John Schiffner is back in Orono.
The veteran baseball coach, who spent the 2014-2015 season as a volunteer assistant with the University of Maine baseball program, has rejoined the coaching staff under head coach Nick Derba.
Derba also announced on Monday that Matt Marsh has come on board as a volunteer assistant with the Black Bears.
Schiffner replaces former UMaine standout Scott Heath of Westbrook, who spent last season in Orono, while assistant Conor Burke and assistant business manager and director of baseball operations Nick Fox both return. Volunteer assistant coach Taylor Lewis also has moved on.
Schiffner spent 25 years at the helm of the Chatham Anglers of the Cape Cod Baseball League. He led the club to two championships, six East Division titles, 15 playoff appearances and 541 regular-season wins before retiring this summer.
From 1978-1982, Schiffner was an assistant with Chatham and from 1983-1988 worked as a scout with the Montreal Expos. He has coached and managed 39 first-round draft picks and more than 125 athletes that reached the major leagues, including 2015 National League Rookie of the Year Kris Bryant.
Derba played under Schiffner at Chatham.
Schiffner was the head coach of the Plainfield (Connecticut) High School from 1978-2011, guiding the team to state tournament appearances in 31 of his 33 seasons. In 2001, he was named American Baseball Coaches Association, District I, Division III National High School Coach of the Year and in 2000, he was honored as the Connecticut High School Baseball Coach of the Year.
Schiffner graduated from Providence College in 1977 with a bachelor’s degree in Social Studies Education before earning his master’s in Human Relations at Eastern Connecticut State University in 1986.
Marsh was most recently the general manager at Motus Academy, a 16-team player development program based in St. James, New York.
While there, he was responsible for managing the recruitment process for players, creating recruitment videos, managing budgets and building schedules for tournaments, league play and practices.
Marsh was also the junior varsity head baseball coach at Ward Melville High School in East Setauket, New York, in 2016 and 2017, going 30-9 while earning Section XI League I JV Coach of the Year honors and a league title in 2017. He has been coaching travel baseball teams since 2010.
Marsh in 2015 earned his bachelor’s degree in Finance and Information Systems from Loyola University in Maryland, captaining and coaching the club baseball team as a senior.
Husson field hockey earns nod
The Husson University field hockey team was selected to finish first in the North Atlantic Conference’s East Division in the preseason coaches poll.
The Eagles received three first-place votes and 33 points to edge defending league champion the University of Maine at Farmington, which had three first-place votes and 30 points.
Thomas College of Waterville (21 points), Castleton and Colby-Sawyer (17 each) and New England College (8) round out the poll.
Husson, which finished 8-7 overall and 4-1 in NAC East play last fall, features a new head coach in two-time All-American Sabrina Smith. The Eagles are seeking their sixth NAC championship in eight years this season.
Three of Husson’s top five scorers return this fall, including Taylor Shaw of Plymouth, Mikayla Toth of Skowhegan and Lauren Russell of Saco.