Archive for the ‘Feature Stories’ Category

Grace Golfers Make Major Strides In Second Round

Monday, October 6th, 2014

Pictured is Taylor Fanning

Grace’s golf team fired off a blistering second round at the St. Francis Invitational over the weekend, finishing fourth overall at Noble Hawks Golf Links.

Grace finished tied for seventh overall after the first round, producing a 313 as a team. In the second round, Grace was even better. The Lancers’ second-round 307 was six strokes lower than any other team, and the Lancers jumped up three spots on the team leaderboard.

Senior Taylor Fanning led Grace’s charge up the leaderboard, improving his total by eight strokes (80-72). His score of 72 in the second round was the lowest total on Saturday.

Jon Schram was one stroke behind Fanning for ninth place overall, firing a 74-79, and freshman Brayden Glaser had a consistent 77-77 in the tournament.

Taylor Ham finished with an 82-79, Daniel Zawlocki produced an 84-79, and Zachary Allyn carded an 84-84.

The Lancers’ next fall tournament is Monday and Tuesday at the Brown Deer Park Golf Course, hosted by Cardinal Stritch University.

Grace College’s “Show Your Colors” Homecoming to Begin a Month Early

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

2014 Grace College Homecoming "Show Your Colors"

This year, Grace Homecoming events will kick off a month earlier than usual in hopes that good weather will allow a full schedule of events and a true showing of Northern Indiana’s fall colors. A pancake breakfast, 5k run, fall festival/tailgate barbeque, Nocturnal 5 adventure race, and class reunion dinners are among the highlighted activities during Grace College’s Show Your Colors Homecoming Celebration, October 3-4, 2014.

An alumni welcome reception and coffee bar kicks off the weekend on Friday, October 3, as well as a special homecoming chapel and alumni awards presentation at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center in Winona Lake. The afternoon and evening will be filled with options for visitors, including an art exhibit from 1-5 p.m. in the Mount Memorial Art Gallery, tours through the Winona History Center and Billy Sunday home, and a campus bus tour.

On Saturday, October 4, a pancake breakfast at 8 a.m. is the first of over a dozen events for the day. These include a Homecoming 5k Fun Run at 9 a.m. at Miller Athletic Complex and a family tailgate barbeque and fall festival prior to the men’s soccer and women’s volleyball games. The day’s sporting events also include a cross country race at 10:30 a.m., women’s softball scrimmage, men’s baseball game, and alumni basketball games over the course of the day.

At 5 p.m., there will be a homecoming banquet for Grace alumni of all ages, featuring The “No Name Quartet,” an all-alumni singing group made up of Bob Jackson (BS 91), Jeff Secaur (BS 81, S 84), Mike Yocum (BS 79) and Tim Yocum (BS 84). It will also feature the Grace Alumni Brass, who will be performing a pops concert.

Information about class-year-specific reunions can be found at The Nocturnal 5 adventure race caps off the weekend’s events, beginning at 8:30 p.m. at the MOCC. Register at

“What’s really been significant this year is that homecoming has been moved up a month,” said Tammy Denlinger, director of alumni relations at Grace College. “It’s been in November for many years, and we’re hoping for some warmer weather this year so we can show off the fall colors and offer more sporting and outdoor activities. We want to make sure we have something for everyone. The alumni awards presentation and homecoming chapel are also unique this year and we are excited to once again recognize our outstanding alumni.”

For a complete list of homecoming events and class reunions, visit

Grace on to Semifinals with Win over Taylor

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

Pictured are Jose Marvel (left) and Ethan Grove (right) celebrating a point against Taylor on Tuesday.

Grace’s men’s tennis team fought off a tenacious Taylor team on Tuesday 8-1 to advance in the Crossroads League Tournament.

The Lancers (7-2) found themselves in a battle at nearly every position but lost just one point at No. 3 doubles. Grace advances to the CL semifinals where the Lancers will play at Indiana Wesleyan on the road on Thursday.

“This was a good win against a gritty, hard-fighting Taylor team. They were definitely ready to fight, but fortunately we were ready for them,” said Grace head coach Larry Schuh. “Jose and Jacob both pulled out super tiebreaks, and one doubles fought off a match point to come back and win. We can use this momentum in the second round against IWU.”

Doubles’ play was a spirited affair between the squads as Taylor had a lead in each match at the midway point. Ethan Grove and Jose Marval at No. 2 doubles won first 8-5 to spark Grace’s team, and Daniel Sanchez and Jacob Stump followed suit with a come-from-behind 9-7 win at No. 1 doubles.

Sanchez made short work of his opponent at No. 1 singles, 6-1, 6-1. Grove won 6-4, 6-4 at No. 4 singles, Ricardo Bedon won 6-1, 6-3 at No. 6, and Gabe Vervynckt held on for a 6-1, 7-5 victory at No. 5.


Marval at No. 2 singles and Stump at No. 3 had to battle in three sets at their respective positions before winning in super tiebreakers, rounding out Grace’s 8-1 victory.

Hollar’s Goal Lifts Grace Past St. Francis

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

A first-half goal from Meredith Hollar lifted Grace’s women’s soccer team to a 1-0 victory against St. Francis on Tuesday.

The Lady Lancers (6-2-2, 2-0 Crossroads League) have yet to surrender a goal in league play thanks to a shutout performance against the Cougars (6-4-1, 0-2 CL).

Hollar came on as a substitute late in the opening period with the score tied. A few minutes later, she would deliver the decisive kick in the match. After trapping a ball in the midfield, Meghan Wiles wheeled around a defender and slotted a pass to Hollar past a defender. Hollar beat the goalkeeper with a shot to the near post for the game’s only goal in the 35th minute.

Apart from Hollar’s goal, one of the strongest chances for either team in the first half came in the 14th minute. Mallory Rondeau played a leading pass to Jordan Hairgrove, and Hairgrove’s hard shot was saved from close range.

Grace had a 4-3 advantage in shots and 3-0 advantage in corner kicks in the opening half.

The second half produced few clear-cut chances as Grace’s defense held firm. Late in the contest, Grace had a number of good looks including a 24 yarder by Mallory Rondeau that forced a diving save. But the Lady Lancers had to settle for one goal in the match.

Abby Schue earned the shutout victory in goal with four saves in 90 minutes. Heather Martin, Faith Voehringer, Meredith Matson and Erica Manchess manned the defensive line for Grace that recorded its second straight shutout to kick off the Crossroads League season.


The Lady Lancers continue league play on Saturday with a trip to Huntington at 4 p.m. Grace’s next home match is a high-profile match against No. 12-ranked Spring Arbor on Oct. 8.

Grace Unveils 2014 Inductees for Hall of Fame

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

The Grace College Athletic Department will induct five members into the Lancer Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday morning: Tracie Mezera, Mike McCoy, Bob and Bernice Ashman and Tricia Sandy.

The 2014 induction class, the seventh in school history, will be honored at the annual Hall of Fame Breakfast on Saturday at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center.

“It’s exciting to honor Grace’s rich athletic history,” said athletic director Chad Briscoe. “This is a very accomplished group of people who have added so much to Grace athletics. They deserve to be recognized for their contributions to our institution.”

Tracie Mezera was a standout women’s basketball player from 2000-2004. She was a four-time All-Conference selection and was honorable mention for NCCAA All-American in 2001. Mezera graduated as the program’s all-time leading scorer with 1,632 points – a record that stood until Juaneice Jackson broke her mark last winter. She also finished with the second-most assists (360) in team history.

Mike McCoy was a member of Grace’s men’s basketball and track teams from 1966-1970. He was a three-time All-Conference honoree who topped 2,000 points in his basketball career. He holds the program record for most points in a game with 53 and most consecutive free throws made in a game with 17.

The athletic department will also induct Bob and Bernice Ashman for their meritorious service to Grace athletics. The Ashman’s were lifelong supporters of Grace, watching the Lancers play from the early days in the 1960s.

Tricia Sandy (Doyle) was an All-American volleyball player from 1999-2002. She was an NAIA Third Team All-American in 2001 and was also a three-time NCCAA All-American during her career. She finished in the program’s top five for a number of categories, including career kills, career digs and career service aces.

“We want to thank those individuals who have brought much distinction and honor to Grace College and have established a tradition of Christian excellence which is incomparable,” Briscoe continued. “These achievements have touched everyone associated with Grace College both in and out of the arena of athletics.”

The inductees will be honored in conjunction with this weekend’s Homecoming festivities for Grace. The inductees will be recognized at halftime of Saturday’s men’s soccer match against Huntington at 2 p.m. at Miller Field.

Volleyball Drops Thriller with IWU

Monday, September 29th, 2014

In a battle for first place in the Crossroads League, Grace’s volleyball team let a 2-0 lead slip away against Indiana Wesleyan on Saturday.

The Wildcats (14-3, 9-0 CL) battled back to win three straight sets, rallying for the 3-2 victory at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center.

Grace won the opening set 25-20 and looked in good position to sweep the match with a 26-24 victory in the second game. The Wildcats were serving to win the set at 24-23, but Grace rallied thanks to two late kills from Grace Woolsey to win 26-24.

The Wildcats responded well in the third set, claiming an early 6-1 lead. IWU continued its momentum with a 25-12 victory. The fourth set also belonged to the Wildcats as IWU eased away for an eight-point win.

In the tiebreaking fifth set, Grace jumped out to a 7-5 lead to force a timeout from the Wildcats. Indiana Wesleyan came out roaring from the timeout, however, outscoring Grace 9-2 after that point to grab a 14-9 advantage. The Lady Lancers (16-5, 7-2 CL) fought off two match points before the Wildcats clinched the comeback victory in the match with a 15-11 win.

Grace finished the game with 40 kills on an attacking percentage of .043. IWU finished the night with 51 kills on a .157 percentage.

In the absence of Calah Kruse, sophomore Kaitlin Kerrigan led Grace’s offense with eight kills. Ellie Harp tallied 31 assists, 7 kills, 9 digs and 3 service aces, and Sierra Smith had seven kills on a .211 percentage.

Grace Woolsey ended the match with 6 kills, 1 ace and 4 block assists. Hannah Clemmons paced Grace’s defense with 19 digs, and Sara Miller produced 16 digs.

The Lady Lancers resume league play on Wednesday 7 p.m. with a home match against Spring Arbor.

Grace Opens League Season with Win Over IWU

Monday, September 29th, 2014

Pictured is Jordan Hairgrove dribbling on Saturday night

The Crossroads League season started on a positive note for Grace’s women’s soccer team with a 2-0 victory over Indiana Wesleyan on Saturday night.

The Lady Lancers (5-2-2, 1-0 CL) notched first-half goals from Jordan Hairgrove and Mallory Rondeau, and Grace’s defense took care of the rest. The Wildcats (1-8, 0-1 CL) were held to two shots on goal for the match and six shots overall.

Grace controlled play in the first period, creating a number of scoring opportunities over the first 10 minutes. Hairgrove and Rondeau both had strong looks in the early stages.

Hairgrove’s hustle created the match’s first goal. She intercepted a pass from IWU’s goalkeeper near the top of the penalty box and lofted an expertly placed shot above the goalie into an open net in the 14th minute.

Less than three minutes later, Grace had doubled its lead. Meredith Matson’s long pass found Holly Bennett on the right side of the field. Bennett fired a cross into the penalty box where Rondeau converted her close-range shot at the16:20 mark.

The first half ended with a 10-3 advantage in shots for the Lady Lancers and a 2-0 advantage on the scoreboard.

The second half saw an increase in physical play, resulting in 19 fouls and fewer shot attempts. Grace and Indiana Wesleyan notched three shots apiece over the final 45 minutes. A few of Grace’s better chances were disallowed as the Wildcats’ defense caught the Lady Lancers offside six times.

Midway into the second half, Carianne Sobey made a weaving run into the penalty box. After maneuvering past a few defenders, Sobey’s shot to the near post clanged off the post and out of bounds.

For the game, Rondeau and Meredith Hollar led Grace’s offense with three shot attempts. Faith Voehringer, Carlie Salinas, Erica Manchess, Matson and Heather Martin controlled the defensive side of the ball for Grace, and freshman goalkeeper Abby Schue picked up the shutout victory with two saves in 90 minutes.

The Lady Lancers have two road matches next week, including at St. Francis on Tuesday and at Huntington on Saturday. Grace’s next home match is a must-see event against No. 12 Spring Arbor on Oct. 8.

Grace Sweeps Rival Bethel

Monday, September 29th, 2014

Pictured celebrating a point against Bethel are (left) Annie Salazar, Hannah Clemmons, Alix Underwood, and Tori Bontrager

Playing without their top attacking option, Grace’s volleyball team used a balanced attack to sweep Bethel College 3-0 on Friday night.

The Lady Lancers (16-4, 7-1 Crossroads League) bounced back from a disappointing loss earlier in the week to Goshen, rebounding to sweep last year’s CL champion in front of a frenzied crowd at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center.

Grace played Friday night’s match without senior Calah Kruse, and sophomore Kaitlin Kerrigan did her part to fill the void with a match-high 13 kills.

In the opening set, Grace started strongly to earn a 20-12 advantage. Bethel used two quick timeouts to battle back, cutting the gap to one at 24-23. But Grace clinched the set on a Pilot error. Kerrigan pounded out three timely kills down the stretch to keep the Pilots at bay.

Grace continued its momentum into the second set, holding a small lead over Bethel throughout the set.  The Lady Lancers limited the Pilots (10-8, 4-4 CL) to a .000 hitting percentage in the set, and Megan Johnson finished the 25-20 win with a kill.

Bethel was up for the challenge in the third set, claiming a 14-11 lead to force a timeout from Grace head coach Andria Harshman. The Lady Lancers refocused to tie the score, but Bethel maintained a slight edge toward the finale.

The Pilots served at 24-23 to win the set, but Kerrigan ignited a raucous home crowd with a kill to tie the score. Grace went on to take the 27-25 victory with a block point from Sierra Smith and Tori Bontrager followed by an attack error on the Pilots. Freshman Sara Miller came up with two acrobatic defensive saves in the final points to give Grace a shot at the sweep.

Kerrigan’s 13 kills came on a .370 percentage. She also tied for match honors with 13 digs. Grace Woolsey finished with 8 kills, 1 solo block and 3 block assists, and Ellie Harp tallied 30 assists, 6 kills and 6 digs.

The Lady Lancers continue league play at home on Saturday with a crucial match against Indiana Wesleyan. Grace, currently second in the league standings, will aim to deal the Wildcats their first loss of the league season on Saturday 3 p.m. at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center.

Indiana Tech Topples Lancers in OT

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

Grace’s four-game winning streak was snapped in overtime on Monday night against Indiana Tech’s men’s soccer team.

The Lancers (5-2) scored first in the match, but the Warriors (3-1-1) fought back to tie the game in regulation and win 2-1 in overtime.

“We lost to a good team tonight. I felt that for the most part our hearts were in this game. Everyone was pulling his own weight,” said Grace head coach Matt Hotchkin. “Our first half was a good one. We played our game and did a nice job of setting up our offense and creating chances. We hit the post several times tonight, and they would have given us a great result had they been an inch left or right. The second half we struggled to get reconnected at times. The temptation was to be a bit more direct, but that moved us all over the place and took us away from our strength.”

The first half of action saw 16 combined shots and two goals. Grace opened up the scoring first in the 30th minute. After a nice build-up of possession, a deflected shot fell to the feet of Danilo Carnelos, and the senior blasted a shot into the back of the net from outside the penalty box at the 29:34 mark.

Within 10 minutes of Carnelos’s goal, Indiana Tech found an equalizer by finishing off a cross in the 39th minute.

In the second half, Grace had several chances to win the game. The Lancers had three shots on goal and six corner kicks over the final 45 minutes.

Around 20 minutes in the second half, Grace nearly scored twice within the span of a minute. Nakilee Weni came off the bench and had a close-range shot saved off the post and out of bounds. Carnelos nearly scored again on the ensuing corner kick when his curled attempt hit the crossbar.

After neither team could finish the match in regulation, Monday’s game headed into overtime. The Warriors did not wait long to win the game, finding the golden-goal winner less than four minutes into the first extra session.

Overall Weni and Austin Altimus had three shots apiece to lead Grace’s offense, and Carnelos and Jon Christensen added two more attempts.

The Lancers will now shift their attention fully to the Crossroads League. Grace’s first league match is on Saturday 7 p.m. at Indiana Wesleyan.

Lady Lancers Sink Rival Pilots

Monday, September 22nd, 2014

Pictured is sophomore Gabrielle Lawrence for the Lady Lancers.

Grace’s women’s tennis team won its second match in a row with a convincing 8-1 victory over Bethel on Saturday at Miller Field.

The Lady Lancers (4-5, 2-5 Crossroads League) claimed all three doubles’ points, including a battle at the top position. Natalia Kurkova and Kristin Cassidy trailed 6-3 at No. 1 doubles, but the duo came back to win 9-8 (7-5).

Gabrielle Lawrence and Mariah Zumbrun at No. 2 doubles and Sarah Hinkel and Katie Etter at No. 3 doubles each won by an 8-1 score.

Kurkova at No. 1 singles (6-0, 6-1) and Cassidy at No. 2 (6-1, 6-1) made short work of their opponents to kick off singles’ play. Lawrence blanked the Pilots at No. 6 singles 6-0, 6-0.

Hinkel claimed a 6-4, 6-0 victory at No. 4 singles, and Zumbrun battled to a three-set win at No. 5.

Jayna Huber nearly pulled off a come-from-behind victory at No. 3 singles, ultimately slipping by the slimmest of margins 6-7 (6-8), 6-4, 11-13.

“We put together another nice team win today,” said Grace head coach Scott Moore. “I was extremely happy with my one doubles team. They were down 3-6 early, so I challenged them a little bit and they responded. Although she did not win, I though Jayna showed some real toughness today at three singles. She is going to be vital for us to take the next step.”

The Lady Lancers conclude the Crossroads League regular season on Tuesday with a trip to Goshen. Grace is currently in seventh place in the league standings, one game out of a tie for fifth place.