Legendary Rootstown athlete Mike Boland dies at 34

Legendary Rootstown athlete Mike Boland dies at 34

Mike Boland, a legendary athlete at Rootstown, died in his sleep August 13. He was just 34 years old.

A four-time all-league soccer standout, Boland still holds Rovers’ career records for goals (106) and points (258). He was the Portage County League Player of the Year in both 2003 and 2004. He was an equally gifted ballplayer, still holding program records for career batting average (.435), runs (105) and triples (17). He also holds the career steals record for the Rootstown basketball team.

“Michael was one of those rare individuals that whatever sport he chose to participate in, he was going to be very successful at it,” Rovers athletic director Keith Waesch said. “The three sports that he chose at Rootstown, soccer, basketball and baseball, few have excelled more than Michael at any of those three sports.”

Indeed, Boland is all over the record books, especially on the diamond. In addition to his career records, Boland still holds program single-season records for runs scored with 48 in 2005 (he also has the second-best figure in program history with 41 in 2004) and triples with 11 in 2005. In that 2005 season, Boland batted .440 (11th in program history) with 40 hits (seventh). In 2004, he compiled 29 singles (eighth in program history) and six homers (second). In addition to being the Rovers’ career leader in batting average, runs and triples, Boland ranks second in homers (nine), third in hits (108) and fifth in RBI (76).

He was short in stature, but deceivingly powerful, not only with his legs, but with his bat and his ability in basketball to get his hands in there and steal the basketball at any given time at any point in the game,” Waesch said. “You don’t get triples by hitting line drives to center field or whatever. I mean he found gaps, and when he found those gaps, he could really run and turned basically doubles for most kids into triples.”

Waesch noted that Boland was equally superb off the field.

“He was one of those type of kids when you coached him that would doing anything for you and certainly would not question anything that was asked of him and that’s just kind of the person that Michael was,” Waesch said. “He was somebody that would just go out and get the job done and wasn’t one that was cocky in any way, shape or form.

“He just enjoyed sports and life and obviously we lost him way too soon. Just a tremendous loss for our community and definitely one of the better athletes that’s graduated from Rootstown High School in the 20 years that I’ve been the athletic director.”

Related posts

Cameron vs Valley Live Stream How To Watch Cameron vs Valley Football

School Sports

Riverdale vs Arlington Live Stream How To Watch Riverdale vs Arlington Football

School Sports

Ruleville Central vs Humphreys County Live Stream How To Watch Ruleville Central vs Humphreys County Football

School Sports

Leave a Comment