Resiliency rules

Jack Hammill - Guest Columnist


It is a word that frames the character of all Lima Central Catholics students.

Obviously I am not at the school as much as when I was a student there but I trust that the value that Fr. Herr drummed into us during that time is very important to the students of that great school at this time as well. Clearly it is a time when the student-athletes of LCC and of Temple Christian are going to need to focus on the word that reminds to get back up when we have been knocked down.

The same can be said for the West Ohio High School Bowling Conference. There is another phrase that comes to mind as well – “The king is dead long live the king.”

We have wondered at different times on these pages what the impact of the absence of the teams on the Western Buckeye League would be on this conference. In many cases we felt that life would go on with many meetings still between the remaining great teams and of each conference. It was long a reinforced belief that the remaining teams of the north conference/division would stay and a schedule would be developed.

That belief however has now plummeted to earth. Lima Senior was the next team to leave the pack, deciding to go independent and Parkway was ever so neatly, but in the dark of night moved into the south division/conference.

The next step was a meeting on Sept. 9 where the teams of the south met and determined that LCC and Temple should be gone from this great conference. The goal is an all-MAC conference as soon as stipulations of the athletic directors and OHSAA can be addressed. The process could take anywhere from a year to never. Let’s hope it is closer to the year.

Interestingly enough the word of this fateful meeting for our two schools in question was delivered to a phone call to this writer on Thursday September 13th as a follow-up to a message that I had sent the evening I had sent the day before regarding the meeting that the WOHSBC has each year where I frequently represent either Temple Christian or Lima Central Catholic. It is most interesting as well that neither the athletic directors nor coaches of those two member schools had been notified of the meeting that was held the week before.

Now if at this point you are reading this and are angry, frustrated, feel like yelling, screaming and cussing then let me tell you that you are not alone. A lot of that has been done over the last few days by more than i.

The argument of distance is used yet this is a conference that travels at least once each season to the Indiana border and that with the exception of that trip the competing schools are only 45 minutes to an hour away. They said that they wanted to stay regional.

The fact that the schools were not advised of the meeting certainly tells that there was not any room for conversation. Historically and LCC does have a keen awareness there is usually an conference exit plan. This phone conversation did not even include any offer of matches with the remaining member schools, a core of which entered the conference at the least after LCC.

It is at this point that Fr. Herr’s great voice burns into my memory one more time – “Resiliency, Resiliency {those who remember Fr. Herr can fill in this blank} _____ Resiliency!”

He would never let a loss or a misfortune get in the way of our longtime success as individuals, teams and families.

Perhaps that is why the Riepenhoff family and LCC Athletic Director Frank Kill took the news in relative stride. Clearly there was frustration and anger and I can still visualize AD Kill scratching his head as he questioned if the meeting and the decision of the group was even legal.

Commish Rick Hartings indicated that the two schools could find matches up here as the WBL teams are looking. LCC is grateful to Wapak for stepping forward to compete when the time is right.

Temple Christian and B.J. McPheron have a back-up plan if this was to happen but he clearly had remained loyal to the conference.

LCC decided to stay loyal and not follow the lead of Lima Senior when they bolted the conference and they are behind the eight ball. There is discussion now of rushing to fill out the slate or just competing in junior league play and grabbing the needed matches prior to sectional action.

What is known is that I will miss the conference! Like LCC and Temple I have been loyal and some would argue a shill for the conference! It will be a solid conference but it will never again be the conference that it was.

The decision of the conference was inexplicable. It does come at a time of loss and as we know frequently those times can be difficult and confusing as we try to rally the family. We circle the wagons! Perhaps the grief cycle is the reason for the decision here as nothing else makes sense.

Resiliency is the answer! LCC and Temple will again rise. May the same be said for our brothers and sisters to the south central of us.

See you at the lanes, just some will be out of the rotation.

Jack Hammill

Guest Columnist

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