New faces and changes support ‘success of Storm athletics’

by John Sirianni

As summer comes to an end, the air starts to get a little cooler, the leaves begin to change color and anticipation fills the air. Virtually empty for three months, campus is full again. Class is in session.

All signs mark the beginning of another year at Simpson College.

Entering my 28th year as the director of athletics, I have never been a part of a more exciting time to be a member of the Simpson College community.

The landscape of campus is changing, paving the way for the next chapter in the college’s storied history. The Blank Performing Arts Center renovation is complete, giving a shiny new home to the Simpson theater program and the nationally-recognized Des Moines Metro Opera. On the North end of campus, construction is underway for the new 55,000 square foot and nearly $14 million Kent Campus Center, which is scheduled to be completed next fall.

On the athletic front, the track and turf at Buxton Stadium were replaced in the summer, giving our student-athletes the benefit of competing on two of the finest surfaces in the Midwest. Inside Cowles Fieldhouse, our competition gymnasium received a facelift with the addition of a panel of photos recognizing the teams which compete in the venue and celebrating some of the finest student-athletes to step foot on our campus. Those individuals truly represent the championship tradition we have developed here at Simpson.

In addition to the physical changes, we welcome a number of new head coaches to campus this year. A former Iowa Conference MVP in his playing days at Luther and an accomplished prep coach at Ankeny, Rick Isaacson took over the men’s soccer program in the off-season. Heath Moenck joined us as the head cross country coach, bringing with him experience from NCAA Divisions I, II and III. The men’s tennis program is now in the hands of TJ Cox, a former All-Iowa Conference player and the current tennis pro at Des Moines Golf and Country Club.

Noel Treibel, a Simpson alumna who was an all-conference golfer when Simpson won the Iowa Conference title in 2006, joins Bob Darrah as co-head coach of the women’s golf team. The cheer team is now under the direction of Tricia Davis, a former Simpson cross country runner and current admissions counselor at her alma mater; leading the dance team is Meagan Jacobson, an Indianola-native with dance experience at Morningside College.

These new faces join the great group of people we already have on staff, who are all committed to the excellence of our athletic program. We hope you can join us this fall and all year long, helping us usher in a new era for the college while supporting the continued success of Storm athletics.

We are SC.