Category Archives: Sports
The Union Knights opened the 2016-17 wrestling season, rolling past Waterloo Columbus, 51-18, in a meet where ten of the 14 matches were decided by forfeit.
In the other half of Union’s double dual, five pins by Denver/Tripoli wrestlers and three Union forfeits were the difference in a 54-19 win by the Titans. Payton Pelke (170 lbs.), Lane Albertsen (220) and Derek Holschlag (138) posted decision victories for the Knights, while Jack Thomsen won by majority decision at 106 lbs. Lake LeBahn (113) recorded the lone pin for Union.
Union 51, Waterloo Columbus 18
152: Kaleb Roach (U) over Zach Holton (WC) (Inj. [time])
160: Kaleb Boleyn (WC) over (U) (For.)
170: Adam Parsons (WC) over Payton Pelke (U) (Fall 4:18)
182: Mitch McFarland (WC) over (U) (For.)
195: Double Forfeit
220: Lane Albertsen (U) over (WC) (For.)
285: Double Forfeit
106: Jack Thomsen (U) over (WC) (For.)
113: Lake LeBahn (U) over (WC) (For.)
120: Payton Hellman (U) over Colin Schmitz (WC) (Fall 2:52)
126: Jacob Worthen (U) over Ethan Schmitz (WC) (Dec 8-3)
132: Kody Crawford (U) over (WC) (For.)
138: Derek Holschlag (U) over (WC) (For.)
145: Kyle Gross (U) over (WC) (For.)
Denver/Tripoli 54, Union 19
145: John Ebaugh (DT) over Kyle Gross (U) (Fall 2:28)
152: Cael Krueger (DT) over Kaleb Roach (U) (Fall 1:25)
160: Dakota Klingfuss (DT) over (U) (For.)
170: Payton Pelke (U) over Brady Brocka (DT) (Dec 3-0)
182: Ryan Maitland (DT) over (U) (For.)
195: Devon Lund (DT) over (U) (For.)
220: Lane Albertsen (U) over Keenan Balhmann (DT) (Dec 7-2)
285: Brock Farley (DT) over Liam Stone (U) (Inj. [time])
106: Jack Thomsen (U) over Jacob Moore (DT) (MD 14-2)
113: Lake LeBahn (U) over Carter Littlefield (DT) (Fall 1:36)
120: Gabe Lewis (DT) over Payton Hellman (U) (Fall 0:53)
126: Riley Wright (DT) over Jacob Worthen (U) (Fall 1:49)
132: Logan Meyer (DT) over Kody Crawford (U) (Fall 1:11)
138: Derek Holschlag (U) over Caleb Wilson (DT) (Dec 3-0)
The #3 ranked (Class 3A) Union’s girls basketball team opened the season at home with a 47-23 victory over Sumner-Fredericksburg on November 28.
Leading 24-14 at the half, the Union defense cranked up the pressure, allowing only two Cougar points in the third period to put the game out of reach, 37-16.
The Knights’ next home game is Friday, when Union hosts the Waterloo Columbus Sailors in the first half of a girls/boys doubleheader. The girls’ game is set to tip at 6:15 PM, followed by the boys at approximately 7:45 PM.
All-District Second Team selections included seniors John Boisen and Brock Hadachek, in addition to junior Carter Brehm. Seniors Jordan Schmitz and Clayton Thiele were recognized with an Honorable Mention. Junior Hunter Fleshner was honored with the Golden Award.
The Iowa Newspaper Association (INA) also released its 2016 All-State selections. First Team honorees from Union included Isaiah Vaghan, Michael Ahrendsen, Brock Hadachek and Carter Brehm.
Earning Second Team honors was senior defensive back Dylan Stech.
In the game of football, sometimes the ball takes funny bounces. And those bounces, like opportunities that present themselves during the four quarters of a game, can change the ebb and flow of momentum, as teams battle to gain the upper hand. In a matchup of 11-1 teams, the Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley Nighthawks used some fortunate bounces of the football and a potent offense to pull away from the Union Knights, securing the school’s first football state championship with a 41-22 victory.
Opting to receive the opening kickoff, the Knights started fast, needing just two running plays to score, as Isaiah Vaughan used the creases opened by his offensive line to break off runs of 30 and 38 yards. Forty-two seconds into the game, Union led 7-0.
Five minutes later, the Knights had an opportunity to increase their lead, recovering a fumbled punt return at the Nighthawk 22 yard line. Unable to get a first down, Union was denied points when a 34 yard field goal attempt was unsuccessful.
The Boyden-Hull offense siezed the shift in momentum and moved the ball down the field. Five seconds into the second quarter, Nighthawk quarterback Brett Moser found a receiver in the end zone on a fourth and goal play to even the score, 7-7.
Boyden-Hull controlled much of the second quarter action from there, marching 70 yards for another touchdown to take a 13-7 lead, while shutting down the Union offense on consecutive possessions without allowing a first down.
Late in the quarter, the Knights would get another scoring opportunity when the Nighthawks’ ran a fake punt attempt that the Union defense saw coming. A last minute attempt by the Boyden-Hull punter to boot the ball was blocked and the Knights had the ball 40 yards from the Nighthawks’ end zone with 48 seconds left in the half. Working without any timeouts, Union quickly moved the ball downfield. Once again, though, they came away empty, as a fumble near the goal line bounced into the waiting arms of a Nighthawk defender on the one yard line.
Missed opportunities would be the story of the game for Union. Six times a Boyden-Hull player would fumble the football during the game. Four times, however, the Nighthawks were able to successfully recover the ball and the Knights were unable to convert the two turnovers they got into any points.
Instead it was a dynamic Boyden-Hull offense that made the plays when they needed them, converting on 12 of 17 third downs and two of three fourth down plays, dominating the time of possession while amassing over 500 yards of total offense.
While falling one win short of a state championship, Union’s ninth consecutive postseason appearance capped one of the school’s most successful seasons ever. Emerging from arguably the toughest district in Class 2A, the Knights were able to secure one of just two available district playoff spots, defeating #1 ranked North Fayette Valley on their run to the state championship game. The team’s eleven wins in 2016 ranks second in school history behind the state champion 2011 team that won 12 games.
The 2016 North Iowa Cedar League East volleyball champion Union Knights sported a perfect 8-0 record in conference play. Navigating the conference schedule without a loss is especially impressive, given that five of the eight schools advanced to the State Volleyball Tournament, four of them playing in a state championship match. In accordance with the top conference record, Union Head Coach Brian Jesse was named the conference Coach of the Year.
The Knights completed the season with a 40-5 overall record and was State Class 3A Runner-Up to conference rival, Dik-New Hartford.
The Knights placed senior outside hitters Megan Hudson and Peyton Parker on the All-Conference First Team.
Hudson was third in the state with 606 kills this past season for an average of 5.46 kills per set. She owns the school record for most kills with a career mark of 1,632. The Iowa Girls Coaches Association named Hudson as one of just 32 2016 Senior All-Stars.
Joing her on the All-Conference First Team is teammate Peyton Parker, whose 486 kills on the season made for a potent outside hitter to complement Hudson.
Named to the All-Conference Second Team was senior setter, Maggie Driscol. Maggie recorded 1,201 assists in 2016, second in the state with an average 10.7 assists per set.
Union senior, Bri Harvey, earned a conference Honorable Mention. Harvey, a middle hitter, was third in the state with 143 total blocks this season.
Hudson’s Kiley DeBerg, who will play volleyball at the University of Illinois next year, was named the NICL East Player of the Year.