Trinity hosts fall sports awards program


Trinity Lutheran High School hosted its fall athletics awards program Tuesday evening at the Bollinger Athletic Complex.

The school recognized 64 student-athletes for participation in the school’s five fall sports programs. Each team presented most valuable player, most improved and the Cougar Award.

Justin Vorthmann, assistant soccer coach and teacher, presented the teams and said all athletes gave the school pride.

“You have made us all extremely proud for the effort that you put forth, your dedication to your sport and your Christian witness,” he said.

Vorthmann started the evening by presenting awards to the boys tennis team, who had a 2-12 record. He read a statement from coach Clayton Engel where Engel said the team improved throughout the season.

“All of our varsity positioned were shifted and we had a new coach,” he said. “As the season went on, it became clear that improvement would be the best measure of this team’s success.”

He also wrote each player improved and displayed great sportsmanship.

Hunter Morgan was named the team’s most valuable player. Jace Crockett was most improved and Noah Voelker was presented with the Cougar Award.

Cross country coach Jennifer Hildreth told her team of six that they were a close-knit group that relied on each other throughout the season.

The group is technically not a team because they don’t have five runners for each gender.

“If you came to our practices, came on the bus with us or to any of our meetings, you’d see these athletes do act like a team,” Hildreth said.

A.J. Goecker was named male most valuable runner and Sadie Nay was female most valuable runner. Most improved runner for boys was Jordan Peters and girls, Abby Hildreth.

Jacob Sabotin and Mya Nay were presented with the Cougar Award.

“I want to thank coach for stepping up this year, doing a fantastic job and pushing us when we thought we were dead,” Goecker said. “Thanks for leading us and making sure we got our workouts each and every day.”

For volleyball, the Cougars went 28-10 and lost in the regional game to Barr Reeve, which could compete for the state title, coach Faith Wilder-Newland said.

Newland said the parents were very involved in the program and helped with numerous things throughout the season.

Players improved throughout Newland’s first year of leading them, she said.

“I saw a lot of growth and leadership this year,” Newland said, adding she allowed some players to design practices to garner more leadership. “I think we saw them talk more and more with the coaching staff throughout the year.”

The team voted for each of its awards.

Hannah Sabotin was named most valuable player. Ruthie Bingham was most improved player and Abby Schult was presented with the Cougar award.

First-year boys soccer coach Joe Doggett presented awards for his team and said while he was proud of his team’s competition, he was most impressed with their character.

“Every time they won or lost, they behaved the same: Graciously,” he told the crowd. “They gelled well with everyone around them as a team and Trinity would be proud of this kind of team. That made our season a lot of fun.”

Josiah Foster and Trent Shoemaker shared most valuable player honors. Caleb Probst was most improved player and A.J. Goecker was presented with the Cougar award.

Shoemaker, a senior, thanked assistant coach Vorthmann, who also serves as his teacher.

“Mr. Vorthmann always believed in me, not just on the field, but in the classroom too,” he said. “I could never thank you enough for that.”

Jeff Nolting, who is stepping down at girls soccer coach, founded the program at Trinity and was proud of his team. He guided three players through all four years of the program after it began.

Nolting was presented with a soccer ball that each player signed.

“A characteristic of this team was that they played hard until the very end,” he said. “Regardless of the outcome, they played so hard until the very end.”

Sidney Hoene and Emma Goecker shared most valuable player. Ashley Goecker was most improved play and Emilee Lang was presented with the Cougar award.

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