Rye Baseball’s Shep Griffiths is Athlete of the Month

0:00 The final Rye High School Athlete of the Month for this school year is senior Shepard Griffiths, who last fall was a captain and […]

Ace: Senior Shep Griffiths was All-League and All-Section, and named to the “Diamond Nine” as a top scholar-athlete.
Published June 7, 2024 2:20 PM
2 min read

0:00

The final Rye High School Athlete of the Month for this school year is senior Shepard Griffiths, who last fall was a captain and two-way player for the state champion football team but who this spring was a captain and pitcher for the Garnets’ baseball team, leading Rye into the area’s Section 1 playoffs again.

“Shep has been part of the varsity baseball program since his sophomore year,” said Coach Mike Bruno, who nominated Griffiths for the Rye Lions Club’s monthly award. “He has continuously been matched up against our opponent’s best each year. This unselfish attitude has been beneficial in the success of Rye baseball.”

Griffiths received All-League and All-Section honors this year, and was among the area’s “Diamond Nine” honorees as a top scholar-athlete.

Asked to describe his best attribute on the mound — be it his fastball velocity, command of his breaking pitches or something else — he replied: “I’d have to say it’s discipline. I take my time between pitches, sorting myself out. And I try to vary my delivery in case there’s a runner on, so they don’t know whether to go or not. That helps, and it’s due to the good coaching I’ve received.”

After graduation, Griffiths will attend Wake Forest University in North Carolina. Will he pitch down there? “I don’t know,” he said. “They’re awfully good in the ACC.”

Griffiths is also undecided on a college major. “I’d like to do something that combines creativity and working with people,” he said. “My schedule didn’t permit me to take an art class this year, which was a shame.

“My freshman year was spent at Iona Prep, so my schedule when I got to Rye High was sometimes out of synch with my friends’,” he continued. “At times, though, that worked in my favor. When I took Mrs. DeVito’s pre-calculus class last year, I didn’t really know anyone else, and I could just put my head down and concentrate on the work. That’s what I like about math: Getting the right answer is like using a light switch — it’s either right or wrong, on or off.”

To graduate from Rye High, a student must amass hours of community service. For Griffiths, it was working to help preserve the Bird Homestead and Meeting House Conservancy on Milton Road. “I did all sorts of yard work and maintenance jobs, working to keep the place in good shape for future visitors,” he said.

Asked if he wanted to thank anyone for help in winning the Lions Club award, Griffiths immediately said: “My whole family, including my grandparents. They always text me after my games.”

“Shep is the consummate student-athlete,” Bruno said. “He knows and values the importance of preparation. He demonstrates leadership qualities that help others reach their potential, and is eager to be challenged.

“He is an individual who makes the most of his skills and of any situation,” his coach added. “His leadership on and off the field has set a positive example for other student-athletes of Rye High School”

Along with the other Athlete of the Month honorees this school year, Griffiths is eligible to receive Rye High’s Athlete of the Year Award when the Lions Club presents it at its annual awards luncheon later this
month.

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