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Turn to Jesus (Article)

More than a Singlet
Archbishop Moeller High School’s SportsLeader program connects fathers and sons, takes wrestling team to a new level.

sportsleader wrestlers
The 8 seniors on the varsity wrestling team, plus their dads and coaches.

February 5, 2010. Cincinnati, OH. The seniors of Archbishop Moeller High School wrestling program were in for a surprise after practice on January 29. It was a Friday night and they had just finished practice when their head coach Jeff Gaier, told them to stick around and meet in the locker room at 6 p.m.

At 6:00 on the dot, all of the coaches and the boys’ dads walked into the locker room. 

One by one, their coaches got up and commented on the good qualities the boys had shown during the season, on their growth and improvement, and on the virtues they had been developing. One coach, for example, mentioned how proud he was of Jake Corrill when he noticed the senior quietly picking up trash and cleaning up the gym after a meet at another school. In fact, Jake and his teammate Pierce Harger had both been featured on the
boys on ESPN
Wrestlers Jake Corrill and Pierce Harger on the cover of ESPN's Rise Magazine.
cover of ESPN’s Rise Magazine. The coach’s point was that humility and service were a big deal.

After the coaches, each of the dads took a moment to tell his son that he loved him and was proud of him. Each dad also gave his son a brand new singlet—a special one-piece wrestling uniform—that was personalized for each senior.

The singlets were a surprise that had been held in reserve for some time. One of the seniors had actually designed them a while back, and Coach Gaier had been waiting for the right occasion. So when the long-coveted uniforms finally appeared in the hands of their own dads, the boys were smiling ear to ear. 

And maybe it was those personalized singlets that helped the wrestling team demolish their archrival, St Xavier High School, 70-0 at the wrestling meet the next day.

Or maybe the ceremony the night before had
wrestler with dad
One of the Archbishop Moeller High's senior wrestlers with his dad (and the new singlet).
something to do with it, along with the indispensable hard work, conditioning, and technique training.

“A lot of athletics also has to do with the mental outlook,” said Coach Gaier. “The ceremony the night before put the seniors in a pretty good frame of mind and we were very positive going into the meet the next day. I think that had an effect on how they competed.”

Singlets or not, the SportsLeader program at Archbishop Moeller High School is feeding the 55-athlete wrestling program with values, and many of the boys are rising to the challenge to grow in virtue along with technique.

“We’ve expanded the SportsLeader program here each year as we’ve gotten more comfortable with our own faith,” explained Coach Gaier. “This year has been our best year. It’s going to be a major part of our program from here on out.”
Learn more about the SportsLeader program at



Related links

LTP Philadelphia
Leadership Training Program
Pure Fashion

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