FORT WAYNE — For one it was the first honor of its kind in a long career. For another, it’s likely to be the last.
Plymouth High School Head Baseball Coach Tony Plothow and four-year PHS starter Damon Howe took the field together one last time at the Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association North-South All-Star Series July 9-10. Plothow was selected as an assistant coach to the North team for the first time in a career spanning many years and more than 350 games at Plymouth, while the game was likely to be the last official baseball game for Howe, an outstanding all-around athlete who was also selected to play in the Grange Insurance/IFCA North-South All-Star Football Game and will continue his football career at the University of Findlay in the fall.
“I know we both had a lot of fun,” said Plothow. “It was pretty well put on and a pretty prestigious thing for both of us. It was a lot of fun and a good way for him to end his career.”
Howe went 3 for 4 at the plate with 2 RBI and two walks while starting two games at first base in the three-game series. Although the North All-Stars were swept by the South 10-3 and 14-3 at the doubleheader July 9, they won the Wooden Bat Classic July 10 at Parkview Stadium in Fort Wayne.
“He had a great weekend with what he did stat-wise, but I really felt that he represented our program, Plymouth baseball, the Plymouth community and his parents really well,” said Plothow. “He opened some eyes out there with what he did for us. He had a great career for us and ended it on a positive note.”
Howe was a four-year PHS baseball starter and three-year Plymouth Post 27 American Legion starter boasting 30 RBI and 26 runs off 35 hits, including five home runs this season for a batting average of .455 and on-base percentage of .528. He was a four-year All-Northern Lakes Conference selection, 2010 All-State honoree and player for the West at this spring’s South Bend Tribune Sports Fest.
Plothow owns a career record of 227-124 at PHS with five sectional titles, three regional titles and a semistate title in 2000. His teams have won four NLC championships, including one this season. He has been named NLC Coach of the Year four times and has twice been named District Coach of the Year.