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Summer gives way to fall

Published: Friday, Aug. 4, 2017 10:10 a.m. CDT • Updated: Friday, Aug. 4, 2017 10:12 a.m. CDT

When the five pages of sports were laid out and ready for printing on Monday morning, our summer sports season ended. 

We covered our final races at Iowa Speedway for 2017. High school softball and baseball wrapped up with the final postseason honors handed out for area players.

A little hint of fall was in those Monday sports pages with the Iowa Shrine Bowl. Really, it was the end of the 2016 fall season and summer wrapped up in one game in which three area graduated seniors participated.

It’s been a slow week for the Newton Daily News sports staff. We still had plenty of busy work to do as we prepare to collect information from our five area schools’ fall sports coaches. Colfax-Mingo football players began practicing this week because the Tigerhawks have a Week 0 game on Aug. 18. Newton, Prairie City-Monroe, Lynnville-Sully and Baxter open the football season on Aug. 25.

All other fall sports practices get underway Monday. A lot of teams are having team camps this week. Revving up for fall action are the volleyball teams and cross country teams from Newton, PCM, Colfax-Mingo, Baxter and Lynnville-Sully. 

The Newton/Colfax-Mingo/Pella (NCMP) Aquagirls hit the water again this fall. Newton’s boys are set to play a split golf schedule again with Class 4A competition in the fall and returning to the links in spring 2018 to compete for the Little Hawkeye Conference title.

I’m heading into my fifth school year covering high school athletics for the Newton Daily News. Of course, my main beat is Newton High sports and Lynnville-Sully sports. It just kind of divided up that way when I came on staff here.

That’s not to say I haven’t covered Colfax-Mingo, PCM and the former CMB teams over the years. Actually, the first winter sports seasons, CMB basketball, both girls and boys, was a main part of my coverage. Then came the 2014 spring season in which I covered all of the area sports because the newspaper was shorthanded in the sports department.

At the Newton Daily News, we pride ourselves in providing the best coverage to the Jasper County schools. Whether it is sports writer Troy Hyde or myself, we relish sharing the stories of area athletes, teams, coaches and their schools.

Through the four previous school years, I’ve had the opportunity to learn some history of Newton High athletics as the school recognizes individuals and teams of the past. I’m looking forward in find out more about the two blasts from the past this fall — the first-ever NHS volleyball team and the NHS Cardinal football team of 1977.

Paying homage to the Cardinal volleyball tradition, Newton will honor the school’s first volleyball team on Sept. 12. The Cardinals will be playing Grinnell in Little Hawkeye Conference action that evening.

On Sept. 29, Newton will have a 40th anniversary recognition of the 1977 football team which finished runner-up to Davenport West in the Iowa state championship game. That Cardinal team finished 9-3 with regular-season losses to Ames, 7-6, and to Sioux Falls Washington of South Dakota, 21-20. It lost the state championship game, 21-14, to Davenport West.

Newton is hoping as many of the former players from the 1977 team can be in attendance at the NHS football game against Fort Dodge. Contact Tom Weeks at weekst@newton.k12.ia.us if you plan to attend.

Put these two dates on your calendar and come out to recognize Newton’s past and present Cardinal teams.

Fall is here — so to speak — and it is going to be an action-packed run for area high school teams.

Contact Jocelyn Sheetsat jsheets@newtondailynews.com

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