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Iowa Lakes Athletics Hall of Fame - Class of 2019 Once a Laker, always a Laker

April 8, 2019
David Swartz - Managing Editor ( , Estherville News

For the six inductees of the 2019 Iowa Lakes Community College Athletics Hall of Fame, Friday' evening was a chance for them to relive a few of the glory days.

Those in attendance reminisced with the honorees and showed their appreciation for these individuals who started their collegiate careers here in Estherville.

This year's inductees to the Hall of Fame are Anthony Anderson (basketball), Aly Bowers (softball), Darren Kelderman (football), Troy Larson (basketball), Julia Nealer (softball) and Cayla Vimr (volleyball).

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Each athlete had their moment to reminisce about their career and told of how they came to be at Iowa Lakes. All pointed to their respective coaches for choosing to come to this college in Estherville.

Anderson and Larson had the most in common, as both played on the 1992 men's basketball team that placed second at the national tournament-which remains the highest finish in Iowa Lakes history. The full 1992 team was inducted to the Hall of Fame in 2014. However, Larson and Anderson were individual inductees this year.

Since the inductees were honored alphabetically, this story will follow that format.

Anthony Anderson

Anderson played basketball at Iowa Lakes from 1990-1992 for coach Bob Grems. The Lakers posted a 32-6 record during Anderson's sophomore season and he led the team in scoring with 18 points per game. He finished with 1,001 career points and was first team all-region both his freshman and sophomore seasons.

When he reached the podium, Anderson spoke to the current athletes in attendance.

"This is the most important time in your career," he told them.

He also talked about how he "had a coach that cared" in reference to Grems.

Anderson has coached 22 years at the NCAA Division 1 level since leaving Iowa Lakes.

Aly Bowers

Bowers played softball for coach Mike Bosch from 2006-08. She holds the single season record for complete games with 33 and games pitched with 47. She helped lead the team to the national tournament in 2008 and accomplished a 91-29 record in two seasons. Her earned run average went from 2.03 her freshman season to 1.3 her sophomore year.

Bowers talked about having great teammates and a great coach.

"He made me a better softball player and a better person," said Bowers of Bosch.

Darren Kelderman

Kelderman played football at Iowa Lakes from 1984-85 for coach Ed Neibauer. A quarterback, Kelderman was seated at a table with his center, Brent Shatto, at Friday's gathering. Shatto is a 2013 Hall of Fame inductee and the current chief of police in Estherville.

Kelderman holds the single season record for passes attempted with 452 his sophomore year and he finished with 2,909 yards. In also hold the single season record for passing yards in a game with 415, touchdown passes in a season (27) and in a game (7).

"We were not expected to win as much as we did," said Kelderman. "But we did because we were a team."

He also gave advice to the current Laker athletes present at the ceremony.

"Cherish your days here-they will mold you for your life," he said.

Troy Larson

Larson played basketball at Iowa Lakes for coach Grems from 1991-93, as was part of the team that finished second at the national tournament. In helping Iowa Lakes with the regional championship that year, he earned MVP honors for the tournament. He is seventh in all-time scoring with 1,054 points and sixth and seven in most free throws made in a season (145 in 92-93 and 142 in 91-92). He also is the second all-time in career assists with 463.

Larson was quick to give coach Grems credit.

"He (Bob) has forgotten more about basketball than I will ever know," Larson said.

Larson was also quick to dispel any comparisons with him and fellow inductee Anthony Anderson.

"Anthony was a better player than I was," he said, adding that he owes his success "guys like him and Marcus Owens."

Larson came from Mallard, Iowa, where his father was the head coach.

"The main reason I came to Iowa Lakes is because coach Grems would talk to you and mean it," said Larson.

Larson talked about the relationships he had on that team.

"There were seven or eight of us that were the most competitive alpha males-it was dog-eat-dog every single day and I absolutely loved it," he said.

He credited Grems for coaching the team "up."

As Larson is the current Laker men's basketball coach, it's important to him when Grems comes to the game.

"It's very important when he watched my team and that he comes to me and says, 'That's a good college basketball team,'" said Larson.

Julia Nealer

Nealer played softball at Iowa Lakes from 209-2011. She led to Lakers to a third-place finish at the 2010 National Tournament. She is third all-time in career wins (38) and strikeouts (379) and fifth in shutouts (13). She's the single season record holder in innings pitched (254), strikeouts 280) and ERA (0.77). She was ranked the top pitcher in the NJCAA during the 2010 season and allowed just 28 earned runs that year.

Originally from Seattle, Wash., Nealer said she knew she wanted to play college ball outside of the state of Washington. Her choices came down to Northern Idaho or Iowa Lakes.

Coach Mike Bosch helped make her decision, she said.

"I continue to set goals and tackle barriers by using what softball taught me," Nealer said.

Cayla Vimr

Vimr played volleyball at Iowa Lakes for coach Scott Tschetter from 2010-2012.

She earned second team all-region honors both her years at Iowa Lakes and helped the team to consecutive fifth-place finishes at the national tournament.

Vimr said she chose Iowa Lakes in that it was relatively close to home, coming from Roseville High School in Roseville, Minn.

She found amazing teammates while in Estherville.

"The bond felt like family," she said.

In coming to Iowa Lakes, Vimr had to adjust from moving to the middle hitter she was in high school to an outside hitter.

"I had wonderful team mates and a coaching staff who supported me," she said.

Vimr played one year at NCAA Division II Northern Michigan.

"I decided nursing was my calling," she said, talking of her return to Estherville, where she took classes at Iowa Lakes. She currently works at Avera Holy Family in Estherville.

"Iowa Lakes changed my life," she said.



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