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Woodridge looking forward to competitive season

8/14/2014 - West Side Leader
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By Sean Patrick

PENINSULA — The 2013-14 school year marked the first year on the job for Woodridge High School Athletic Director Nick Mayer, who described his experience as “enjoyable, but busy, busy, busy.”

“It was definitely a good busy, though,” he said. “It was an awesome first year and was a crazy first year. We had a lot of things happen with a ton of calamity days, but we had some great success — some postseason success — and some great experiences. Our baseball team made it to the state elite eight. Our track and cross country teams made it far. It was great.”

Mayer said he is finding his second year on the job to be “even more of an enjoyable experience” than his first year.

“I know the kids and the coaches better, and I have relationships set up in the community, and those are the reasons you do this job,” he said. “There’s a level of comfort there and I can just kind of go out and do all of the things that are related to this job without having to worry about building those relationships as much this year. Being there a year now, you get more reward out of planning and all of the long hours if you actually get to see how it pays off.”

One change for the school this year, Mayer said, will be the addition of a new athletic trainer.

“We’ve moved over to Akron Children’s Hospital,” he said. “Mike Johnson is coming on board. He’s going to be solely at Woodridge. He’s our athletic trainer.”

Another change is the hiring of a new football coach, Jeff Decker, who arrives from Chagrin Falls.

“He’s a teacher rather than a tactician, which is great,” Mayer said. “I saw him out on the field a couple of days and he’s a hands-on instructor. He has a great presence on the field for a new head coach and he’s a great communicator. He also really trusts his assistants and he utilizes them well.”

In addition, girls tennis head coach Pete Mally will now also take over the boys team.

“Pete’s got college playing experience and he also has experience within our district,” Mayer said. “He knows our community and he knows what works here and what doesn’t. He knows the game of tennis really well and he relates to the kids well.”

Overall, Mayer said he expects all of Woodridge’s fall sports teams to “be successful both on and off the field.”

“We’ve got a great group of student athletes returning, and we have a strong freshman class coming in,” he stated. “We are really excited. Everyone is fresh off a summer break and eager to get back at it. There’s definitely an excitement in the air at Woodridge.”

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