Conery, Grayvold top Knights

By BURT ANGELI

Sports Writer

NORWAY – Student-athletes along with retiring school icon Dwight Castelaz were honored Sunday at the Norway Knights Booster Club Banquet.

Rachel Conery and Austin Grayvold accepted the Clarence (Towe) Castelaz Trophy and Quentin Nolte Trophy, respectively. The trophies are awarded to the senior boy and girl athletic letter-winners who have the best athletic and scholastic record during their high school courses.

Conery, co-MVP of the girls basketball team, also took home the Charles E. Day Memorial Scholarship.

Grayvold’s other awards on the night included the Don Hill Memorial and Norway High School baseball scholarships plus boys basketball most valuable player.

Patrick Guffey, an MHSAA Scholar-Athlete headed to the University of Michigan, received the Alan Ronberg Memorial Scholarship.

Conery, Andrew Carlson, Ben DeCremer, Alexis Kallenbach, Leah Mattson and Lexi Negro received $500 scholarships from the athletic booster club.

Dwight Castelaz, called “Mr. Knight” by schools superintendent Louis Steigerwald during a video tribute, was honored to close out the program.

Castelaz, a part of the school district since 1948, has served the past 45 years as a teacher, coach and athletic director.

“Without him the school does not run,” said principal and new AD Joe Tinti.

NOTES: Cole Gonzalez recorded his 100th career wrestling win this season … Girls cross country received a Division 2 academic all-state award … Norway, due to lack of interest, does not field a middle school girls track team … Football coach Bob Madigan emphasized the importance of using the weight room. “If your son wants to play football, he should be in the weight room,” said Madigan, noting several time slots are available there … Girls track coach Carli Kelly asked her girls to submit a couple reasons on why they enjoy track & field. One, apparently without arm-twisting, said “because the girls team has the best coach you can ask for.” … Volleyball coach Kayla DeBakker, on MVP Lexi Negro: “She has a work ethic like no other.” … Baseball coach Tony Adams figures his team had 24 games postponed during this weather-marred spring; “Hitting in 34 degree weather was not meant to be,” Adams said … Rachel Conery is the first four-year player in the young history of Knights softball. Norway sported a 16-42 in its first two years; 38-10 in the last two.

Other awards follow (some sports held off on naming recipients until completion of the season):

WRESTLING – Zach DeCremer and Donnie Houle, hardest worker; Travis Moon, leadership; Cole Gonzalez and Taylor Bonetti, MVP.

CHEERLEADING – Amanda Ray, MVP; Madyson Miller, Carrie DeRidder Spirit Award; Krista Urbanc, MVP.

TENNIS – Dustin Thurston, boys MVP; Samantha Schultz, girls MVP.

SKIING – Paige Sheski, most improved.

CROSS COUNTRY – Alexis Kallenbach and Jeremy Bjorkman, coach’s choice; Andrea Rake and Jordan Mauro, most improved; Kyra Johnson and Justin Anderson, girls and boys MVP.

BOYS BASKETBALL – Austin Grayvold, MVP.

GIRLS BASKETBALL – Rachel Conery and Jordan Kraemer, MVP.

FOOTBALL – Jorden Neumann, MVP; Patrick Guffey, Don Anderson Line Award; Garrett Bonetti, Joe Moraska Award.

VOLLEYBALL – Sarah Bietila, most improved; Lexi Negro, MVP; Leah Mattson, coach’s choice.

SOFTBALL – Mimi Hladik, coach’s choice.