December 24, 2013

Dear Santa:

Please give the following presents to the following individuals who, among others, are very important to the Olivet High School athletic program. You will have to take my word that they have been “nice” over the past 12 months.

Freshmen boys’ basketball coach Marvin Freed:  A set of school keys that he has been pursuing for more than a year. Not only will the keys make his job easier, they also will allow him to access the weight room sound system the next time music is drowning out our National Anthem singers prior to a basketball game.

Boys’ and girls’ cross country coach Mike Spoelstra:  A home cross country course so that we can host some cross country meets next fall. Actually, I’m not sure we have a choice since one of the KVA jamborees is scheduled to take place in Olivet in 2014.

Varsity football coach Gabe Priddy:  The foresight to choose Nike over Rawlings when it’s time to purchase new uniforms. While it is safe to say that Coach Priddy knows more about football gear than yours truly, we may have to remind the Regional Coach of the Year about the power of the Swoosh.

Football equipment manager (and girls’ basketball scorekeeper) Dave Lambert:  A Gator or golf cart to help him lug various items from the locker room to the football stadium each and every game day. Dave, without question, is one of our unsung heroes, volunteering his time and energy for multiple Olivet teams.

Custodian Tom Critchlow:  An active school email account so that we can keep him in the loop on a consistent basis. Behind the scenes, no one is more important than this guy. He sets up for everything, takes pride in his work, and helps with game management (football chain gang & boys’ basketball scorekeeper) when he can.

Athletic Department administrative assistant Lauri Janousek:  A picture of former Olivet athletic director Tom Sowles to remind her of a time when she didn’t have to answer a lot of rookie questions, deal with my sense of humor, and loan out her stapler and scissors every other day.

Doctor Fred Bean:  An uneventful second half of the school year, which means our student-athletes will remain relatively healthy while participating in the sports they love. We cannot thank Dr. Bean enough for all of the time and energy he donates (voluntarily) to the Olivet athletic programs.

Varsity basketball coaches Rob Fleming & Brian Dartt:  Flexibility in their non-league schedules so that they can play more than two non-league games each year. With the way the KVA basketball schedules are designed, they both play only two non-league opponents each season. That simply is not enough to stimulate players and prepare them for post-season play.

Middle school boys’ basketball coach Troy Waffle:  A course in anger management as a result of his recent technical foul during a 7th grade boys’ basketball game at Parchment. Rumor has it that Coach Waffle got a raw deal with the “T,” but we want to support him nonetheless.

Friends of the program Debby & Rex Swank:  Their choice of any OHS athletic gear that they desire. These two individuals not only feed the volleyball team throughout the season, they also videotape the volleyball and girls’ basketball games for coaches and take hundreds of photos that are shared with families and posted on our athletic Web site.

Varsity baseball coach Heath Otto:  Either a cover for the gallon-size cup from which he drinks soda or a mini screen to protect it while he’s throwing batting practice. Rumor has it that there was quite a spill during a recent BP session with the fellas.

All-Sports Boosters Tammy Huffman, Sandy Ploehn, Carol Sobleskey & Kristi Walkowski: An army of volunteers to assist them with the concession stand throughout the school year. These four women lead an organization that has been very generous over the last four months, donating items such as wrestling singlets, a squat machine for the weight room, various soccer equipment, basketball warm-up pants, baseball and softball field improvements, and the list goes on.


The Seidlines