Prep Baseball Report

Division III Team Of The Week: Week 7 - Versailles

Bruce Hefflinger
Ohio Senior Writer

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Division III Team Of The Week: Week 7 - Versailles

VERSAILLES - A share of the Midwest Athletic Conference title and a 23-4 regular-season record are in the books for Versailles, the Prep Baseball Division III Team of the Week.

“I am proud of the boys for the way they have played this season,” related head coach Brad Koopman, whose Tigers defeated Preble Shawnee 5-2 in its last game of the regular season after beating Franklin Monroe 1-0, Bradford 9-3 and taking two from Fort Recovery, 6-1 (completion of suspended game) and 4-1. “As a coaching staff we saw the potential despite some of them not having a lot of varsity time, but they have performed well. They surprised some other people by winning a share of the league title and earning the number one seed in our sectional.”

While some may be surprised, Koopman is not one of them.

“Going into the season I was very optimistic,” the Versailles mentor said. “With a core of returning players and talent at the younger grades, we had the potential to be a very good team. The part I like about this team is their mental toughness and aggressiveness. This mindset has allowed them to be more successful at the plate and on the mound.”

Koopman pointed to a senior with being a big part of the success.

“AJ Griesdorn has been great on the mound all year,” Koopman noted. “He did a great job this week finishing a league game with Fort Recovery, securing our first league title since 2016, throwing all seven innings, giving up only one run while striking out 11.”

Griesdorn and junior outfielder Jace Watren both had six hits during the week with Watren producing a home run while driving in seven.

Ross Francis, a junior OF/P) is hitting a team-high .370 on the season with 26 runs and 15 RBIs while senior Lane Bergman is batting .358 with 17 runs and 17 RBIs and Griesdorn .351 with 28 runs and 21 RBIs.

“We have had some interest, exchange of information, and discussion with different schools in relation to AJ, Ross and Matthew Subler (junior catcher), however there are no baseball commitments at this time,” Koopman said.

Watren is carrying a .337 average with 24 RBIs, junior Ben Subler is batting .334 with 30 runs scored and senior Michael Osborne is hitting .308 with 26 runs.

On the mound, the one-two punch of Griesdorn and junior left-hander Chase Monnin have led the way. Griesdorn is 5-1 with a 2.32 ERA, fanning 51 in 42.1 innings while Monnin is 4-0 with a 2.31 ERA, striking out 52 in 36.1 frames.

“The key to our continued success is to continue to play loose and relaxed,” concluded Koopman, whose 10th-ranked Tigers open tournament play tonight against Milton-Union in the sectional finals. “Staying ourselves will lead to hitting and pitching well, like we have this season. It also allows us to be aggressive and put pressure on other teams.”

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