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 Madison Heights Lamphere’s Noah Hurst pitches during a recent game against Clinton Township Clintondale. The Rams are looking for a Macomb Area Conference Gold Division championship.

Madison Heights Lamphere’s Noah Hurst pitches during a recent game against Clinton Township Clintondale. The Rams are looking for a Macomb Area Conference Gold Division championship.

Photo by Donna Agusti


Lamphere baseball aims for the top of the MAC Gold

By: Mark Vest | Madison - Park News | Published April 4, 2018

 Lamphere coach Adam Wooley takes time to talk to players at a recent game. Wooley said it is very important for Lamphere to buy into “gritty baseball.”

Lamphere coach Adam Wooley takes time to talk to players at a recent game. Wooley said it is very important for Lamphere to buy into “gritty baseball.”

Photo by Donna Agusti

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Madison Heights Lamphere baseball coach Adam Wooley used an acronym to describe the kind of players the program was looking for at tryouts this year — OKG.

The acronym stands for “our kind of guys.”

Although Wooley said Lamphere doesn’t recruit and have the “pick of the litter” when it comes to players, he still managed to get the kind of guys he wants on his roster.

“It was real important for us to buy into — I would call it — gritty baseball,” Wooley said. “Last year we got off to a terrible start, probably one of the worst starts in my career. But we were able to keep everything in perspective last year by honing in on the grit, the hard play and the hustle. And we (want to) just continue that. That’s the biggest lesson I think we’ve learned.”

What could help make this season a special one is if Lamphere can translate those intangibles into some victories in the Macomb Area Conference Gold Division.

Last season, the program finished at 13-20 overall and 5-10 in division play.

The program’s last division championship came when the Rams shared a MAC Gold title with Marine City High in 2011.

In order to finish at the top this season, Lamphere may have to contend with a Fraser High team that has won the MAC Gold the last three years (the Ramblers shared the title with Warren Woods Tower in 2016).

“I know that over the course (of) the last couple years, not any team has really run away with it. I expect it to be kind of a similar situation this year,” Wooley said. “Fraser’s obviously got the numbers, and they’ve got the league championships to back it up, but I think overall the league is pretty balanced and pretty competitive.”

After division play is complete, the Rams will have the opportunity to compete for the program’s first Division 2 district championship since 2014. The other teams in Lamphere’s district are Beverly Hills Detroit Country Day, Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood, Orchard Lake St. Mary’s and Clawson High.

“Our district is stacked and loaded,” Wooley said. “But I feel like if we can prove that we can play consistent baseball throughout the regular season, then that makes districts a greater possibility when you face competition like that.”

Some of the players who can help Lamphere compete for championships are senior shortstop/pitcher Noah Fisher, senior third baseman/pitcher Gabe Dionisio, and senior pitchers Preston Young and Zach Hilliard.

In total, Wooley said there are eight seniors on Lamphere’s squad.

“I like their leadership, I like their buy-in, and I like their attitudes overall,” Wooley said. “They’ve been willing to not only be leaders, but also to support these younger players that have come up for us.”

Catch the Rams at 4 p.m. April 9 at Warren Mott.

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