My name is Mark Mochel and I was an official on Saturday,
Jan. 27, at Riverside Christian High School for the game with Sunnyside
Christian. Not only am I a basketball official, but an educator and coach as
In today’s society, we see that
kids are consumed with immediate feedback and doing what is best for
themselves. Often times this results in kids showing emotion in a negative
manner when on the stage of athletics.
During Saturday night boy’s basketball game, there was great
intensity shown by players, coaches and the communities alike. Often times,
when there is that level of intensity, emotions boil over the edge and order
needs to be restored. Throughout the game there were numerous opportunities for
one team or another to take offense. This was never the case. Each team helping
each other up off of the floor after a foul, a pat on the backside and friendly
chatting happened frequently.
As the game was wrapping up, Riverside Christian substituted
out a young man who gave every ounce of energy he had.
Although his team ended up losing the game,
it was clear that he was not the only one in appreciation of his efforts. As
the young man left the court for the bench he was congratulated for his efforts
by his teammates, his home crowd and Coach Dean Wagenaar and the Sunnyside
Christian faithful alike.
As the game came to an end, Riverside Christian Coach Bruce
Siebol pulled off his pursuit in a longshot comeback win. Sunnyside Christian
brought the ball across mid-court for the final time of the evening with 17
seconds to go in the ball game. At this time, the Sunnyside Christian point
guard offered his hand in congratulations to the young man who was guarding
him. Each and every player on the court then shook hands and hugged before the
final buzzer sounded.
As an educator this is ultimate in kids showing that they
Please offer my applause to each of your coaches, players
and community members. Being an Eisenhower alum, I may have had the thought of
the Ike-Davis game being played that night in the back of my mind, but after
spending the evening with those two teams and communities, I know I was exactly
where I should have been.
/s/ Mark Mochel, Toppenish