Oliver twins snubbed at CSC All-Conference vote

At the Sunday, Feb. 16, annual meeting of the Classic Suburban Conference boys hockey coaches to select All-Conference candidates, North High School’s two nominees, twins Justin and Tyler Oliver, were inexplicably not selected by the assembled coaches.

“I couldn’t believe it. I still can’t believe they would be overlooked,” said long-time North coach Jerry Diebel.

“I was under the impression that players were selected on their abilities, (and) not whether players or coaches liked or disliked somebody,” stated the obviously upset North head coach.

Diebel went on to explain that selections are not supposed to be revealed until after the state boys hockey tournament takes place, but said, “I don’t care. That they were not voted in is absolutely wrong.”

Diebel, who is retiring from coaching after this season, would not reveal players from other teams who were selected.

However, he did say, “Even Richfield had a player voted in as All-Conference. They didn’t win a game in our conference all year.”

North finished the regular CSC season with a record of 4-9 and was 12-13 overall going into the sectional playoffs.

Certainly, the Olivers could not have been left off because of lack of statistics. Both suffered injuries during the season and despite that, both posted some enviable stats.

In 22 games played this season, Justin Oliver scored 24 goals and had 40 assists for 64 points. As of Feb. 11, that put him in the middle of the top 10 of the entire metro area players.

His brother Tyler, who played in only 19 games, had similar results, scoring 13 goals and having 33 assists for 46 points.

“I know other teams don’t appreciate the brothers because they yak a lot at opponents, but that is no reason they shouldn’t be recognized for their abilities,” said Diebel in a parting shot.

Wally Wakefield can be reached at wwakefield@lillienews.com.

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