Team Ram Black

Team Ram Black and Orange conclude successful summer campaigns

August 9, 2012 // 0 Comments

by RANDY GREGORY Another season of baseball for the two teams comprised entirely of baseball players from Rockford drew to a close recently. Team Ram Black was basically a 16-and-under team filled with players expected to play at the varsity level for the Rams. Team Ram Orange was a 15-and-under team that featured players who will man the freshman and JV squads next year. Team Ram Black ended up with an overall mark of 15 wins and six losses while playing an ambitious schedule that included top 18-and-under travel teams from around the state. They also played games at several beautiful venues that included the baseball stadiums at Central Michigan University, Western Michigan University and Grand Valley State University. The team was coached by varsity assistant Steve Fusee with help from regular head coach Ian Hearn. Fusee handled logistics, scheduling and a lot of the game-time decisions, while Hearn cheerfully stepped aside over the course of the highly successful summer season. “It was another good summer for Rockford baseball,” said Hearn. “It was nice to see the players develop, settle in and get used to competing against some outstanding teams. It was also a treat for them and the coaching staff to have had the opportunity to play at several beautiful college ballparks.” Team Ram Orange was coached by freshman coach Lance Boehm. Junior varsity coach Steve Dengler also moved over to assist while letting Boehm take the reins. Sean O’Rourke offered his expertise while manning the fort for one tourney. The results weren’t quite as glowing for Team Ram Orange from a win-loss perspective, but it was a valuable learning tool for the younger Rams. “We strongly feel a lot of the success we have achieved over the last several years can be attributed to our summer teams,” said Hearn. “We may even have to consider adding a third team soon because of the overwhelming numbers we had show up for some of our games. But that is something we will talk about next year.” The sport of baseball has made tremendous inroads at Rockford High School over the last several seasons, and several Ram players will continue on playing into the fall. Hearn would like to see his players participate in different sports […]

Team Ram Black continues stellar summer play

July 19, 2012 // 0 Comments

by RANDY GREGORY The Rockford baseball program has achieved unparalleled success in recent seasons (including a state championship in 2011). One of the pillars that the team’s success has been predicated on is the summer program that nearly every Ram freshman, sophomore and junior from last season participates in. The teams are separated into two different age groups with Team Ram Black being primarily a 16-and-under team and Team Ram Orange being comprised of mostly 15-and-under players. Team Ram Black has played 18 games so far and has amassed an overall record of 12-6. The team won their own tournament to kick off summer play and has played in various venues including the baseball stadiums at Central Michigan University, Western Michigan University and Grand Valley State University. Team Ram Black has toppled state powers including the Michigan Red Sox, Lakes Dodgers, Lansing #205, Kalamazoo Maroons and Elite Baseball. “We are very pleased with the success of the team so far this summer,” said Rockford head baseball coach Ian Hearn (who is the assistant coach for Steve Fusee on Team Ram Black). “We have played several 19-and-under teams that have as many as eight college players on the roster and held our own. We have seen a lot of growth from both a physical and mental perspective from all of our players while competing against some very talented competition.” Fielding a roster of players solely from one school is not the recommended path to achieving consistent success in summer baseball tourney play. Most summer teams field players from multiple high schools, who are the cream of the crop of their various programs. But Rockford has followed their formula for several years now and more than acquitted themselves decently. The team has bonded not only in the camaraderie generated from spending time together, but also in becoming accustomed to the habits and tendencies of current and future teammates on the diamond. Team Ram Black is also occasionally hampered by having several of their players participating on other elite travel teams that may periodically conflict with their schedule. But that is no big deal, according to Hearn. “We are always trying to compete and win whenever we take the field,” said Hearn. “But that isn’t what we are […]