By: John Raffel
Pitcher’s masterpiece put DeWitt in state semifinals
Garrett Larner just fell short of a no-hitter for DeWitt when he hurled the Panthers to a 4-0 victory in the state baseball quarterfinals on June 14 at Saline against Tecumseh.
He wasn’t their No. 1 or 2 pitcher, but the Panthers had no hesitation of throwing Larner in the quarterfinal game.
“With Garrett being our No. 3, we felt great about it,” Coach Alan Shankel said. “He’s a great pitcher. We liked the matchup. He did a great job. He was a Bulldog, he’s tough.”
“Just to get the opportunity to be on the state and pitch against this high of competition and get the win for the team, (was huge),” Larner said.
He couldn’t have been happier that he was able to control Tecumseh effectively and allow the Panthers to prevail and advance to the semifinals against Swan Valley at Michigan State University.
Larner, a third baseman when he’s not pitching, allowed just one hit
“It was amazing,” he said. “I went out there, planning to throw strikes and do my own game, as I’ve always done and ended up throwing a really good game.”
The DeWitt senior and his team (27-7) were disappointed to lose 3-1 to Swan Valley in the semifinals, but Larner isn’t done with the sport yet. Also a player for Michigan Xtreme and Harleman Baseball Training, Larner committed to play college baseball on Jan. 24 at Cleary University in Howell. He joined the FieldLevel recruiting service and targeted 24 different college programs before committing to Cleary.