The Top 5 Cedar Valley High School Sports of 2016
We asked the Cedar Valley to vote for what they thought the top Cedar Valley High School Sports story of 2016 was. The votes are in.
It was a big year for several of our area high school teams and athletes. Records were broken. Championships were won. We even had one receive national attention.
In January, Dr. Anthony Pappas of Waterloo West was named as the 2015 National Coach of the Year for girls basketball by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Coaches Association. At the completion of the 2015-16 season, his coaching record sat at 533-341. Pappas has guided the Wahawks to seven state tournament appearances with two runner-up finishes in 1999 and 2002.
After finishing the runner-up in 2015, the Don Bosco Dons stormed through the 2016 to 12-1 record and the Iowa High School 8-Player Football State Championship. Austin Svoboda tallied four touchdowns and 183 rushing yards for Don Bosco, and Austin Hellman added 82 yards and one touchdown.
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Trent Johnson ran his way into the Iowa High School record book while leading Dike-New Hartford to a first-round playoff victory Friday night (Oct. 28, 2016). He finished the year with 7,653 career rushing yards.
Two Cedar Valley Sports teams were crowned the 2016 Iowa High School Volleyball State Champions, and both championship matches featured an all Cedar Valley showdown. Janesville had to defeat Hudson to earn the Class 1A title. Dike-New Hartford beat Union for the Class 3A title. A combined 10 players from those four teams made the All-Tournament Team.
In 2016, the Gladbrook-Reinbeck Rebels defended their Iowa High School Football State Championship. It was a game that went down to the final seconds, but GR's defense held firm later to secure the 20-19 win over Bishop Garrigan, Algona. The Gladbrook-Reinbeck Rebels boys basketball team’s perfect season was voted as the best Cedar Valley Sports story of 2015.