Jack Nicholson (Grand Haven cross country)
Nicholson had quite the sophomore season, just missing All-State honors with a 32nd-place finish at the Division 1 meet, after leading the team to a regional win with his first-place individual performance.
He also saw regular-season success, earning All-Conference honors, as well as being the top local finisher at Grand Haven’s Don Anderson Invitational.
Drew Van Andel (Grand Haven soccer)
Van Andel is a big guy at 6-foot-5, and he has a knack for the big moment.
The Buccaneers advanced to a Division 1 regional semifinal last season, but their run wouldn’t have been possible without a game-clinching, Van Andel overtime header in the district opener against Jenison.
With great quickness and instincts to match his size, look for Van Andel to be a big factor for the Bucs again this season.
Joey Zelenka (Grand Haven football)
The three-sport standout (football, hockey, baseball) starts his senior year on the gridiron.
Zelenka led Grand Haven in rushing last season, going for 440 yards and six touchdowns on 82 carries.
A special mix of speed and power, he was one of the first players to go both ways after the Buccaneers abandoned their platoon system last season. That won’t be a problem this year, as he’s expected to line up at running back and safety from Day 1.
Andew Hylen (Spring Lake cross country)
Hylen burst onto the scene last season as a freshman, finishing third as an individual at Spring Lake’s regional meet. The run helped the Lakers reach the state finals, tipping the scales after just missing out on a trip to the Michigan International Speedway in 2014.
He finished 46th overall at the Division 2 state meet, as the Lakers took 10th as a team.
Look for the sophomore to make an even bigger splash this season. Hylen finished second at this summer’s Coast Guard Festival 10K, before winning the Brainy Day 5K and 10K.
Levi Six (Fruitport football)
Six stands less than 6 feet tall and 200 pounds at 5-9, 175, but you wouldn’t know it based on his impact.
The senior has led the Trojans in tackles the past two seasons, including bringing down more opponents his sophomore season than now Michigan Tech linebacker Nathan Kriger, despite being in his debut varsity season.
Six is expected to have a similar impact offensively this season, becoming a workhorse running back after splitting carries with Nick Kramer in 2015.