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We support Coach Kimmel, BHS soccer

May 05, 2010 - Dear Editor,

(In response to, 'Brandon sports, 'oh yea, not so good,' ' The Citizen, May 1, 2010, page 6).

All of us are, or will soon be, graduates of Brandon H.S. and have played on the varsity soccer team coached by Phil Kimmel. Hopefully, our words will hold more weight than those by a disgruntled parent.

Playing for Coach Kimmel was a privilege. There was no question about his dedication to the soccer program at Brandon H.S.. Coach Kimmel taught us not only to be better athletes, but to be better individuals. We would set goals before the season, and he expected us to meet them. However, school always came before soccer.

Coach Kimmel believed that a good education, not soccer, was the key to our future success. He expected us to do our best, both in the classroom and on the field. Coach Kimmel also set a good example and was an excellent role model. He treated us with respect, and expected us to treat others the same way. Every year, one of Coach Kimmel's goals was to win the Sportsmanship Award. Success cannot always be measured by a win-loss record. Character is what counts.

Besides having Coach Kimmel, we were fortunate that our parents supported us, whether we won or lost. Sometimes, no matter how hard you work, if the other team plays better, they win. The constant criticism by the O'Sheas serve only to disrupt the team, and the program. Maybe instead of blaming the coach, they should find ways to support the team. Cheering for the girls instead of making negative remarks about individual players and coaches would help to improve the problems they have caused. There is no question that their behavior is affecting the team.

In his letter, O'Shea points to the girls' losing record this season. Last year, there were 11 senior girls, with a roster of only 17, on the Varsity team. Many of those seniors played in key positions. So this year was going to be a challenge to rebuild. But we know that the girls this season have talent. If they work hard and can come together as a team, they will find a way to be successful. Coach Kimmel knows how to instill good work ethics, as this quality is so important to succeed. That is how he was able to lead the Boys' Varsity Team in 2008 to their League and District Title in only his second year as the Boys' Varsity Coach.

O'Shea also stated that there is "absentee coaching" this year. That is just ridiculous. Coach Kimmel does have an assistant coach this year, due to conflicts in his schedule. His assistant, Coach (Wilkerson) Chapa played at Brandon H.S., then went on to play Division I at Oakland University. She also coached at Brandon M.S. for several years. Some of us girls played for her, and know she is a great coach. Having her as an assistant coach can only benefit the program.

The claims made by O'Shea in no way reflect the opinions of the players and majority of parents.

We support Coach Kimmel, and the varsity soccer program at Brandon High School. Go Blackhawks.

Jessica Lane, Aimee Soave, Sam Roberts, Nick Bognar, Danica Rylance, Hannah Scherer, Jake Knight, Greg Lanthier, Kara Craig, Shea Penney, Derek Brady, Jaret Kage, Anthony Dubay, Lauren Schumacher, Joe Blakeley, Cody Hibbs, Brandon Losey, Shana DeVoe, Stacy Woloszyk, Paula Getzmeyer, Jacob Lane, Matt Meyer

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