Sporting WCA

What Everyone Does NOT Know About Veege

In his last year of coaching Westminster Baseball, Rich Van Gilst, has never been more dedicated to his team and the game. Every morning, Veege’s day begins at 4:30. He arrives at school by 6:30 to prepare for his Statistics classes.

The 71 year old has been teaching for 48 years and plans to continue this profession long after he completes his 45 year high school baseball coaching career. Veege began his teaching and coaching at Timothy Christian in Elmhurst Illinois. He coached 5 years there and 7 years in Florida before moving to St. Louis to join to Westminster community to begin his legacy.

In his last year as head coach, Van Gilst has a special team to work with. “We’ve got a lot of potential the guys are working hard and we are off to a good start” Van Gilst started, “we need to step up as the teams get harder.” Although the team is extremely talented, Coach Van Glist’s goals have nothing to do with physical performance. During the team’s first meeting earlier this spring, the three goals were clearly spelled out. Honor God. Be a good teammate. Have fun.

After starting the season 12-1, Coach Van Gilst is expecting more from the team. Although extreme talent has been displayed already this season, he believes there is still a lot of “untapped potential within the team.” A small thing like baserunning is something Van Gilst is adamant about being perfect.

Moreover, The St. Louis Amateur Baseball Hall of Fame is planning its 44th annual banquet this April at the Sheraton Westport Chalet Hotel. There will be 20 new inductees into the hall including Veege. He is being honored for not only his incredible record over his 45 years of coaching, but for leading the Wildcats to four successive state championships from 2011 to 2014.

The team has expressed how honored they feel to have played under such a respected man. He brings a unique twist on the game, constant laughter, and a desire to win. Westminster will truly miss Veege as he steps down from coaching. He has left an honorable legacy.