The Tiger Paws are coaches by Brielle Beck and Molly Loftin.