The coaches of the St. Mary’s Central Catholic High School wrestling program have sued a parent, whose whistle-blowing led the Ohio High School Athletic Association to place their program on probation.
The plaintiffs, head coach Jude Roth and assistant coach Mark Hiemstra, alleged that defendant Traci McCune-Mackey defamed them as well as the program when she told the OHSAA that the coaches tried to “recruit” her son to their team.
The plaintiffs, who are represented by attorney Christopher Marinko, names other defendants, who are listed as John Does one through 50. Marinko has suggested that the John Does are certain administrators, coaches, employees and other people, who made negative statements against Roth and Hiemstra.
The suit also alleges that the OHSAA conducted an “unfair and incomplete investigation, which shows a bias against Roman Catholics.
The plaintiffs seek damages of more than $25,000 for the destruction of their reputations and interference into their relationship with SMCC.
In addition to the two years of probation, the school was $500. It also must notify the association of “pertinent information,” such as the home address of any wrestler who joins the program after transferring from another school.
The wrestling program at SMCC has won five Division III state championships in the past decade.