Multi-Sport Standouts Again Helping Watervliet Diamond Teams Shine

May 22, 2023

Watervliet has two seniors who have made a positive impression in the classroom, on the athletic playing fields, and in the community over the past four years – and this spring, they’ve helped their respective teams to back-to-back-to-back baseball and softball league championships. 

Tyson Williams and Samantha Dietz have been a great example of scholar-athletes at Watervliet High School over the past four years. Williams will earn his 11th varsity letter this spring, and Dietz will earn her 12th. Both are outstanding students as well; Williams has a 3.98 GPA, while Dietz has a 4.13 as they rank ninth and third, respectively, in their senior class. 

Both have been exceptional role models for future Panthers; they both spend many days and hours at the elementary schools having lunch, reading, or just hanging out with the elementary students at recess. Both student-athletes are National Honor Society and student council members.

Their teams have achieved plenty during their four years at Watervliet, including combining on a couple of memorable accomplishments – notably, the baseball and softball teams went a combined 73-1 in league play over the last three seasons, and this winter saw the girls and boys basketball varsities both win 20 games for the first time.

Williams is headed to Hope College in the fall to play football. As the quarterback at Watervliet for four years, He threw for more than 5,000 yards and 52 touchdowns. He also led the team in scoring and rebounds this past basketball season and helped the team to a 20-win season after last year's 19-win campaign. Williams was named first-team all-state by the Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan.

In baseball, the Panthers recently clinched the Southwestern Athletic Conference Lakeshore title for the third-consecutive season, and the team has gone undefeated in league play during his 10th, 11th and 12th-grade seasons (with his freshman season canceled due to COVID-19. As of May 15, Williams had pitched a total of 132 career innings and tallied 188 strikeouts, with a 24-6 record, three saves and a 1.77 ERA.  

Dietz will continue at Arizona State University this fall. She was a member of the volleyball team which won two SAC division titles, two District titles, and a Regional championship. during her volleyball career, she tallied 1,433 kills and earned all-state honorable mention as a sophomore and made the first team as a junior and senior. During basketball season, Samantha was a part of a back-to-back-to-back SAC Lakeshore championship teams that finished a combined 25-1 in league play and won the program’s first District title since 2006. Dietz scored 1,279 career points and grabbed 1,009 career rebounds. She earned honorable mention all-state twice, and made the first team once.

In softball, Dietz has been a part of the SAC Lakeshore championship team for three seasons (with her freshman season also canceled due to COVID). She is in the MHSAA record book for stolen bases, with 74 in 2022 and 62 in 2021. Her teams also have won back-to-back District titles.

PHOTOS From left, Samantha Dietz and Tyson Williams. (Photos courtesy of the Watervliet athletic department.)