Science teacher and National Honor Society sponsor Wendy Oelrichs will be joining the track and field coaching staff this spring season in place of coach Aaron Peirick.
Mrs. Oelrichs stated, “A couple of years ago when the track team decided to add another assistant track coach to the staff, I was very interested and nearly applied for the position. However, I just couldn't figure out how to make it work with my kids' sports schedules, especially Ava's competitive gymnastics schedule. It was a really hard decision, because I really loved track when I was in high school, and coaching has been something I wanted to do since I started teaching at New Haven. But, I had to do what was right for my family at the time.”
She continued: “Then, this past summer, Coach Tucker told me that they would be hiring a new assistant track coach, with Coach Aaron Peirick moving to baseball, and asked if I'd be interested in the position. I took some time to think about and talk it over with my family. This year, with Ava being in Middle School and planning to participate in track, the decision to coach made a lot more sense, so I accepted!”
Ongoing, she stated: “In addition to helping Coach Tucker with whatever he needs, I will be coaching pole vault! Even though I have never vaulted myself, I have an extensive background in coaching CrossFit, and about a year and a half of gymnastics coaching experience. From what I've watched, read, and learned about pole vault, a lot of what I already know from those sports will transfer to pole vault.”
Mrs. Oelrichs proceeded to comment: “I am looking forward to learning from Coach Tucker, Coach Hagedorn, Coach Witthaus, and Coach Hoener, as well as from the athletes who vaulted last year. I hope to be able to help them achieve new goals this year, and I'm looking forward to training new pole vaulters. I'm also looking forward to getting to know the track athletes on a different level than what I can in the classroom.”
Senior track and field athlete Lydia Pataky is a pole vaulter. Lydia commented, “I am really excited to have Mrs. Oelrichs as my coach this year for pole vault. I know she is learning about it, and I am excited to see what she can teach me this year, and to see how much I improve throughout the season.”
The New Haven track and field team is excited to have a new face within their coaching staff and hopes to continue with their success from last season.