CGHS Front Row: Trainers to the CGHS Stars

Writer / Leigh Lawson
Photographer / Jessica Kelly

A common thread courses through all of the Center Grove High School athletics. It may not win an individual championship, but it is a vital part to the success of all sports. Striving to achieve the CGHS gold standard, the Athletic Training Department surpasses the mark. With the knowledge and talents of David Buchholtz and Tasha Taylor, the CGHS student athletes receive capable, compassionate care.

Buchholtz, known as Trainer Dave by the students, has begun his 15th year as the CGHS athletic trainer. Buchholtz earned his degree as a certified athletic trainer from Minnesota State University at Moorhead. In his early years at CGHS, he was alone in the challenge of caring for the many athletes. The job spans vastly from injury prevention and assessing athletes after injury to providing treatments and returning athletes to their sports.

Three years ago, Taylor joined the staff to meet the needs of the athletic department. Coming from Franklin College, Taylor has been a valued addition. She has made it much more feasible to cover the heavy game and practice schedules. When asked about her favorite part of being a CGHS trainer, Taylor responds that it is “working with the kids to help them get back to the sport they love to do, functioning properly.” She loves to interact and work with the students.

While Buchholtz and Taylor are the foundation, there are other contributors to the department. University of Indianapolis students Jenny Dudash and Lauren MacNab receive the opportunity to apply their education. Along with these students, CGHS students have joined the training team. The student trainers for this year are Vanessa Kuechler, Marina Dietel, Laurinda Godfrey, Angela Fields and Elena Ponder. Buchholtz states that teachers recommend students or they have previous sports experience.

Buchholtz and Taylor work tirelessly in caring and rehabilitating student athletes. They create a comfortable, loose environment, giving the care that students know will be the best thing for their return and for the long term. The trainers ease anxieties as they assess and refer students to the correct facility or physician for further treatment. Doing what is best for each student is essential. Buchholtz states, “We ride that line of not wanting to get them back into a sport too soon and making sure they can perform the basic activities so they can perform in their sport.”

The trainers understand the need for consistency in the care provided by following protocols for the various injuries. They do not keep athletes from their sport, unless it is necessary. It sometimes means that they must be brutally honest. Both Buchholtz and Taylor agree that the most difficult part of the job is having a student injured in a preseason practice or scrimmage which prevents the student from participating in the season.

The coaches truly appreciate the trainers. Coach Cale Hoover shares, “Dave and Tasha are an instrumental part of our team. Wrestling is obviously a very physical sport, which causes our team members to work through many nicks and bruises. Our training staff is phenomenal in their treatment and keeping our guys on the mat in both practice and competition. I know when one of our guys goes to see them, any injury will be identified and treated the best way possible.”

Buchholtz and Taylor know that they are part of the backbone of CGHS sports and consider all of the athletes as their own. They enjoy the successes of all of the sports and fully appreciate the hard work to achieve a state championship, but they never lose focus on the well-being of their students.

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