Bruce Bentley

Central Montcalm’s Mason Barnwell, right, brings the ball up the court during a home game against Newaygo last season. - File photos

Central Montcalm boys ready for basketball season

The expectations continue to rise for the Central Montcalm boys basketball team. Following last year’s 9-12 record, with all five starters returning (six seniors overall) this year, the Hornets expect to see improvement.

Daily News/Bruce Bentley

Ferris State University defensive end and Greenville graduate Justin Zimmer, left, chases down a player from Northern Michigan University during a game in 2013. Zimmer and the Bulldogs play today in the second round of the Division II playoffs at home against Ohio Dominican. - Daily News/Bruce Bentley

Ferris State’s Zimmer ready for D-2 playoffs

Justin Zimmer was a dominating football player in high school for the Greenville Yellow Jackets. Zimmer, now playing for Ferris State University, continues to dominate on the gridiron. The preseason All-America selection, Zimmer is up for a host of awards for his play this season. Before that, Zimmer will help lead the Bulldogs in their first postseason contest in 18 years.

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Greenville/Belding hoops to play at Palace

It’s always a big deal when the Greenville Yellow Jackets and Belding Redskins face each other in sports. It doesn’t even matter the sport. Well this January, the two schools will meet again on the hard court, as they do every season, this time both the boys and girls games will take place at The Palace of Auburn Hills.

A look at Greenville’s Legacy Field looking south during a football game. - Cory Smith

Legacy Field being showcased

Legacy Field at Greenville High School has been talked about plenty the past couple of weeks across the state and for good reason. This week, Legacy Field will play host to two high profile football playoff games showcasing what everyone has been talking about. First, the three-year-old stadium, placed second in the MLive “Grandest” high school football stadium contest. Voting took place online the past month with Legacy Field finishing second to Engel Stadium at Bay City Central.

Belding’s Damion Ball (52) makes a tackle with the help of Sam Beckett (28) and Alex Hubbert (3) during the season opening game at Greenville. - Cory Smith

Belding struggled on the gridiron in 2014

The Belding Redskins struggled to find wins in 2014. They struggled to stay competitive. The Redskins went just 2-7 overall this year, which followed a 7-4 season and playoff appearance in 2013.

Lakeview junior Vaughan Martens dives to keep a ball in play during Tuesday’s Class B regional semifinal against Grand Rapids South Christian. - Daily News/Bruce Bentley

Lakeview falls in regional semifinals to South Christian

The Lakeview Wildcats were playing in its first regional volleyball game in 23 years. The Grand Rapids South Christian Sailors were the Class B state runner-up in 2013 and are annual state champion contenders. On Tuesday night, the experience prevailed for the Sailors as they swept the Wildcats 25-15, 25-13, 25-9 to advance to the regional final Thursday against Lake Odessa Lakewood.

Greenville graduate Jordan Thomas in his team photo for the University of Michigan. Thomas was a three-time individual state champion in high school. - Courtesy photo

Injuries force Thomas to retire from wrestling

As a kid, Jordan Thomas dreamed of wrestling for the University of Michigan. A combination of talent, hard work and dedication led to that dream becoming reality. Unfortunately, Thomas’ dream ended in early October with the quiet announcement of his retirement from the sport he loves. Injuries and the battle to stay healthy became too much and Thomas told himself it was time.

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SPORTS GALORE: Lauren Hill is an inspiration

There is more than just winning and losing when it comes to sports. Despite stories of reckless youth parents, win-at-all-cost college athletic programs and law breaking professional athletes, sports provide us with stories of courage and inspiration.

Belding’s Sarah Brownell, right, Greta Wilker, middle, and Sam McNeal, left, get ready to serve receive during Monday’s Class B district volleyball opener at Central Montcalm. - Daily News/Bruce Bentley

Belding advances with 3-1 victory over Alma

The Belding Redskins always seem to play its best volleyball this time of the year. That means the district tournament. On Monday, the Redskins took their first step toward winning a fourth consecutive Class B district title with a 25-17, 23-25, 25-15, 25-17 win over Alma in the first round of district play at Central Montcalm High School. The Redskins domination goes further back with district title wins in six of the last seven tourneys.

Carson City-Crystal’s Tabor Erskin, left, and Zach Pringle, middle, try to bring down Ravenna receiver Alex Jawor during Saturday’s first round playoff game. - Daily News/Bruce Bentley

CC-Crystal loses to Ravenna in opening round 42-14

The Ravenna Bulldogs were a little more physical and a little more athletic than the Carson City-Crystal Eagles. On Saturday, in the first round of the Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 6 football playoffs, the Bulldogs, behind the effort of running back David Thompson, defeated the Eagles 42-14 to advance to the district final.