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Live announcers pin down the details for Sugar River wrestling fans
Ken Engelke and Scott Schmitz serve as wrestling announcers.

Belleville’s Winter sports season is proud to have had former coaches Ken Engelke and Scott Schmitz add their knowledge and love for the sport of wrestling, as they took their seats as the first live-stream announcers for Belleville High School’s (BHS) first winter sports broadcast last week.  BHS has brought a whole new dimension to its sports lineup this year with the aid of its Tech Team Chris Armstrong and David Edge, who have made live-stream announcing a reality in Belleville.

Belleville’s new Athletic Director Zack Nelson feels that the willingness of former coaches to come and lend their voices as announcers only shows the deep community commitment he witnesses for his school sports teams.  It really helps highlight the winter sports season and its dedicated athletes.

“The live announcing events speak to the level of commitment and passion of our staff and community members in Belleville. Having live announcers provides additional entertainment value, informational depth on the sport, and brings in a larger audience to showcase the work our athletes have put in, as well as their talent in their respective sports,” says Nelson. 

For Head Wrestling Coach Pete Swenson, it means the world to have his Sugar River Raiders highlighted in the first live-stream event of the winter sports season and helps bring important detail to the mat as fans look on.

Coach Swenson notes, “To have two previous coaches come in and give a play-by-play really enhances the experience for the listener.  Their extensive background in the sport is very entertaining to listen to.  I am grateful to have these two great coaches do this.” 

For those who have never watched wrestling, it serves as a fantastic way to educate the public who might want to learn more about the sport.  As a coach and educator, Swenson knows you have to provide an entry point to continue to build a strong team and this really is one more way to build the interest of the public.

Swenson emphasizes, “It’s a great way to educate the public who may not have been to a wrestling meet before.  Also, the commentary brings life and experience while watching the matches. It may intrigue more people to come to a live match as well.” 

For District Administrator Nate Perry, bringing announcers to the school district’s live-streaming sports for the community is one more initiative that he is proud of after serving the Belleville Community for ten years.  It offers yet another opportunity to engage with families and support high school athletes, as well as spark the interest of high school athletes-to-be. In this way, adding announcers was a way to improve their live-streamed events and it is an important way to build on the work Belleville has already done and make it even better.

Perry stresses, “The early success of our play-by-play live-streams for football, soccer, and volleyball this fall were due, in large part, to the announcers themselves. I have been impressed with their professionalism and preparation, along with their enthusiasm. Thanks goes to Head Coach Pete Swenson for recruiting Scott and Ken. I know that they do a wonderful job with their wrestling knowledge and background of the Mineral Point, and Sugar River programs.”

Increasing awareness for the sport of wrestling was a great way to begin to highlight the Winter sports season.  The School District of Belleville looks forward to continuing this new tradition with up-coming announcers Kyle Loshaw and Jon Benash on February 8th when their Boys’ Basketball Team takes to the court.  Belleville’s Wildcats look forward to playing the Waterloo Pirates, so tune in to hear play-by-play action after tip-off!

— Marie Perry is the Communications Director for the School District of Belleville. She can be reached at