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Cedar Valley Christian - Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Cedar Valley Christian - CVC Home

Huskies show spirit in defeat

MAYNARD -- The outcome was as expected.

The moment was better than anticipated.

Junior Nick Henderson scored Cedar Valley Christian's first touchdown in school history on a 43-yard pass play midway through the fourth quarter Friday night at West Central High School. It was the highlight of the Huskies' first football game, a 62-8 rout at the hands of highly-regarded West Central.

"That's a morale booster all the way around," Cedar Valley Christian Coach Ed Betsworth said of the scoring play. "It shows that if we don't quit -- and that's what I emphasized on the bus on the way up -- that good things will happen. I think we're going to take to heart that we scored against a good team. It's going to make us feel that we can compete."

Henderson hauled in the pass from junior Arturo Melendez at the West Central 30. A Blue Devils defensive back wrapped up on his right leg, but he kept moving forward, shucked the tackler and sprinted to paydirt.

"I just caught it and kept on pumping my legs," said Henderson, playing his first game of organized football.

Cedar Valley Christian had a crowd of more than 100 fans along that went wild after the touchdown. The West Central fans also cheered the Huskies.

Betsworth heaped praise upon his team in the post-game huddle, praising them for their effort and never-say-die attitude. He also beckoned the Cedar Valley Christian cheering section onto the field to join his players in a mass group huddle after his initial words to his team to share his thoughts about the game and to ask for the players and the fans to offer their input. It was all positive, even if the word "creamed" did get tossed in a couple of times.

"I'll tell you what I'm proud of," Principal Jeff Pospisil told the throng, "even when we were getting creamed, we never gave up."

Last Updated on Wednesday, 24 August 2011 19:15



Cedar Valley Christian - CVC Home

Huskies march into first season with big hearts

Cedar Valley Christian football coach Ed Betsworth has not gotten around to measuring his players for the team's historic opener at West Central Friday night.

No heights, no weights.

He's been too busy teaching his inexperienced guys how to block, tackle and line up in the proper position, so he cannot tell you anyone's exact size.

Betsworth knows one thing, however. They have big hearts.

"I'm very proud of them," he said. "They've been working really hard. Their spirits are good."

This is Cedar Valley Christian's first eight-man football team in school history. Betsworth has only 14 players (he was hoping for 20), and he knows the odds will be heavily stacked against the Huskies in their first game Friday.

West Central went 7-3 last season, reached the eight-man playoffs and averaged 47.7 points per game. They scored 64 points against Olin, 56 against Dunkerton, 54 against East Central, 52 against Midland of Wyoming, 52 against Central City and 51 against Springville.

"I hope we can make it a competitive game," said Betsworth. "I know our guys are looking forward to it."



Cedar Valley Christian - CVC Home

Ed Betsworth, football coach at Cedar Valley Christian, shows Tom Scroggs (left) how to defend against Eric Gustafson on Wednesday at the team's first official practice. (Photo by Ken Gilchrist)

Spirits high as CVC Huskies start 8-man football

The Cedar Valley Christian football team does not have its own field, its weight room is located in a garage, only one of the Huskies played football in middle school and there are only 14 players on the brand-new squad.

That doesn't seem to bother any of the players or coaches, judging by all the laughter and smiles Wednesday night during their first official practice at St. Joseph School in Marion.

"I'm really excited," said Luke Long. "I'm loving it," agreed David Sperling. "It's a lot of fun," chimed in Joe Spina.

Long, Sperling and Spina are the only seniors on the team. There are seven juniors, two sophomore and two freshmen. They'll all play this season. They have to.

The Huskies are playing eight-man football, but even an eight-man team needs 16 players for a scrimmage. The Huskies are two players shy.

"I wouldn't say we're crazy," Coach Ed Betsworth said, smiling. "I would say that we like a challenge."

Last Updated on Thursday, 04 August 2011 08:40



Cedar Valley Christian - CVC Home

Betsworth pumped up for 8-man football

Ed Betsworth is working on his playbook for the Cedar Valley Christian Huskies football team this season, but the veteran coach doesn't have as many X's and O's to worry about.

In fact, he's got three less X's and three less O's than normal, because the Huskies are going to play eight-man football in 2011 with a brand-new program on the southeast side of Cedar Rapids.

Betsworth, 46, is currently the athletic director at Holy Catholic Middle School, but he was the head football coach at Lincoln Community of Stanwood (1991-92) and Dunkerton (1993-96) and knows how to run a program. He's also been an assistant high school coach and has worked with Xavier's grade-school program.

Betsworth has four children in the Cedar Valley Christian school system (K through 12) and is excited about starting a new program from scratch. Cedar Valley is a small school with approximately 80 students in grades 9 through 12, but Betsworth thinks there are enough talented boys to pull this off.

"There's athletes there. The talent is there. Our pool isn't dry," he said. "But, it's going to be a learning experience for them and for me and my coaches. We have to keep it simple, because a lot of these kids haven't played football.

"We might get a couple of wins," he said. "Then again, we might not."

Betsworth has seen eight-man football games and he's spoken with other coaches of eight-man teams for input. There are five players on the line of scrimmage and three in the backfield on offense in the eight-man game, compared to seven on the line of scrimmage and four in the backfield in the 11-man version.

"It's definitely more fast-paced," he said. "The field is smaller, but the game is a little more fast-paced and high scoring. I guess it comes down to what kind of quality athletes you have."

Cedar Valley Christian considered adding sports for several years and will join the boys and girls state associations for the 2011-12 school year. Betsworth led the effort to add football.

"I volunteered to start researching it to see if it was possible," he said. "That led to one thing and another."

He found donors to fund the program, raising enough money for several years, "and the ball just went rolling from there."

Twenty boys have signed up for football, the school is putting a schedule together for 2011, Betsworth has ordered equipment and he's found some assistant coaches. They're still looking for a practice field and will play all their games this season on the road.

The Huskies probably will play only six varsity games this year, then play a full nine-game schedule in 2012 when they become eligible for the state playoffs.

"It won't be a full season, and that's OK," he said. "The state (association) went out of their way to step in and get us the games, which was really good."

Betsworth said he feels "really good" about having 20 boys on the team and is looking forward to the season.

"I think eight-man football is getting a little more respect," he said. "It's just like 11-man. You block, you tackle, there's just a few less people on the field."

Last Updated on Tuesday, 19 July 2011 16:28

Cedar Valley Christian - CVC Home

Cedar Valley Christian adds 8-man football

There will be a new high school football program in Cedar Rapids for the 2011 season.

Cedar Valley Christian School has decided to create an eight-man football program and has begun scheduling games, the school's athletic director said Wednesday. The season opener is scheduled for Aug. 19 at West Central.

Cedar Valley Christian, located at 3636 Cottage Grove Ave. SE, has joined the Iowa High School Athletic Association (IHSAA) and the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union (IGHSAU) for the 2011-12 school year and has been looking to add sports.

Ed Betsworth, the athletic director at LaSalle Middle School in Cedar Rapids, will be the head coach of the Cedar Valley Christian football team.

"He has raised a large amount of money to support football at Cedar Valley," said Stephanie Hodge, the school's athletic director. "We have enough to get us going - buying uniforms and equipment - and we're working on sharing a field."

She said Betsworth has two children who attend Cedar Valley Christian, a daughter in high school and a son in the seventh grade.

Hodge has scheduled varsity games with West Central, Dunkerton, Midland and Central City and is looking to add others. All of Cedar Valley's games in 2011 will be on the road, she said.

There were 65 schools in Iowa with eight-man football programs in 2011. All of those schools consider themselves too small to field regular 11-man teams. There were 32 teams in the IHSAA eight-man playoffs.

West Central, Dunkerton, Midland and Central City are in District 4 for eight-man football along with Preston, Lansing Kee, East Central, Springville and Olin. "Schools have been very enthusiastic to include us on their schedule," said Hodge.

Hodge said 20 boys attended a meeting for eight-man football at the school. Twelve of them have been fitted for equipment, she said, and the team will have spring conditioning. Hodge said there are about 80 students at the school, roughly half boys and half girls.

Cedar Valley Christian already offers boys basketball, girls basketball, girls volleyball and coed soccer. The school has been looking to expand its athletic department, but Hodge acknowledged football came as a surprise, mostly due to the expense involved.

"I was skeptical at first, but we've had meetings and the coach is very organized and has contacts," she said. "The students are very enthusiastic and so are the parents, so I'm looking forward to it.

"There's talk of other sports now," said Hodge. "If we're doing football and soccer and basketball and volleyball, why not do the easier sports, like cross country or golf? Those have been thrown out there, but it has not been taken to the school board."

Cedar Valley Christian has been playing coed soccer in the fall, but will switch to a spring schedule for the 2011-12 school year. Hodge is not sure if the school will stick with coed soccer, or switch to separate teams for boys and girls.


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