Don’t be sad it’s over, be happy it happened.
Eight seniors on The Tinora Rams baseball players took off the forest green jersey for the final time after their District Final loss to Ottawa Hills last Saturday.
Graduating is the eight-member class of Jayden Bergman, Bryce Bailey, Cole Commisso, Nolan Schafer, Tristan Birks, Casen Wolfrum, Keegan Miles, & Tyler Wiemken.
The 2022 season started out with adversity as they learned senior righty Jayden Bergman would be unable to throw from the mound for his senior season. All Bergman did in the 2021 spring season was show he was ready to be the ace of the staff this season, taking the torch from Andrew Imthurn.
During the 2021 summer Acme season, Bergman again shined, pitching the Rams to the State Acme Championship game against Defiance.
Although unable to pitch in the spring, Jayden still came through with the bat as a senior. Hitting over .400 most of the season, Bergman had a great career as a Ram. From his clutch 2021 season, to the game winner vs Antwerp, to his two hits vs Nolan Schmitz in the PBR Classic, to his homerun vs Fairview this season, Bergman will always be the man you wanted at the plate in crunch time. Jayden was named 2nd Team All-GMC for his efforts at the plate this season.
With the loss of Bergman on the mound, the right arm of fellow senior Casen Wolfrum was set to shine in 2022. Like Bergman, Wolfrum also had his hand in pitching the Rams to State in the ‘21 Acme season. Wolfrum realized what it took to battle through the summer of ’21, all this came to light in the 2022 season.
Pitching in many high-profile games in 2022, Casen became the #1 arm of the Rams baseball club, the right-arm head coach Brett Renollet would give the ball to many a time when a big game was being played.
Wolfrum proved to be up to each and every challenge coach Renollet put in front of him. Stepping up with big wins over Fairview, Hicksville, Wayne Trace, in the Sectionals vs Otsego.
In the biggest game the Rams have had in years, Wolfrum was given the ball in the District semifinals. Pitching against the previous season’s state runner-up team, the Archbold Bluestreaks was a task in itself. Thrown as well was pitching against the two-time player of the year in the NWOAL, as well as all-state pitcher DJ Newman, and could the senior Wolfrum respond?
All Casen did was shutout the ‘Streaks, limiting them to just four hits while picking up the win. What a fantastic senior season, Casen, Wolfrum finished at 6-0, and an all-time top 5 ERA of .89
Meanwhile, at the dish, Casen would be one of the more consistent Ram hitters, finishing with a .427 average while driving in 33 runs.
At the plate, and also on the mound, fellow seniors Nolan Schafer and Cole Commisso were set to lead the Rams in 2022.
Nolan Schafer, who seems to have been a Ram at the high school level forever, was set to have a great season at the lead off spot, and as we found out at the midway point, on the hill also.
Schafer would be taking the field for his 12th and final varsity season, what a career for Nolan.
Schafer would have many shining moments during the 2022 season, none brighter than that April 16 Saturday late morning in Napoleon.
What was at the time thought to be a just a start against his two cousins on the Wildcats Trey & Tanner, turned out to be a diamond in the rough. Schafer kept coming back out, inning after inning, and his first start in three years resulted in a 4-2 Tinora win. Nolan would get the win, pitching a complete game for the Rams.
This led to another arm BR could lean on when needed.
Nolan also picked up wins vs Antwerp in a non-league game, his eight-inning win in the Rams come from behind victory at Paulding, and his gem at Ayersville vs the Pilots. Schafer would wind up at 4-1, and a 1.94 ERA.
At the plate, and in the field, Nolan was steady as always. Finishing with a .354 average while stealing a team-high 16 bases, Nolan will go down as one of the best all-around athletes in Tinora sports history.
Senior second baseman Cole Commisso was set to have one of the best seasons at the plate in the past 20 seasons.
As a pitcher, Cole would finish with a 5-1 record and a 2.77 ERA, in the field Commisso was near flawless.
At the plate, Cole was the hottest hitter in the area a majority of the season. From his 9 RBI performance vs Edgerton to his 50 RBI season, Cole was always coming through in any situation.
Cole’s 50 RBI’s would be the most for any Ram in over 20 years, passing Clay Pittman’s 46 RBI’s in 2013.
Cole Commisso also would hit .505 for the season, at one point, close to .550 towards the end of the season, also tying Nolan with 16 stolen bases in the ’22 season.
Commisso had one of the top performances as a Rams hitter ever in 2022, Commisso was named to the GMC first team. Many more postseason awards await Cole in baseball.
The remaining Rams seniors, Bryce Bailey, Tristan Birks, Ty Wiemken, and Keegan Miles all came through for the Rams when called upon in the 2022 season. All four seemed to play better as the season progressed.
Miles with a key single & double vs Antwerp, among numerous defensive plays, to Ty’s squeeze bunt at Paulding, with Ty behind the plate, the Rams were always in good hands. Birks going deep vs Jackson Bergman, and Bryce with a gold glove at first, each of you had your hand in the 21 win season in some way.
Bailey’s homerun vs Wauseon last summer in the Acme tournament helped them advance deep in the tourney. Bailey had a fantastic career as a Tinora football player as well, a great two sport athlete.
For the upcoming senior class, Plassman, Ward, Harris, Casteel, Dalton Wolfrum, wondering what to do next season as this class of seniors leave, the book has already been handed down to you as it was handed down to this group of seniors who are departing.
Each senior class from Marcus & Max Grub, Andrew Imthurn, and the seniors before them, from Big Red Jimenez to Clay Pittman, to all the brothers Renollet & Drewes, the leadership has been there year after year, just follow in their footsteps.
Underclassman, Sophomore Kadyn Radzik made one of the smoother transitions as we’ve seen in a long time taking over for Marcus Grub at shortstop.
Rams center fielder Grady Gustwiller is another underclassman full of potential, as we have seen with his catch vs Ottawa Hills, possibly the best catch we’ve ever seen at the HS level.
Freshman Alec Shaublin also is a name to remember, Shaublin has three more years to add to his impressive start.
This group of young men finished with a 21-6 record, finishing with a fifth straight Green Meadows Conference Championship, and competing for a spot in the Regionals before their loss to Ottawa Hills.
The practices are over, and the bus trips home after big wins are over, this group will never take the field again in a high school baseball game.
But, what does and will remain is a lifetime of memories. Maybe not today, tomorrow, or even next month, but out of the blue, a group text will appear, or a memory will pop up, and you will smile from ear to ear, and for that split second, you will be back at that moment.
What can be said about this group is nothing short of amazing, one of the toughest bunches ever to put on a Rams baseball uniform. Maybe not the most talented team in Tinora baseball history, but no one, literally no one, was going to tell this group they couldn’t accomplish something they put their minds to doing.
This 2022 team had the fifth-most wins in BR’s 22 seasons as Rams coach, simply an incredible accomplishment.
It was an honor to cover this team in 2022, please come back and visit over the upcoming seasons.
As I said to a few parents, even though I don’t have any kid on the team, each year it seems like each graduating senior player is a like a family member.
Thanks to all our sponsors, and a special thanks to Logan for all the great help this year.
Another thanks goes to Greg Schafer for a great four years of helping in the press-box. From watching dump trucks move dirt on a Saturday double header years ago, to freezing in all those early April games, to the final out in the Sectional Finals at home, it was always a great time.
Well, except for the game this season when the umpire was on a two-second delay with his calls, LOL. Don’t be a stranger next season!
And finally, thanks to my daughter Emily, who was my runner and BR’s bookkeeper for six seasons, since the 2017 season. Unfortunately, she missed most of this season, but she was always running up lineups and changes from BR and the other coaches prior to first pitch, as well as being the team sunflower seed provider. Ha-ha.
Like the other seniors, she as well is moving on to bigger things next season as she is headed to U of Cincinnati, it will be a rough 2023 season for me.
*Wins – Casen Wolfrum – 6
*K’s – Casen – 50
*ERA – Casen 0.89
*Average – Cole Commisso .505 (tied for 5th since ’99)
*Home Runs – Cole -5
*Doubles – Cole – 11
*RBI – Cole 50
*Runs scored – Cole 39
*Hits – Cole – 47
*Stolen Bases – Cole & Nolan – 16 each (Both tied for third since 1999)
*Walks – Nolan – 20
Listen back to the games, click below:
Link to the coverage of the 2022 season:
Overall GMC standings ’22
Audio highlights below:
Pics courtesy Sarah Harris, Nancy Fedderke, Stacy Bailey, & Mrs. Wells, thank you all!