Three Blaine coaches resign
By Jack Kintner
The Blaine school board approved resignations from varsity coaches Monday night, but got one of them back the following day when Foster reconsidered.
Foster quit after being told that 60 percent of his time would be in the primary school next year, from 10:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. each day. Currently, he works 40 percent at the primary school and 60 percent at the high school.
But three hours before a Tuesday afternoon deadline when the school board’s acceptance would take effect, Foster sent Blaine high school principal Dan Newell a second letter stating that he was “rescinding” his resignation.
In a later interview, Foster said, “As of 3 p.m. today [Tuesday], I’m still the wrestling coach at Blaine high school. This doesn’t mean I agree with the way this [issue] has been handled, and it doesn’t mean I’ll quit fighting for what is right. It just means that, at least for the short term, I’m still the coach.”
Foster has been the wrestling coach for 15 years, developing a reputation for a high level of personal involvement with team members. In 2005 he was named coach of the year for the school, league, district, region and state. He repeated as coach of the year for the league and district this year, and his varsity team won an academic award for a team grade point average over 3.0 and the Spirit of Wrestling award for having the most sportsman-like program in Whatcom and Skagit counties.
Rob Adams will continue to coach the girls varsity basketball team but stepped down as girls fast-pitch coach to have more time with his family, and Rob Bouma resigned as girls golf coach to take a two-year teaching assignment in China.
“I told Adams I was a little worried,” said Blaine athletic director Gary Clausen, “since if he does both basketball and fast pitch that’s two varsity seasons back to back, and that’s a lot of time for someone with a young family. When he took over five years ago he said he’d try it, and we’ve appreciated all his hard work.”
Blaine’s team had one of the worst imaginable beginnings to Adams’ final season when a car accident took the life of their star pitcher, Kailey Walter, and severely injured another key player, Krissie Hammer, days before the season began. The girls began the year with wins over Concrete and AAA Squalicum before dropping league games to Lynden Christian and Meridian. They finished the year 2-10 in league, beating only Nooksack early in the season and Meridian in a one-run thriller earlier this month. Their overall record was above .500 at 7-13.
Bouma, a high school science teacher, will be moving to a town near Hong Kong for a two-year teaching commitment. His lead player, Blaine’s Girl of the Year Tegan Bukowski, medaled in every league tournament this season as the team won the league championship undefeated, sending four players to the state tournament.