The Class of 2020 knew when they were at John Young Middle School that they had a chance to do some amazing things if they stuck together. While some were part of rebuilding programs, others were record setters who enjoyed the spoils of championship trophies and history making accomplishments. The theme this year was “Our Time” and these kids lived up to it. For starters, we had Northern Indiana Conference MVP’s in Girls Soccer, Boys X-Country and Wrestling. Congratulations to Rachel Gomez, Casey Quintana and Joe Walker.
Rachel became the all-time leading scorer in Mishawaka Girls Soccer history and set standards future Cavemen will have to reach high to surpass. Another Cavemen star was Paishence Johnson. The Sprinter proved to be the fastest girl in Mishawaka history as she won the Sectional and Conference in the 100 and 200 as a freshman, sophomore and junior. And even though there wasn’t a senior season, she’ll always be able to hold onto the memory of 2019 when her team won the Princess Relays, NIC Conference, and became the first girls track team in school history to win a regional championship.
Boys Basketball and Girls Soccer won divisional titles in the NIC during their high school careers. The Baseball team not only won the Sectional in 2018, but they became Regional Champs in 2019 and made it all the way to the Final 4. Donovan Snyder, Derrick Dawson and Ryan Watt all put their name in the record books.
The Wrestling team rose to prominence in 2020. They beat rival Penn 7 times this year. Jacob LaPlace was the state runner up and Joe Walker the 182 lb State Champ. The Cavemen made us proud at the Al Smith Invitational and brought home NIC, Sectional and Regional Championships for the first time in 10 years.
Mishawaka Swimmer Eric Arsenau broke a record in 2019 while Diver Brant Zickafoose had an amazing Junior year as he not only won the NIC title, but he was the Sectional Champ! And not to be forgotten were the Friday Night Lights. The Mishawaka Football team won the Sectional 3 out of 4 years. And in 2018, the Cavemen won the NIC on the road across the river. In a thrilling 49-42 victory, many of these kids were a huge part of the group that got to hold up the conference plaque. They carried that momentum into the tournament where they won the Regional, and after shoveling off the field, got to play in the Semi-state at Steele Stadium.
It’s been an incredible 4 years with a new track, a fresh look on the floor of The Cave, the video scoreboard and timing system has been a difference maker and we’re so appreciative of seeing a dream come true with the Irions Strength and Conditioning Center.. Cavemen Athletics are on the rise and it wouldn’t have been possible without the hard work and dedication from the amazing student athletes of 2020.