January 6, 2018

 Good morning! I’m Drew Bacha!

 I’m Nolan Greene!

 And I’m Laurel Degen! Thanks for joining us for the “Bear Facts” Happy New Year from everyone here at Bishop Garrigan High School.

 After a big win last week at Forest City, the Golden Bear boys basketball team started 2018 at the top of the Top of Iowa Conference. All season long the Bears have enjoyed a height advantage over their opponents. Their starters include 6’7” Angelo Winkel, 6’5” T.J. Schnurr, 6’4” Cade Winkel, 6’3” Brad Capesius, and 6’1” John Joyce. There’s also six players on the bench who are all over six feet tall. Coach Harry Condoleon is hoping to do well in the rest of the conference season and then make a long run in playoffs. We’ll be following the Bears all season long.

The Golden Bear girls had a couple of tough losses before and after Christmas, but they’re also still vying to be conference champs. Seniors Jenna Boelter, Whitney Hovey, and Grace McGuire are at the core of the team, together with sophomore Maddie Meister and freshman Kaylyn Meyers. There are five seniors ready to lend their experience off the bench. Coach Brandon Schwab has been working the girls hard, and we wish them good luck through the rest of the season and in playoffs.

Both the boys and girls basketball teams have solid lower-level squads too. On the girls side the JV squad features Mackenzie Meister, Amanda Miller, Emma Fogarty, Katie Noonan, and Emma Lichter; as well as Emma Hamilton, Jenna Heinen, Grace Elsbecker, Bailey Meister, Grace Rosenmeyer, and Reese Rosenmeyer. In addition to them the JJV players include Tara Kron, Kiana Book, Kelly Baade, Anna Berke, Halle Menke, Ava Bartolo, Ella Nelson, and Jayda Specht.

On the boys JV roster you’ll find juniors John Meis and Tristan Furguson; sophomores Kurt Condoleon, Cameron Baade, Andrew Arndorfer, and Marcus Plathe; and freshmen Kyle Schaaf, Joseph Meis, Kellen Murphy, Kyphus Goche, and Isaiah Plathe. There’s good height and talent on the JV team, and we wish them good luck all season long.

Speech rehearsals are well underway. There’s a huge group of students involved in speech at Garrigan this year, even though they’ll only be performing six events. The varsity performances will include the one-act play The Brothers Grimm: Out of Order, the readers’ theatre This Is a Test, and two musical theatre presentations—Godspell and Rent. In addition there are two freshman events—You’re Only Old Once in choral reading and Zeus on the Loose in readers’ theatre. Best wishes to coaches Jake Rosenmeyer and David Burrow and the speech team!

 Later this month two Garrigan students will be headed on a mission trip to Haiti. Seniors Sam Trainer and Tommy Kollasch will be part of the delegation to St. Cecelia’s sister parish in Ste. Jeanne de Chantal, which is located in the mountains on the western part of the island. There are always challenges in Chantal, but the natural disasters of the past year have proved especially difficult. Sam and Tommy will mostly be assisting with medical care for people in the area.

Almost everyone at Garrigan will be helping out a little bit with the Haiti mission project. With semester tests coming up next week, high school students are paying for out of uniform days while they take tests. The money will go to supply goats that can supply milk to those who need it.

Our Senior Spotlight this week shines on Gigi Byrkeland. Here to tell you about her is John Meis.

Gianna Byrkeland is an Algona native who keeps busy with lots of different activities. She’s part of the one-act play that the speech group is preparing for contest, and she’s also involved with cheerleading and band. In sports her biggest activity is probably softball, where her work as a catcher earned her all-district and all-state honors as well as the team’s MVP award. Gigi will be off to college next year, and we wish her all the best in the future.

Thanks, John. On our Golden Bear calendar this week, there’s a JJV girls basketball game at Osage this morning, and there’s also an honor band in Mason City. Tomorrow the Knights of Columbus will have their area free throw contest.

 Monday the JJV basketball teams will be playing at Belmond, and Tuesday the JV and varsity Bears will host Belmond—Klemme. We’ll have semester tests next Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.

There’s a special schedule for semester tests, and we’ll have open campus when we don’t have exams. Next Thursday the JJV basketball teams will play at Osage, and the JV and varsity boys will host West Bend—Mallard.

Friday there’s JJV basketball at Algona High, and next Saturday there’s another honor band—this time down in Ft. Dodge.

That’s the “Bear Facts” for this week. Thanks for tuning in, and be sure to catch the show again next week for more news from Bishop Garrigan High School.