Archive for Thursday, July 14, 2005

Martin, Wegner hired as BHS coaches

July 14, 2005

Two head coaching positions at Baldwin High School were filled Monday night at the school board meeting by BHS teacher Bob Martin and Marion Springs Elementary School Principal Gus Wegner.

BHS Activities Director Gary Stevanus said he expects the coaches to do a wonderful job.

"I expect Bob Martin to carry on the great tradition of the girls' basketball program," Stevanus said. "Gus has a great deal of experience with soccer and I would expect him to build a strong foundation to our soccer program."

Martin was hired as the BHS girls' coach, filling the void left by former coach Eric Toot who resigned after he accepted a coaching job at Baker University in early June.

When the job became available, Martin said he knew it was something he was interested in.

"I was pretty surprised when coach Toot resigned to take the Baker job, but I am happy for him," Martin said. "I knew it was something I wanted to do. It's such a great program with great tradition."

Martin was Toot's assistant coach for the past five seasons. Martin coached the junior varsity team during those five years, which will help him with the transition to head coach.

"It's an advantage," Martin said of knowing the players. "We will pretty much run a similar program. Hopefully, the transition will be fairly easy."

The transition for Wegner will be much different, because he will be the first-ever soccer coach at BHS. The soccer program, which is set to begin this fall, has been in need of a head coach for months.

Wegner, who has years of experience with soccer, was asked by Supt. James White if he would like to become the coach a week or two ago.

"I knew I had done it before, so I knew I could do a good job," Wegner said. "I'm just excited to be a part of the athletic tradition at Baldwin. I like that."

Wegner was first introduced to soccer in the 1960s. Then in the early 1980s, Wegner coached both the men's' and women's' teams at Northwest Missouri State University for five years. In recent years, Wegner has coached elementary-age teams the last six years.

Wegner said he is a big fan of the game, because it involves teamwork and every team member contributes.

"I really like the game because the kids get very involved in the game," Wegner said. "It's a real team-oriented game. They have to work as a team. It's one of the best games to play."

Both Wegner and Martin are excited for their upcoming seasons as the head coaches.

"From what I hear, the team is going to be young," Wegner said. "They will be starting the tradition. We will be starting to formulate practices and getting the field ready."

Martin said he has some fairly high expectations for the team.

"We have positive expectations," Martin said. "We hope it will pay off for us. We have a number of girls who have a lot of experience. We're looking forward to being competitive in a tough league."

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