Local athletes giving back, focusing their talents on coaching

Yaneek Smith

Press Sports Editor

Paying it forward.
That’s what three Oak Harbor softball players — one past and two present — are doing with their skills.
Remi Gregory, who graduated in May and is attending the University of Toledo; Porter Gregory, her sister, and Alyse Sorg are coaching young softball players at the RedShed Baseball & Softball in Fremont, a facility founded by Trent Logan.
Remi Gregory just joined the coaching staff, while Sorg and Porter Gregory have been coaching for two years and one year, respectively.
Remi Gregory, who will be an assistant for Oak Harbor in the spring with new coach Cami Haas, has taken lessons at the facility since she was 13. There’s a funny story behind her deciding to become a coach for the RedShed.
“We kind of played around with the idea since I was in high school, but it was always a joke. I saw Trent at a football game, and he said, ‘Send me your resume,’” she said. “Probably about a month went by and I jokingly sent him a resume, and then he said, ‘When is a good time to interview?’”
Remi Gregory, who coaches hitting, was pushed by her softball coach, Chris Rawski, and like him, will demand the most out of her players.
“I learned that you can’t just show up to practice every day; you have to put in the extra effort. You always have to be working, whether it’s in front of the coaches or not. Doing the right amount of practice isn’t enough,” she said. “You need to go above and beyond.”
Porter Gregory enjoys seeing her players make strides on the field.
“It’s fun. After a week or so, they’ll say, ‘Guess what I did?’” she said. “It’s kind of fun to hear what they’ve been doing and how they’re improving while they’ve been playing.”
Sorg, a junior, talked about how coaching came about for her.
“I was going there as a student, and my own instructor was going off to dental school, and Trent asked me if I’d like to take her place as the pitching instructor,” said Sorg, who also runs cross country and is a stellar swimmer. “It’s pretty awesome, but seeing the girls grow, their love for the sport as well is rewarding.
“I teach all year, mostly on the weekends or the morning, if I can. I try to squeeze some (sessions) in during the week,” she said.
Rawski, who coached the team for the last 11 years, talked about his players turning their talents to coaching.
“First of all, I think anytime you can get an athlete to give something back, that’s kind of one of the goals that you would have for them,” he said. “I don’t think there’s enough of that going on in the sports world – as an official, coach, any of those things – for young people to come back and help the sport is much needed. They’re helping out the young kids at winter workouts; they’re natural leaders with a passion for the sport, and when you combine those things, you can have success.
“Trent and T.J. (Harkness), they’ve done a fantastic job of embracing both baseball and softball, hitting as a science, translating that in a very enthusiastic way, and it gets the athletes excited about what they’re doing. The kids that take the lessons seriously, and the proof is in the pudding,” Rawski said.
The trio was instrumental in helping the Rockets win the program’s first-ever regional championship, which came via a 5-4 victory over Lexington in a Division II regional final.
Remi Gregory, who played third base, hit .337 (.397 OBP) and slugged .455 while driving in 25 runs, breaking the school record. She was a two-time captain and earned first-team honors in the Bay Division and second-team honors in the district.
First baseman Porter Gregory, a junior, hit .413 (.458 OBP) and had a slugging percentage of .661. She earned first-team honors in the Bay Division and second-team honors in the district and is a two-year starter.
Sorg, a junior and two-year starter, played center field quite well for the Rockets, and hit .271. She had an on-base percentage of .404 and tied the single-season record for walks with 19 and drove in 13 runs.
“They’ve been pivotal parts of our success. They were all impactful players from the time they were young and all the way up,” said Rawski. “To me, it just makes you smile knowing that they are incredibly impactful on the field, but also becoming young-adult leaders. It’s pretty fun to watch.
“Players like them are very difficult to find. They have a passion for the game and the athletic talent to go along with it. Fortunately, we had those three, plus some others, and with that combination of things, you end up with a magical season,” Rawski said.


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