The first time the Wichita Falls Warriors NAHL play-by-play job opened this summer, David Koier didn’t know about it. The team had given the lead to STAA but Koier wasn’t yet a member. When the Warrior’s hire left just weeks later, the team again posted with STAA. Koier didn’t apply because he has never broadcast hockey. When the team’s second hire reneged one day after accepting the position and just days before the season-opener, Koier again wasn’t going to apply. Then his mom encouraged him to take a shot. “The worst they can say is no to you,” she advised.
Mom’s are smart. Ms. Koier’s son is the Warriors new Broadcaster/Director of Social Media.
“It kind of just came out of nowhere if I’m being honest,” he muses. “I love hockey but didn’t have any hockey experience.”
An unlikely story
This summer, Koier asked STAA Owner Jon Chelesnik if it was smart for him to apply for hockey jobs with no hockey experience. “I was advised no, but given the tools to get reps and build a demo without calling an actual live game,” Koier recalls. “My plan for this fall was to reach out to teams within a few hours of me to see if I could utilize an empty press box to just try and get some reps and build a demo for hockey to potentially apply for jobs next fall.”
When the Warriors job opened the third time this off-season on Friday October 8th, Koier again decided against applying. “Not only did I still not have a hockey demo, but I am currently finishing my last semester of grad school and didn’t think I’d just be able to get up and leave during the semester. I called my mom for advice and she said, “Worst they can say is no to you. If you don’t have a demo they can only say no. If they can’t because of grad school, worst they can say is no. Just go for it.”
On Saturday evening October 9th, Koier submitted his application “just to see what would happen.” The next morning, Warriors Owner Mary Anne Choi contacted him for an interview. “She said she was impressed with my body of work. I sort of hinted once again that I had never called hockey. It didn’t seem to bother her.”
Pieces fall into place
Choi was especially impressed with Koier’s graphic design work. “On my website I have a few Photoshop edits I have made just toying around. She asked about grad school and said if I could finish it remotely the job was mine. I immediately called my mom and emailed my professors to see if it was possible.
Koier’s mind raced that night about suddenly moving halfway across the country alone for a new job in a sport he had never called. “Roughly seven years ago, my sister up and moved to North Carolina just for a change of scenery and has been there ever since, so she talked me through that aspect,” Koier says. “My sister is my role model and is always who I go to for advice.”
The next morning, Koier woke up to four emails from his professors, all stating that they were happy for his opportunity and were pleased to accommodate him so he could move to Texas.
Though Koier hasn’t broadcast hockey, he’s called plenty of football, basketball and baseball. He spent this past summer with the Sioux Falls Sunfish of the summer collegiate Expedition League.
Koier learned of STAA after Chelesnik spoke via Skype to one of his classes at Western Illinois. He joined this year and, despite Chelesnik advising that applying for hockey jobs without a hockey demo was a fruitless endeavor, still appreciates his membership.
“All summer while I was in Sioux Falls trying to update my demo and website and get advice for applying for jobs, I sent email after email to Jon and he was so prompt in responding and gave the best advice. He was always genuinely interested in my time with the Sunfish and continuously told me to keep the questions coming. If you have a question, there’s a chance Jon has written a blog about it, and if he hasn’t, email him your question and there’s a good chance he’ll write one for you.”
One of Koier’s next challenges will be decorating his Texas bachelor pad. He’s smart; he’ll likely ask his mom for advice.