Sibley-Ocheyedan's Grant Brouwer like the challenges that sports present to him. The real challenge is trying to top Brouwer in whatever sport he's participating in at the time.
After averaging 18.0 points per game on 51 percent shooting in the basketball season, including 41 3-pointers on 40.6 percent shooting, and coming away with 50 steals, the Generals senior hasn't missed a beat in the transition to the track season.
Brouwer, the Sioux City Journal Siouxland Athlete of the Week, consistently put together some of the best jumps in the state and qualified for the Drake Relays for the second season in a row in the high jump.
Then at Drake, Brouwer put together the best jump in the state when he cleared 6 feet, 9 inches to win the Drake Relay high jump title.
Sibley-Ocheyedan head coach Peter Carlson believes it's the first Drake Relays title in the program's history.
"I spoke to Grant about it and just the energy in the stadium. The drum line was playing and it was pumping him up," Carlson said. "When he is on a roll, he can really do some great jumps. He's a competitor for sure."
The 6-9 height almost didn't happen. Brouwer struggled to clear 6-3 and then he struggled to clear 6-5. But once he did clear 6-5, it was smooth sailing from there.
"It was kind of weird. I didn't expect to win it at first. After the third jump at 6-5, something felt different and I felt comfortable," Brouwer said. "The atmosphere was great, the drums were beating, the people were cheering. When I cleared (6-5), my coach told me I could've cleared 6-10 with that jump.
"I felt more confident after that. That's when I cleared 6-7 on the first try. I was feeling in the swing of things and felt a lot better about myself."
Brouwer tried to clear 6-10 in the next height but just missed. That's the height Brouwer has had his sights set on all season.
Carlson has no doubt that Brouwer can clear that height. He has seen Brouwer clear the bar easy enough at certain heights to think that the Dordt track and basketball recruit can meet his goal.
You have free articles remaining.
"He has some things to work on and it's possible," Carlson said. "If we can get some good weather and he is nice and loose, he can do it. He's not a loud person, he's quiet and reserved and really humble. I think he just has a goal set in his mind and he will work toward it to achieve it. He will practice until he feels satisfied."
That same work ethic has rubbed off on others on the team. Carlson said Brouwer is a great role model for the rest of the athletes to look up to.
"He's a really good leader for our team. He knows pretty much everybody on the team regardless of if they are a freshman or a sophomore," Carlson said. "He talks to everyone on the team and they all respect him and they think it's pretty cool that they are on a team with a Drake Relay champion."
Track has helped Brouwer excel at basketball, too. Brouwer went from a distance runner to running sprints, which has helped him in the high jump and on the court. He will look to improve at Dordt next year.
"I am very excited to jump there and play basketball there. I really want to grow in my faith there and they have a great academic program," said Brouwer, who is going to major in physical therapy. "I get along with the coaches and teammates. It called my name there."
But before he heads to Dordt at the end of the summer, Brouwer has his sights set on winning the Class 2A state title. He still has the top jump in the state, tied with Northeast's Braeden Hoyer, who he defeated at Drake.
Last season Brouwer finished in third place in the high jump. After winning the Drake Relays, he believes he can win the state title.
"After Drake, it boosts my confidence. At the beginning of the year, I keep track of Quikstats and saw some of the heights," Brouwer said. "Winning Drake boosted my confidence and I am feeling really good about it right now."
Girls Track and Field
Shaylee Siebens, Akron-Westfield - Siebens won the 100 dash in 12.82 seconds at meet at West Sioux last week along with winning the 200 in 26.94. She was part of the 4x100 relay that won in 54.29. Siebens has the fasted 100 time in Class 1A.
Jose Martinez, Storm Lake - The senior scored all three of Storm Lake's goals in a win against Spencer last week. Then he had a goal and two assists in Storm Lake's 6-1 win over Unity. Martinez has 22 goals on the season for the 11-1 Tornadoes.