2013-05-31 / Community News

Baseball to lose bumper crop of seniors

First-place Red Storm boasts 15 graduating players
By Michael Kelley Staff Writer


The Scarborough High School baseball roster includes 15 seniors, who were honored Tuesday, May 28 before a 2-0 win against South Portland. The game was not only senior appreciation night, but also the Scarborough’s Coaches vs. Cancer game, which raised money for the Maine Cancer Foundation. (Courtesy photo) The Scarborough High School baseball roster includes 15 seniors, who were honored Tuesday, May 28 before a 2-0 win against South Portland. The game was not only senior appreciation night, but also the Scarborough’s Coaches vs. Cancer game, which raised money for the Maine Cancer Foundation. (Courtesy photo) When shortstop Nick Bagley and second baseman Brendan Hall look around the baseball diamond at a Scarborough High School varsity baseball game, they see nothing but familiar faces.

This year’s team, which is currently ranked first in the conference with a 14-2 record, is made up of 15 seniors.

Many of the seniors have been playing together their entire baseball careers. On Tuesday, May 28, Scarborough’s 15 seniors were honored before a game against South Portland High School.

This year’s seniors include: Bagley, Hall, Kevin Dryznga, Eric Pemberton, Damian Ramsdell, Ryan Collins, Ryan Bailer, Aaron Ravin, Sam Terry, Greg Viola, Jayme Lappin, Sam Wessel, Trevor Sparda, Mike Linehan and Dillon Russo.

Bud Sutyak, who coaches the freshman team and helps coach the varsity squad, said losing this group of players next season is bittersweet.

“I get very close to the players over the years,” said Sutyak, who has been coaching in the Scarborough baseball program for 10 years. “I am retired and I substitute teach at the high school from time to time and see them around the school, but to see them graduate and leave is really tough.”

Sutyak knows this year’s seniors will accomplish a lot when they leave Scarborough High School this June.

“I am so proud of them. Seeing what they have done and accomplished over the years, I know they will all do well,” Sutyak said.

“I can’t say enough about the quality and character of the young men who have come up through the program,” added Sutyak, who played professional baseball in the Philadelphia Phillies system in the late 1960s.

Before they all leave and head out on their own, the Scarborough seniors have one more goal: to win a Class A state championship. The team came close last season when it lost 6-3 to Messalonskee High School in the Class A final.

The team has made it easy on Ryan Jones, who is making the transition from assistant coach to head coach this season.

“I don’t necessarily need to rally the troops,” Jones said. “They do a pretty good job getting excited for the games themselves. They have been playing together for a while. They are confident and they all know their roles.”

Hall, who plays second base and left field, said the familiarity with each other has been an advantage over other teams this season.

“I definitely helps,” said Hall, who is going to Providence College in the fall to study business. “We are more mature than most teams because we are all seniors. We just build off each other.”

“We all know our role. We have guys who are leaders on the field and guys who are leaders off the field. We each do our part to succeed. It’s great to have everyone out there working together,” said Bagley, who plays shortstop.

Bagley played on the junior varsity team as a freshman and was called up to the varsity roster halfway through his sophomore year. His first game at the varsity level was one he would never forget. Bagley led off and started the game and ended up recording the final putout in a no-hit win for the Red Storm.

“I have absolutely loved every game I’ve played in on the team,” said Bagley who is going to play baseball and study economics at Wheaton College in the fall.

The team wrapped up the regular season this week with a 2-0 win over South Portland. The game was much more than a final home game for the seniors. It was Scarborough’s Coaches versus Cancer game, an annual fundraiser for the Maine Cancer Society. It was also an opportunity to honor those who have had cancer, including Sutyak’s wife, Vickie – a cancer survivor – and Andrea Wedge, the mother of freshman baseball player Mitchell Wedge who passed away in April after a years-long fight with breast cancer. Mitchell threw out the first pitch at the game in his mother’s memory.

As this season wraps up, Scarborough coaches will soon begin thinking about replenishing next year’s varsity roster.

Jones said he is confident another competitive varsity team could be compiled for next season. The team will have Ben Greenberg back. Greenberg, a pitcher/ infielder who has a 6-0 record and a .431 batting average, was recently named the Gatorade Maine Baseball Player of the Year.

“The kids playing (junior varsity) are good,” Jones said. “They are playing everyday rather than sitting and watching the varsity play. They are continuing to improve and are getting reps in practice and games. It will be easy for them to put on a varsity jersey and win games next season.”

The future of the program is strong, said Jeff Irish, who was elected president of the Scarborough booster program in March.

“It’s been a pretty successful program over the years. Between the three teams this season, there has been a half dozen or so losses. The program is deep. It is an exciting time for Scarborough baseball. It is emerging as a powerhouse program,” said Irish, whose son Ben plays on the junior varsity team.

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