Originally published in Island Ad-Vantages, June 20, 2013
DISHS baseball coach Darren Eaton retiring
by Jack Scott
After 17 years of coaching, Mariner baseball coach Darren Eaton has decided to hang up his spikes. The first two years, he was assistant coach to Scott Seile, but after that, they switched roles and together developed a very impressive baseball program that went to the playoffs every year. That is the achievement that he said he is the most proud of.
Because of the long span of years, it was not possible to determine the actual win loss record that these teams accumulated overall, but Eaton estimates that they averaged over 10 wins per season. He has coached a lot of talented players over the years and it would be too long a list to name them all, though they are all special in his memory. One of the gratifying parts of all his hard work is seeing these players as they grow to young men and they still greet him as coach.
There also were three state championships that we won in a five-year period. Each team was a different mix and won in a different way. The 2005 team willed its way to the trophy, overcoming adversity and winning the game against a very accomplished team, making it a David and Goliath story. The 2007 team was loaded with talent and was very motivated in its win. The 2009 team took him by surprise and was a group of players who just fit together very well and played as a team.
There is also the relationships he has developed with other coaches in the area. He especially was impressed with the help and insight he has gotten from George Stevens coach Danny Kane, despite the intense rivalry between the schools.
Eaton feels that he owes a lot of the success that he is given credit for to Scott Seile, a good friend and partner in crime through most of the years. He felt they complement each other and Scott provided entertainment and insight, as well as encouragement and motivation with the players. Eaton feels he couldn’t have done it without Seile.
He also is indebted to his assistant coaches this year, Gil Lacroix, Will Morey and Colin Ciomei. Another reason he gives for his success is all the work of the coaches who run the Little League, junior league and senior league teams where the basic skills are learned and refined before they get to high school.
Eaton feels it is time for a younger coach with more energy. He also coaches the girls’ basketball team in winter. Coaching takes a lot of time with practices, games, bus rides, and strategy and he is looking forward to watching his daughter play softball after being able to coach his son in baseball.