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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Feven Getachew
Feven Getachew
May 6, 2024
Michael Lozada
Michael Lozada
May 6, 2024
Nathan Hoffman
Nathan Hoffman
May 6, 2024
Harvey Wilhelm `24.
Harvey Wilhelm
May 6, 2024

A Family of Five Pioneer Teams Coming Home This Weekend

Family Weekend is a time for students to reunite with loved ones and for the College to show off the campus. But with a weekend packed with sporting events hosted on campus, it is also an opportunity for the Pioneer athletic teams to showcase their game.

This year, men’s and women’s soccer, women’s golf, football and men’s water polo are all scheduled to play at Grinnell during Family Weekend.

Greg Wallace, Director of Athletics and Recreation and former football coach, reaffirms that this year, having multiple home games on campus is advantageous for both students and their families.

“Family Weekend is always a great event on any college campus, but it’s added excitement when you have a number of athletic teams that are playing at the same time,” Wallace said. “It also gives a chance for parents to be able to see a vibrant college campus on a weekend.”

In the past, turnout for sporting events during Family Weekend has been relatively high. While the majority of supporters have been parents and families of student-athletes, non-athletes are encouraged to bring their families to sporting events.

Much of the excitement for this weekend is centered on the various sporting events taking place on campus, but the Athletic Department has another reason to be thrilled. This year, an anonymous alum will be donating $10 for every student who attends any of the sporting events. Students need to bring their P-cards in order to be counted in the official tally.

The donation will be given to the Athletic Department’s general fund. However, the money will not only benefit athletes; it will also improve the overall athletic experience for all Grinnell students.

“There are certain things we can do with that money to make this entire facility and our experiences in the Athletic Department better for all students. It’s not just going into student athletes; some of it will go to the facilities and into improving the experience for everybody who walks in our doors,” said Ben Cooprider, Coordinator of Athletic Facilities and assistant baseball coach.

Wallace and Cooprider also acknowledged the collective effort of the Athletic Department in the preparations that go into planning a successful Family Weekend.

“In order to put something like this on, it really does take a lot of coordination between the people in Facilities Management—they get everything in place for the contests—as well as the custodians who have to have everything prepped for the teams as they come in, and also clean up. It’s a real team effort by all of the sports department,” Wallace said.

According to Cooprider, also a co-liaison for the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, many individuals, Grinnell faculty and students alike, have been working to promote student attendance this weekend.

“Getting as many students up here as we possibly can would be a tremendous, tremendous advantage for us,” Cooprider said.

The Athletic Department hopes Cooprider’s goal become a reality this weekend.

Below are brief previews of the many events that will take place over the next couple of days.


Men’s Water Polo

Men’s club water polo will be playing four games this weekend in their first in-season tournament of the year.

Joe Lytle ’14, captain of the men’s water polo team, believes that it is incredibly lucky the tournament will be held in Grinnell during Family Weekend.

“All of the teams from [the Heartland Conference] are coming in and playing, so it’s a really nice opportunity because we get to see everyone else and see where they’re at,” Lytle said. “It’s my senior season, and we’ve got a few other seniors on the team. All of their parents are coming to watch, which is really nice that they’re coming in for Family Weekend and to take part in cheering us on in water polo.”

The team is set to play St. Mary’s University at 10:40 a.m. and Carleton College at 3:20 p.m. on Saturday and then St. John’s University at 10:40 a.m. and Knox College at 2:10 p.m. on Sunday.

Having recently played against Monmouth College, the reigning national champion for Division III Club Water Polo, and the University of Wisconsin, home of a well-respected program, Lytle is confident the team will perform well this weekend.

“I think we’ll go undefeated this weekend. We’re a strong team. And just knowing that we can compete against teams like Wisconsin—we should do very well in our conference,” Lytle said.

According to Lytle, the Pioneers are looking to make a run at both the conference title and a national title. With three new players who are now in the starting line-up, Lytle believes that the team has a very good shot at winning Conference, which would place them as the top seed in their conference when entering Nationals.


Women’s Golf 

The women’s golf team will be playing at the Grinnell Invitational this Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Grinnell Golf and Country Club. The team achieved a strong start to the season after they placed sixth out of 19 teams in the Mount Mercy Fall Invitational, which took place on Aug. 30 to Aug. 31. However, they fell to both Simpson and Central College in the Central Fall Invitational on Sept. 6. In their most recent tournament, the Illinois Wesleyan Fall Classic, they placed 14th out of 21 teams.


Men’s and Women’s Soccer

Women’s soccer will be competing against Beloit College on Saturday at 11 a.m. The game will take place on Springer Field. The women’s team has a 5-3 record and is currently in fourth place in the Midwest Conference standings. Last Sunday, Sept. 22, the Grinnell Women’s Soccer team won with a score of 1-0 against Carroll University in a Midwest Conference competition. This week’s game is also a Midwest Conference competition, and a victory against Beloit will better the team’s prospects at the Midwest Conference Championships later in the season.

Men’s soccer will also take on Beloit this Sunday at 1:30 p.m., again on Springer Field. Having suffered a 6-0 loss to Carroll College last Sunday, Sept. 22, in a home game, the team has had a rough start to the season, now with a record of 2-6, but hope to improve that record this weekend against a Beloit team that lost two of their best players from last year’s squad.


The football team will also take on Beloit this Saturday, Sept. 28. The game will start at 1 p.m. on Rosenbloom Field. A preview of the game can be found in “Strong Defensive  Performance Drowns Out Lake Forest: Offense Gets Caught in Wake”.

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