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So far, so great for WCHS fall sports teams

September 22, 2010 - Troy Banning

 I’ve officially had to go to my toes to figure out how many years I’ve been covering sports for the Daily Freeman-Journal. Just counting with my fingers doesn’t cut it anymore.
 Yep, this is my 11th year as the man in charge of the sports department, and over the years I have had the privilege of covering a slew of great individuals and teams. There have been many conference championships and even a few state titles. There have been plenty of heartbreaks as well...but as we all know, that’s part of the game.
 I promise I have a point and it’s this: in all my years in Webster City, never has there been a fall season with as much promise as the one taking place at this very moment.
 The 10th-ranked (Class 3A) Lynx football team is off to its best start in 20 years, and unless there’s a huge upset between now and Oct. 8, head coach Bob Howard and his boys will take the field for Homecoming with an unblemished 6-0 record for a date against one of the state’s benchmarks: Clear Lake, currently ranked second. Oh baby, just thinking about that battle brings a smile to my face.
 I know it is way too early to talk about that match-up, and Howard will probably be none too pleased with me for just glossing over the Lynx next two opponents – Nevada and Humboldt. But, come on, if things go according to plan it will be the biggest football game this community has seen in years!
 But the football team isn’t the only Lynx program that is currently on the fast track to success. Volleyball coach Jessica Kastler and her squad have won 17 of 20 matches heading into Thursday’s tilt at Humboldt, and the Lynx are ranked (11th in 3A) for the first time during my tenure.
 They’re quick. They’re explosive. And they’re really, really entertaining to watch. You should take in a match sometime...if you haven’t already.
 Kastler’s bunch has a couple of key tests coming up as well. A win over Humboldt would keep the Lynx unbeaten in North Central Conference play leading up to next week’s home dates with Iowa Falls-Alden and Algona. Yes, the same Algona team that has won the last four conference crowns.
 Two of Webster City’s losses have come to Algona at weekend tournaments, but they’ve been close. And the important battle is next week...inside Jefferson Gymnasium...where the home court advantage could be a key. Are you picking up on my subtle suggestion? I hope so.
 Last but not least, Lynx cross country coach Tony Bussan has done his usual great job with his teams this fall, and both should be in the mix for NCC titles when the league meet takes place next month. Webster City has strong cross country teams year after year, and this fall is no exception.
 How does Bussan do it? I could tell you it’s through hard work and dedication, but he’d say it’s quite simple: it’s all about the kids. And maybe he’s right.
 The Webster City runners do things the right way. They train in the offseason to make sure they’re ready for whatever they face during the season. Senior Alex Lamp is coming off a gold-medal showing at last weekend’s Carroll Kuemper Invitational, and he’s ranked among the best individuals in 3A. That’s no accident.
 So, please, get out and support your Webster City sports teams. They’ve put in the time and now they’re being rewarded for their efforts. And they’d like nothing more than for you to see what they can do.


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