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West Bloomfield

May 15, 2014

West Bloomfield baseball to open postseason with Brother Rice

By Mike Moore
C & G Sports Writer

» click to enlarge «
Chandler Sedat and the West Bloomfield baseball team open the playoffs against Brother Rice on May 27. Rice reached the state finals a year ago.
Kenny Arnold (21) and the St. Mary’s baseball team begin the D-2 playoffs against Country Day or Auburn Hills Avondale in a 10 a.m. May 31 semifinal.
 

WEST BLOOMFIELD — To be the best, you often have to beat the best, usually during the playoffs.

Eric Pierce and his West Bloomfield High baseball team are about to expereince that mantra May 27, as the 2014 district season officially gets going.

“They are the team to beat every year in our district,” Pierce said of Birmingham Brother Rice, the Lakers’ opening-round opponent. “But we feel we can compete. We feel we can give them a good, hard-fought game and see what happens.”

The teams are at the Beverly Hills Groves Division 1 district and will kick things off at 4:30 p.m. May 27.

“We’re ready for a playoff run,” Pierce said. “We have to play very well, and we know that.”

Rice ousted West Bloomfield last year in the district semifinal by a 6-0 count en route to making it all the way to the state finals, an eventual 1-0 loss to Bay City Western.

The Warriors were 27-2-1 at press time; West Bloomfield was 14-10.

“For us, it starts with pitching and defense,” Pierce said of a blueprint to success. “We have to have a good outing on the mound and play error-free defense. (Rice) is great on capitalizing on mistakes. If they are given more opportunities than they earn, they will make you pay.”

Pierce knows his guys are likely to face Rice’s Matt Ruppenthal in the opener.

“He’s a great pitcher,” Pierce said. “We have to stay within ourselves on offense. And when we put runners on, we have to execute.”

The Rice-West Bloomfield winner faces Lathrup Village Southfield-Lathrup at 10 a.m. May 31 in a semifinal.

zThe other side of the bracket includes Groves and Birmingham Seaholm, with the final set for 2 p.m.

In other playoff baseball action
In a D-1 district at Walled Lake Western, Walled Lake Northern and Walled Lake Central open against one another at 4 p.m. May 27.

The winner faces Brighton High in a 10 a.m. semifinal on May 31.

Western faces South Lyon High at 12:30 p.m. in the other semi, with the final set for 3 p.m.

In a D-2 district at Pontiac Notre Dame Prep, Orchard Lake St. Mary’s drew a bye and will face Beverly Hills Detroit Country Day or Auburn Hills Avondale in a 10 a.m. May 31 semifinal.

Prep and Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood face off for a spot in a 1 p.m. final.

Softball action
In softball action at Groves, West Bloomfield takes on the host team at 10 a.m. May 31.

The winner faces either Lathrup or Seaholm in a 2 p.m. final.

In the Walled Lake Western district, Central and Northern open at 4 p.m. May 27 in a pre-district.

The winner faces Brighton in a noon semifinal on May 31.

Western and South Lyon play at 10 a.m.

The winners meet at 2 p.m. in the final.

You can reach C & G Sports Writer Mike Moore at mmoore@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1038. Twitter Follow Mike on Twitter.