The Wauwatosa East athletic department not only lost two good coaches last week, but two great people.
First, Megan Arndorfer emailed me and told me she stepped down as the head coach of the softball team and then I discovered at the Brookfield Central-East soccer game on June 7 that football and track and field coach Jake Wolter took a teaching position at Whitefish Bay High School.
Unless you are living in a cave, coaching high school sports has not been an 'in-season' job for a long time. There are summer camps, kids play club sports out of season and there is work in the weight room, which for football is a full-time job of its own.
Arndorfer said she feels that she can no longer give the commitment to the program that it deserves - and more importantly needs - because she would like to spend more time with her family.
"For as long as I can remember my life has been sports, but now my life has changed," Arndorfer said. "After school I want to have more time to go hang out with my nieces and nephews, the rest of my family and friends. My team and program deserves more from a coach. They mean the world to me, but after 16 years of coaching, it is just my time."
Arndorfer has done a good job with a softball program that lacked a great deal of talent, to be polite. Her teams hadn't won a game in the conference for at least four years, but this season the Red Raiders went out and won four games in the Greater Metro Conference.
When it came to working with a coach, Arndorfer was one of the best coaches I dealt with. Her reports were detailed and organized. But when reading her reports, I could feel the heartache and disappointment she would feel after a tough loss and the helplessness after a game where her team didn't play well. She cared a ton about her players, not only as athletes, but as people.
Wolter's move is a different story, since this young man has not gotten out of the coaching business. It was a question of providing for his family and Whitefish Bay gave him something the Wauwatosa School District didn't because there were no openings - a full-time teaching job.
Wolter who received his teaching certification and student taught this semester, will teach Physical Education at Bay. It is not official yet, but he will probably be part of coach Jim Tietjen's football staff as well.
Wolter, who was a student supervisor at Tosa East, told his players his decision June 6.
"I told them the hardest part was telling them my decision," Wolter said. "It was difficult to tell them and it will be very different to no longer be a part of their lives.
"But I told them it was the easiest decision to make to support my family."
The Red Raiders won one game in Wolter's two years at the helm of the football program and were winless in the rugged GMC.
It is sad the Red Raiders will be losing Wolter, who most people consider the greatest athlete to ever wear a Tosa East uniform.
"I loved coaching at my alma mater," he said. "I was hoping to get (football) back to where it was, but the program never made it that far."
Megan, Jake, good luck to both of you. You will be missed.
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