Category Archives: Sports
Led by seniors Jon Hellman (120 lbs.), Will Reiter (170) and Michael Ahrendsen (285), the Union Knights crowned five champions at the Class 2A Sectional tournament hosted by Union on February 6.
Joining the three seniors at the top of their respective medal stands were a pair of juniors, Derek Holschlag (132) and Isaiah Vaughan (160). Senior Bryon Sells, who placed second in the 182 lb. weight class will also advance.
Hellman was dominant on the way to improving his record to 49-4, recording two first period pins. Reiter also recorded a first period pin in his final match of the day for the title at 170. Ahrendsen posted a pair of decision wins, raising his record to 41-5.
While injuries and illness have limited time on the mat for Holschlag and Vaughan this season, both looked strong at the sectional meet. Holschlag, 24-1, recorded two second period pins, while Vaughan (16-3) won by first period pin in his semi-final match before earning a 6-4 decision over Williamsburg’s Calvin Malloy in the final.
Sells’ narrow semi-final victory by tie breaker over Benton Community’s James Heilman was enough to advance him to districts, claiming second by rule after getting pinned in the first place match at 182.
By virtue of finishing second in the team scoring, Union will wrestle at Independence on Tuesday for the opportunity to advance to the State Team Duals.
Wapsie Valley 8 – 9 – 4 – 4 – 25
Union 8 – 15 – 16 – 11 – 50
Union Scoring: Powell 14, Ju. Nagel 5, Jo. Nagel 6, Driscol 7, Grosse 2, Parker 2, Barz 3, Block 9, Krug 2
Wapsie Valley 17 – 14 – 15 – 19 – 7 – 72
Union 14 – 16 – 18 – 17 – 10 – 75
Union Scoring: Alpers 4, Boisen 4, Douglass 25 Edwards 14, Lambe 26, Miller 2
Union to Renew Rivalries with North Fayette, Waukon and Columbus
The road to the Iowa state playoffs promises to be considerably more difficult for high school football teams in 2016. With the Iowa High School Athletic Association’s (IHSAA) Board of Control adopting a nine game regular season schedule and 16‐team qualifier field for all football classes, the number of schools qualifying for the postseason has been cut in half, which will eliminate teams that place below second in district play.
The IHSAA made the change to the playoff structure following a review of the system that has been in place since 2008. Under the old system, the top four teams in each district advanced to the state playoffs. In an effort to improve player safety and risk‐minimization, the IHSAA had been looking at several different options. Cutting the playoff field in half will allow for one week between postseason games, instead of four or five days.
“The driving force behind this decision is player safety and keeping the best interest of our students at the forefront,” said Alan Beste, IHSAA Executive Director.
Football is the largest high school participation sport in Iowa among males with 20,630 participants, according to the 2013‐2014 IHSAA annual participation survey. Along with a reduced number of playoff qualifiers, the state’s biannual process of realigning districts will pit Union against some stronger competition next season. Two years ago when the Knights moved to District 6 in Class 2A, the records of the teams from the previous season was a combined 17-46. In 2016, the combined record of the teams in District 4, Union’s new assignment, is 35-37.
As the Knights, (4-5 in 2015) move to a new district, they will find some familiar foes to compete against. In addition to North Fayette Valley (7-2), the Class 2A state champion in 2014 and state semi-finalist last year, District 4 will also include Waukon, the 8-1 team that defeated Union in the first round of the state playoffs last season, along with perennial playoff contender Dyersville Beckman (6-3) and another 2015 state qualifier, Cascade (4-5). The remainder of the district includes three teams that did not participate in 2015 postseason play, Monticello (4-5), and a pair of 1-8 teams, Oelwein and Waterloo Columbus.
Senior Jon Hellman was Union High School’s lone conference champion at the NICL Wrestling Tournament in Conrad (Jan. 29-30). Hellman won the 120 lb. weight class with a pin and pair of decision wins, the last a 5-3 victory over Nick Meling of East Marshall/GMG.
Two Union wrestlers took home runner-up honors- Derek Holschlag at 132 lbs. and Michael Ahrendesen at 285 lbs.
Union will host the Class 2A-Sectional 8 tournament on Saturday. Other teams competing include Benton Community, Center Point-Urbana, Clear Creek-Amana, Vinton-Shellsburg and Williamsburg.
NICL Conference Team Scores
1. Dike-New Hartford 201.0; 2. Sumner-Fredericksburg 196.0; 3. Denver-Tripoli 182.5; 4. Union 180.0; 5. Wapsie Valley 171.5; 6. West Marshall 123.0; 7. East Marshall/GMG 119.0; 7. Jesup 119.0; 9. Hudson 110.5; 10. AGWSR 107.0; 11. BCLUW 104.0; 12. Aplington-Parkersburg 75.0; 13. Waterloo Columbus 60.0; 14. GRNT/GC 30.0
NICL Individual Results for Union High School
106-Payton Hellman 4th; 113-Gavin Miller 4th; 120-Jon Hellman 1st; 126-Kody Crawford DNP; 132-Derek Holschlag 2nd; 138-Kyle Gross 8th; 145-Payton Pelke 7th; 152-Kole Hedeman 8th; 160-Brian Sells 7th; 170-Isaiah Vaughan 4th; 182-Will Reiter 3rd; 195-Lane Albertsen DNP; 220-Sam Johnson 7th; 285-Michael Ahrendsen 2nd