A trip to Cooperstown was all it took for Scott Sency to realize pitching was his thing.
A member of a traveling team that got the opportunity to play on baseball’s hallowed grounds, the 12-year-old faced 21 batters and retired them all.
It was a perfect game to everyone but him — and not because he was disappointed.
“I really didn’t even know I threw a perfect game until we were back in our team housing and my coach told me,” Sency recalled with a chuckle.
Six years later, the left-hander put forth a near-perfect senior season as an ace for Medina High. For his efforts, he is the Gazette MVP in the sport.
“I felt when we put him out there, the win was automatic,” Bees coach Nick Kaplack said. “I always felt that I would not want to go into a game and face him and game plan for, ‘How are you going to hit a lefty with that much movement and that much command?’”
Very few hitters could.
Sency proved time and again he was as clutch as they came, going 6-1 with a 2.52 ERA. He also led Medina County with 71 strikeouts in just 50 innings, and came seemingly out of nowhere to hit .347 with a five home runs and a county-best 30 RBI.
Against Brunswick in a key midseason Northeast Ohio Conference River Division game, Sency had it going strong. His fastball had extra zip and pinpoint accurary, and his bat was sizzling, too.
Sixteen strikeouts, a booming home run to right field and five RBI later, Sency had the top individual performance of the season in an impressive 12-3 Medina victory.
There was more to come.
Against Nordonia in the Hudson Division I District semifinals, Kaplack lifted Sency after three innings despite the southpaw throwing a perfect game. Sency also hit a grand slam in the 10-0 victory.
Then came the moment that nearly ended the Bees’ season.
Twenty-four hours after beating the Knights, Sency was in trouble against Solon, which scored five runs in just 2⁄3 inning off Sency.
His teammates had his back, however, and the Bees came back and won 11-10.
“When I was pitching I felt like I left the team down,” Sency said. “It feels great when your team rallies behind you and win a game like that. It was unbelievable. I still can’t believe that game.”
Sency then bounced back in style for the Canton Regional semifinals against Willoughby South. He found himself in a pitching duel with Cam Knott, but allowed just five hits and struck out five.
It wasn’t enough, as the Rebels won 1-0.
On the other hand, it further proved why Sency had the moxie to compete with anyone in Ohio.
“Oh my gosh. I’m still sick about it for him because he gave up one run, and the way he competed was outstanding,” Kaplack said. “I guess it’s baseball. On the mound, you play that game 20 times and give up one run, you win 19 of them.
“The way he pitched in that game was good enough to win any game through the state title game. That’s what caliper he was throwing at in the end of the season.”
Now, Sency will be taking his talents to Division II college baseball, as he will join Saginaw Valley State.
When he’ll look back at his high school career, there will be plenty of positives.
“Overall, I think it was good, but we should’ve went farther than what we did,” he said. “Every team wants to go farther, but every other team wants to, too. We probably should have won (the NOC River Division) again, but overall we did pretty well.”
Contact Albert Grindle at (330) 721-4043 or firstname.lastname@example.org.