Bucs salute their brightest stars

Craymer, Juarez named Sluka Award winners
Matt DeYoung
May 13, 2014

Taylor Craymer helped guide the Buccaneers’ girls basketball team to back-to-back state championships as a sophomore and a junior.

Dakota Juarez fell just short of a wrestling state championship four times, placing as high as runner-up his senior year.

The two Grand Haven High School seniors were recognized for their outstanding athletic achievements on Tuesday as they were presented with the Steve Sluka Award — Grand Haven’s highest athletic honor.

Craymer was a little-used sophomore when the Bucs won their first basketball state championship in 2012, then played a much more prominent role her junior year as the Bucs went back-to-back.

Craymer had several big scoring outbursts during that 2013 state title run, including a dazzling shooting display in her team’s 60-54 win over Grosse Pointe South in the title game. In that contest, Craymer was 5-for-7 from the field, including 3-for-3 from 3-point range, scoring 14 points. She also had seven rebounds and four assists.

As a senior, Craymer earned honorable mention all-conference honors on the basketball court. She’ll continue that sport next year at Northwood University.

Craymer also turned in a strong senior season on the volleyball court, helping the Buccaneers claim a Class A district championship and earning second-team all-state honors.

Juarez was an outstanding linebacker on the Buccaneers’ football team this past fall, leading the team with 110 tackles and earning first-team all-conference honors.

It’s on the wrestling mat where Juarez really made his mark. As a freshman, he finished seventh at the individual state meet. He was third as a sophomore, fourth as a junior, and came up one win short of a state title as a senior, falling in the championship match at 160 pounds.

The Todd Chittenden Award is given to team-oriented athletes who exhibit hard work and good sportsmanship. This year’s winners were Mallory Beswick and Chris Semrinec.

Other award winners from Tuesday night:

O-K Conference Athlete of the Year Award: Claire Borchers and Dakota Juarez

Ken Ranta Sportsmanship Award: Emily Sexton and John Strainer

U.S. Army Reserve Scholar Athlete: Jami Hogeboom and Karl Johnson

U.S. Marine Corps Distinguished Athlete: Faith Platz and Korey Searle

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