This special feature is produced for the Boyne City Gazette by sportswriter Chris Graber. Following is an in-depth look at how former high school athletes from around Charlevoix County are doing in sports at the college and university level.
Winter Romeyn (Ellsworth 2015) captured his first Top-10 finish of the season en route to leading the No. 15 Michigan State University men’s cross country program at the Eastern Michigan University Fall Classic on Oct. 20 in Ypsilanti. In the outing, the junior collected the No. 2 effort for the Spartans by placing fifth overall on the 5,000-meter course with a career-best time of 15 minutes, 20.8 seconds. The competition was not scored.
Tanner Kruzel (Boyne City 2016) registered his second 100-yard receiving effort of the season at running back for the Northern Michigan University football program (1-7) in a 20-12 loss at home to Saginaw Valley State University (4-4) on Oct. 21 in Marquette. In the competition, the sophomore hauled in 118 yards from four receptions.
On Sept. 30, he registered his first career touchdown in highlight reel fashion on a 72-yard pass from Ryan Johnson in a 28-21 loss at Michigan Tech (4-5) in Houghton.
In the outing, Kruzel finished with 116 yards and two TDs from four catches. His second TD came by trick play as running back Jake Mayon found him for a 30-yard completion on a halfback pass.
For the year, Kruzel’s compiled 318 yards and two TDs from 17 receptions. Defensively, he’s added one tackle.
Chris Wyniawskyj (Charlevoix) is in his third year at coach for College of Lake County men’s golf program, which secured a title at the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference Championships on Sept. 26 in Mundelein, Illinois.
Brad Klinger (Charlevoix 2017) is a freshman at defensive back for Northern Michigan University, which fell to 1-7 overall after sustaining a 28-3 loss to NCAA Division II No. 19 Grand Valley State University (7-2) on Oct. 28 in Allendale.
Brent Murray (Petoskey 2016) is a redshirt freshman at fullback for Wayne State University, which improved to 3-5 overall after registering a 20-14 victory at Michigan Tech (3-5) on Oct. 21 in Houghton.
Dustin Hejka (East Jordan 2014) is a senior at wide receiver for Hope College, which improved to 6-2 overall after registering a 50-0 sweep of Kalamazoo College (0-8) on Oct. 28 in Kalamazoo.
James Brown (East Jordan 2016) is a sophomore linebacker for Adrian College, which fell to 3-5 overall after sustaining a 55-34 loss at home to Trine University (8-0) on Oct. 28 in Adrian.
MEN’S CROSS COUNTRY
Tristan Rudolph (Charlevoix 2015) clinched the No. 19 effort for NAIA No. 23 Aquinas College at the NAIA Great Lakes Regional Championships by finishing 172nd overall on the 8,000-meter course with a time of 28:43.6 on Oct. 21 in Grand Rapids.
Among the 24 teams, the Saints ended fifth.
Nick Plude (Charlevoix 2016) is a sophomore for Saginaw Valley State University, which captured a runner-up finish among the 11 teams at the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championships on Oct. 21 in Marquette.
In his most recent outing, he collected the No. 9 performance for the Cardinals at the Oakland University Golden Grizzly Collegiate Opener by nabbing 48th overall on the 6,000-meter course with a time of 21:40.7 on Sept. 1 in Rochester.
Among the 15 teams, SVSU secured runner-up.
Luke Budday (Charlevoix 2017) posted the No. 13 effort for Lansing Community College at home in the LCC Invitational by nabbing 120th overall on the 8,000-meter course with a time of 29:23.1 on Oct. 6 in Lansing.
Among the 21 teams, the Stars collected runner-up.
The junior college program was bested only by NAIA team Siena Heights University, which received votes in the NAIA Top 25 rankings released on Oct. 11.
Jonathon Pischner (Charlevoix 2016) registered the No. 1 performance for Alpena Community College at the 37th annual Auto-Owners Insurance Michigan State University Spartan Invitational by ending 212th overall on the 8,000-meter course with a time of 29:31.7 on Sept. 15 in Lansing. Among the eight teams in the junior college division, the Lumberjacks clinched seventh.
Dominic Santina (Boyne City 2016) captured the No. 1 effort for Rochester College at the NAIA Great Lakes Challenge XC Invitational by finishing 232nd overall on the 8,000-meter course with a career-best time of 30:30.5 on Oct. 21 in Grand Rapids.
The Warriors did not compete as a full team.
Zachary Willford (Redwood Legacy Christian 2016) is a sophomore for Navy, which turned in three seventh-place finishes at the Head of Charles Regatta on Oct. 22 in Boston. He is a Boyne Falls native.
Nick Snabes (Charlevoix 2014) contributed one shot at forward for Otterbein University (15-2) in a 4-1 loss at home to Baldwin Wallace University (5-10-2) on Oct. 20 in Westerville.
For the season, the senior’s compiled one shot on goal and two shots through five appearances.
Becca Moon (Charlevoix 2017) secured an appearance at outside hitter for Trine University (13-13) in a 3-1 loss at St. Mary’s College (12-9) on Oct. 21 in Notre Dame, Indiana.
For the year, the freshman’s totaled five kills, two digs and two blocks.
WOMEN’S CROSS COUNTRY
Amber Way (Charlevoix 2015) is a junior for No. 20 Michigan State University, which clinched fifth among the 14 teams at the Big Ten Conference Championships on Oct. 29 in Bloomington, Indiana.
Paige Podskalny (East Jordan 2014) is a senior for Northwood Univeristy, which captured runner-up among the eight teams at the Blythfield Country Club Battle of Belmont Invitational from Oct. 16-17 in Belmont, Michigan.
Ivy Wells (Charlevoix 2015) is a redshirt sophomore for Eastern Michigan Univeristy, which opened exhibition competion in a matchup against the University of Michigan on Sept. 17 in Ann Arbor.
No team score was kept.
Isabel Hess (Charlevoix 2017) delivered one shot at defender for Northwood University (4-11-1) in a 1-1 tie at home against Michigan Tech (5-10-1) on Oct. 1 in Midland.
In the freshman’s most recent outing, she registered her 13th appearance of the year in a 7-0 loss at Saginaw Valley State University (9-6-1) on Oct. 27 in University Center.
For the season, she’s provided one goal, one assist, three shots on goal and four shots.
Kirsten Malpass (East Jordan 2015) completed the fall portion of the season with one appearance for Lake Superior State University, which holds a 1-4 overall record. In the junior’s effort, she collected a 6-0, 6-0 loss at No. 6 singles for LSSU in an 8-1 loss at Tiffin University (9-5) on Sept. 17 in Tiffin, Ohio.