Souhegan baseball coach Bill Dod in stretch run of legendary career

Staff photo by HEATHER HENLINE Souhegan baseball coach Bill Dod pauses at home plate as his players look before Friday's regular-season finale against Goffstown.

The biggest thing for Souhegan High School baseball coach Bill Dod on Friday was honoring his seniors and also speaking pre-game about the importance of honoring the country’s veterans on Memorial Day.

The fact that it was in all likelihood the final home game in his stellar 50-year coaching career? Yes, well, that too, but Dod wasn’t thinking that first and foremost.

The Sabers finished the regular season by falling to Goffstown, 12-1, and their 7-9 mark likely means they will be on the road in next Thursday’s first round Division II game.

“I think the big thing for me was honoring the seniors (which was done with a cake with their names on it) and seeing the alumni come back,” Dod said.

Indeed, several Souhegan alums were on hand, but also alumni from Bishop Guertin, Milford and Sanborn, where Dod also coached. He was admittedly thrilled to have a pitcher who won 17 games in three years at Sanborn, Al Lanseigne, on hand. Lanseigne has become a close family friend and is godfather to Dod’s daughter Kerry.

The whole event brought one simple reaction.

“It just doesn’t seem like 50 years,” Dod said. “It’s been a lot of really great seasons. I’ve been fortunate to coach 50 seasons and get 549 wins. I think the biggest thing was honoring the seniors and seeing the alumni come back, some of them whom I haven’t seen in a while.”

In the game, the Sabers actually took a 1-0 lead on an RBI hit by Caelan Behn. Max Leonard and Aiden Casey had the Sabers’ other hits. The 15-3 Grizzlies, who will likely be seeded second, had 12 hits. Liam McGrath took the loss.

The Sabers could be on the road next Thursday in the single elimination tourney to one of any spots, possibly at Plymouth, John Stark, or Kennett. Seedings come out early next week.

“I’d cherish the opportunity to play a Plymouth or a Kennett whom we haven’t played,” Dod said.

There will be an event to honor Dod at the New Hampshire Fisher Cats game on Saturday evening, June 9 as the Northeast Delta Dental Stadium Left Field Pavillion has been reserved. The cost of $36 will include food and game ticket, and checks can be sent by June 1 to Saber assistant coach Mike Beliveau at P.0. Box 1152, Amherst, N.H. 03031. Checks can be made payable to the SHS Activity Fund.

Also before Friday’s game, a moment of silence was held in memory of longtime local baseball coach Bobby Caswell, who passed away earlier this week.