Division IV Team Of The Week: Week 1 - Shadyside


Bruce Hefflinger
PBR Ohio Senior Writer

Follow on Twitter- @PrepBaseballOH
Follow on Twitter- @PBROhioScout
Follow on Instagram- @pbrohio

To view the Weekly Team Rankings, click below:

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

Division IV Team Of The Week: Week 1 - Shadyside

SHADYSIDE - Even the absence of arguably their best player has not prevented Shadyside from getting off to a great start to the 2021 season and gaining respect along the way.

A 9-1 record has the Tigers earning accolades as the Prep Baseball Report Division IV Team of the Week.

“Our expectations were definitely high in the valley,” admitted head coach Shawn Selmon. “There’s a lot of pressure on these guys and they’re stepping up.”

It has happened in spite of Bryce Amos being out with an injury. The 6-5 hard-throwing right-handed junior, a Tulane commit, teamed up with Mason Vannest to throw a no-hitter in the team’s season opener against Bellaire, but has not been in a game since. He is hoping to be cleared to play at the end of the month.

“The team is playing for each other,” Selmon explained about how the Tigers have been able to overcome the absence of Amos. “It says a lot about their character. High school baseball is about pitching and when you have your best guy out it can be tough. But all of our guys have stepped up for each other. It’s unreal. This is the best talent and attitude-wise team we’ve had since I started coaching here in 2009.”

In addition to Amos, four pitchers on Shadyside have not permitted an earned run to date. Vannest, who shared the no-hitter with Amos, is 2-0 with a 0.00 ERA in 14 innings while fanning 20.

“He is pitching well and hitting well,” Selmon said of the junior who is batting .483 while also playing shortstop. “He was athlete of the week in the Valley week one.”

Alex Baker, who pitches and plays first base with a .375 batting average, took that honor this past week after throwing a 37-pitch perfect game. In 6.1 innings, the junior has not given up a hit.

“Alex is not the kind of pitcher that’s going to scare batters,” Selmon said of Baker, who threw 29 strikes and fanned three in his perfect-game performance. “He tops at 63 miles per hour with his fastball and his curve is maybe 50. He’s a kid who throws strikes and is not afraid to challenge hitters. He chews up innings for our guys that can throw upper-80s.”

Korey Beckett, who has logged nine innings on the mound, helped save the perfect game with a stellar play at third base.

“He took a strange hop and ate the ball in his face,” Selmon explained. “He reacted quickly and made a great throw to get the kid out in the top of the fifth to keep the perfect game going.”

The junior also has a 0.00 ERA with a 2-0 record, striking out 14 and allowing six hits and five walks while recording one save.

“Pitching is the best thing I’ve seen out of the team this year,” Selmon related. “The majority of our baseball players can throw. Not all are pitchers, but they can throw strikes.

“The next best thing is our defense. We have four outfielders that can move around at every spot and three of them pitch. Everybody in the infield can pitch and all move around except at first base. We also have two freshmen that start. We’re blessed to have a sturdy defense and a catcher who is lights out behind the plate. Having Ryan back there is a Godsend.

“He’s the most unsung hero we have,” continued Selmon about junior catcher Ryan Florence. “He’s caught every game and has no errors with one passed ball in the first game and he’s thrown out five guys. Having him back there behind the plate really helps the team.”

Jordan Joseph, one of just three seniors on the squad, is another that has been a key performer.

“He’s a track kid who came out to play baseball this year,” Selmon noted. “He’s our leadoff guy batting .444 and a corner outfielder.”

With just 15 players on the roster, Selmon points to health as a key to success the remainder of the season for the Tigers, whose lone defeat was a 5-3 loss to River in game seven. Wins have come over Bellaire 2-1 and 8-5, Rose Central 6-1, Bridgeport 9-2, River 2-1, Shenandoah 13-5, Steubenville Catholic Central 10-0, Buckeye Local 4-1 and Frontier 10-0.

“If we can stay healthy and maintain the attitude we have right now we should win a lot of ball games,” Selmon concluded. “We’ve got to hit the ball a little better, then we’ll have the three facets of the game down.”

And with it, respect along the way.

“I remember we were taking batting practice before our first game and Korey Beckett runs up and says we’re ranked seventh,” Selmon said. “He said we’re finally getting respect and I said now we’ve got to prove it. They’re all working hard at doing that.”

A Look Back At What Would've Been The 2020 Season:

To view each of the parts to the No 'Last Dance' Series, click below:

To view the 2020 Team Previews, click here.

To view the 2020 Preseason All-State Teams, click here.

To view the 2020 Virtual Ohio High School State Tournament/Preseason Team Rankings, click here.

A Look Back At The Last Decade:

To view the Ohio High School All-Decade Team 2010-2019, click here.

A Look Back At The 2019 Season:

To view the 2019 Team Previews, click here.

To view the OHSAA Baseball Tournament Roundup, click below.

To view the 2019 All-State Teams, click below.

To view the 2019 Preseason All-State Teams, click below.

A Look Back At The 2018 Season:

To view the 2018 Team Previews, click here.

To view the OHSAA Baseball Tournament Roundup, click below.

To view the 2018 All-State Teams, click below.

To view the 2018 Preseason All-State Teams, click below.

A Look Back At The 2017 Season:

To view the 2017 Team Previews, click here.

To view the OHSAA Baseball Tournament Roundup, click below.

To view the 2017 All-State Teams, click below.

To view the 2017 Preseason All-State Teams, click below.

Recent Articles