Moving on up

Local athletes finalize college plans
Matt DeYoung
May 7, 2014

Several local athletes recently pledged their services to various colleges, including a pair of football standouts.

Grand Haven kicker Ryan Maguire committed to Alma College, while Spring Lake defensive back Chase Slagboom committed to Lake Forest College in Illinois.

Slagboom earned first-team all-state honors for the Lakers this past fall. The 5-foot-10, 155-pound senior had nine interceptions from his defensive back position, two of which he returned for touchdowns.

Slagboom also showed off some talent on special teams as he returned a punt and a kickoff for touchdowns.

He helped the Lakers finish with an 8-2 record, an outright Lakes Eight Conference title, and a home playoff game.

Lake Forest is located in just outside Chicago. The Foresters play in the Midwest Conference.

Maguire was an honorable mention all-conference selection in the O-K Red this past fall and was named the Buccaneers’ Most Valuable Special Teams Player the past two years.

He connected on 8-of-18 field goals over his junior and senior seasons, including a long of 35 yards. His eight field goals are second in school history. He also finished third in the school record books by making 91.1 percent of his point-after kicks.

Maguire was also an outstanding defensive back for coach Mike Farley, finishing his career with 58 solo tackles, 17 assists and five interceptions.

The Alma Scots play in the MIAA Conference.


Grand Haven High School senior Brody Smith recently signed his letter of intent to play lacrosse at Alma College.

Smith will join former Bucs’ teammate Buccaneers’ teammate Matt Mulcahy at Aquinas. Mulcahy recently became the first Saints’ freshman to earn All-CCLA honors after leading Aquinas with 23 caused turnovers and adding seven points this past season.


Spring Lake High School senior Sierra Gipson has committed to play soccer at the Florida Institute of Technology.

Gipson is one of the key cogs on a Lakers’ varsity soccer team that is currently undefeated and ranked No. 4 in the state. She helped Spring Lake reach the Division 2 state title game a year ago.

She’s a three-sport athlete, also competing in volleyball and basketball.

Gipson has racked up 43 goals and 43 assists throughout her high school career.

“Sierra is very competitive on and off the field,” Florida Tech coach Fidgi Haig said in a press release. “With her experience at the club level, I see her making an impact as a freshman.”

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