Written by John Kuhens on December 31, 2015



The Southeast Iowa Super Conference held their conference cross country meet  at Columbus Jct.  #1 ranked class 1A Pekin won the girl’s race with 20 points.  Gwynne Wright of Pekin won the individual title in 19:39 this was her 4th straight conference title.  Mediapolis was 2nd, Danville –New London 5th, WMU was 7th.  The boy’s title was won by Pekin also with 48 points, the individual title went to Keifer Sexton of Highland in 16:40.  WMU was 3rd, Mediapolis 5th, Danville-New London 8th.


The MPHS Powder Puff football game provided lots of excitement when the Junior girls defeated the Senior girls 6-0.  Brianna Shellman scored the only touchdown of the game in the 1st half and the defense for both teams would not allow any more scoring after that.  The senior defense came up with two drive stopping interceptions, Kodi Rundquist and Ali Davis made those plays.

The Southeast Conference cross country meet was hosted by Washington last night.  Ft. Madison won the girl’s title and the 5th ranked MPHS boy’s team ran away with the team title.  Mt. Pleasant dominated the boy’s race with Logan Murray coming in 1st in 16:07, Adam Bodenham was 2nd 17:15, Kyle Vanderham 4th, Cody Mertens 5th and Ryan Hutchison 8th.  Ft. Madison scored a 29 for 1st in the girl’s race, Sarah Steffensmeier of F.M. ran 20:04 for 1st.  Taylor Murray had the best finish for MPHS she was 9th in a time of 21:31, Delaney McDowell was 14th in 22:09, Kelsey Notestein finished 20th, Catherin Prough 26th and Megan Shumaker 30th.

It’s onto state for the MPHS boys cross country team as they won the State Qualifier meet at Fairfield with a 57 score and had the individual champion in junior Logan Murray who finished 1st in a quick time of 15:29 almost a half minute ahead of 2nd place.  Adam Boddenham was 5th in a time of 16:29, Kyle Vanderham was 10th for the Panthers, Cody Mertens 16th and Ryan Hutchison 25th, Dalton Krum 26th, and Jonathan Ita 29th.  Marion was 2nd as a team with a 78 score and Cedar Rapids Xavier 3rd with 81.

The MPHS girls team finished 11th as a team and was led by Delaney McDowell who ran 31st  in a 20:55 time, Kelsey Notestein was 54th, Catherine Prough was 75th, Emma Smith 76th, Ally Davis 77th and Megan Shumaker 78th.

OTHER AREA CROSS COUNTRY STATE QUALIFIERS:  Class 1A girls #1 ranked Pekin qualified as a team, Class 2A girls Mediapolis qualified as a team.  Class 1A boys Wapello qualified as a team and Winfield Mt. Union qualified two individuals Gavin Bencze was 4th and Jonathan Quinn 8th.

MPHS volleyball swept Keokuk 3-0 to wrap up the regular season with a 12-20 record, Panthers finished 3rd in the Southeast Conference.Ft. Madison defeated Mt. Pleasant in Class 4A Regional Volleyball semifinal action in the HoundDome  with a 3 game sweep 25-13, 25-12, 25-14.  Mt. Pleasant ends the year 12-21.


The Mt. Pleasant High School varsity football team won the 9th game of their season Friday night over Ft. Madison and avoided going winless in 2015, 14-13 was the final score at Ft. Madison.  The game was not decided until 1 minute was left to play, that’s when Ft. Madison decided to go for two points and the win after they scored their last touchdown.  Mt. Pleasant ends the year 1-8, and one step above Ft. Madison in the Class 3A District 5 standings.  The Panther freshman ended the season with a win, they beat the Bloodhounds 27-8.



  1. Mount Pleasant

1  Logan Murray, Jr             16:17.2

24  Adam Bodenham, Jr            17:10.4

51  Kyle Vanderham, So           17:39.5

62  Cody Mertens, Fr             17:48.0

68  Ryan Hutchinson, Jr          17:54.4

86  Jonathan Ita, So             18:20.5

89  Dalton Krum, Jr              18:24.0

Total Time = 1:26:49.5     Total Places = 206


1 Mount Vernon-Lisbon      50    2    9   10   14   15   48   56  16:49.5  0:30.8

2 Grinnell                 81    5    7   19   22   28   65   74  16:59.5  0:31.9

3 Pella                    94    6   12   18   20   38   57       17:03.3  0:37.5

8 Mount Pleasant          206    1   24   51   62   68   86   89  17:21.9  1:37.3


3A GIRLS RACE WON BY DAVENPORT ASSUMPTION 131, FT. MADISON 216 IN 10TH.  Sara Steffensmeier 9th, Bret Schneider 14th.

Gavin Bencze and Jonathan Quinn of WMU were 17th and 25th in 1A boys race.

Mediapolis girls were 12th in Class 2A.


The Iowa Wesleyan volleyball team traveled to Cedar Rapids to face  Mount Mercy University, IW ended their season with a 3-0 loss to the Mustangs, falling 25-15, 25-14, and 25-19. The Tigers ended the 2015 season with an overall record of 6-21 and went 4-14 in conference play.


Southeast Iowa Super Conference:


Beth Atwood, Pekin, Sr                               Madelyn Orton, Holy Trinity, Sr


Ashley Bartels, Pekin                                  Melissa Freesmeier, Holy Trinity


The Southeast Iowa Conference has announced their all conference volleyball selections.  For the Mt. Pleasant Panthers they had no 1st team selections, making the 2nd team were:  Julie Lasswell and Ashley Menke.  Academic All Conference honors went to;  Haylee Boecker, Haley Booton, Morgan Fraise, Abbie Liechty, Sarah Moffett, Emma Overton and Kirsten Smith.  Conference players of the year honors went to Kelsey Roberts of Fairfield.


Mt. Pleasant High School  announced the selection of the new varsity girls track coach that will replace longtime coach Dave Hutchcroft who retired after last season.  Michael Pilcher a graduate of Eddyville-Blakesburg High School and William Penn University.  Pilcher already has teaching and coaching duties in the district: 6-8 exercise science, assistant coach for 9th grade football, & assistant for varsity and JV wrestling. Pilcher will resign from being an assistant coach for the boys high school track team.

Other coaching positions approved:  Jesse Schadt assistant varsity wrestling, Michael Schmitz assistant boy’s soccer.


Congratulations to the Mt. Pleasant High School Cheer Stunt Team for winning the Class 3A State Championship in Des Moines Saturday and the competition cheer squad who finished 2nd.


In the last game of the 2015 season, Iowa Wesleyan hosted Crown College.  Wesleyan suffered a 21-14 loss to Crown College in their last game of the year Tigers finished the season with an overall record of 1-9 and went 1-8 in UMAC conference play.


The MPHS football team held their awards banquet.  Here are the awards that were handed out.

Team Awards:

MVP: Pat Canby

Co-Defensive Players of the Year:  Tanner Ruby/ Tyler Davis

Outstanding Lineman:  Keegan Pullis

Coaches Awards:

Panther Award: Isaac Davis

Brotherhood Award:  Brock Wilson

Sportsmanship: Cameron Keomanivong

1st Team All-District 

Pat Canby

Cameron Keomanivong

Keegan Pullis

Zac Ebeling

Honorable Mention All-District

Cori Fitten

Joe Hess

Tyler Davis

DShundric Foster

The Class 3A District 5 coach of the year was Washington’s Garrison Carter.


The Waco Community School District board of directors have  voted to apply to the Iowa High School Athletic Association for permission to make the transformation from 11man football to 8 man football.  The IAHSAA will be setting up new football districts and schedules and will announce those in February.  The Lone Tree School District also is looking into moving from 11 man to 8 man football.



Mt. Pleasant boys’ cross-country and track and field coach Mitch Anderson has received a Coach of the Year award for both sports for the 2015 year by the Iowa Association of Track Coaches.  Coach Anderson was named the Class 3A coach of the year for his track teams 2nd place finish at state and for his cross country team finishing 8th overall and Logan Murray being the individual champion.


The UMAC has released their 2015 football post season awards. Iowa Wesleyan had two student-athletes receive All-Conference awards for this season.

Bryson Oliver (FR/Aurora, IL) was named UMAC First Team All-Conference Kick Returner for his efforts on the field this season.  Oliver returned 27 kickoffs this season for a total of 637 yards.  He averaged 23.6 yards per return, and his longest return was 58 yards.

Caleb Huss (SR/Pekin, IL) also received UMAC All-Conference honors. Huss was named to the UMAC All-Sportsmanship team. Each team has one player selected to be a representative for the individual sportsmanship award.


Mt. Pleasant Community School District Board of Directors approved several personnel for coaching positions at the high school.  Lyle Murray and Sibyl Cox were approved as girl’s varsity track assistants.  Phil Kenny will be added as a boy’s varsity assistant track coach.


The United States Collegiate Athletic Association has announced their 2015 All-USCAA Football Team honors.

Iowa Wesleyan had six players selected to the first team and six players selected as second team members.  First Team Offense recipients for the Tigers included Caleb Huss< (SR/Pekin, IL) QB, Jeremy Gomez< (JR/Dinuba, CA) WR, and Nick Huys (SO/Potosi, MO) OL.  First Team Defense honorees were Ryan Gerleman<(SR/Kewanee, IL) DB/S and Antonio Penn< (JR/Bassett, VA) DB/S.  Bryson Oliver<(FR/Aurora, IL) received First Team Special Teams honors as a return specialist.

Second Team Honors for the Tigers consisted of two offensive players and four defensive players.  Trinton Robinson< (FR/Bessemer, AL) earned Second Team as a wide receiver and Dakota Dowd<(SO/Fredericktown, MO) was named Second Team Offensive Lineman.  Both Nate DanielS> (SR/Biggsville, IL) and Andrew Terrell< (JR/Jonesboro, GA) received Second Team honors as linebackers.  Christian Henriksen< (SO/Donnellson, IA) earned Second Team Defensive honors as a defensive lineman, and Darryl Smith< (JR/Florissant, MO) earned Second Team as a defensive back for the Tigers.


A Mt. Pleasant High School bowler has signed a national letter of intent to attend Culver Stockton College in Canton. Missouri.  Maddie Kirschner signed the letter Wednesday and is coached by Troy Mears.


Senior Keegan Pullis of the MPHS football team was selected to the INA 3rd team all state football team as an offensive lineman and was named 1st team all state class 3A by the Des Moines Register.


Each month the NCAA holds a Special Olympic Spotlight that features three stories about Special Olympic events held around Division III and creates a poll for fans to vote for their favorite one. Iowa Wesleyan’s story was one of three stories selected to highlight in the month of November.


On April 11, 2015, Iowa Wesleyan hosted the Southeast Iowa Special Olympic Spring Games at Maple Leaf Athletic Complex.  The Springs Games are a track and field event where athletes can compete for a chance to qualify for the state event held at Iowa State University.  Over 200 athletes and 130 volunteers, including over 50 Iowa Wesleyan student-athletes were on hand to make the Spring Games a successful event.


Iowa Wesleyan received 2,776 total votes throughout the month of November to win the Spotlight poll with 48 percent of the votes.  Iowa Wesleyan received $500 dollars for winning the poll and plans to use it to help host the Southeast Iowa Spring Games for the second year in a row.  The event is set for April 9, 2016 at the Maple Leaf Athletic Complex.


The Iowa Wesleyan women’s basketball team is now 8-2 overall and 3-0 in SLIAC play.  They defeated Marywood University in the Land of Magic Classic in Daytona Beach, Florida on Monday and lost to Wisconsin River Falls Tuesday.  Tiger women host Principia Saturday at 1 p.m..

The Iowa Wesleyan men return to action on Saturday January 2nd also hosting Principia. Iowa Wesleyan is now 6-3 overall and 2-1 in SLIAC play this season.


Iowa Wesleyan University has named Mike Richtman as its new head football coach. Richtman began as an assistant football coach with the program in 2013 and an instructor in the teacher education program in 2014.  He has served in such capacities as a special team’s coordinator and both offensive and defensive line coach.  In addition, Richtman served as the academic liaison for the team as they instituted an academic program aimed at ensuring student- athletes kept academics as their top priority.  Mike will lead the football program with the help of Joe Stubbs and Dave Lukens long time assistants that will remain on staff.  In addition to Richtman’ s collegiate football coaching experience, he brings 14 years of experience coaching high school football in Minnesota. A Wisconsin, Richtman is a 1997 graduate of Saint Mary’s University in Minnesota and obtained a Masters of Arts in Instruction from Saint Mary’s in 1999. Richtman and his wife Meg have three children, Caroline (14 years old), Jacob (10), and Elizabeth (8), and they reside in Mount Pleasant.

The Mt. Pleasant High School girls bowling team is 5-3 while the boys team is 7-1, at the Holiday break.



Former Holy Trinity Catholic High School volleyball standout Mikaela Foecke was named the outstanding player in the NCAA women’s volleyball championships after she recorded 19 kills in the Nebraska Cornhuskers 3 game sweep of Texas in the championship match played in Omaha.  Foecke just completed her freshman season.


The Mt. Pleasant Panther boys basketball team has wrapped up the 2015 portion of their season with a 4-2 record.  Their two losses are to C.R. Xavier and C.R. Prairie.  M.P. also sits atop the Southeast Conference race with a 3-0 record.  January 2nd the boys begin the 2016 half of the schedule hosting West Burlington.


Happy ending to the year for the Mt. Pleasant Panther varsity girl’s basketball team……they got their 1st win of the season  at Davis County December 22nd 61-35.  The 1-6 Panthers will now have a Merry Christmas break and come back to action at home January 2nd against West Burlington.


MPHS wrestling team is 2-5 in dual meets and has one ranked wrestler….senior Colten Mertens at 145 pounds, is ranked #7, and is undefeated.