For first-year coach Daryl Semien, the task is pretty straightforward: Getting the South San Francisco High School baseball team back to the upper echelon of the Peninsula Athletic League.
Getting the task completed won’t be so easy, but Semien thinks his Warriors may be up to the challenge.
“We definitely have some work to do, especially at the plate,” Semien said this past week. “We’re a little young, but we’re strong with pitching and defense.”
First up for the Warriors (2-3 PAL Ocean, 4-5 overall) is to capture the Ocean Division crown and move back up to the Bay Division. With just three seniors, South City may not be ready to claim the Ocean crown this year, but with nine juniors and one freshman, the Warriors have the foundation to build on for the future.
Junior pitcher Joey Marccuci is 3-2 so far this season as the team’s top starter.
“As he goes, we will go,” Semien said. “Our pitching is definitely going to determine how far we go.”
Handling Marccuci and the rest of the Warriors’ pitching staff falls on the shoulders of catcher and team captain Ramzy Azar, a junior, and Semien likes what he has seen so far.
“He’s a great kid,” Semein said. “He’s one of our leaders and he does a great job with our staff. He speaks up when he needs to.”
The Warriors are getting plenty of senior leadership out in the field with center fielder Greg Bildhauer, a fellow team captain, and Joey Moro.
“Joey is a real leader, both on and off the field,” Semien said.
South City has drawn an infusion of new blood this year with junior shortstop-pitcher Ryan Mohr and junior second baseman Brad Los anchoring the Warriors defense up the middle.
The lone freshman, Maligi Maluia, is the team’s starting third baseman as he continues to transition from football to baseball.
“Ryan and Brad really anchor the middle,” Semien said. “And Maligi is a strong kid at 6-2 and 240 pounds. He’s really coming around for us, even as we keep throwing a lot of new stuff at him.”
Despite losing to San Mateo twice this past week, Semien is looking for a successful conclusion to this season.
“I am very confident we can win the division and get into the Section playoffs,” Semein said. “We’ve got some big games against Capuchino, Woodside and Half Moon Bay coming up, but we can’t look past any team in this league.”