A two-time state qualifier, Hellman moved up from 138 to 160 pounds and has been a valuable leader within Don Bosco’s lineup. The senior improved to 18-1 last weekend by going 6-0 with five falls to help Don Bosco capture the Battle of Waterloo’s dual championship. “He did some good stuff in the offseason as far as lifting and putting on some size and it paid off for him,” Don Bosco coach Tom Hogan said. “The difference between this year and all those other years is his confidence level is skyrocketing right now. He gets better each practice and each time he steps out on the mat.” Hellman was also a key part of the Dons’ state championship football team.
Baker-Bruce has emerged as a valuable leader following the graduation of Tori Hazard, who averaged more than 20 points a game during Janesville’s state tournament run last season. The junior captain finished with 16 points, four assists, three blocks and two steals as Class 1A’s No. 10 Janesville improved to 6-0 Friday with a 55-37 win over No. 4 Dunkerton. Baker-Bruce averages 12.2 points to go with 5.6 assists and 4.8 steals per game. “I have pretty high expectations of her, and she in turn tries to get the most out of her teammates,” Janesville coach Steve Chidester said. “She distributes the ball and takes it to the basket when she needs to. She’s got unbelievable God-given abilities and sees the floor well.”
Wolf has done a little bit of everything for the Cedar Falls basketball team this season. The second-year starter and team captain is averaging 12.2 points per game on 57 percent shooting. He leads the Tigers in offensive rebounds, assists, steals and blocks. “He’s been a rock in so many ways for us as we’ve started our season,” Cedar Falls coach Ryan Schultz said. “Logan has taken his game to another level. He has grown to 6-4 and has great guard skills and athleticism. He’s very multi-dimensional.” In addition to basketball, Wolf enjoyed a breakthrough season at wide receiver for a Cedar Falls football team that reached the state playoff quarterfinals.
Happel is in the midst of an eye-opening season for a Dunkerton team off to a 5-0 start. He followed a 30-point game against Janesville on Friday with 12 assists during a win over Denver on Saturday. Happel is averaging 18 points, eight assists and six rebounds per game. He also leads the Raiders in steals and blocks. “Brady positively affects the game in literally every single aspect,” Dunkerton coach Todd Kuntz noted. “He is incredibly unselfish, passionate and makes everyone around him better.” Happel is a returning first-team all-conference selection also active in golf and track.
Draine’s versatility has provided plenty of options for West to find team success. The Wahawk junior finished with 12 points, five rebounds, three steals and an assist during Saturday’s win over Waterloo Columbus. Draine ranks among her team’s leading scorers with an average of 10.9 points per game. “Jada continues to improve during the season,” West coach Tony Pappas said of his third-year varsity letterwinner. “She has the ability to play inside and outside, which helps us.” Draine is an honor student who has also competed in volleyball and soccer.
Schmidt has been instrumental in helping East improve throughout the early portion of the bowling season. The Trojans’ third-year starter is averaging 197 per game and has been a reliable performer within the rotation. “He is one of the most consistent bowlers we have on the team and his attitude on the lanes is always positive,” East coach Mike Weber noted. “His teammates look to him for advice and Braden is always willing to help them. He strives to be the best and is always working on his game.” Schmidt also competes in junior leagues and is strong academically.
Schmit certainly knows what it takes to find success on the wrestling mat. A 2016 state champion and 2017 state runner-up, the Wapsie Valley senior helped his team capture a title at last weekend’s Starmont Tournament by winning the 138-pound bracket. “He’s been a great role model in how to work out,” Wapsie Valley coach Danny Adams said. “He’s been very focused in the weight room or the wrestling room. He’s just got a very strong work ethic. I think he has a pretty clear focus and knows where he wants to be at the end of the year.” Schmit was also a starting defensive back on the Warriors’ football team.