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Redhawks rally for fall

September 4, 2018
CJ Eilers - Editor ( , Traer Star-Clipper

The Redhawk Recognition and Fall Kick Off on Thursday, August 16 drew the North Tama faithful to the school gym to celebrate the success of last year's sports teams, introduce the fall athletes and have a little fun while everyone was around.

Things started off competitively as the freshman, sophomore and JV volleyball squads took on their teachers and administrators in a friendly game of volleyball. While the students knew most of the faces, there was one on the teachers team they will get to know well over the year: new Principal/Athletic Director Andrew Meister. After wrapping up his time at Waterloo West, Meister took over his duties at North Tama in early July.

"I've been trying to meet as many people as I can, learn the ropes and enjoy the opportunity to be the principal of North Tama," Meister said.

Article Photos

Kent Vesely Award recipient Ryan McLean

Meister joked that he played "old" during the scrimmage, but happy to play as such with the volleyball program on the rise. While his interaction with students has been limited thus far to the Winding Stairs Festival and this event, he has been impressed with their school spirit.

"You can tell how proud students are to be North Tama Redhawks," Meister said. "They take a lot of pride in the school, in their community. I've be happy with how easy they are to talk to. You can tell the future is bright for those coming through the schools."

With the first rounds over and Meister ready for a rest, the Redhawk Recognition portion of the program recognized the summer and fall sports teams before moving on 2017-18 athletic awards. This year's Kent Vesely Award for an Outstanding Freshman and Sophomore Males saw Ryan McLean and Skylar Staker nominated, with McLean receiving the award. The Tonja Rickert Award for Outstanding Freshman and Sophomore Females saw Abby DeBoef, Rylee McLean, Megan Popelka, Takoa Kopriva and Katelyn Kucera nominated, with Kopriva receiving the award. The Outstanding Junior/Senior Award recognized Carissa Calderwood, Molly Kvidera, Olivia Schrier and Tessa Dvorak, with Kvidera receiving the award. The Bruce Erickson Award recognized finalts Noah Bond, Zade Podhajsky, Cael Even, Hale Hulme, Tyler Morrison and Lance Zobel, with Hulme being awarded the scholarship as the recipient.

"It's great to honor those who have worked hard over last year," Meister said. "The support of this community is so cool. You can tell this school is the center of the community when you have events like this."

According to Patty Calderwood, the awards have been giving out for decades at different venues, including the Winding Stairs Festival. The Fall Kick Off was created in 2011 to kick of the school year and wrap up the summer sports.

"We originally had it around out football scrimmage, but when we started scrimmaging away some of those years, we decided to include volleyball and have it inside," Calderwood said. "It's been a neat oppurtunity for everyone to get together and kick off the year."

Volleyball continued with the varsity squad taking on the best of the best North Tama has to offer. Despite a valiant effort by the teachers, the Redhawks are coming off a record-breaking season and put away the teachers in three sets and gave fans a taste of what's to come in 2018. As Meister celebrated his first Redhawk Recognition, he hoped for the best in 2018-19 for academics and athletics.

"As Athletic Director, I want to continue what we have going on," Meister said. "We have great coaches, great student athletes in multiple sports. I want to keep supporting them all and keep getting the resources they need to be successful. We need to maintain the student-first part of student-athlete to have well-educated, well-round kids graduating from here and ready to face the world.



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