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  • Feature image-0

    Clarkson-Leigh Wrestling State Qualifiers

    We are very proud of both these seniors, qualifying for state.

    Tim has wins over two wrestlers in his state bracket and one wrestler who qualified in class B. Derek has three wins over class D qualifiers and six wins over class C qualifiers.  He finished the season rated #6 in class D. 

    Both wrestlers have competed with the best in the state and we're excited so see what happens at state.

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  • Girls BB Wins Two Games in Conference Tourney

    The first round of girls’ conference basketball for the Patriots tipped off on January 26th in Howells. The Lady Patriots, #8 seed, faced their opponent Oakland-Craig, #9 seed. Earlier in the year, they had defeated Knights by a close six-point margin.


    Fortunately, that happened again last Friday night in another tight game. The Patriots came out on top, 38-32.  A big third quarter push by the Pats was the difference in this game.  


    Sophomore Ashlynn Novotny led the team with 11 points, 8 rebounds, and 6 assists.


    The following Monday, the Patriots were up against the #1 seed Stanton Mustangs in round two of conference. The Patriots hadn’t seen them yet this season and knew it would be a challenge.  


    The Mustangs knocked down key shots, and the Patriots just couldn’t keep up. The girls battled, but were unable to catch up. The final score was 49-25.


    After the loss, that meant the Pats’ next opponent, for the third round of conference, would be against rival school, Howells-Dodge.


    The Patriots played the Jaguars on Thursday, February 1 in Humphrey.  Boy, was it an exciting game to watch! The entire game against the Jaguars was close.


    Kaegan Held and Halee Steffensmeir were the top scorers for the Patriots. Held had 20, while Steffensmeir put up 16.  


    Foul trouble was an issue for the Pats, but that didn’t stop them. They continued to battle even up to the buzzer. Right before it went off to end the game, Junior Kaegan Held was fouled to shoot two. The pressure was on, as the game was tied 42-42. It was up to Held, whether or not they would proceed to overtime.


    Unfortunately, neither one of the free throws bounced in. Four minutes was put back on the clock to start overtime number one!  After a back-and-forth exchange, when the clock buzzed again to end the game, the score was still tied 46-46!


    The Patriots and Jaguars now had to go into double overtime. Because the Pats had a few girls who fouled out earlier in the game, freshman players had the opportunity to step it up.


    Kaegan Held and Kim Stodola were both fouled within those four minutes. This time all of the free throws swished in! The Pats outscored the Jags 7-4 in the second overtime due to free throws.


    Finally, the Lady Patriots basketball team earned their first victory on the Jaguars since the consolidation. This was a well-deserved win!  


    Junior Kaegan Held said, “We came out of the first game with a win against Oakland-Craig, and we were very excited about that. We had played them close earlier this season, so we knew it was going to be a good battle. Next was Stanton. We had beat them last year, and we felt good about this year. They shot really well that night, and we weren't able to do the same. Finally, after the loss to Stanton, we had to play Howells-Dodge. We lost to them earlier, and we wanted some revenge. It was a tight game the whole way, and it came down to my free throws! I didn't finish them and we ended up going into double overtime to get the win. Right after I missed my free throws, I had confidence in myself and my teammates. I trusted them the whole way and we came out of the game with a great, hard-fought win. Conference was a success this year and it was the best that we have ever done. I'm looking forward to having that same success in districts!”


    Oakland-Craig Stats:


                        Q1  Q2 Q3  Q4 Final

    C/L               7    6   17    8     38

    O-C               7    7     5   13    32


    (points, rebounds, assists, steals, turnovers)

    Ashlynn Novotny-(11, 8, 6, 4, 1);  Kaegan Held-(6, 6 ,4, 0, 3);  Halee Steffensmeier-(8, 2, 1, 2, 2);  Kim Stodola-(7, 7, 0, 2, 1);  Cassidy Hoffman-(0, 6, 1, 0, 2);  Paige Moore- (0, 0, 0, 1, 0);  Beth Wiese-(6, 1, 0, 0, 1)


    Stanton Stats:


                         Q1  Q2 Q3  Q4 Final

    C/L                  8    0  11     6  25

    Stanton        20    7  12   10  49


    **No individual stats available for this game


    Howells-Dodge Stats:


    Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 OT1 OT2 Final

    C/L       11  10 11  10   4   7   53

    H-D       12  13  10 7   4   2   48


    (points, rebounds, assists, steals, turnovers)

    Ashlynn Novonty-(4, 7, 5, 1, 3);  Kaegan Held-(20, 5, 2, 2, 2);  Halee Steffensmeir-(16, 0, 2, 6, 3);  Kim Stodola-(4, 5, 0, 3, 3);  Alissa Kasik-(2, 5, 0, 0, 0);  Sara McEvoy-(3, 1, 0, 0, 1);  Beth Wiese-(0, 2, 0, 0, 1)


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  • Patriot Boys Pick Up Win in Conference Tourney

    The Patriot Boys basketball team entered the East Husker Tournament as the #13 seed out of 14 teams this year.  After losing their first-round match to Wisner-Pilger, the Pats went on to defeat the #14 seed Tekameh-Herman Tigers in the second round to add another win this season.


    Their first game against the Wisner-Pilger Gators took place on January 27.  


    They battled the whole game but were always a little behind on scoring. The final score of the end of the game was 44-71.


    Freshman Tommy McEvoy led the team with 9 points and 6 rebounds.  Senior Haden Held also added 9 points.


    The following week, the Pats played their second round of conference at Tekamah- Herman in the losers’ bracket.


    The boys started out strong with a 19-6 lead. At half they were up 26-19.


    After halftime, the Patriots jumped out with an explosive third quarter, outscoring the Tigers 20-5.  Even though Tekameh Herman battled back in the fourth, it was not enough.  


    The Patriots won the game 56-43.


    In this game McEvoy put up 19 points and 6 rebounds.  Senior Anthony Bruhn scored 16 points with 5 steals and 5 assists.


    “Although we didn’t necessarily finished the way we wanted to,” Bruhn said, “we competed at a high level and got better.”


    Stats vs. Wisner/Pilger:


                                        Q1    Q2    Q3    Q4    Final


    Clarkson/Leigh          9     10     13    12   44


    WIsner/Pilger        18    22     16    15   71


    (points, rebounds, assists, steals)     

    Lance Paprocki- 8,2,2,1; Daniel Beller- 6,5,0,0; Jacob Gall- 2,4,0,1; Kobe Indra- 1,1,0,0; Anthony Bruhn- 7,2,6,1; Isaak Weise- 0,2,1,0; Haden Held- 9,0,1,0; Garrett Schroeder- 2,2,1,1; Tommy McEvoy- 9,6,0,0; Douglas Pocasangre- 0,1,0,0


    Stats Vs. Tekamah/Herman:


                                        Q1    Q2    Q3    Q4    Final

    Clarkson/Leigh:        19      7     20    10     56


    Tekamah/Herman: 6    13      5     19     43


    (points, rebounds, assists, steals)

    Douglas Pocasangre- 0,1,0,0; Kobe Indra- 0,1,0,0; Lance Paprocki- 3,1,3,2; Daniel Beller- 6,11,0,1; Jacob Gall- 6,3,1,0; Sawyer Kappel- 0,1,0,0; Anthony Bruhn- 16, 2,5,5; Isaak Weise- 2,5,0,0; Garrett Schroeder- 2,1,0,4; Tommy McEvoy- 19,6,1,0; Austin Sayers- 2,1,0,0


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  • Gurnsey and Harney Medal at Conference Wrestling

    With this being the last meet of the year before districts, the Patriot wrestling team was ready to make their mark in Genoa on Saturday, January 27th at the East Husker Conference Wrestling Meet.


    The Patriots had seen many of these teams earlier in the year, but the Patriot wrestlers had improved throughout the season and were ready to have a second chance at some earlier matches in the season.


    After a long day of matches, the Patriots finished 11th out of 14 teams. Logan View won brought home the Conference championship.


    The Patriots had two individual medalists at the Conference meet.  Senior Derek Gurnsey received 2nd place, and sophomore Colby Harney received 4th place.


    “It was great that Colby and I medaled at Conference,” Gurnsey said.  “I know who my competition is for districts, and our team also knows. We have worked many long hours, and I feel that we are ready for districts.”


    Head Coach Tyler Reeves said, “I thought the boys gave great effort. With John losing in overtime, it kept him from placing, and Tim fell just short of placing in a tough 160-pound bracket. Colby fought hard and won an overtime match to get himself into the medal rounds, finishing 4th. Derek wrestled well and lost to the number 3 kid in Class D in the finals match.”

    Good Luck at Districts Patriot Wrestlers!!!


    Individual Records for Conference:

    Derek Gurnsey: 2-1;  Tim Zimmerman: 2-2;  John Langhorst: 0-2;  Alex Fischer: 1-2;  Colby Harney: 2-2;  Trey Zimmerman: 0-2;  Orion Hunt: 0-2


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  • Feature image-4

    Junior High Girls’ Basketball Season Comes to a Close

    Eighth Grade Finishes with 8-6 Record, Seventh Grade 6-6

    The Junior High Girls’ Basketball team played their last games of the season in a tournament on January 20th. The tournament was held in Bancroft and it had both an ‘A’ and ‘B’ bracket. Both teams battled their way to second place and came home with silver medals!


    Eighth-grader Kennedy Settje said, “As a team, I thought we all competed and improved our game. Everyone worked hard this season to get better.”


    The seventh-grade team finished up with a record of 6-6, and the eighth-grade team finished 8-6.


    “As a team, our fundamentals improved, and we all got much better this season. We all got to know each other a lot better too,” seventh-grader Korbee Wendt said.


    Assistant coach Tami Sayers stated, “This season was one of great growth!  We had players who went from being timid with the basketball to becoming confident on the court.  They came together as a team and walked away with some awesome wins to be proud of!  I can't wait to see what is in store for those coming back next year and the others moving up to play at the high school level!”


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  • Feature image-5

    Senior Livestock Judging Team Advances to State!

    On Wednesday, January 31, 2018, two teams from the Leigh-Clarkson FFA Chapter went to Norfolk to judge livestock. The event was held at the Chuck Pohlman Ag Complex at Northeast Community College.


    Fifteen people from the chapter competed at the contest.

    The senior team placed 3rd overall out of 14 total teams with a total score of 1975.  The top four teams advance to the state competition!  


    “Livestock evaluation is not an easy thing to compete in, and does not come naturally to many people, but the students who competed were positive going into the competition. For my first year of teaching, I thought we did well as a team, and I am proud of those who participated,” FFA Advisor Brandy Held said.  


    There were 71 total competitors for the senior division.  For the Leigh-Clarkson chapter, Korbin Kudera placed 6th, Trevor Zulkoski placed 9th, Kara Kudera placed 19th, Sawyer Kappel finished 22nd, Alexis Schroeder finished 27th, Jacob Gall finished 34th, and Abby Langdon finished 47th.


    “Even though this wasn’t my first time judging, as I have judged a few years before in 4-H, it was still exciting to be part of the FFA team,” freshman Trevor Zulkoski said.  “As my first year of judging with the FFA chapter, it was great to be part of the senior team, and we qualified for state, which I am looking forward to competing in.”


    Although they did not qualify for state, the junior team of Riana Grotelueschen, Carson Ahrens, Quintessence Indra, Morgan Voborny, Natalie Reeves, Austin Sayers, Lane Kudera, and Molly Langhorst also had a very good day, finishing 6th overall out of 13 teams.  


    Out of 84 total competitors in the junior division, Riana Grotelueschen finished 14th, Carson Ahrens placed 18th, and Quintessence Indra finished 20th.


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  • Feature image-6

    “Out of This World” Experience

    4th, 5th, and 6th Grade Leigh Elementary Students Video Conference with Astronaut in Orbit

    3, 2, 1… Blastoff!


    The 4th, 5th, and 6th grade students at the Leigh Elementary had an “out-of-this-world” experience on January 31 at 11:20 a.m. when they had the rare opportunity to video-conference with NASA Astronaut Mark T. Vande Hei who is on the International Space Station.


    Prior to this, the students had been following his journey in space, so it was only right to actually get to meet and chat with him.


    When Mark came online, he showed the students some of his cool tricks that he could do in space. He showed them his new cartwheels and flips in mid air. It put all of the kids in awe and had them wishing that they could do awesome tricks too.


    After the wild flips, the students had the chance to ask Mark many questions and learn more about being in orbit.


    Mark shared that he had always liked astronauts ever since he was little. He even thought of them as superheroes. He had the chance to become an astronaut at the age of 25, right out of college. While he was training, he had to learn about many different topics. He had to learn about the Russian language, robotic arms, how spacecraft works, and many other science things. After his training was complete, he had the opportunity to go to the International Space Station.


    It took him and his crew six hours to get there, and they went around the Earth four times.  They are currently 250 miles away from Earth. At the time of the video-conference, it was 5:23 p.m. in a United Kingdom time zone. Mark was also flying over the Pacific Ocean as he spoke.


    Mark’s specific job on the ISS is to do science experiments. They have done 200-300 experiments, but a lot don’t require astronauts. Some of the objects that they have worked with are fidget spinners, mini satellites, and flames. All of the experiments are running pretty smoothly and are very interesting.


    Mark’s daily routine is usually pretty busy. Everyday, he wakes up at 6:00 am and eats breakfast until 7:30 am. Then, from 7:30-1 pm he has meetings and works. From 1-2 pm, he eats lunch. Next, from 2-7:30 pm, he works more and has meetings.  Finally from 7:30-9:30, he gets personal time. During his personal time, he may look out the window and take pictures, read a book, or get together with other astronauts and watch movies.


    During his eating periods, there are many options to pick from. Most foods come in a bag, and the astronauts have to add some sort of liquid to it. After supper, Mark loves to hop into his sleeping bag and lay down for the night. It is very comfortable to sleep in space because you just float around.


    As Mark was showing the students around the station, he stopped at the window and showed them his favorite view: Earth.  It was a truly amazing view. They got to see that the Earth looks smooth, the atmosphere looks thin, and the clouds actually look bumpy.


    Everything isn’t perfect in space though.  Mark has had a very scary experience from being in space. While he was space walking, he had troubles getting his space suit to restart. He couldn’t reach the button, and he thought he wasn’t going to get it. Luckily, he did!


    Once Mark comes back to Earth, he told the students he is excited to see his family first.  He gets to talk to his wife every day, his kids every week, and other friends once a month in space.  After Mark goes to see his family, he will have to come back and refresh his knowledge about the spacecraft. He will also have to exercise a lot because when he gets back, he could be weak because astronauts do not use many muscles floating around in space.  


    This is what Mark will miss the most about space. He loved the fact that he could float everywhere and do cool tricks, but he also misses Earth. He misses the wind on his face and the beach.


    As the video conference was coming to an end, the students and teachers could not believe how much they learned from this experience.


    Fifth grader, Brianne Kuhr said, “I thought that it was very cool because he answered our questions very well. The best part was seeing Earth out of the window.”


    Fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Briana Wietfeld agrees.  


    What an amazing experience our students had,” Wietfeld said.  “Being able to video-conference with a NASA astronaut, Mark Vande Hei, while he was aboard the International Space Station was something I know I will never forget. I would have to say that my favorite part of the whole tour was when Mark took the camera to the windows in the ISS and we got to see Earth from space, live in action. I was in amazement. I am thankful for this opportunity, and being able to provide it to the students makes it even that much more special.”

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    Dance Team Performs at “Jam the Gym”

    “Five, six, seven, eight!”  This chant could be heard throughout the Columbus High School gym on Sunday, January 21, 2018, at the annual “Jam the Gym” dance extravaganza.


    The Clarkson-Leigh Elite Dance team made up of Brittany Urbanek, Tess Indra, Taya Gross, and Abby Langdon performed at “Jam the Gym.”  Both studio and high school dance teams in the area just come to perform routines and show the crowds what they can do.  


    Clarkson-Leigh performed both of their song mixes that they will perform at State Dance in Grand Island on Friday, February 16.


    Taya Gross said, “The girls did amazing. I think that it was a great experience, and it helped better prepare us for our state competition coming up.”


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  • Feature image-8

    Senior Spotlight: Michaela Hall

    For Jon and Kathy Hall, April 4th, 2000, was the best day of the new millennium so far.  It was the day they welcomed their youngest daughter, Michaela Grace Hall, into their lives in Norfolk, NE.  


    The youngest of the four children, Michaela has three older sisters: Melani, 30, Samantha, 27, and Natalie, 24. The Hall family also couldn’t survive without their overweight cat, Polly.


    Michaela resides in Stanton, but she joined Leigh Schools her sophomore year.  Throughout high school, Michaela has been involved in band, choir, and quiz bowl for four years; One-Act and National Honor Society for three years; bowling for two years; and FBLA, speech, and honor band for a year.  


    On track to be the valedictorian of the graduating class, Michaela has received numerous awards and scholarships throughout her high school career.  She has won two state championships and a runner-up with the One-Act team.  This year, she also won the Academic All-State Award for One-Act play.  She also holds the distinct honor of reading more books in one year than student to ever graduate from Leigh High School (that we know about!)  Last year she read over 20,000 pages, and is currently on track to do the same this year.


    To get to know Michaela a bit more, she describes herself as helpful, curious, and stubborn. Some of Michaela’s hobbies include reading, baking, hanging out with friends and her family. Her favorite subject is social studies. She loves the TV show, Doctor Who, and the movie, The Princess Bride. She doesn’t have a favorite sports team because she doesn’t like sports except the Olympics.


    Her favorite song currently is “I Can Go the Distance” from Hercules. She likes the book Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. She really likes Afghani and Indian food and anything with curry.


    She has many interesting pet peeves, including when people are hypocritical, when people don’t take things seriously, and when people don’t say the word “wash” properly.  


    Michaela says her proudest moment in high school was when she aced her business plan project in Entrepreneurship.


    It was also in a business class where Michaela had her most embarrassing moment when she got a bloody nose presenting a project.  


    After high school, Michaela intends to go to the University of Nebraska-Kearney for Criminal Justice, so she can become a police officer. In 10-15 years she sees herself working as a law enforcement officer. 


    She wants to have many adventures in her life.  She would love to travel to Switzerland because of their excellent food and skiing.  Four more goals on Michaela’s bucket lists are to rappel down a skyscraper and a waterfall, visit Europe’s cathedrals and museums, eat fish fingers and custard, and learn how to fly.


    If she were fortunate enough to win the lottery she would give part of it away to a cause of her choice, use a portion to purchase or pay for necessities, and then invest the rest.


    When asked who she admires the most, she said she couldn’t pick just one person because there were too many to count. She admires all those who choose to face their inner struggles and take a stand.


    Michaela’s favorite high school memory is playing games and hanging out with her classmates.


    Her encouraging advice to underclassmen is “Never be cruel or cowardly, never give up, and never give in.”


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    Busy Week for Leigh Speech Team

    The Leigh speech team had a very busy week recently. After having two snow days on Monday and Tuesday, the members of the team competed at the Jaguar Jabber meet hosted by Howells-Dodge on Wednesday, January 24th and the Bancroft-Rosalie Invitational meet on Saturday, January 27th.


    Those who attended the Howells-Dodge meet were seniors Michaela Hall, Brady Hathaway, and Haden Held; juniors Logan Becher, Alex Fischer, Kaegan Held and Holly Kuhr; sophomore Alexis Schroeder; and freshmen Rylee Olson and Madisyn Pelan.


    After the first two preliminary rounds, Leigh qualified for finals in two events. Junior Holly Kuhr earned 2nd place for her Humorous Prose, and junior Logan Becher placed 5th in Persuasive Speaking.


    Though not qualifying for finals, senior Michaela Hall received a superior rating for her Serious Prose, and senior Brady Hathaway earned a good rating in Poetry and an excellent rating in Extemperaneous Speaking.

    Junior Alex Fischer received an excellent rating in Poetry and an excellent rating in Extemperaneous Speaking, and junior Logan Becher earned a superior rating in Informative Speaking.


    Sophomore Alexis Schroeder earned an excellent rating in Humorous Prose and a good rating in Poetry.


    Freshman Rylee Olson received an excellent rating in Serious Prose, and freshman Madisyn Pelan earned an excellent rating in Entertainment Speaking.


    The OID of senior Haden Held, and juniors Kaegan Held and Holly earned a superior rating.


    There were 19 schools in attendance at this meet. Leigh finished 8th overall.


    On the 27th, attending the Bancroft-Rosalie Panther Invitational were juniors Logan Becher and Holly Kuhr, and freshmen Rylee Olson and Madisyn Pelan.


    Following two preliminary rounds, the Leigh speech team was sitting well as every member that attended competed in finals. Junior Logan Becher placed 3rd in Informative Speaking and a superior rating in Persuasive Speaking. Junior Holly Kuhr earned 3rd in Humorous Prose. Freshmen Rylee Olson and Madisyn Pelan placed 3rd in Duet Acting. Rylee Olson also earned an excellent in Serious Prose and Madisyn Pelan received a superior rating in Entertainment Speaking.


    Team sweepstakes were not awarded at this meet.


    The LHS speechsters are continuously showing improvement and growth,” said head coach Gailen Volquardsen. “With each speech met, I am pleased to see each speaker improving. As their coach, this is what makes my role rewarding.”

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