2022 OHSAA Tournament: State Final Four Preview


Dylan Hefflinger and Bruce Hefflinger
PBR Ohio Editor in Chief/NW Scout and Senior Writer

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To view the 2022 OHSAA Tournament 64-Team Regional Preview, please click below: 

To view the Final Team Rankings, click below:

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2022 OHSAA Tournament: State Final Four Preview - Division I

  • No. 24 Northview vs No. 27 Kenston
  • No. 2 Mason vs No. 10 Grove City

Division I State Overview: The first trip to regionals in school history was a successful one for Northern Lakes League runner-up Sylvania Northview, which will be participating at state for the initial time after a 3-1 win over Saint Ignatius behind a six-hit complete game from Blake Bradford. Brody Acres, a Walsh commit, had an RBI triple. Riley Ames produced a two-run single in a 5-1 regional semifinal victory over Anthony Wayne behind a Garrett Zimmermann four-hitter. … A 17-seed entering the tournament, Kenston is now a state participant for the first time ever after stunning Walsh Jesuit 4-1 for a regional championship. Drew McKenna hit a two-run double and scored a run to back the six-hit pitching of Parker Munday. Jake Vasi tossed a shutout in the regional semifinal win over North Royalton, to outduel Alabama signee Gavin Jones. … The Greyhounds of Grove City will be making a state Final Four appearance for the first time since back-to-back appearances in 2011 and 2012 after knocking off defending state champion New Albany 2-0 in the regional finals behind a shutout performance from sophomore lefty Keegan Holmstrom, an Ohio State commit,  Grove City scored its runs on a Jackson Ware sacrifice fly and an error. Zak Sigman blanked Hilliard Darby 2-0 in the regional semifinals and drove in the first run of the game. … Brenden Garula fired a two-hitter and did not permit an earned run to lead second-ranked Mason past top-rated Moeller 4-1 in the regional finals. Sean Krueckeberg had three hits and Garula and Michael Murphy two apiece while Brady Bly drove in a pair for Mason, headed to state for the third time overall and first since 2018. AJ Lefton scored on a wild pitch in the bottom of the 11th to beat Lebanon 5-4 in the regional semis. Mason did not allow a run in the tournament up until regionals, highlighted by a Garula perfect game with 17 strikeouts in a 1-0 win over Western Brown in the sectional finals.

For Fun Prediction:

*** We are holding a fan vote via twitter that will end Tuesday night and we will add those results below after the vote is completed.

Dylan Hefflinger

  • Northview over Kenston
  • Mason over Grove City
    • STATE CHAMP - Mason

Bruce Hefflinger

  • Kenston over Northview
  • Mason over Grove City
    • STATE CHAMP - Mason

Fan Vote:

  • ????? over ?????
  • ????? over ?????
    • STATE CHAMP - ?????

#2 Mason

Record: 27-4
Head Coach: Curt Bly (190-50)
Final Ranking: No. 2
Preseason Ranking: No. 2
Postseason History:

  • State Runner-Up: 1987
  • State Final Four: 1987, 2018, 2022
  • 13 District Titles In School History

Fun Facts:

  • Set program record for strikeouts by our pitching staff

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .286, Total Runs: 168
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 220, Team ERA: 1.84, Strikeouts: 325

Top Players: (Click For Stats)

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach:  Our guys have embraced the consistency required to be great; we didn’t do anything out of the ordinary. The players came to work every day and put in countless hours within our program and on their own. We all stayed the course and remained committed, and that’s all it takes. It’s not luck or magic or any secret – it is earned success.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach:  We like our resiliency and our commitment to each other. Our pitching has been strong all year. Our team understands the formula for success and have committed to that plan through their mentality, energy, and dedication.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach:  I felt tremendous pride in who they are as a group. It hasn’t been easy, and we’ve had to overcome a lot of obstacles with injuries, but it’s super gratifying to see them celebrate that victory. I’m proud of the accomplishments so far and am excited for our opportunity in the Final Four.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach:  It is a difficult task to be able to accomplish. To get there is a long road, and it’s not something we take lightly. I’m proud of this team, but we’re not finished yet. We’re trying to stay focused on the task at hand and balance the excitement we feel to still have that chance.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach:  Obviously, they’re all tremendously talented and very well coached. They’re really well-prepared and all playing great ball right now, and they’re going to keep playing their best in the final games, so it’s going to be a great challenge to navigate. 

PBR: Anything else you would like to add, feel free to send it. Remember, this is for your players, your coaching staff and your community.
Coach:  We are, as a staff, super excited for the opportunity for these boys. We understand the focus it puts on our community, our school, our athletic department; and to represent Mason, Ohio is something in which we take great pride. I am excited and hopeful to have our community follow us up to Akron, and we just could not be more excited for this opportunity to continue a great season.

#10 Grove City

Record: 25-7
Head Coach: Ryan Alexander
Final Ranking: No. 10
Preseason Ranking: No. 10
Postseason History:

  • State Final Four: 1983, 2011, 2012, 2022

Fun Facts:

  • 11 game winning streak  (played #1 in country Orchard Lake, #3 in AL  Oxford, AL  #8 in FL, Lakeland George Jenkins)
  • 10 years ago since our last Final 4 trip (current Coach Tyler Kent was our Centerfielder)
  • 3 guys drafted in last decade (Mike Mayers class of 2010, Tyler Kent class of 2012, Chase Antle class of 2015)
  • Over 70 guys that went on to play college baseball since 2009.

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .302, Total Runs: 211
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 212, Team ERA: 2.41, Strikeouts: 193

Top Players:

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: This group just loves to work. They hit 3-4 times a week in the off-season with each other every week, never complain about work or workouts, great leadership from our 4 captains and 8 seniors. We really focused on MUDITA and the ability to enjoy others around us successes. This group truly doesn't care who gets the job done that day. We need all 22 guys locked in to be as successful as we want to be.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: In the Districts and Regionals-- we defended it and pitched it extremely well. 3 wins in a row with a score of 2-0 including both regional wins over Hilliard Darby and New Albany.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals? 
Coach: Amazing feeling. Truly wish every little kid that plays baseball had a chance to play in a district final, regional final or in this case, in the state finals. We have an amazing community in Grove City that truly rallies around us and supports us in so many ways. I am so happy for this group of seniors, who lost their sophomore season and lost a really tough 2-1 district final last year in 11 innings.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: Really excited to give it a run at Canal Park. Our 1st two trips to the Final 4 were at Huntington Park in Columbus.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: We play Mason first. I am great friends with Coach Bly and we talk baseball all through the year. We know what their program is all about and the talent that we will go up against. We are excited for the opportunity to compete.

PBR: Anything else you would like to add, feel free to send it. Remember, this is for your players, your coaching staff and your community.
Coach: Thanks again for the coverage all season PBR-- we greatly appreciate what you do in moving forward this great game!!  Thank you!!

#24 Northview

Record: 24-8
Head Coach: Greg Szparka (152-107)
Final Ranking: No. 24
Preseason Ranking: NR
Postseason History:

  • First Final Four Appearance In School History
  • First Regional Title In School History
  • First District Title In School History

Fun Facts:

  • School record for wins with 24
  • Brodey Acres is the all time hits leader in school history
  • First time district/regional champions
  • Most team HRs in a season 15

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .312, Total Runs: 207
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 205.2, Team ERA: 1.97, Strikeouts: 158

Top Players:

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: The players have worked so hard since September. They’ve held each other accountable throughout all of the offseason workouts and the entire season.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: the number one thing I like is that they play together. They are all in, on team first! They are loose and relax, playing a game they all love.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: It was awesome to sit back and watch the excitement on the kids face’s. It’s all about the kids. They’ve worked so hard for this and I’m so proud of them.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: It’s a great opportunity for the kids to compete at the highest level. They have worked so hard to get to this point and I’m just happy for them.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: I don’t know much about them to be honest. I’m sure they are all very well coached teams with some great players. It should be fun.

#27 Kenston

Record: 18-8
Head Coach: Joseph Hritz (21-23, 18-8 w/Kenston)
Final Ranking: No. 27
Preseason Ranking: NR
Postseason History:

  • First State Appearance In School History

Fun Facts:

  • 18 years since last regional appearance

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .302, Total Runs: 153
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 168.1, Team ERA: 3.53, Strikeouts: 174

Top Players:

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We have been working hard to establish daily routines and habits that prepare us to compete. Our players have bought into this approach and are elevating this program to a new level.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: Our team is playing great defense, controlling the mound and having great plate approaches.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: The feeling was unreal. Especially since we were underdogs in the game. It is always great to beat a top notch program.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: This is all we can ask for at the beginning of the season. Kenston will be ready to go and meet any challenge that we face head on.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: Every team that is left is having a great year and is going to be tough to beat. We are going to be in for some great Division 1 baseball this weekend.

PBR: Anything else you would like to add, feel free to send it. Remember, this is for your players, your coaching staff and your community.
Coach: Thank you to all of our team parents, administrators, community and coaches for making sure the little things get taken care of on a daily basis to help our program continue to grow and thrive. Our players have fed off of this energy and are poised and ready for the upcoming opportunities. It has been a pleasure to coach this program this year!

2022 OHSAA Tournament: State Final Four Preview - Division II

  • No. 3 Badin vs. No. 9 Archbishop Hoban
  • No. 20 Bishop Hartley vs No. 21 Chardon

Division II State Overview: Defending D-II champion Hoban is back at state for the second year in a row after rallying past Tiffin Columbian 8-5 in nine innings, scoring once in the top of the seventh on a Zack Zimmerman RBI double to send the game into extra innings. It will be the sixth Final Four appearance for Hoban, which blanked Sandusky Perkins 8-0 in the regional semifinals behind the six-hit pitching of Caleb Kepler. Sophomore Parker Falkenstein had three hits and drove in two. … A state semifinalist in 2021, Badin is back in Akron after an 11-1 win over Delaware Buckeye Valley. Rodney Rachel hit a two-run homer and Diego DeCello an RBI triple with Lucas Moore driving in three runs and Brycen Fox producing three hits for the Rams, which won state in 1991 and 1995. Eric Rawlings threw six innings of one-hit ball to improve to 10-0 on the season. Nic Copenhaver had a four-hit shutout in the regional semifinals against Taylor, a game Badin won 6-0 with all the runs coming in the fifth. … Hartley defeated Steubenville 5-0 behind the four-hit pitching of Dimitri Boumis to make it to state for the first time since winning the Division IV title in 1996. Emmett Gillies struck out 12 in a 5-2 win over Washington Court House in the regional semis. … The last time Chardon was in the state tournament came in 1950. But a 7-3 victory over Louisville has the Hilltoppers, featuring seven underclassmen starters, in the state semifinals. Nolan Kirsh drove in two runs during a five-run fifth inning and fanned six in five innings of three-hit ball for the win. Christian Hall allowed only four baserunners in a 4-1 victory over Chagrin Falls in the regional semis.

For Fun Prediction:  

*** We are holding a fan vote via twitter that will end Tuesday night and we will add those results below after the vote is completed.

Dylan Hefflinger

  • Badin over Hoban
  • Bishop Hartley over Chardon
    • STATE CHAMP - Badin

Bruce Hefflinger

  • Hoban over Badin
  • Chardon over Bishop Hartley
    • STATE CHAMP - Hoban

Fan Vote:

  • ????? over ?????
  • ????? over ?????
    • STATE CHAMP - ?????

#3 Badin

Record: 26-6
Head Coach: Brion Treadway
Final Ranking: No. 3
Preseason Ranking: No. 2
Postseason History:

  • State Championship: 1991, 1996
  • State Runner-up: 1975, 1984, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2016
  • State Final Four: 1975, 1984, 1991, 1993, 1996, 1999, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2021, 2022
  • 14 Regional Titles In School History
  • 19 District Titles In School History

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .323, Total Runs: 250
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 208, Team ERA: 1.92, Strikeouts: 247

Top Players: (Click for Stats)

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We spent a lot of time on the mental game, breathing, visualization and meditation. Our strength coach, Craig Cheek, does an incredible job of preparing our players for the season.  Our players continue to get bigger and stronger. 

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: We challenged the team at the beginning of the season to make their own unique mark in our program's history. We graduated irreplaceable leaders off of our 2021 team and enjoyed tremendous success. It has been fun to watch this group come into their own and grow as leaders. The journey from day 1 to today has been fun to watch and be a part of. Our pitching has been superb and our offense is clicking at the right time. This team works hard and has raised the bar yet again. 

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: Pure elation! I felt like a proud dad watching my guys experience success and celebrating their victory. Our coaches and players put so much time in and it was awesome to be able to celebrate together. 

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: The state does such a great job with the Final Four for baseball. It truly is a special event that players will remember forever. As a high school athlete and coach, it is a great feeling to be able to represent your school and compete for a state championship. There is no greater feeling than to be able to bring back a state championship for your school.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: D2 is loaded yet again. Hoban has done an incredible job backing up their state championship from last year with another return trip to the final four in their backyard. Hartley is always loaded. Our football team played Chardon in the state finals so it's easy to see their school competing for yet another state championship.

#9 Archbishop Hoban

Record: 22-9
Head Coach: Andrew Bonnette (55-33)
Final Ranking: No. 9
Preseason Ranking: No. 3
Postseason History:

  • State Championship: 2021
  • State Final Four: 1987, 1993, 2011, 2013, 2021, 2022

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .299, Total Runs: 223
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 203, Team ERA: 2.89, Strikeouts: 251

Top Players:

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: Our guys have put a lot of time in the weight room and on the practice field throughout this offseason and season. Coach Winkler, our strength coach, does an amazing job of helping our guys put on muscle and stay strong throughout our season. We also try to schedule as many tough teams throughout the season as we can. I feel that our schedule is a big reason for our comfort against tough teams and in close games.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: We have really come together as a group over the last few weeks and it's awesome to see how much our guys care about each other. They are each other's biggest supporters and really like to see one another succeed. We play for the guys next to us and will fight for each other till the last out.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: Our game with Columbian was a true battle till the end. They fought us into extra innings and made us earn our win. It was an emotional game but our guys kept on fighting. We are very blessed and excited to be a part of this year's final four at Canal Park.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: These opportunities are tough to come by; especially in the current one game elimination OHSAA format. We are blessed to be a part of a great division 2 final four and looking forward to the battles that are to come!

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: This is definitely a very talented and well coached group of teams. They all come from tough schedules and have been tested throughout their playoff runs. The team that ends up with this year's title will really have to earn it and we look forward to the competitions ahead!

#20 Bishop Hartley

Record: 19-9
Head Coach: Tim Heinmiller
Final Ranking: No. 20
Preseason Ranking: No. 20
Postseason History:

  • State Championship: 1996
  • State Final Four: 1991, 1996
  • Six District Titles In School History

Fun Facts:

  • Second trip to State Final Four, first trip as D II program.
  • Assistant Coach Randy Wooten was a member of 1996 state championship team.

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .325, Total Runs: 215
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 182, Team ERA: 3.27, Strikeouts: 205

Top Players:

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We hit the weight room hard in the offseason, with a focus on staying healthy and being able to move better. The senior class took it upon themselves to ensure great team chemistry, flawlessly integrating the younger kids into everything they did, on and off the field

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: Right now, our pitching and defense is carrying the team. The team is finding ways to manufacture runs in any way possible and buying into the team mentality, not worrying about who gets the credit.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: The feeling when we won both regional games was joy and happiness for the team. This team has made it further than any Hartley team in the last 26 years. They understand that and understand that they are still building their own legacy.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: It is never easy to win a district championship, let alone a regional championship. I am excited for this team, and especially the seniors, to get to continue playing with a chance to further cement their legacy.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: The other 3 teams are outstanding baseball teams. We will see outstanding arms, great defense, and great hitting. Every team that is here deserves to be here.

PBR: Anything else you would like to add, feel free to send it. Remember, this is for your players, your coaching staff and your community.
Coach: I would like to again thank the seniors and the parents for everything they have done for this program. The leadership of the senior class has been outstanding. The parents have done everything they can to make sure the team has to worry about only baseball. The Hartley community showed strong in the regionals and the team fed off of that. Lastly, I would like to thank the past players that have reached out to the team, expressing their support and advice for the current players.

#21 Chardon

Record: 22-10
Head Coach: Brian Long (158-92)
Final Ranking: No. 21
Preseason Ranking: NR
Postseason History:

  • State Final Four: 1950
  • Three District Titles In School History

Fun Facts:

  • Currently have 3 players with 15+ HBP that will be entering the OHSAA record books

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .316, Total Runs: 241
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 203, Team ERA: 2.69, Strikeouts: 180

Top Players:

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We try to keep a good relationship with the athletes' travel coaches. As a program we set up weekly voluntary open cages starting in November. This season we also assisted in helping the athletes become students of the game...to begin to learn the actual hitting process  and the fundamentals of the sport. During the season we emphasize the little things that set teams apart...things such as hard and free 90s, winning every pitch, and making the routine plays routinely. It may sound cliche' but when guys buy in you can see the results.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: They play as a team, don't give up, and pick each other up on a regular basis. We have great leadership on the field from guys like Christian Hall at 3B and Ethan Faber in CF. Guys like Will Francis, Jake Barker, and Hunter Greco continue to improve daily. And finally, our pitching staff has been phenomenal.  I believe this team feels like they have each other's back. Also, I really like the way they swing the bat.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: We were all excited for the hard work to pay off for these young men. A chance to play for a state championship is something these young men have yet to experience. Their effort is a reflection of the Chardon community.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: It is a great opportunity and we hope to bring home Chardon's first state championship.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: They are clearly excellent teams who have also earned their places in the Final Four. We look forward to competing against them. Meanwhile, we will focus on our squad and the things we can control. We will focus on the process and not the product. The other 3 programs will definitely come to compete.

2022 OHSAA Tournament: State Final Four Preview - Division III

  • No. 4 Liberty Union vs No. 7 Waynedale
  • No. 22 Milan Edison vs No. 23 Roger Bacon

Division III State Overview: After coming up one game short of a state berth last season, losing to Archbold in the regional finals, Liberty Union has taken the next step behind the pitching of Jacob Miller, the top-rated player in the state. The Louisville commit threw a two-hitter with 17 strikeouts in the sectionals, tossed a no-hitter with 14 Ks in districts and followed it up with a one-hitter while fanning 15 in the regional semifinals against Ridgewood. Miller has yet to allow an earned run in the tournament for the Lions. Senior Jon Wheeler, who bats third and plays shortstop, threw six innings of shutout ball before allowing a run in the seventh in a 3-1 win over Fairland in the regional finals. … Waynedale has won 23 straight after beating Hawken 8-2 behind the three-hit pitching of Otto Solarzano. Josiah Raber, a Tiffin football commit, had four hits, including two triples, for Waynedale, a D-III state runner-up in 2016. Waynedale pounded out 13 hits and stole six bases in beating Youngstown Ursuline 8-4 in the regional semis. Dylan Raber produced three hits and four RBIs. … A three-run top of the seventh gave Roger Bacon a 6-3 win over Northeastern and with it a second trip to state in the past four years. Bacon trailed 2-0 and 3-2 against Northeastern, which knocked off defending D-III state champion CHCA in the regional semis, before scoring the final four runs. Logan Huber had a single and triple in a 6-3 regional semifinal win over Reading, with southpaw Jake Tschida throwing five innings for the win against Northeastern before relief from Logan Huber and Dylan Rolfert. ... The Chargers are at state for the first time after edging Fredericktown 5-4 and Ottawa Hills 3-1 in regionals. Milan Edison, which lost to eventual state runners-up Archbold 3-2 in 11 innings in last year’s regional semifinals, got a four-hitter from Ben Bates in the regional finals versus Ottawa Hills after rallying from a 4-2 deficit to beat the Freddies in eight innings on an error that scored Brady Barker, who also had two RBIs in the win.

For Fun Prediction:  

*** We are holding a fan vote via twitter that will end Tuesday night and we will add those results below after the vote is completed.

Dylan Hefflinger

  • Liberty Union over Waynedale
  • Milan Edison over Roger Bacon
    • STATE CHAMP - Liberty Union

Bruce Hefflinger

  • Liberty Union over Waynedale
  • Milan Edison over Roger Bacon
    • STATE CHAMP - Milan Edison

Fan Vote:

  • ????? over ?????
  • ????? over ?????
    • STATE CHAMP - ?????

#4 Liberty Union

Record: 24-5
Head Coach: Justin Miller (83-42, 58-21 w/LU)
Final Ranking: No. 4
Preseason Ranking: No. 8
Postseason History:

  • State Championship: 1960, 1961, 1964
  • State Runner-Up: 1962
  • State Final Four: 1960, 1961, 1962, 1964

Fun Facts:

  • First State Final Four appearance since 1964
  • Back-to-Back District Championships for first time since 1965-1966

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .329, Total Runs: 206
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 190, Team ERA: 1.95, Strikeouts: 275

Top Players:

  • Cayden Carroll, 2B, 2023
  • John Edwards, CF, 2022
  • Jon Wheeler, SS/P, 2022
  • Jacob Miller, P/DH, 2022, Louisville commit
  • Austin Ety, C, 2022
  • Braden Shreyer, RF, 2022
  • Trevor Wood, 1B, 2022
  • Austin McClure, 3B, 2023
  • Ian Wilson, LF, 2024
  • Colton Hutchison, RHP, 2023

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We started offseason weightlifting and open hitting in September

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: Our great chemistry and fierce competitiveness 

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: Grateful. Very happy for the success of my players. 

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: Dream come true. Excited for the players to have this unique opportunity. 

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: Don’t know much about them but expect to see the 4 best teams in DIII play this week- looking forward to it. 

PBR: Anything else you would like to add, feel free to send it. Remember, this is for your players, your coaching staff and your community.
Coach: Thank you to everyone for all the love and support! GREAT DAY TO BE A LION!

#7 Waynedale

Record: 27-4
Head Coach: Lucas Daugherty (49-11)
Final Ranking: No. 7
Preseason Ranking: No. 17
Postseason History:

  • State Runner-Up: 2016
  • State Final Four: 2016, 2022
  • 10 District Titles In School History
  • School Record For Wins

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .326, Total Runs: 216
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 202, Team ERA: 2.01, Strikeouts: 262

Top Players:

  • Dylan Raber, INF, 2023
  • Josiah Raber, C, 2022
  • Jay Mast, OF, 2022
  • Timmy Short, INF/P, 2023
  • Connor Gatti, OF, 2023
  • Ian Lehman, OF, 2022
  • Ean Miller, INF, 2022
  • Trey Barkman, P/1B, 2023
  • Braden Hershberger, 1B/P, 2022
  • Otto Solorzano, LHP, 2024

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We have throwing, hitting, and lifting routines that we are very consistent with. Our players worked hard in the offseason to be prepared for a challenging regular season schedule.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: Our team doesn't rely on just 2 or 3 star players. We have different players coming through each game to help us keep this season going. The players are very selfless and they just want to keep playing baseball.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: It was an awesome feeling to win the regional! We really try to think of every game as "just another game", but these last couple wins have been special.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: Making it to state is something that is talked about amongst players and coaches every year. Being able to go on a little run and make it this point is a really cool experience! This is only the second final four appearance in program history, and we are excited to have a chance to win a championship!

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: We know that there are 3 other really good teams left in the tournament! We are ready to compete with the best teams in the state and see what we can do.

#22 Milan Edison

Record: 23-8
Head Coach: Sean Hoover (289-239)
Final Ranking: No. 22
Preseason Ranking: No. 19
Postseason History:

  • First State Appearance In School History
  • Five District Titles In School History

Fun Facts:

  • School record for wins with 23

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .321, Total Runs: 207
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 204, Team ERA: 2.13, Strikeouts: 231

Top Players:

  • Thomas Simon, LHP, 2022
  • Clint Finnen, INF, 2023
  • Dominic Dymond, C, 2023
  • Hayden Fry, INF, 2023
  • Noah Smith, OF, 2022
  • Brady Barker, SS, 2022
  • Max Hoover, DH, 2023
  • Bryce Michaelis, OF, 2022
  • Xander Danner, OF, 2022
  • Keegan Smith, 1B/LHP, 2022
  • Ben Bates, RHP, 2023
  • Blake Simon, LHP, 2024
  • Carson Smith, RHP, 2024
  • Joe Pennell, RHP, 2022

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We started individual training in the late fall.  We play a tough schedule against many larger school, so our players have been in many pressure situations in games throughout the year.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: Our players compete on every pitch. We've been ahead early and behind early in tournament games and the mentality of the players hasn't changed in either situation.  We have great team chemistry.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: Amazing.  It was great to see all of the hard work the players and coaches have put it pay off.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: It's incredible to be one of the 4 teams in our division to be playing for a state title.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: They are 3 great teams playing their best at the right time of the year.

PBR: Anything else you would like to add, feel free to send it. Remember, this is for your players, your coaching staff and your community.
Coach: I am very proud of how the players and coaches have performed all year. There were very high expectations coming into this year and with expectations comes stress. The players have handled themselves great all year and are working hard to meet all of the goals we set for our team at the beginning of the year.

#23 Roger Bacon

Record: 20-8
Head Coach: Tim McCoy (164-196, 107-74 since 2015)
Final Ranking: No. 23
Preseason Ranking: No. 25
Postseason History:

  • State Championship: 1935
  • State Runner-Up: 1932, 1944
  • State Final Four: 1932, 1935, 1936, 1944, 1968, 2019, 2022
  • Seven Regional Titles In School History
  • Nine District Titles In School History

Fun Facts:

  • First 20 win season in 30+ years.
  • Jake Tschida  George Janzen have played in 3 Final Fours (2 baseball, 1 football)
  • Head Coach Tim McCoy won a state championship in basketball 2002 vs. SVSM and LeBron James
  • It took 51 years to return to the Final Four in 2019 and now it has been 2 times in the last 3 years.

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .297, Total Runs: 180
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 180, Team ERA: 3.65, Strikeouts: 192

Top Players: (Click for stats)

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We are always putting work in over the fall and winter. However, most of our guys are multi-sport athletes and are competing in football, basketball, soccer, etc. We have several players who have competed for Regional Championships in basketball, football, and baseball. You can’t teach that sort of high-pressure experience. 

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: This is a group of guys who want to win for each other. They are very tight and will do anything it takes to get the job done. Our entire lineup has contributed in some facet of the game during this tournament run. We aren’t a team built around 1 or 2 superstars. We have 21 guys contribute. They play with a fire that is unmatched. 

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: The feeling of winning big games like that is addicting. I love watching the faces of our players after a big dog pile. It is a feeling that only big wins can capture. These guys had no doubt in their minds they were returning to a state final four. They embraced the challenge and did so playing uphill most of the way. Any time we were hit with adversity, we answered, and that is what good teams do. 

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: The ultimate goal. Win your last game. This group is hungry. I am excited to watch them compete on the big stage. We are ready for the environment and this incredible opportunity. 

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: Making the Final Four isn’t luck. These teams are filled with really talented players and coaches. It is going to be an awesome experience for all of us. Competing against the best is every athlete’s dream and we get to do that in Akron. 

PBR: Anything else you would like to add, feel free to send it. Remember, this is for your players, your coaching staff and your community.
Coach: We have incredible senior leadership right now. I am so proud of that group. They continue to surprise me over and over. Senior Logan Huber is putting this team on his back during this tournament run and we are along for the ride. At the beginning of the season I told anyone that would listen that this group has a chance. They came together and really got hot at the right time. It takes a lot of skill to get to this point, but also a little luck. As my asst. coach, Chad Hungler told these guys……”WE make our own luck”.

2022 OHSAA Tournament: State Final Four Preview - Division IV

  • No. 2 Lincolnview vs. Tiffin Calvert
  • No. 5 Newark Catholic vs No. 17 Russia

Division IV State Overview: Lincolnview, last year’s Division IV state runners-up, is back for another go of it at state, two victories away from setting a school record for wins in a season. Senior left-hander Landon Price leads the way for the Lancers with four wins in the tournament, fanning 46 in 24 innings. Price took a no-hitter into the seventh in the regional finals against Antwerp in moving to 24-0 for his career. Junior right-hander Dane Ebel did not allow an earned run in an 8-1 win over Leipsic in the regional semifinals and has struck out 19 in 10.2 innings on the mound in the tournament. Cole Binkley was 6-for-8 at the plate in the regionals. ... Falling behind has not been a problem for Tiffin Calvert, which rallied past Jeromesville Hillsdale 9-8 for a regional title after giving up five runs in the top of the first. Caden Otterbacher had a walk-off single in the bottom of the seventh for Calvert, which stunned Norwalk St. Paul 6-5 with a four-run bottom of the seventh in the districts. Nick Palm and Garrett Spaun each had three hits against Hillsdale. Spaun hit a two-run homer in a 5-3 win over Bristol in the regional semis. ... Xavier Phlipot pitched a complete game in leading Russia to a 7-1 win over three-time state champion Fort Loramie and with it a trip to the state tournament. Grant Saunders fanned 10 in a 6-2 regional semifinal victory over Southeastern while adding a single, double and run scored. Brayden Monnin, Aiden Shappie and Jared Poling also had a pair of hits for Russia. … Make it 17 trips to the Final Four for Newark Catholic after defeating Berlin Hiland 3-2 in the regional finals. Nate Ferrell and Grant Moore had run-scoring singles for the Green Wave, back at state for the first time since 2016. Eli Morris had three hits, two RBIs and picked up the win on the mound in a 6-1 win over top-ranked Lucasville Valley in the regional semis.

For Fun Prediction:  

*** We are holding a fan vote via twitter that will end Tuesday night and we will add those results below after the vote is completed.

Dylan Hefflinger

  • Lincolnview over Tiffin Calvert
  • Newark Catholic over Russia
    • STATE CHAMP - Lincolnview

Bruce Hefflinger

  • Lincolnview over Tiffin Calvert
  • Newark Catholic over Russia
    • STATE CHAMP - Newark Catholic

Fan Vote:

  • ????? over ?????
  • ????? over ?????
    • STATE CHAMP - ?????

#2 Lincolnview

Record: 23-6
Head Coach: Eric Fishpaw
Final Ranking: No. 2
Preseason Ranking: No. 1
Postseason History:

  • State Championship: 1962
  • State Runner-Up: 2021
  • State Final Four: 1962, 1974, 2021, 2022

Fun Facts:

  • School record for wins with 24
  • Landon Price strikeouts in a season, career
  • Landon Price wins in a career 24-0

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .329, Total Runs: 179
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 195.2, Team ERA: 1.28, Strikeouts: 302

Top Players:

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We started our offseason program mid October. We did 1 month of arm care, weight lifting, yoga, and hitting. Mid November we started our 8 week throwing program along with weight lifting, yoga, and hitting. The regular season we started hitting repetition hard and getting younger guys acclimated to varsity level pitching velocity.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: Team chemistry. Starting pitching. Energy. These three things describe Lincolnview baseball this season.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: We were thrilled to be going back to Akron for the 2nd straight year and the opportunity to play in front of our awesome community.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: Our Seniors and our team set goals back in late March. Getting to Canal Park was one of those goals. Winning the state championship was another goal.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: Newark Catholic is a D4 Powerhouse. Russia is familiar with the state tournament knocking off a very good Fort Loramie team. Tiffin Calvert came out of a very tough regional.

PBR: Anything else you would like to add, feel free to send it. Remember, this is for your players, your coaching staff and your community.
Coach: Our community has had a big week. The softball team finished as state runners up in Akron. Our track team sent an individual and a relay team to Columbus. We want to make our community and school proud this coming weekend.

Tiffin Calvert

Record: 18-12
Head Coach: Matt Coleman (127-55)
Final Ranking: NR
Preseason Ranking: No. 30
Postseason History:

  • State Final Four For First Time In School History

Fun Facts:

  • We were 7-10 at the time of the tournament draw.
  • The Class of 2021 Senior Class had 8 boys in the whole class, but luckily 6 of them played baseball on team that lost to Warren JFK in the Regional Finals.
  • The Class of 2022 Senior Class had 16 boys in the whole class and 8 played baseball last year after only 3 playing the year before, so it took some time to get some rust off them.

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .288, Total Runs: 210
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 197.1, Team ERA: 2.55, Strikeouts: 198

Top Players:

  • Nick Palm, SS/P, 2023
  • Garrett Spaun, 3B, 2022
  • Mason Johnson, 1B/P, 2023
  • Hunter Yeakley, C, 2022
  • Max Paul, Util/RHP, 2022
  • Reed Warnement, DH, 2022
  • Harry Shultz, LF, 2022
  • Dylan Stephens, RF, 2023
  • Blake Coleman, 2B/P, 2025
  • Caden Otterbacher, RHP, 2024

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: We are an extremely small school, so we ask our athletes to play 2 or 3 sports to allow us to be competitive in all sports.  That being said, much of the preparation is on strength, speed and on the athlete as a whole.  We have really tried to place the focus on the mental side of things and how we will respond to the adversity and failures that come along with the sport.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: We have been resilient and found ways to scratch and claw and win close games the second half of the season.  It has been a total team effort and we have done a great job over the last month to make sure we each of our role that makes the team better.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: It was an incredible feeling because we fell in a whole 5-0 in the top of the first against a solid HIllsdale team with the young man that was our most consistent pitcher on the hill.  The team took a Breathe and Move on approach or "So what, now what" approach that we have preached and chipped away at the lead against a very good and well-coached Hillsdale team.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: Obviously, it is likely the goal of most teams to start the year, so to have the chance to be one of the Final Four is humbling and truly special.  It is something that we will not be satisfied with, but we will certainly do our best to enjoy it and the atmosphere.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: Our opponent, in Lincolnview, obviously has a solid team with great pitching.  We are honored to have the chance to get to face them on Thursday and look forward to the challenges and simply having the opportunity to compete on this stage in June.  Aside from  Lincolnview, Newark Catholic and Russia both have a solid programs and we are well anywhere that any one team could walk away with the title.

#5 Newark Catholic

Record: 25-6
Head Coach: John Cannizzaro (558-247, 26 years)
Final Ranking: No. 5
Preseason Ranking: No. 5
Postseason History:

  • 26 District Titles In School History (19 for Coach Cannizzaro)
  • 17 Regional Titles In School History (14 for Coach Cannizzaro)
  • 9 State Titles In School History (7 for Coach Cannizzaro)
  • 4 State Runner-ups in School History (All for Coach Cannizzaro)

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .333, Total Runs: 216
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 212, Team ERA: 2.31, Strikeouts: 181

Top Players:

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: Winter time we do regular weight training and speed training. Most of our players play football or basketball or both. Senior 2nd baseman Tristan Gorius started on Div 7 state football final and on two-time Central District Champion Teams.

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: “Our defense has improved immensely against a very challenging schedule.” We won the Licking County League Cardinal Division as the smallest school with a 12-3 record.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: We won an extremely tough regional in Lancaster against top-ranked Lucasville Valley, and perennial power Berlin Hiland.  

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: The other 3 teams to get here have to be good”.

#17 Russia

Record: 23-7
Head Coach: Kevin Philpot (145-64)
Final Ranking: No. 17
Preseason Ranking: NR
Postseason History:

  • State Championship: 1971
  • State Runner-Up: 1975, 2017
  • State Final Four: 1971, 1975, 2017, 2022

Fun Facts:

  • 1971 State Championship was the 1st State title in the history of the SCAL.
  • Ron Shulze went 5-5, hit for the cycle and a grand slam in the 1971 State finals victory.
  • Dion Puthoff won a Musial Award (a national award named after Stan Musial) for his display of sportsmanship after our loss in the 2071 state finals. For more details, google Dion Puthoff Musial award.

Team Stats:

  • Offense: Team Average: .342, Total Runs: 241
  • Pitching: Innings Pitched: 192, Team ERA: 1.60, Strikeouts: 195

Top Players:

Coach's Thoughts:

PBR: What did you and your team do this offseason and regular season to prepare yourselves for this point?
Coach: Our goal every year is to win league, sectionals, and play for a district title. If you are able to accomplish that and advance to regionals, than anything can happen

PBR: What are a couple of things you like about your team right now?
Coach: Pitching and defense.  That is the key to our success.

PBR: Talk about the feeling when your team won regionals?
Coach: We lost to Fort Loramie in last years reg finals. So having the rematch and being able to beat our league rivals and advance to state is about as exciting as it can get.

PBR: Thoughts about being able to play in the state final four with a chance at winning a state championship?
Coach: A lot of teams are good enough to win state, but  to know that we are 1 of 4 left standing is pretty special.

PBR: Thoughts on the other three teams at the state?
Coach: I know very little at this time.

2022 Spring High School Season Content

To view the Heat Sheet, which provides the top velocity we have seen this spring, please click here.

To view out Spring Scout Blog with videos and reports from the spring, please click here.

To view the Team Rankings, click below:

To view the Teams of the Week, click below:

To view the Preseason All-State Teams, click below:

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