MINOOKA – Minooka Intermediate School and Minooka Junior High School coaches schooled Minooka Police and Explorers in the Coaches vs. Coppers on Friday night at Minooka Intermediate School, winning for the fourth year straight.
The annual event raises money for Minooka 201 Athletic Boosters and Illinois Special Olympics. This was the fourth year for the fundraiser.
Despite the previous losses, the Coppers went into the game with confidence they’d come out victors. They also brought some secret weapons – the Minooka Police Explorers, youth between the ages of 14 and 21 who want to go into law enforcement.
“We’re not hoping to win, we will win,” Sgt. Sarah Lindmark with the Minooka Police Explorer Post 447 said prior to the game. “It’s about time we win.”
The Coaches didn’t let the Coppers predictions deter their confidence.
The event features multiple games: volleyball, dodgeball and basketball. For each sport, the teams play best of three. Despite the Coaches winning the first two volleyball games, they still played a third. They won the dodgeball tournament as well, so they moved on to basketball, only playing one of this sport for show. Since the Coaches won both the volleyball and dodgeball matches, they won the trophy without needing to play the basketball game – but played it anyway.
Despite the athletic abilities of the coaches, they were missing some key coaches that one would expect when competing.
“I’d like to think we’ll win the trophy again,” Coach Matt Heck said prior to the competition. “We don’t have any volleyball coaches on the team, I’m a wrestling coach I don’t know anything about basketball, but we’re going to win.”
Despite their efforts, Lindmark’s prediction didn’t come to fruition.
The Coppers lost the first volleyball game 21-12 and the second 21-2. The coaches won the volleyball category with the first two games, but they decided to play a third volleyball game and it appeared both teams were finally getting the hang of the game. The ball volleyed back and forth for 20 hits in a row before hitting the court again.
As they warmed up for the dodgeball games, Minooka Police Chief Justin Meyer stretched and talked about his expertise in the area of dodgeball.
“We’re going to win this, I’ve got a curveball, knuckleball, and a 95 mph spongeball,” Meyer bragged.
But he wasn’t the only Meyer with confidence.
“My daddy’s gonna get all the points,” said Kaden Meyer, Justin’s 5 -year-old son.
The dodgeball events were not as one-sided. The teams threw small colorful balls at one another, taking out a member at a time, but at the end of two games the Coaches came out victorious again.
With the Coaches going for a clean sweep, they decided to determine the winner of the basketball category on one game, without stopping the clock.
With the help of Mike Beguin, Minooka Junior High School’s eighth-grade girls basketball coach, the Coaches cuffed the Coppers in an easy win.
After the third quarter, the real action on the court began.
The drawing to put a pie in the face of one of the Coaches or Coppers took place with the winners lining up, smiles on their face as they picked their victims.
Coppers couldn’t even win with the number of pies in the face despite Meyers taking three for the team and Denis Tatgenhorst, Community Policing Director, taking one.
The event isn’t about the games played on the court though, it raises funds for Minooka 201 Athletic Boosters and Illinois Special Olympics.
“It’s a great cause they are playing for,” said Jim Seput, with the Minooka Athletic Boosters. “Our half of the proceeds will go to supplement the needs of our athletes.”
The other half of the proceeds goes to the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics, which the Minooka Police Department has raised $109,000 for since they started raising money for the cause six years ago.
“We have a goal of $15,000 every year,” Meyer said. “We’ve made our goal each year.”