A powerful offense and a lights-out pitching staff helped the Greendale baseball team to a fine 29-4 season in 2014, and Ty Ramirez, Tristian Pipp and Zack Henderson were all right in the forefront.
Ramirez and Henderson led the pitching effort, as the Panthers compiled a team earned-run average of 1.73.
Ramirez, a junior, went 9-0 with a minuscule 1.03 ERA and 86 strikeouts in 541/3 innings, while senior Henderson was 5-1 with an 0.91 ERA and 82 strikeouts in 46 innings.
Pipp, a sophomore, paced the offense as he batted .430 while driving in 42 runs and scoring 42 more.
They all led the way as Greendale claimed the Woodland Conference championship at 16-1 and ran off a 19-game winning streak at one point.
For their efforts, they are all on this season's Now Newspapers All-Suburban team.
They also earned recognition on a larger scale, as Ramirez and Pipp were on the Wisconsin Baseball Coaches Association's all-state first team and Henderson was given honorable mention.
Ramirez, who hit .375 with 35 RBIs, was also named the Woodland Conference Co-Player of the Year this season.
'Ty is a great competitor who flat-out dominated,' said Greendale head coach Brian Johnsen. 'He can throw any of his pitches for a strike at any time.'
Ramirez would agree, adding, 'I had good command of my fastball and curve, and I let my defense make plays behind me.'
Ramirez already has NCAA Division 1 scholarship offers from Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Wright State, South Dakota State and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Henderson is on his way to play Division 1 baseball next season, as he signed with Missouri. He could overpower lineups, as shown by his school-record 17 strikeouts in a victory over Wauwatosa West this season.
'He cut down on his walks this year, which made him absolutely dominating,' Johnsen said. 'He is also a tough competitor.'
Pipp was at the heart of the batting order and produced in a big way.
'He is an all-around phenomenal athlete who is a run-producer and an extremely clutch hitter,' the coach said. 'There is no one else I would want up in a clutch situation than Tristian.'
Pipp lined a three-run double to put Greendale on the board against Oak Creek late in a WIAA sectional championship contest and then scored himself on a single by Ramirez to give the Panthers a 4-1 lead.
He also had a walk-off home run in a game earlier this season, among his many crucial hits.
Team was close
Ramirez said this year's Greendale team was so special because all the players were close.
'We had a tight bond,' he said. 'We were on the same page with everything, and everyone knew his role.'
While Henderson will play in college next spring, Ramirez and Pipp will be back to help the Panthers try to continue this year's excellence.