D1 Baseball: Pilots Fly High Again

June 15, 2012

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor

BATTLE CREEK – When Warren DeLaSalle began this season 3-14-1, coach Matt Cook had little choice but to simply look ahead to the next practice, the next game.

But he promised the Pilots if they stayed the course, the tough times wouldn’t last forever.

Kevin Carroll and his classmates made sure of it.

DeLaSalle is 17-8 since, and will play for its fourth MHSAA championship Saturday thanks to a 3-2 win over Howell in Friday’s Semifinal.

“No one’s going to stop this team right now. We’re playing better than we ever have,” said Carroll, who gave up five hits and struck out six in getting the pitching win. “Everyone’s here to play. Everyone’s here to win. There’s not one person who doubts it.

“I don’t know what the turning point was or where it was, but I think that definitely it was because of the seniors. The seniors decided we were done losing. We didn’t like it.”

DeLaSalle (20-22-1) faces No. 6 Hudsonville at 12:30 p.m. Saturday for the title. Data isn’t readily available to confirm the Pilots could become the first team to win an MHSAA championship with a losing record.

But it’s fair to believe this run is bordering on unprecedented.

“These guys did a heck of a job putting it together and doing things the right thing,” said Cook, who as a player caught for the Grand Ledge team that fell in the 2001 Division1 Final to Grosse Pointe South. “I kept telling them to play their game. You play baseball the right way, it’s going to turn around.”

The Pilots scored one run apiece in the tops of the fourth, fifth and sixth innings. Howell came back with a run in bottoms of the fifth and sixth. But sophomore second baseman Dominic DiPuma’s home run in the top of the sixth ended up being the game-winner when the Highlanders (30-11) failed to scratch one more across.

“We’ve battled through. That’s been our thing all year; our kids have never given up,” Howell co-coach Jason Ladd said. “We were down 7-1 in the Regional, battled back and won. And I think these kids expected we were going to win this one.”

Senior outfielder Reed Carnagie had two hits and an RBI for the Pilots. Senior Josh Vyletel fell to 15-3 on the mound despite tossing a complete game and striking out four for Howell. Click for a full box score.

Hudsonville 4, Saline 3

Hudsonville earned its first championship game berth with a two-run rally in the fourth inning and shutdown pitching by senior Blake Hibbitts and sophomore Logan Magsig. Saline had just one more hit after opening up a 3-0 lead.

Magsig, playing shortstop before he moved to the mound, also drove in the first run of the go-ahead rally before scoring what became the winning run later in the fourth inning.

Senior first baseman Hunter Prince also had two hits for No. 6 Hudsonville (32-5). Junior second baseman Andrew White, sophomore rightfielder Michael Hendrickson and senior catcher Patrick Price all had a double and an RBI for No. 9 Saline, which finished 30-11. Click for a full box score.

PHOTOS: (Top) Warren DeLaSalle players celebrate sophomore Dominic DiPuma's home run that proved to be the game winner against Howell. (Middle) Hudsonville senior Hunter Prince connects during his team's Semifinal against Saline.

Longtime Chelsea High School Administrator, Coach Bush to Join MHSAA Staff as Assistant Director

By Geoff Kimmerly
MHSAA.com senior editor

December 21, 2022

Brad Bush, a highly-respected educator, administrator and coach over the last three decades, has been selected to serve in the position of assistant director for the Michigan High School Athletic Association, beginning Jan. 17.

Brad BushBush, 52, taught and coached at East Kentwood High School for four years before beginning a tenure at Chelsea High School in 1997 that has included teaching, then serving as athletic director and later also assistant principal and leading the football program as varsity coach from 1997-2002 and again from 2004-18.

He also has served as a statewide delegate on the MHSAA Representative Council during the last year and provided leadership in multiple roles, including president, for the Michigan High School Football Coaches Association (MHSFCA) since 2005.

Bush will serve as the MHSAA’s lead administrator for baseball and also among lead administrators for the officials program, which includes more than 8,000 registered officials in all sports. Bush also will be assigned additional duties in other sports based on his vast experiences. He was selected from a pool of 34 applicants.

“I’m incredibly excited to have Brad join our team,” MHSAA Executive Director Mark Uyl said. "He’s been an outstanding athletic director and coach who is highly-respected by those who know him.”

As Chelsea athletic director, Bush annually has supervised a staff of 110 coaches across 31 programs, with nearly 70 percent of the high school’s 800 students participating in athletics. As a teacher and assistant principal, he has served on Chelsea’s School Improvement Team and on multiple committees that provided instructional leadership including in the development of the district’s new trimester schedule. In his roles with the MHSFCA, Bush helped direct an organization with more than 2,200 members and also served as the association’s treasurer and liaison to the MHSAA.

Bush is perhaps best known, however, for his coaching success. Over 22 seasons, he led Chelsea’s varsity football team to a 169-60 record, 13 league championships, 18 playoff appearances, seven District titles and a Division 3 runner-up finish in 2015. During his break in tenure as Chelsea coach, Bush served as an assistant football coach and recruiting coordinator for Eastern Michigan University during the 2003-04 school year, and he has served as an assistant coach at Albion College the last four seasons contributing to the team’s two league titles and appearance in the 2021 NCAA Division III Playoffs.

“I feel like joining the team at the MHSAA is an opportunity I couldn’t pass up,” Bush said. “The 26 years I spent at Chelsea were some of the best times of my life. It’s a professional transition that in the back of my mind, if this opportunity came, was something I needed to do.

“Over time, I’ve grown to care about the bigger picture of athletics and appreciate the role of the MHSAA in protecting high school athletics in Michigan.”

Bush is a 1988 graduate of Ypsilanti High School. He studied and played quarterback at Cornell University before returning and graduating from EMU after majoring in history and minoring in social studies. He earned his physical education endorsement from EMU in 2000 and his master’s in physical education and sports management from EMU in 2002. He has earned continuing education credits in sports management from Drake University and completed the Path to Leadership program from the Michigan Association of Secondary School Principals (MASSP). 

Bush was inducted into MHSFCA Hall of Fame and Ypsilanti High School Hall of Fame both in 2019. He and his wife Laura have three adult children, two daughters and a son.

PHOTO Chelsea coach Brad Bush directs his team during the 2015 Division 3 Final at Ford Field.