On Wednesday, four Delavan-Darien High School students — Juan Rocha, Tigrio Huerta, Jackie Damrow, and Jake Benzing — and interim Athletic Director Hank Johnson attended the 2014 WIAA/Rural Insurance Sportsmanship Summit in Stevens Point.
The summit is designed for students and administrators to strengthen the principles of sportsmanship by promoting teamwork, sharing resources and providing the impetus to make a difference in schools.
While at the event, the four DDHS students worked closely with four Elkhorn Area High School students who also attended. Their interactions were planned by administrators from both schools to better facilitate the historic rivalry between DDHS and EAHS, Johnson said.
Attendees were offered ideas to address citizenship and sportsmanship issues with students, athletes, fans, advisors, parents and booster clubs, along with developing plans to maintain good sportsmanship, define appropriate behavior and set sportsmanship standards.
Johnson said the hope is for the students to work with their peers, including team captains and coaches, non-athletes and fans, to develop ideas for better sportsmanship and sports atmospheres at school athletic competitions.
WIAA Executive Director Dave Anderson’s introduction was followed by a keynote address from Craig Hillier, a professional speaker and author of “Playing Beyond the Scoreboard.”
The breakout sessions included “The Coach and Participants Role in Sportsmanship” by Mark Maas, a veteran teacher and coach; “School Sportsmanship Expectations” by John Frizzell and Mel Dow of the WIAA Sportsmanship Committee; “Sportsmanship: The Officials Prospective” by Ken Koester, a veteran WIAA licensed official; “Peer Leadership for Better Sportsmanship” by by Dan Hoppe, Kim Kargus, and Rachel Ley representing the Wisconsin Association of School Councils; and “Sportsmanship Roundtable Discussions” moderated by Shane Been of the WIAA Sportsmanship Committee.
The students also got to meet Jessie Vetter, U.S. Women’s Olympic Hockey Team Goalie and former WIAA State champion and participant. Vetter gave an afternoon keynote at the summit.