Monthly Archive for September, 2010

Thursday, September 30

No snappy titles for this one.  It’s Thursday and I realize I haven’t written since late last week.  Had meant to write on Sunday but decided to lay low.  That turned into Monday and so on and so forth.  Sometimes life gets in the way.

Here’s my take on the last week or so…

Football-good three quarters against Nebraska Wesleyan….need to find a way to get points on the board.  Giving up the big play too much–two interceptions returned for td’s on Saturday.  Face  a Briar Cliff team that is 0-3 in the league this Saturday.  Briar Cliff hasn’t lost to any slouches up to this point in Hastings, Morningside and Northwestern.  Beat Waldorf in a non-conference game in week #2.

Volleyball-4-0 over the weekend at the Bellevue Bruin Classic.  Found a way to slog through a Saturday where they weren’t at the top of their game but still managed a pair of 3-2 wins.  Came back with a win over Mount Marty on Tuesday night when it looked like they were simply going through the motions early on.  Big match on Saturday with Hastings on the road.  A rare conference match that I won’t be at with football playing at the same time.  Can’t be two places at once…have tried and I’ve got the speeding tickets to show for it.

Cross Country-experience of running at the Roy Griak Invite put on by the University of Minnesota at a course in St. Paul, Minnesota.  Huge meet.  Men ran in a pack…needed to get the group a little closer to the front.  Women finished right in the middle.  Week off now as the team has just two meets left before the GPAC Championships in early November.

Men’s Golf–Jordan Janz takes a month off from golf to recover from an injury.  Comes back with an 82 on Saturday at Sioux FAlls and then goes 75-76 on Monday and Tuesday at a difficult course (Wilderness Ridge) in Lincoln, Nebraska.  Took medalist honors for the first time in his career.  First time in two years a Dordt golfer has finished #1–Jared Rempel did it a few years ago at a course hosted in Orange City.

Men’s Soccer-Snuck a free kick through in the first half of its game with Nebraska Wesleyan and had a penalty kick to take a 2-1 lead late in the game but the penalty kick was saved and the game ended in a tie.

Women’s soccer-road the roller coaster.  Won a big match with Dakota Wesleyan on Wednesday… know the story, a letdown and a 1-0 loss to Nebraska Wesleyan in Lincoln.  Had a shot off the cross bar that would have tied it late in the game.

Men’s and women’s basketball start practice on October 4–that’s next week.  Late Night With the Defenders coming up on Friday, October 15.  Women scrimmage at 10:30 followed by the men at 11:00.

Baseball and softball wrapping up the fall portion of their workouts–baseball will get scrimmages with Northwestern on Friday to cap things.

Check out the east lobby of the De Witt Gym next time you’re there.  I know several of you never make it in those doors but the trip will be worth it to check out the update that has taken place.  Hats off to Jamin Ver Velde for a bang up job on the photo mural on the wall.

That’s it.  More work and life waiting………..

Friday Morning

and I’m wiping the sleep from my eyes.

Had to put the finishing touches on a release to send out late yesterday afternoon.  Sometimes in this business I have to separate myself from the matter at hand and take my emotions and feelings out of it.  I approach those times by trying to stay with the facts.  Here’s what I came up with if you haven’t heard or read already……….

(Thursday, September 23; Sioux Center, Iowa) Tom Van Den Bosch, Dordt College head volleyball coach, has announced he will step down from the coaching position at the conclusion of the 2010 season to concentrate on his duties as Associate Director of Admissions.

Van Den Bosch has served as volleyball coach at Dordt College since 1997 and entered the 2010 season with a career college coaching mark of 432-104. He coached the Defenders to nine conference titles in the South Dakota Iowa Conference and the Great Plains Athletic Conference.  The 2010 team is currently 16-3 and ranked #21 in the country.

“The timing feels right,” said Van Den Bosch. “My duties as Associate Director of Admissions have continually expanded. It is time for me to step away from coaching and concentrate on those responsibilities. I’d like to thank the Dordt College administration for allowing me to continue my work in admissions. It has been a blessing to be part of such a fine competitive volleyball program. I know the college is committed to finding an excellent coach to keep the tradition alive.”

Six of Van Den Bosch’s teams qualified for the NAIA National Tournament including four trips to the NAIA National Quarterfinals and one trip to the NAIA National Semifinals. He was named the NAIA National Coach of the Year in 2003. He coached the Defenders to three straight unbeaten conference seasons in 2003, 2004 and 2005.

“Tom Van Den Bosch’s contribution to quality of education and athletics at Dordt College can hardly be overstated. His mentorship of the participants in our volleyball program has nurtured a generation of Christian women serving their communities, churches, and families literally across the continent and around the world. We are delighted that he now will be able to concentrate his energies on his responsibilities as Associate Director of Admissions — but will miss him deeply in our athletic program,” said Dordt College President, Dr. Carl Zylstra.”

Prior to coaching at Dordt College, Van Den Bosch coached 16 seasons at Western Christian High School where he compiled a 709-71 record. Van Den Bosch’s career coaching mark is currently 1155-177.


Now, I knew this was coming at some point in the not so distant future.  I can do the math…..thirty years of coaching exacts a toll and at some point individuals say “I’ve done this long enough.”  Anyway, when the season is over I’ll have a little more to write.  For now I’ll let others do that.

One of those others is Barry Poe with the Sioux City Journal.  Have always liked the work Barry has done.  He’s one of those long-timers.  Met him for the first time when I was covering Central Lyon George Little Rock some 15 years ago.  Here’s what he wrote for the Journal……

Dordt’s Van Den Bosch to Leave Volleyball Bench at Seasons End

From the Sioux City Journal, Barry Poe
To say Tom Van Den Bosch is a volleyball coaching legend would be a vast understatement.
The Dordt College head coach has amassed an astounding 1,157-178 record in 35 years as both a high school and collegiate coach. The 2010 season, however, will be his last behind the bench.

Van Den Bosch announced he will step down as coach at the conclusion of the season to concentrate on his duties as associate director of admissions.

“At certain stages of your life, you start to evaluate things a little more,” said the 62-year-old Van Den Bosch. “The other part of my job was demanding a little more time and I’m at an age where I want to enjoy my grandchildren and other social things.

“I still love coaching, practicing and recruiting. I just felt it was a good time. Over the last year or so I’ve talked to other people who’ve retired and I’ve taken a lot of evaluation time.

“I’ve been blessed with great health and am able to to a lot of things physically, so I want to enjoy those types of things as well.”

Van Den Bosch’s credentials had already been established when he took over the Dordt program in 1997. He coached 16 seasons at Hull Western Christian, starting a dynasty that continues to flourish today.

At Western Christian, Van Den Bosch’s teams won state championships in 1989, ’93, ’94 and ’95, laying the groundwork for a program that has gone on to capture 12 state titles.

Van DenBosch is a member of the Iowa High School Volleyball Coaches Hall of Fame. His Western Christian teams compiled a 709-71 record.

“In my first season at Western (1975), there were only four high schools in the area who had volleyball, so we started on the ground level,” Van Den Bosch said. “The sport grew so quickly and I attended a lot of camps, then we started to have success and tradition takes over after that.”

Van Den Bosch has a 448-107 record at Dordt, his alma mater, and has coached the Defenders to seven NAIA national tournament appearances. Dordt had a string of three straight unbeaten seasons in the Great Plains Athletic Conference from 2003 to 2005 and has won six league titles under his tutelage.

Dordt has reached the national tournament quarterfinal round four times and made it to the semifinals in 2003, when Van Den Bosch was named the NAIA Coach of the Year.

“We were fortunate at Dordt to have a lot of local players who played in high profile programs come to college and move on to the next level,” Van Den Bosch said. “That made the transition very easy.”

The Edgerton, Minn., native met his future wife, Carol, at Dordt. Their son, Kyle, is the head coach at Northwestern College, ranked fifth nationally in NAIA volleyball.

Northwestern defeated Dordt in four sets Wednesday in the latest renewal of the father-son coaching battle.

“Like life itself, I look back on so many blessings and experiences, so I look at it as a whole,” Van Den Bosch said. “It won’t be easy because that’s what life has consisted of for me for so long.

“It’s just who I am, part of my being, so it will be a big change in my life. I’ll still try to stay connected to volleyball.”

Dordt, ranked No. 21 nationally, has a 16-3 overall record this season.

“Tom Van Den Bosch’s contribution to quality of education and athletics at Dordt College can hardly be overstated,” Dordt College President Dr. Carl Zylstra said in a statement on the school’s website. “His mentorship of the participants in our volleyball program has nurtured a generation of Christian women serving their communities, churches and families literally across the continent and around the world.”

Next Week Is Coming

So let’s put the wraps on the past weekend.

Football played their hearts out on Saturday in the first half.  Stopped the run on defense, moved the ball on offense.  Gave up a fumble recovery for  a touchdown in the first quarter and allowed a long drive to close the first half.  Hastings then continued a strong run with a sustained drive on their first drive of the second half and then took an interception return to the end zone to make it 28-0.  Went from about 7-0 to 28-0 in about nine minutes, or so, of playing time.  Next up a hard luck team by their own rights, Nebraska Wesleyan.  The Prairie Wolves have started the season 0-3.

Volleyball had a great weekend in winning four matches and upping its record to 16-2–14 straight match wins for a team that is scoring between 3-4 points per set on blocks.  I can’t remember another time Dordt was putting up those kind of numbers.  Best win was a 3-1 decision over Baker in the final match of the weekend.  Now the Defenders get ready for Northwestern on WEdnesday night in Orange City.  Northwestern was ranked #5 and Dordt #24 last week in the NAIA rankings.  Northwestern beat Doane 3-0 on Saturday night in conference play.

Talking with Coach Dave Schenk after the soccer games with Hastings he seemed happy with the strides his team made against pretty good teams.  Women fought to a 0-0 110 minute tie while the men had several good runs at a team that has owned the first ten GPAC regular season titles.  Dordt was down 1-0 when they lost a player and had to go a man down for the final 15 minutes or so.  Hastings got a goal for insurance and took the 2-0 win.  Defenders will host Dakota Wesleyan on Tuesday in its next action.

On deck…’s golf at HAstings tomorrow, soccer Tuesday, volleyball Wednesday, women’s golf Friday and Saturday, volleyball at Bellevue on Friday and Saturday for their final classic of the season, football at Lincoln on Saturday, cross country at the Roy Griak meet in the Twin Cities, JV football on Monday at home with Northwestern.  No lack of things to do!

By the way, baseball’s scrimmage on Saturday was halted due to the rain….way to early to be having November weather!!!

Squeezing It In

Here it is Friday morning and I’m trying to find time to write.  Had thought I’d get to this earlier but there’s always something else to do it seems.

Monday–hosted the GPAC Regular Season meet round one for men’s golf at The Ridge.  Golfers were very complimentary of the course and the day was nearly perfect–warm with little wind.  Ryan Kamp was hot for the Defenders while playing most of the day under par.  Ended up event at 71 for the day.  Medalist honors went to a golfer shot a 68 if my memory is correct.  I scored the event and found it to be quite peaceful!

Tuesday it was off to Mitchell with the volleyball team playing Dakota Wesleyan.  The Defenders were pretty tough at the net–didn’t let much through at all.   JUmped out to a 10-1 lead in set one, got challenged and responded in set two and finished the job in set three.  Mitchell’s paper talked about Dordt’s imposing front row of multiple six-footers the next day.  12 points off blocks in the match and even numbers in kills.  Will play four matches this weekend against pretty good competition at a classic hosted by Midamerica Nazarene…..match with Northwestern in Orange City looms on Wednesday of next week.

Women’s soccer kept their winning ways going with a 2-0 win over Morningside–keep finding ways to score on opportunities. Noelle Kreykes another goal–that’s seven for the year and Rindy De Nooy put a penalty kick in.

Men couldn’t hold the Mustangs off in a 3-2 loss.  Goals by Alex Geylense and Josh Brinkerhoff for Dordt.  Morningside countered with one player getting all their offense.

Next up….Hastings.  Dordt women have had quite a bit of success with Hastings in recent seasons.  No one in GPAC play has had much success against the Hastings men…they’ve won every GPAC title since the league was formed in 2000…won something like 90 percent of their conference matches.

Women’s golf continues through their first season…golfed at a meet in Lincoln on Wednesday and will play in Sioux City. We’re starting to bear down on the end of the fall season in that sport.

Baseball and softball have played in scrimmages this week–will let you know how those went if I hear any details.

Football at home tomorrow against Hastings.  Get ready for a punishing ground attack to set up the run for Hastings on offense.  Defensively Hastings doesn’t do anything flashy, but, they are as solid as can be.  Turned the ball over five times against Northwestern last week in a loss–that typically isn’t a recipe for success.

Now, out the door for my shuffle, er, I mean jog…..

Random Thoughts

End of a long day.  It’s Saturday night and the reports are in, the stats are filed (most of them at least) and sleep will have to wait a little while.

Day started by hitting the road at 8:00 for Crete, Nebraska.  Team went up last night to avoid the Husker traffic by Lincoln for a kickoff at Memorial Stadium at 11:30.

Volleyball beat Black Hills State this morning 3-0.  Much needed quick victory because they were pushed to four sets in a match last night and had to play another match later in the day.

Cross country results finally came in and both teams finished second in the team races.  Michelle Steiger ran away from the field at the NXN Preview Meet at Yankton Trails in Sioux Falls.  Beat the opposotion by over twenty seconds.  Men carried out the pack approach with Ryan Tholen taking sixth and all of the “counters” for Dordt finishing 16th or better in the men’s race.  Week off now until they head to Minneapolis for the Roy Griak Invite.

Soccer  bounced back with a pair of much needed wins.  Women got a corner kick by Rindy De Nooy to curl in for the game winner in the 11th minute and the men got two first half goals for a 2-0 win.  Brian Ver Wolf and Katie Kortman turned in impressive days in goal with nine and five saves respectively.  Back at home to face Morningside on Wednesday.

Bounce back to volleyball where Dordt beat the College of the Ozarks in five after getting down 2-1.  Good way to end the weekend.  Dug and blocked well in this one.  Talked to coach VB on his way home and he seemed happy with the direction this team is going.  To Dakota Wesleyan on Tuesday and another tournament next weekend…this one near Kansas City.  Team has won nine in a row now.  Ozarks got  a wake up call after starting the season 10-0, the Midlands Collegiate Conference member went 1-3 at the meet, losing to Dordt, Northwestern and Doane.

Meanwhile, the Defender women were golfing in their first ever GPAC Qualifier and shot a 425 with a team that is still getting accustomed to college golf.  Youthful squad.

In Crete, Nebraska, the Defender football team lost a 36-10 decision to Doane.  Was a 16-10 game until the Tigers scored on three straight drives, getting the ball to their wideouts and letting them create.  Positives–Dordt had some big plays including a 55 yards touchdown pass to Sam Du Mez.  Defense stopped the run, but, Doane was content to throw the ball all over the yard.  Negative–Justin Knot did not return in the second half after taking a blow near the end of the first half.

Where do we go from here?  Home game with a Hastings team that lost to Northwestern today.

And then it was time to hit the road…fought the traffic from Lincoln to Omaha, talked to some coaches on the way home.  Made it home safely just in time to see the kids off to bed and then pecked away at some work while listening to the Twins beat the Indians.

It’s almost Sunday morning and it’s time for bed…….

A Full Schedule

Yes it was.  This was the first full-fledged weekend of activities for all our fall sports teams.  All in all a pretty good weekend.

Friday started with the cross country women taking first at Dakota Wesleyan behind Michelle Steiger and Merissa Harkema running away from the field for a 1-2 finish.  Top four runners were all Dordt runners as well.  Men finished second with Ryan Tholen topping the Dordt finishers.

Men’s golf was without the services of three-time all-GPAC competitor Jordan Janz due to injury.  Men finished second in the two -day Siouxland Invite.  Windy day on Friday didn’t help the scores…guys settled down on Saturday.

Women golfed in their first ever event.  Two-day event at Buena Vista.  Changed up the lineup on day two which means Dordt’s team score didn’t count with the individuals getting experience in a college meet setting.  May have been an eye opener.  Next up for them is the GPAC meet on September 11.

Volleyball won four matches, dropping one set to Grand View along the way at the Sioux Falls Classic.  Judging by the numbers the Defenders weren’t pushed terribly hard in this one.  Kendra Potgeter, Danae Geels and Dorinda Hibma all had big weekends.

Women’s soccer improved to 4-0 with a 4-1 win over Mount Mercy.  Noelle Kreykes registered the hat trick and Morgan Rodenburgh got a couple assists in her first action of the season after struggling with a foot injury during the pre and early season.

Men’s soccer got shut out 3-0 but the score was more lopsided than the play the way it looks.  Managed eight shots on goal to Mount Mercy’s nine.

Both soccer teams travel to Michigan and then Chicago for a pair of matches this coming weekend to face Aquinas and Trinity International.

Football capped the weekend.  Promising start for the Defenders against Dakota Wesleyan.  Missed a makeable field goal on their first drive but got the defense to come through.  Scoreless first quarter for both teams but Dakota Wesleyan broke through with a drive at the end of the first/beginning of second and took the lead.  Scored their next two touchdowns on short fields after turnovers and then gave up a long pass play for a fourth touchdown.  Down 28-0 at half and lost 42-7.

I’m reminded of all the interviews I did with West Lyon coach Jay Rozeboom while covering high school football.  Every answer he had included “blocking, tackling and turnovers.”  True, very true.

Had people ask me today what I thought of the team.  After watching the team build from four seasons ago till now I can say this squad is stronger than any of the other editions we’ve had.  Stay free from injuries and keep gelling and I’ll take my chances with them.

Off to Doane this week to face a team that was beaten by Morningside on Saturday. Other than the 3-plus hour trip I always enjoy going to Crete and catching up with Doane SID Rick Schmuecker who started in his position at the old NIAC school the same year I started at Dordt.

I know there were some disappointed folks around the country who couldn’t catch the game via video webstream.  Set things up on Friday and tested–all appeared well.  Took equipment down because of the high school game on Friday night.  Set up again SAturday afternoon and realized we had problems.  Started to trouble shoot while also trying to get press box organized.  6:00 rolled around and it was obvious we weren’t making headway.  My apologies to our faithful viewers.

Guess I know what I’ll be doing on Labor Day and Tuesday…..


Wednesday means we have one more day to get ready for our first full-fledged, wild weekend of the fall sports season.  Volleyball…four matches.  Men’s golf….two day event.  Women’s golf…two day event.  Men’s and women’s cross country….first meets.  Football… a game.  Men’s and women’s soccer….games on the road.

Still a few things to get in order before Saturday rolls around.  Will be back out at the pressbox the next couple days testing various setups to make certain we’re ready for the first webcast/radio broadcast of the fall and that we’re functional with our stats.  No matter how many times I do this the first competition of each season is met with a certain amount of nervousness wondering if I’ll remember how to do this.

Congrats to the men’s and women’s soccer team.  Women jumped on Waldorf from the start and scored five first half goals on the way to a 5-1 win.  Men beat a much improved team that had players from near and far….something like seven or eight nations represented on the original 58 man roster I received for the match.  Anyhow, Alex Geylense knocked one in in the fourth minute of overtime for the win…a much needed first win of the season.

Both teams go to Mount Mercy for a pair of challenging contests on Saturday.  By the way, Mount Mercy is in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.