The long wait is over.

After enduring restrictions that kept many fans out of gyms in N’West Iowa this fall and winter, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Thursday she was altering the public health measures that are designed to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Spectator limits for sporting and recreational gatherings, including for high-school sponsored events, were lifted on Friday.

The proclamation continues to require that when people are in an indoor public space and unable to social distance for 15 minutes or longer, masks are required to be worn.

Record broken

Congratulations to Dordt University senior Erika Feenstra, who became the all-time leading scorer in the Defender women’s basketball program on Wednesday.

Feenstra, a Hull native who graduated from Western Christian High School in 2017, scored 14 points in a win over College of Saint Mary to put her career total at 1,738. Amber Soodsma, who played for the Defenders from 2007-2011, held the previous mark at 1,736.

“She puts in so much time, effort and energy and to see her become the all-time leading scorer here is really a blessing,” said Dordt coach Bill Harmsen. “To coach her and see here through thick and thin and to see her surrounded by a lot of great teammates and to see her achieve this accomplishment is really awesome.”

Feenstra scored 343 points during her freshman campaign and followed that with a Dordt single-season record 637 points her sophomore season. Feenstra had 562 points in 2019-20 and has 10 regular season games remaining in 2020-21.

Feenstra also has 658 career rebounds and has converted 54.7 percent of her career field goals and 79.2 percent of her free throws. She’s the career leader in free throws made and ranks second in field goals made and 13th in career rebounds

Changing channels

Those of you who had become accustomed to watching Dordt University athletic contests on the web have probably noticed a slight difference in the new year as the school has moved its live video webstreamed events to Vimeo.

Viewers can access live home events at https://vimeo.com/dordtu or can go directly to the Vimeo Dordt basketball event page https://vimeo.com/event/572671 to view Dordt basketball games. Each Dordt sport will be offered on its own unique Vimeo event page.

Vimeo is unavailable on Smart TVs and Roku devices. Viewers who have become accustomed to viewing Dordt athletic events in this way are able to watch most events using the YouTube app and searching for “Dordt University Defender Athletics” and subscribing to the channel.

Answering demand

Northwestern College has announced that Taylor Nygren’s position as the head cheer and dance coach at the school has been expanded and will be a full-time post.

The athletic department expressed in a news release its desire to strengthen those competitive programs and enhance the game environment at its football and basketball games. Nygren is in her fifth year as the head of the cheer program at Northwestern. Last year the school took fourth in the Great Plains Athletic Conference cheer championships and fifth at the northwest regional qualifier. She has been in charge of the Northwestern dance program for three years. That squad placed fourth at the conference competition and seventh at regionals last year.

“I am extremely excited to build and grow our cheer and dance programs here at Northwestern,” Nygren said. “Over the course of the last five seasons we have really grown for a club activity to a demanding sport. This will bring new and exciting opportunities for many students on campus and future athletes.”

Spartans compete

The Sioux City Spartans boys swim team went to Atlantic and got a split in a triangular on Jan. 5, topping the hosts 78-12 but falling to fifth-ranked Waukee 62-32.

Kohen Rankin of Boyden-Hull and Hudson Vonk, James Dean, Kellen Dean and Graham Vande Vegte of Sioux Center compete on the Sioux City squad.

Rankin was the second leg of the 200-yard relay team that took second for the Spartans. Vande Vegte was the same leg on the team that placed fourth in the race.

Rankin was second in the 200-yard freestyle race. Kellen Dean took second in the 200-yard individual medley. Vonk was third in the 100-yard freestyle race.

Rankin and Vonk took the first two legs on the 200-yard freestyle relay team that placed second. Kellen Dean was third in the 100-yard backstroke. Rankin was second in the 100-yard breast stroke.

In the 400-yard freestyle relay Vonk was on a team that took third and Kellen Dean was on a team that took fourth.