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June 9, 2014

Roseville baseball coach looking for improvements in 2015

By Jason Carmel Davis
C & G Sports Writer

» click to enlarge «
The Roseville High baseball team won its first division title since 2010. Pictured is Panthers junior third baseman Austin Morrow during a May 30 district semifinal game against Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse.

ROSEVILLE — Roseville High graduate and 13-year Panthers baseball coach Keith Marzec led his alma mater to an outright division title this spring.

The Panthers went 11-4 in the Macomb Area Conference Silver Division to secure the league title — its first since 2010. Marzec said the team didn’t really get the chance to celebrate that accomplishment.

“We had a couple of tough games right after we clinched,” Marzec said. “It’s great for the school, and I’m happy for the kids.”

The 2014 season represented a continuous improvement for the program.

For the fourth season in a row, the Panthers saw their win total increase — from one win in
2011, to six in 2012, to 10 in 2013 and 12 this spring.

Marzec and his players hoped for a deep postseason run but fell 9-7 to Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse in a Division 1 district semifinal May 30 at Roseville. The contest marked the third straight postseason meeting between the teams — all of which have been won by the Lancers.

The game was a back-and-forth contest. The Lancers, which went on to down St. Clair Shores Lake Shore 8-1 to claim a district title, jumped out to a 2-0 lead through two innings. The Panthers plated three runs to take a 3-2 lead after three. L’Anse Creuse took a 7-4 lead in the top of the seventh inning, but Roseville battled back to tie the game 7-7 and force extra innings.

The Lancers got two runs across the plate in the top of the eighth.

“I’m very proud and happy that my guys battled back to send the game into extra innings,” Marzec said.

“We talk about how you’ll get punched in the mouth in games and that it’s about how you get off the mat and punch back. We had an opportunity in the bottom of the eighth to push across some runs, so I’m very proud of my guys.”

Those guys include five seniors who have played their final prep game, including team leaders Tyler Petrone (outfield) and Billy Howe (second base).

Marzec should have 10 players back next season. That group includes sophomore pitcher Evan Gates, sophomore catcher Matt Fowler and junior third baseman Austin Morrow.

“I expect us to grow and take steps forward,” Marzec said. “My top six arms are all coming back — we didn’t have a single senior pitch for us this year.

“I expect us to be as good as we were this year, if not better, and for us to win (a district title).”

East Detroit High baseball falls in district semis
The East Detroit High baseball team saw its season end in a 13-0 loss to Grosse Pointe South in a D-1 district semifinal May 31 at St. Clair Shores Lakeview.

The Shamrocks end the season at 9-10 and went 9-6 in the MAC Silver — good for a third-place finish.

You can reach C & G Sports Writer Jason Carmel Davis at jdavis@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1107. Twitter Follow Jason on Twitter.