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By Michael Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor
The spring of 2017 will forever be remembered in Wellesley as the year of the Cinderella Raiders. Entering the tournament as a humble 13 seed, the Raiders won four games away from home (three away, one neutral) en route to a South Sectional title. The Raiders continued their winning trend following the South title thanks to staff ace Henry Weycker, who tossed a gem (10 strikeouts, no runs) against Lowell in the Eastern Mass title game (state semifinals), advancing the Raiders to the state finals via a 1-0 win.
Wellesley’s season ended with a tough 5-1 loss to a strong Taconic team in the state finals on June 17. However, despite the non-ideal end, the Wellesley Raiders achieved immensely in 2017, and much of that can be accredited to pitcher Henry Weycker and head coach Rob Kane.
On June 21, the left-handed Weycker was named to the Massachusetts Third-Team All-State team. On June 25, Coach Kane was named Boston Globe’s Division I Baseball Coach of the Year. Ever since taking over the program in 2006, Kane has led the Raiders to the state tournament in all of his 11 seasons at the helm. 2017 was Wellesley’s first ever trip to the state finals.
A humbled Kane took to social media after receiving the award.
“When you have 25 dedicated players and three amazing head coaches, one person shouldn’t get all the credit,” said Kane.Along with Dover-Sherborn’s Steve Ryan and St. John’s Shrewsbury’s Charlie Eppinger, Kane coached Team Massachusetts in the annual Massachusetts vs. Connecticut All-Star game on June 24.
Seniors such as Brendan Dolan, Jack Waisel, Isaac Weycker, and Jason Maiona will dearly be missed. However, the returns of rising junior Henry Weycker, rising senior and center fielder John Ciolfi, rising senior and left fielder Colin Blasco, rising junior and pitcher Teddy Goss, and rising sophomore and second baseman Matt Maiona, have expectations and hopes for next season’s Wellesley baseball team sky high.
Congratulations to Henry Weycker and Rob Kane on these awards and to the entire Wellesley High baseball team on an incredible season and an even more impressive tournament run.