Miami County Baseball Preview


Brad Lavey returns as the Piqua baseball coach.

The Indians are coming off a 16-10 season.

The seniors include Brennan Johns, Peyton Offenbacher, Brady Ouhl, Zane Pratt and Trenton Rudd.

Pratt was 4-3 with a 4.87 ERA a year ago, while Ouhl had a 2.33 ERA in limited time on the mound.

Ouhl batted .347 with five doubles, 21 RBIs and 19 stolen bases.

Pratt batted .329 with seven doubles, 12 RBIs and 17 stolen bases.

The juniors include Mickey Anderson, Mason Davis and Zander Mason.

Anderson batted .430 a year ago with four doubles, two triples and 24 RBIs.

The sophomores include Trenton Laughman, Owen Shawler and Hunter Steinke.

Steinke had a 3-2 record on the mound a year ago and Shawler had a .270 batting average.


Bryan Gronski returns as coach.

A year ago the Red Devils were 18-12 and advanced to the D-II district title game.

Returning letterwinners include seniors Josh Dietz, Max Dunaway and DJ Martin; juniors Jaxon Hil, Lucas Merry, Peyton Schultz and Landon Turner and sophomores Preston Zumwalt, Logan Wright and Eli Voisard.

The pitchers will include Dunaway, Voisard, Merry, Dietz, Carson Jackson, Bryce Eckert and Cayden McKinney.

Dunaway was 7-1 a year ago with 2.172 ERA.

Brady Liskey will handle the catching duties.

Hill, Martin, Schultz, Turner and Zumwalt will all see action in the infield.

Hill batted .283 a year ago and Martin batted .310 with eight doubles and 25 RBIs.

Turner batted .311 and Zumwalt batted .400 with three home runs, 13 doubles and 27 RBIs.

The outfielders will included Dietz, Dunaway and Eckert.

Dietz batted .316 a year ago.

”This is the toughest our conference of teams have been in years,” Gronski said. “Butler, Troy, Piqua, and Sidney all returning many of their pitchers and key players. We will be young, but have the skilled players to compete with anyone, but have little room for error.”



Chase Goullette returns as coach

The Bees are coming off an 11-14 season.

Returning letterwinners include seniors Kyle Brueckman, Colby Keiser, Jack Iseminger and Zach Goodman; juniors Noah McCann, Grant Bean, Luke Gray, Elijah Schroeder and Braylon Schroeder; and sophomore Gabe Veldman, Evan Goodman, Christian Barker and Cody Delaet.

The pitchers will include Gray, Elijah Schroeder, Braylon Schroeder, junior Bryce Ballard, Barker, Veldman and freshman Anderson Mohler.

Gray was 3-4 a year ago with a 2.40 ERA.

Noah McCann and Evan Goodman will be the catchers.

McCann batted .471 a year ago with seven doubles and 13 RBIs.

The infielders will include Braylon Schroeder, Elijah Schroeder, Bean, Mohler,Veldman, Iseminger and Josiah Jackson.

Elijah Schroeder batted .303 with 20 RBIs and Braylon Schroeder batted .286.

Bean hit for a .306 average a year ago.

The outfielders will include Gray, Keiser, Brueckman, Zach Goodman, senior Isaiah Edmondson, and Barker.

Gray batted .318 with seven doubles and 14 RBIs and Brueckman hit .405.

“The conference will be competitive with the experience of all the coaches throughout the conference,” Goullette said.


Andy Johnson returns as coach.

Covington was 8-14 overall a year ago and 8-6 in the TRC.

Returning letterwinners include juniors Trey Schmelzer, Carter Owens, Jacob Tipps, Michael Hagan and Connor Humphrey and sophomores Tyler Jay, Tanner Palsgrove and Kian French.

Jay was 2-3 on the mound a year ago.

“Tyler Jay is our only returning starting pitcher,” Johnson said. “He earned All-TRC honorable mention last year as a freshman, and we are hoping he continues to develop this year.”

Schmelzer will be the catcher after batting .277 a year ago.

“Trey Schmelzer will be our primary catcher this year,” Johnson said. “He was voted second team All-TRC last season. Trey is a tremendous leader for our team both in how he carries himself as a person, and how he motivates his teammates to be the best version of themselves.“

Who are your top infielders?

Jay and Tipps will lead the infielders.

“Tyler Jay will be our starting shortstop when he is not pitching,” Johnson said. “He is a strong defensive player who wants to do his best to support his pitchers. Jacob Tipps will move around the infield depending on the situation. He has put a lot of time into his game in the off-season, and he is starting to see the fruits of his labor.“

Who are your top outfielders?

Owens will lead the outfielders

“Carter Owens will be our centerfielder this spring,” Johnson said. “He gets a great jump on the ball, and he is willing to go all out to support his pitchers. Carter has taken charge of our outfielders, and he has done a really good job at helping the younger guys with their skills.”

Johnson expects the conference to be strong.

“Miami East, Troy Christian, and Bethel will be the teams to beat in the league this year,” he said. “When Riverside has Warren Shockey on the mound, they can compete with anyone. We are hoping to improve and develop as the season progresses, and give ourselves a chance to be a threat in the D-IV tournament.“


Dean Denlinger returns ast coach.

The Vikings were 14-12 a year ago.

Returning letterwinners include seniors Wesley Nidzgorski, juniors Connor Apple, Luke Hamaker, Layton Hughes, Michael Hohenstein and Michael Till and sophomore Vincent Crane.

Apple and Hamaker will lead the pitchers.

Apple was 2-1 a year ago.

Hughes and Till will be the catchers.

The infielders will include Apple, Hamaker, Till, Crane and Nidzgorski.

Apple batted .383 last year with 17 RBIs and Hamaker hit .426 with 16 RBIs.

Nidzgorski batted .375.

Matthew Osting and Hohenstein will lead the outfielders.

Hohenstein batted .375 in limited plate appearances a year ago.

Denlinger expects the TRC to be very competitive.


Nate Morter returns as coach.

The Bulldogs were 7-16 a year ago.

Returning letterwinners include seniors Trevor Brazina, Nathan Morter Jr. and Ben Schommer; juniors Peyton Nichols and Zach Lovin and sophomore Wyatt Kimmel.

Morter Jr., Nichols and Kimmel will head up the pitching staff and Schommer will be the catcher.

Nichols was 3-2 a year ago, Morter Jr. was 2-2 and Kimmel was 1-2.

Schommer batted .347 a year ago.

Morter Jr., Brazina, Nichols and and Lovin will lead the infield, while Kimmel and Lovin will be the top outfielders.

Morter Jr. batted .310 last season and Nichols batted .347 and had six dooubles.

Kimmel hit .324 and Lovin batted .279.

“This should be a very competitive conference,” Morter said.


Tony Ferraro returns as coach.

The Eagles were 18-8 overall a year ago and won the TRC with a 14-0 record.

Returning letterwinners include seniors Ben Major, Seth Ryan and Zane Harris; juniors Camden Koukol, Paul McDonals, Ryan Waltz and Andrew Knostman; and sophomores Judah Simmons, Matthew Major and Marcus O’Neal.

The pitchers will include Simmons, Harris, junior Carson Dyer, Ben Major, Matthew Major, McDonald, Waltz and Knostman.

Simmons was 5-1 a year ago with a 2.079 ERA.

The catchers will be Koukol and O’Neal.

Koukol batted .278 a year ago with 26 RBIs.

The infielders will include Harris, O’Neal, Matthew Major, Waltz and senior Rylee Huber.

Matthew Major batted .379 as a freshman with 10 doubles and 19 RBIs and Harris batted .333.

The outfielders will include freshman Landon Day, Ben Major, McDonald, Waltz, Andrew Knostman, freshman Ben Knostman and Ryan.

Ben Major batted .356 last year with 15 RBIs last season.

“We have the ability to compete and should be in the middle to upper-middle of the TRC, Ferraro said.



Legendary coach Bill Sturwold takes over as Bradford coach.

Returning letterwinners include seniors Brendan Baker, Landon Monnin and Dalten Skinner; juniors Tucker Miller, Landon Wills, Hudson Hill and Garrett Trevino and sophomore Owen Canan.

Miller, Monnin and Wills will lead the pitching staff.

Wills was 5-0 on the mound a year ago, Miller was 3-0 and Monnin was 1-0.

Canan, Trevino and Monnin will see action behind the plate.

Monnin batted .351 a year ago.

The top infielders will include Baker, Miller, Monnin, Wills and Trevino.

Miller batted .525 a a year ago with 18 RBIs and Wills batted .471 with 19 RBIs.

Baker batted .288.

The top outfielders will be Hill, Gage Shafer and Colton Gambill.

”I expect Bradford to contend for league and district titles,” Surwold said. “Arcanum, Newton, and Ansonia will be good. The league will be very balanced.”


Jordan Kopp returns as Newton coach.

The Indians were 16-7 a year ago and lost to eventual state champion Russia in the district semifinals.

Returnng letterwinners include seniors Carson Knupp, Hudson Montgomery, Aiden Kelly and Max Blair; juniors Brady Downing, Ty Schauer and Jyler VanCulin and sophomore Parker Kanet.

Knupp and Montgomery will lead the pitching staff.

Knupp was 6-1 last year with a 0.84 ERA and Montgomery was 1-1 with a 3.00 ERA.

Knupp and freshman Will Bowser will see action behind the plate.

Knupp batted .250 last year with 15 RBIs.

The infielders include Montgomery, Blair, Kanet and Austin Tippie.

Montgomery batted .288 a year ago.

The outfielders will include Schauer Downing, Kelley and Rhett Koffer.

“In 2022 we won our fourth league title in school history and the third title in the last four years,” Kopp said. “Even though we lost a lot of pitching from last year we are hoping to be back in the top half of the league. Arcanum will be the favorite as they bring back a lot of talent.”

Kopp expects good things from his team.

”We will have a good mix of experience and youth in our starting lineup,” he said. “We have a very difficult start to the season playing four games in Orlando Florida vs schools from Florida, South Carolina and New York.”

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