Posts Tagged ‘Gavin Knoblich’

Gavin Knoblich, born to be a star. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Gavin Knoblich was as solid as they come.

Some athletes blaze hot for a bit, arcing high into the skies, while sometimes crashing back down.

But there is something to be said for the guy who shows up game after game, practice after practice, season after season, the very definition of steady.

In the moment, those players sometimes get overlooked a bit.

Take a step back and look at the whole picture, though, and their worth is magnified tenfold.

Five years from now, 10 years, 20 years, Wolf fans will reflect on what the lanky, affable Knoblich quietly accomplished, and they will know the truth – he was one of the best we ever had.

This was a kid who got stronger, and taller, and more talented, as he worked his way through CMS and then CHS, but two things never, ever changed as he grew into a man.

First, he never failed to give us all he had.

Gavin wasn’t always the one who got to amass the big stats, but he was utterly indispensable.

He did the dirty work, he fought for every moment, he always backed up his teammates, he was the glue every team has to have.

And secondly, he did it all while remaining the same genuinely nice guy from start to finish.

Gavin could flex with the best of them, if he wanted to, but look at sports photos over the years, and he’s smiling in almost every single one, whether it’s a portrait or he’s on the rampage.

Put him on a football field, and he used his length and soft hands to become a top-notch receiver, pulling in passes over the outstretched arms of defensive backs who couldn’t control him.

Touchdown, incoming.

When the Wolves went on defense, Gavin hit with intensity, wrapped people up, refused to let foes escape or evade.

He was a genuine two-way terror, but one who also, after big wins or tough losses, always had the grace to immediately go hug mom Mariah and pose with lil’ sis Ryanne for photos.

Gavin’s prep sports career carried over to the basketball court, where he was a rebounding machine with an often-sweet touch on his jumper.

He could stroke it from three-point land when given the chance, but, again, he often sacrificed the spotlight to set up those around him.

That he made the extra pass, always looked for the open teammate, jumped into the fray to fight for loose balls and absorb elbows swung at his head, marked him as a valuable part of the Wolf attack.

And that selflessness carried over to the final stop on his sports arc, the baseball diamond.

No matter the position he played, Gavin was a rock for the CHS hardball squad.

But it’s somehow appropriate that his most enduring moments came when he was buried under the protective gear of a catcher, crouched behind the plate, joking with the umpire, then whipping throws to second to nail dead-on-arrival runners.

“They run, I gun. They lose, I win. Every time.”

Gavin was on the receiving end of some of the more memorable throws in recent memory, whether he was pulling in lasers from Joey Lippo, or Kyle Rockwell, or a dozen others.

Some times, though, the CHS catcher was the one rockin’ the arm.

During one tense battle with Chimacum, a 1-0 Wolf win to move into first place, every play mattered twice as much as normal.

Or, at least it seemed that way.

At one point, Coupeville hurler Matt Hilborn cracked off a third strike, only to have the ball hit Knoblich’s mitt at an odd angle and skid away.

The Cowboy hitter dropped his bat and tried to get his feet churning, looking for a free base, but, behind him, Gavin shocked the world.

Exploding out of his crouch, Knoblich scrambled to the backstop, snared the ball on a hop, whirled and launched a moonshot of a throw (all while rocking/falling backwards, thus greatly increasing the difficulty of the maneuver).

Up, up, up, the ball went, then it plunged out of the sky, plopping right into the outstretched glove proffered by Wolf first baseman Julian Welling, arriving a half-second ahead of one extremely-agitated runner.

The umpire pumped his fist, the Wolves went crazy, and Gavin?

He turned around, picked up his discarded mask, smiled at his mom in the stands, then went right back to work.

Like a boss.

I feel for Gavin, who, like the other senior athletes in the CHS Class of 2020, won’t get a final season this spring.

Life isn’t always fair, whether it throws a pandemic at us, or a war, as it did for many who saw prep sports careers end early after Pearl Harbor.

But today, tomorrow, or years from now, when Wolf fans look back and remember Gavin, they won’t fixate on what could have been.

Instead they will remember what was.

And that image will be of Gavin, fighting to his last ounce of sweat, always, while never forgetting to enjoy the moment and share it with those who love him the most.

I have no doubt he made his mom, and dad Clint, proud.

It’s a sentiment likely shared by his coaches, his teammates, and those who watched him play.

I can’t give Gavin his senior baseball season back, but I can give him this moment, as we induct him into the Coupeville Sports Hall o’ Fame.

After this, if you pop up to the top of the blog, you’ll find Gavin camped out under the Legends tab.

He earned it every step of the way, with his spirit and his attitude, with big plays and with small moments.

He won’t be forgotten.

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Gavin Knoblich plays big under the basket. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Alex Murdy fires a pass.

Deb Sherman gives some grandma love.

Dominic Coffman probes the defense.

Cody Roberts looks to dish.

CHS grads (l to r) Barbi Ford, Sherry Roberts, and Aimee Bishop still rule the gym.

Hawthorne Wolfe delivers another bucket.

Nick Armstrong slashes to the hoop.

Three games, two courts, eight photos.

We’re distilling Monday’s Coupeville High School boys basketball games down to that concise measurement.

The pics you just perused come to us from wanderin’ paparazzi John Fisken, but are just a small part of what he snapped.

To see everything he shot, and possibly snag some glossies for Gram and Gramps, pop over to:


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Alex Murdy comes in like a hot knife, slicing through the defense. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Koa Davison hits pay dirt with a sweet hook shot.

Coupeville C-Team players await their moment.

Gavin Knoblich lets fly.

Chris Cernick bangs down low.

Xavier Murdy dances to the hoop.

The cameras were busy.

Wanderin’ paparazzi John Fisken ended up down in Langley Friday and delivers a medley of action-packed pics from Coupeville’s boys basketball rumbles with South Whidbey.

The snaps seen above are courtesy him, but there’s much more available.

To see everything his cameras captured, and possibly buy some gifts for Gram and Gramps, pop over to:


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Izzy Wells works her magic behind the arc. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Gavin Knoblich comes flyin’ in hot.

Gwen Gustafson hits the brakes, giving her hair a case of whiplash.

Alita Blouin gets down ‘n dirty.

Ulrik Wells touches the heavens.

Avalon Renninger does complex mathematical equations in her head while waiting for someone to get open.

Hawthorne Wolfe pounds home the rock.

The Wolf JV boys get rowdy.

It’s the sound of silence.

We’re on Day 5 of a 12-day run with no Coupeville High School basketball games, as winter break plays out.

The Wolves return to action Jan. 3, when both the girls and boys travel to Chimacum for the final non-conference action of the season.

Unless the Port Townsend games — postponed by the concern high winds would affect the ferries — get rescheduled, that is.

But, I’m not holding my breath on that happening.

After the Chimacum match-ups, Coupeville jumps full-force into North Sound Conference games, with the girls at home first, welcoming Cedar Park Christian to Whidbey Jan. 7.

As we wait for the sound of basketballs thunking off the hardwood to return, here’s some photos from John Fisken to fill 2-3 minutes of your time.

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Gavin Knoblich is your 2019 Coupeville High School Homecoming King. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Tia Wurzrainer, three-sport star and ice cream scooper extraordinaire at Kapaws Iskreme, is your Homecoming Queen.

It all came down to taking a bite of a cupcake.

Ten seniors, nominated by their peers, formed the 2019 Coupeville High School Homecoming court, with the King and Queen revealed Friday night at halftime of the Wolf football game.

Each senior was handed a cupcake, with the winners revealed when their sugary treat turned out to be full of sprinkles.

Taking the crowns were Tia Wurzrainer and Gavin Knoblich, who both are three-sport athletes for the Wolves.

The rest of the Homecoming royalty:


Senior Princesses:

Ashleigh Battaglia
Hannah Davidson
Emma Mathusek
Maya Toomey-Stout


Senior Princes:

Jered Brown
Gabe Carlson
Sean Toomey-Stout
James Wood


Junior Princess:

Knight Arndt


Junior Prince:

Owen Barenburg


Sophomore Princess:

Ja’Kenya Hoskins


Sophomore Prince:

Andrew Aparicio


Freshman Princess:

Nezi Keiper


Freshman Prince:

Alex Murdy


Faculty Duchess:

Stephanie Ask


Faculty Duke:

Kyle Nelson

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