Tiger runners among front of the pack

Sept. 17
Boys results
1. Falls City    49
2. Atchison    73
3. Hiawatha    77
4. Sabetha    85
5. Savannah    99
6. Silver Lake    129
7. Nemaha Central    156
8. Holton    210

Girls Team Standings
1.  Hiawatha    44
2.  Atchison    47
3.  Savannah    69
4.  Atchison County    72
5.  Falls City    121
6.  Holton    163

    The Falls City boys cross country team has set a fast pace to the 2015 fall campaign, capturing a treasure trove of medals en route to a repeat championship at the Hiawatha (KS) Invite last Thursday, which succeeded a runner-up finish at the Fairbury Invite Sept. 10.
    The Lady Tigers, while not off to as blazing a start as the guys, have set a strong pace themselves, finishing third at Fairbury and fifth last week down in Kansas.
    The season started at the competitive Johnson CC Invite Sept. 4 in Tecumseh. Senior state qualifier Lainey Larsen and junior Kyle Leafty medaled for their respective teams, each finishing ninth overall in the season opener.
    “The teams got off to a slightly slower start than what I would’ve liked to have seen,” Coach Cody Hawley said. “The boys will continue to get better throughout the season and the girls can get better if we work on a few details during the week of preparation of practices.”
    How right he was.
    A week later at Fairbury, Leafty was runner-up and so was FCHS. Leafty was one of four Tiger male medalists, including sophomore Dylan Leafty (10th), senior Anthony Baker (14th) and junior Brett Black (16th), and the boys finished runner-up to Syracuse in a field of 14 schools (nine with team scores).
    For the girls, Larsen finished fourth and Cheyenne Dovel (15th) and Lauren Bierman (20th) also left Fairbury with medals, as the Lady Tigers were third, running behind only champion Fairbury and runner-up Syracuse.   
    “I was very proud of the way every member of these teams ran,” Hawley said. “They each took a good step forward in their training and their ultimate goal of finishing well at the end of the season.”
    The girls were excited to finish so close to Syracuse, the district champion last year,” Hawley said. “The girls know what needs to be done to narrow the gap. Our time gap has to improve for us to be successful at the major meets.”
    This Thursday’s meet at Nebraska City would qualify as such.
    FC is certainly entering the race at Wildwood on a high note, having just repeated as champs on a hot afternoon at Hiawatha.
    Kyle Leafty was third at Hiawatha, and a total of five Tiger guys claimed medals. In addition to Kyle Leafty (17:58), Dylan Leafty (12th, 19:27), Black (13th, 19:30), Baker (16th, 19:35) and junior Brody Smith (22nd, 20:19) captured hardware at Hiawatha.
    “The boys repeated as the team champion because of great efforts,” Hawley said.  
    “They have the potential to be very good, but the 2nd – 4th runners have to get close to the front. Our district is going to be challenging. They will have to improve to give themselves a chance to be in the Top 3 teams in the district.”
    The girls were lead by a 12th place finish by Larsen.  
    “The weather really affected them and they struggled to run up to their potential. They will continue to work hard and push themselves.”
    Dovel came in 27th at Hiawatha, followed by Bierman (32nd), Morgan Roberts (37th), Kirsten Carter (40th) and Mary Patnode (45th).
    In JV competition, Zach Petry was the top Tiger runner, as he finished 11th, followed by Jake Craig (13th), Dakota Fisher (16th) and Brody Bindle (27th).  
    The cross-country teams travel to Nebraska City on Thursday, Sept. 24. The junior high will also be running at this meet.

Irish dominate in all phases against winless PC

   The Class D2 No. 4 (Lincoln JS) and No. 5 (Omaha WH) FC Sacred Heart football team appeared at Jug Brown Stadium for the first time this season last Friday and for the second consecutive week earned a blowout victory but also saw another key contributor suffer a major injury.
    The Irish were absolutely suffocating defensively, making a tremendous 15 tackles behind Pawnee City’s line of scrimmage for 82 yards in losses. The Indians, 0-2 on the season, finished with a negative-15 yards rushing and 63 total yards of offense for the evening. That, even though just four FCSH players (three underclassmen) played in part of all four quarters.
    But it all wasn’t good news, either, as the Irish for the second straight week watched as one of their own was helped off the field, not to return. Last week, 193-pound junior linebacker Austin Ahern in the early going of FCSH’s 60-8 win at Meridian re-injured a back that once sidelined him an entire year in junior high. He didn’t return to that game, didn’t suit up Friday at home and isn’t likely to practice this week. Sophomore back William Morehead met a similarly cruel fate in the opening period against Pawnee City, suffering a knee injury that positively ends his 2015 campaign.
    Rough stuff for the young athletes, but the games will go on and if anybody has the depth to weather injuries, it’s Sacred Heart and its 31-man roster. And most of those guys turned in multiple plays to celebrate in the home opener. Five different guys scored touchdowns and five had sacks, led by senior Reggie Johansen’s trio of sacks for 24 yards in Indian losses. Junior Michael Keithley sacked the QB twice and Nathan Bird, Bryant Jorn and Brandon Scheitel all dropped the PC signal-caller behind the line of scrimmage. Senior Henry Arnold didn’t do a sack dance, but did pick off a pass and recover a fumble.
    Offensively, after an opening drive three-and-out, FCSH reeled off six consecutive scoring drives (and took the opening kick after halftime all the way back) - the last one coming with 1:03 to play in the third quarter.
    Senior quarterback Bailey Witt put his team on the board with a 28-yard TD run with 2:14 to play in the first quarter. Witt would later add a two-point conversion pass to Henry Arnold (following a one-yard TD run by sophomore back Sean Arnold), but otherwise it was a quick and painless work shift for the Irish signal-caller. Witt rushed just four times (at 14.8 per) and completed 4-of-9 passes for 75 yards and one score. After sophomore Christian Harring scored on a 12-yard run (followed by the Witt conversion pass to Henry Arnold), the Irish led 24-0. Inside of the final minute of the second quarter, Witt marched his team 38 yards in eight plays, throwing to junior Noah Keller for a six-yard TD as time expired. Sean Arnold, who rushed six times for 56 yards, took the opening kickoff of the second half all the way home, 74 yards for a score, adding to his TD run and pair of conversion runs. He also made nine stops defensively.
    Harring (five carries, team-high 84 yards; team-high 12 tackles) tacked on his first conversion two-pointer and it was 40-0 just 12 seconds into the second half. He would later break a 56-yarder on Sacred Heart’s first offensive snap of the half, coming with 2:35 to play in the third quarter, to make it 46-0.
    Moments later, after Pawnee City fumbled the ensuing kickoff and Henry Arnold recovered, junior Cameron Barker went in from the one-yard line and that was it, 52-0 FCSH.
    While the Irish are off this Friday, Johnson will hit the road and play two-time defending state champion Exeter-Milligan, which is 2-0 after beating Kenesaw (46-40 in OT and Sterling, 34-16).

Concussion awareness presentation’s to be held around the county next week

At 17, Brady Beran had everything going for him.  Great student, Gifted athletic abilities, Goals set high, then, one night during a football game in 2004, he stared death in the eye, and his life changed forever.
Brady had been minutes from death after collapsing on the sidelines of a varsity football game. He was taken to the hospital and rushed into surgery with a slim chance of survival.
The doctors were about to come out to tell his parents he hadn’t made it, when a miracle happened and he began to turn around.  “Prayers and the grace of God saved my life that night, “ but that was just the start of the story.  Brady faced death several more times during those next five weeks while he remained in a coma and endured four more major surgeries.
At the end of October, 2004, Brady finally was transferred to a rehabilitation hospital, unable to speak, read, walk or swallow.  From the moment Brady started to come back, he was so glad to be alive, so grateful for every moment. With the help of five people he started to take a few steps.  
Brady had been a 4.0 student, and now he could read at barely a kindergarten level and do only simple math.  All of this could have frustrated Brady, but it didn’t.  Through many hours of intense therapy, Brady was able to get back to school and graduate with his high school class. Though few would have believed it could happen, Brady was able to complete the tests that showed he could start college, which he has graduated from. He is still planning on going to graduate school to seek a degree to be a counselor.
Brady has moved from a quiet teen before the accident, to an ‘on-fire’ entertainer, ready to share his Passion for Life with the world.
Brady will be in Falls City sharing his story with the community on Tuesday, Sept. 22 at Community Medical Center at 10:00 a.m. then he will be in Humboldt in the old gym at Humboldt-Table Rock-Steiner at 1:00 p.m.
On Wednesday, Sept. 23 he will be speaking at Falls City High School in the auditorium at 10 a.m. and to the parents at 7 p.m. On Thursday, Sept. 24 Brady will be speaking at Auburn High school at 1 p.m.
Brady is sharing information on concussion symptoms, facts and when to report symptoms to your doctor.
The event is sponsored by TSMF, Tanner Shelby Merz Foundation.

Identical prison terms for violent offender, shoplifter

     Two young Richardson County adults — a 23-year-old Stella man with a record of violence and a 26-year-old Falls City woman with sticky fingers — were both sent to the Nebraska Dept. of Corrections for a period of 20-60 months.
    Corrina Phroper on Sept. 1 was re-sentenced by Judge Daniel E. Bryan Jr. for violating her probation after being found guilty of shoplifting clothing from Shopko Hometown in Falls City. It was her third shoplifting conviction, according to Court documents. Phroper is eligible for parole after 10 months, with credit for 64 days served.
    Judge Bryan also sent Ethan Bentley to prison after he broke probation by causing more than $20,000 damage to the Grace Bible Fellowship Church east of Stella and then threatening officers as they tried to apprehend him last January.
    Police learned of the break-in from a witness who alleged Bentley said he “was looking to kill” a law enforcement officer. Sheriff Don Pounds and Deputy Clinton Stonebarger responded to the call and discovered Bentley, covered in blood from cuts he received from jumping through stained glass, leaving the church property on foot.  When officers ordered him to the ground, Bentley lunged at Stonebarger, who used a taser to apprehend the suspect.
    This, just a little more than one month after Bentley was sentenced to probation for a July 2014 incident at Burbank Apartments in which he threw a brick through a window, entered a residence, caused extensive damage and threatened the occupants.
    Still, he could be released long before Phroper, as the two received identical penalties and Bentley gets credit for 184 days previously served.

‘I Believe’ Fight Against Suicide ride Saturday, Sept. 12

By Joey May, Hiawatha World
It’s time to ride for KJ’s “I Believe” Fight Against Suicide. And this year’s event also features a nationally known suicide prevention speaker, Jeff Yalden.
The second annual event will kick off on Saturday, Sept. 12, with a benefit ride and auction, along with a band to benefit the Kyler Wayne Jones Memorial Fund. Kyler, the son of Betty Jones and Rick Jones of Hiawatha, passed away the spring of his sophomore year at Hiawatha High School in 2014.
The route has expanded for this year’s ride. Registration (all types of vehicles are welcome) will be at 9 a.m. at Wild Bill’s Bar & Grill in Rulo. There is a fee of $20 for pilot and $15 for co-pilot, $5 second hand. At 11 a.m., kickstands are up and the ride begins.
Riders will travel to Hickory Road in Auburn, then to the Would Eye at Falls City, where they will stop for lunch. From there, the ride will turn south along U.S. 73 Highway through Hiawatha on the way to Muellers at Atchison.
At roughly 1:45-2 p.m., riders will be traveling southbound along First Street in Hiawatha, with an escort by the Hiawatha Police Department. Organizers are asking community members to come out and line First Street to show their support of the event.
From Muellers in Atchison, the riders will travel back to Wild Bill’s Bar and Grill at Rulo, for the auction, food and a band. Donated items for the auction are still being accepted — contact event organizers Jim Brennan (741-1614) or Kelly Pendleton (741-0620) to make a donation.
Money from the memorial fund established on Kyler’s behalf by friends and family members goes directly towards suicide prevention programs, along with annual scholarships to the youth in the area. A main focus of the fund is to raise awareness of not only teen suicide, but suicide in general.
Last year’s kick-off event was a spectacular success, organizers said, and they hope to bring even more riders, raise more funds and raise more awareness this year — adding in a teen suicide/depression mental health speaker Jeff Yalden for three local special events for youth and the public.
“Bringing Jeff was made possible through donations and last year’s ride, along with other fundraisers and donations,” said Betty Jones.
Jones said she read about Yalden in “The Hog” magazine, watched his amazing videos and contacted him about speaking to local youth and members of the community.
“He is honest, he gets it,” she said. “He is very straight forward and talks about life’s experiences.”
Yalden has been considered one of America’s No. 1 youth motivational speakers since 1992. Yalden overcame depression and suicidal tendencies himself to fight his way back to healing. He made life-transforming choices and decided to use his darkest hours to help today’s youth transform their own lives.
He has spoken to millions of people in all 50 states and 48 countries. He is an author, with a best-selling book “Your Life Matters,” hosts his own radio show “The Jeff Yalden Show” and is a one of the world’s most requested teen motivational speakers. Seventy million viewers know him as “Life Coach” on MTV’s longest-running reality show, MADE. He offers once-a-month training through his website ( for suicide prevention for teachers, administrators, coaches, parents and community health professionals.
Yalden will be hosting three local events for youth and community members. On Monday, Sept. 14, Yalden will be at Memorial Auditorium in downtown Hiawatha, speaking to the students from Hiawatha, Horton and Kickapoo Nation high schools, starting at 9 a.m.
On Tuesday, Sept. 15, Yalden will be speaking at Falls City High School to their students, along with those from Sacred Heart High School, starting at 9:30 a.m.
The evening of Tuesday, Sept. 15, at 6 o’clock, Yalden will be speaking to parents and community members at Hiawatha High School in Hiawatha.
“This is a huge step towards our goal and we are excited to have him,” organizers of the “I Believe” Fight Against Suicide said. They encourage community members and youth to visit his Website at
“I Believe” T-shirts are being pre-sold on the event’s Facebook page and proceeds go back into the fund. Financial donations are also being accepted and can be mailed to P.O. Box 24 Robinson, KS 66532 or call Kelly Pendleton (741-0620) or Jim Brennan (741-1614) to pledge your support. Donations can be sent directly to Citizen’s State Bank to the Kyler Wayne Jones Memorial Fund. Contact them to make a donation toward the auction for the Sept. 12 Benefit Ride.