Farmington High School will enter South Suburban Conference athletics in 2014-15 with at least a couple of new head coaches.
The school recently announced the hiring of Jason Obarski as boys soccer coach and the resignation of Keith Revels as boys hockey coach.
South Suburban Conference soccer should be familiar territory for Obarski, a 2008 graduate of Apple Valley High School. He was an all-state player in soccer and also kicked for the Eagles’ football team. He was one of three Obarski brothers to serve in that dual soccer-football role at Apple Valley. Later, he kicked for the North Dakota State and St. Olaf College football teams.
Obarski’s father Mark is head girls soccer coach at Eagan High School.
Obarski currently is athletic director at Prairie Seeds Academy, a charter school in Brooklyn Park, and is coaching director for the Farmington-based South Metro Futbol Club. Last fall he coached one of the University of Minnesota men’s club teams.
He takes over a Farmington team that was 8-5-5 last season and was Section 1AA runner-up under Julian Buss, who was the Tigers’ coach the last five years.
Obarski guides the Tigers into what might be the state’s strongest boys soccer conference. The South Suburban has had a team in the state Class AA boys championship game every year since the league formed in 2010.
Revels has been a hockey coach at Farmington High for two decades and was in charge of the boys program for the past six. In 2013-14 the Tigers went 23-4-1, won the Missota Conference title for the first time in 38 years and reached the Section 1AA championship game for the first time.
Revels’ successor will inherit a team that returns its top three scorers and both varsity goalies.
Before taking over the boys’ program, Revels was Farmington girls hockey head coach for 12 years. The Tigers reached three state tournaments and were Class A runners-up in 2007.
Mark Osiecki to coach in World Juniors
Burnsville native Mark Osiecki this week was named coach of the U.S. team for the 2015 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championships.
Osiecki, an assistant coach for the Rockford Ice Hogs of the American Hockey League, was an assistant coach on three other U.S. teams at the World Juniors. He coached on teams that won gold medals in 2010 and 2013 and earned a bronze in 2011.
The 2015 tournament will be Dec. 26, 2014-Jan. 5, 2015, in Montreal and Toronto.
The U.S., coached by University of Minnesota head coach Don Lucia, reached the quarterfinals of the 2014 World Juniors before losing to Russia.
Before going to Rockford, Osiecki was head coach at Ohio State for three years. He also was an assistant coach at Wisconsin for six years and head coach and general manager of the Green Bay Gamblers of the United States Hockey League for seven years.
He played on Burnsville High School’s state championship teams in 1985 and 1986. Both were coached by Tom Osiecki, Mark’s father. Mark Osiecki also played for Wisconsin’s 1990 NCAA championship team and played parts of four seasons in the NHL before a wrist injury ended his career.
Girls basketball all-stars
Rosemount guard Hannah Grim will play in the Minnesota Girls Basketball Coaches Association all-star series April 26 at Carleton College in Northfield. Games are 1 and 3 p.m.
Grim, the Irish’s all-time scoring leader, is one of three South Suburban Conference players to be invited. The others are Kenisha Bell and Tonoia Wade, both of whom played for state Class 4A runner-up Bloomington Kennedy.
Grim, Bell and Tartan’s Tia Ebert, who also will play in the all-star series, all signed with Marquette University in November.
Football playoff stays same
The Minnesota State High School League board of directors last week turned down a request to tweak the playoff procedure for Class 6A football.
The proposal would have created a bracket system in which teams from different sections would meet in the first two rounds and ensure that No. 1-seeded teams could not meet until the state semifinals. Coaches and athletic directors from Class 6A schools reportedly were strongly in favor of the chances, but the MSHSL board chose to leave the current system in place.
Under the current format, teams play opponents from their own section in the first round, followed by a “crossover” game with a team from another section in the second round. Once the field is down to eight teams, the playoffs are reseeded.
SCSU gets a goalie
Eastview High School boys hockey goalie Zach Driscoll recently announced a verbal commitment to St. Cloud State University. Driscoll, a junior, helped lead the Lightning to the state Class AA tournament in 2013.
He will join three Lakeville North players – brothers Jack, Nick and Ryan Poehling – at St. Cloud. The Poehlings, all forwards, verbally committed in February. Jack and Nick Poehling are juniors and Ryan is a freshman.