Hamilton Calls It Quits


Coach Hamilton meets with the varsity players during a practice (Javon Harris)

By: Sebastian Wiegand Sports Reporter

Yesterday after school Coach Mike Hamilton called a meeting for all the baseball players in lecture hall 251.  What he told them caught everyone by surprise as he announced that he officially resigned as the head varsity baseball coach here at Rangeview after 15 seasons.  Hamilton said he wanted to spend more time with his family.

“I’m looking forward to having my summers,” said Coach Hamilton. “And my spring breaks – I’ve never had one.”

Despite the fact that he will no longer coach baseball, he will still remain a teacher and now will join the coaching staff of softball as an assistant.

“I’m disappointed that he is leaving,” said junior shortstop Josh Schumacher. “I’m going to miss him. We are going to need to come together as a team and become stronger.”

Hamilton leaves the baseball program on a good note as they have made the playoffs four times in the last five years.

Hamilton has been coaching at Rangeview for 17 years; two years were as an assistant.  Since being named head coach at Rangeview High School in the year 2000, Hamilton has lead teams to being the best they can be.  In 2006 Hamilton coached the boys’ baseball team to a 14-5 record and ended tied for second place in arguably the toughest athletic conference in Colorado, the Continental League.

Despite the regular season success, Rangeview lost to Mountain Vista in the first round by a score of 6-0.  The 2011 season was the best in Rangeview history, as they finished 15-6 and ended with the second best record in the East Metro Athletic Conference (EMAC).  However they lost to Regis Jesuit, who eventually would go on to win state that year, in the first round of the playoffs.

Mr. Hamilton also has coached phenomenal athletes.  One of those athletes was 2010-2011 Colorado Gatorade Athlete of the year and stand out outfielder, Jaleel Awini, who attracted interest from MLB teams such as the Houston Astros and the Chicago White Sox. Awini is now a linebacker at the University of Colorado.

Another athlete Hamilton coached is John Tidwell; Tidwell is now a starting cornerback for the Division II University of Sioux Falls Cougars who finished ranked 16th in the nation.  Tidwell is currently one of the top cornerbacks in Division II and was recently awarded with an All-American honorable mention.

Whether it’s on the field or off the field, Coach Hamilton wants all of his players to be the best people that they can be and preform to the best of their abilities. First year Varsity member Gonzalo Luevano said, “He focuses on having us work hard and giving it our all.”

However Mr. Hamilton also cares about the well-being of his players as well.  “He is always making sure we are doing well as a person, and just being the best we can be,” said sophomore baseball player Isaiah Carrillo.

Mr. Hamilton said he didn’t only care about how good his athletes are or the number of athletes that he’s had go Division I or to the MLB.

“I would rather prepare them to succeed in college and their later jobs,” he told his players often at practices.

Hamilton’s efforts to make his players better members in their communities have been noticed.  Coach Hamilton has brought the LoDo Sertoma field of dreams baseball camp for deaf children to Rangeview for five of the past six years; last year’s camp was on the Metropolitan State University baseball field.  The LoDo Sertoma camp meaning, Service to mankind, is a baseball camp that teaches baseball to kids with hearing difficulties.

The hunt for a new head coach is now on for the third time this year at Rangeview – the along with football and softball – as Mr. Strouse looks for a new coach to fill the big shoes of Coach Hamilton.

Brian Gausman, the varsity pitching coach the past three years and a social studies teacher, could take over. Gausman pitched at New Mexico State University and in the Kansas City Royals farm system for several years.