Special Olympics Athletes were recognized Thursday afternoon at Village Northwest Unlimited in Sheldon. A total of 38 athletes participated in the recent games in Sioux Center. Of that group of 38 a total of 8 were first time participants.
27 members of the Village Northwest Unlimited contingent qualified for the State Special Olympic Summer Games coming up in Ames. There will be 10 competing in soccer skills, 5 in Bocce Ball and another 12 in the Track and Field competition.
Deb Middle with the Village told KIWA Sports that the group bound for State follows the true spirit of the games.
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Also Thursday afternoon it was announced that the Panthers Softball Team has been selected to compete in the Special Olympics National Tournament in Oklahoma City September 21st through the 23. Middle explained how the Panthers were selected for the honor.
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The Panthers will be the only team representing Iowa at the nationals. Middle runs down the rest of the tournament field.
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Thursday afternoon the news was still sinking in.
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Practice for the nationals will start in a couple of weeks. The Panthers are coached by Deb Middle assisted by Sara Wolthuizen. Staff assistants include Mindy Liechti and Michelle Holtrop.
The team roster includes Scott Wheeler, Mike and Matt Kramer, Cody Meendering, Bob Stewart, John List, Stephanie Landhuis, Matt Petersen, Charles White, Zach Arrick, Abby Paulsen and Keith Krumm.
Also at Thursday’s announcement the Sheldon Noon Kiwanis presented the team with a check in the amount of $1,500 dollars to help with their expenses.