Goshen News, Goshen, IN

August 23, 2013

High school sports can lead to great things


— It’s hard for us to believe that another summer break is behind us and that another fall high school sports season is upon us. Varsity sports at our local schools are already well underway.

If you read Wednesday’s sports section of The Goshen News, you would know that freshman Aylissa Trosper scored the first goal of the season for the Goshen girls soccer team and that Fairfield’s Sierra Smith had 12 kills in a straight-set season-opening volleyball win against Fremont. You would also likely be aware that NorthWood’s Val Ostwoski scored three goals in a girls soccer game and that Wawasee’s Adam Doll ran a 17:24 to best all other runners in a cross country meet against Bremen, Fairfield and NorthWood.

And if you read Thursday’s sports section, you know that the 2013 high school football season kicks off tonight with Goshen traveling to Carroll in Fort Wayne, NorthWood hosting Jimtown, Fairfield visiting Central Noble, Wawasee welcoming Whitko and Northridge and Concord venturing to South Bend Adams and Washington, respectively. It doesn’t take reading between the lines to figure out how excited we are that another high school sports season is under way.

We are fortunate to have great local schools here and we feel sports — in addition to other extra-curricular school activities — have a significant role in the educational and maturation process of our young people. This is why we dedicate so much of our news space to coverage of local high school sports. The games matter. Not just because of the scores, but because of the commitment these students make to be part of team that is bigger than themselves. You don’t have to be the best. You just have to do your best and work hard to make your best better.

As we have chronicled over the years, that type of attitude, combined with ability and proper coaching guidance, leads to great places. 2013, for instance, is the anniversary of the two greatest Goshen football teams in the school’s history. Thirty-five years ago head coach Ken Mirer led Goshen to a 12-1 record and the school’s first state championship. That team did not allow a point in any of its three 2A playoff games.

Twenty-five years ago it was Mirer’s son, Rick, who as a senior All-American quarterback led Goshen to a perfect 14-0 record and a dramatic 4A state title victory. While Mirer received a majority of the headlines, that team was loaded with talent and role players who together found glory.

Those championship runs helped unite this community and illustrated the power high school sports can have. Are there any champions in our area this year? Maybe. Maybe not. We’ll look forward to enjoying the ride with our readers either way.

Best of luck to all our local teams.