Sean Hogan, a Molloy College graduate student, once played for the East Meadow Baseball Softball Association, beginning on a T-ball team and playing all the way through Senior League.
Clearly, he was only getting started. On May 13 Hogan was named Player of the Year by the East Coast Conference, the NCAA Division II conference in which Molloy competes. “When you’re a kid, obviously you look forward to achievements like this,” Hogan, 22, said. “It definitely felt good that all the hard work paid off.”
According to the East Meadow Baseball Softball Association, Hogan, a catcher, was the top hitter in the ECC during the regular season, with a .402 batting average. He also topped the league with 41 hits, and had eight doubles, three triples, 30 runs batted in, 55 total bases, a .480 on-base percentage and a .539 slugging percentage.
“He also hit a milestone this year of 200 [collegiate] hits,” Hogan’s father, John Hogan, said. “That’s a pretty big milestone for any college baseball player. All year long he has been really gaining traction, and he was also picked as pre-season player of the year, so for him to go out and win it at the end of the season was just terrific.”
Hogan is also known for putting pressure on opposing defenses by being the toughest player to strike out in all of Division II baseball. He has gone down on strikes just three times in 102 at-bats, or once every 34 at-bats.
“Sean is a great kid,” EMBSA Manager Steve LaSala said. “His dad coached down at the complex. His sister was a tremendous softball player. It was a very athletic family.”
Hogan often “played up,” LaSala explained, meaning that he would play with children a year older than him because of his skill level. “From a little kid, he was very talented.”
Playing baseball at Molloy has been “nothing short of amazing,” Hogan said. “I’ve met some friends that I’ll keep for the rest of my life. I’ve had unbelievable coaches through the year. I have not a single bad thing to say about Molloy. My time there has been amazing.”
One of his greatest tools, he said, has been the discipline and skills he learned as a young player in the EMBSA. Hogan said he was blessed with “unbelievable” coaches, including his father, a longtime East Meadow resident.
In fact, John said, he and his wife, Tracye, played on the same fields growing up.
“He’s been playing since he was 5 years old,” John said of his son. “He would run around with the girls and play with the girls’ softball until it was his time to start off with T-ball.”
Asked what it was like to coach his own children, John said there was nothing better. “[To] see them grow and see them flourish, see them grow beyond your expectations,” John said, “that was a real pleasure for my wife and I.”
And while John could not stay his son’s coach forever, Sean said that his dad has always been his hitting and personal coach, and is one of the main reasons why he’s been so successful. That success is continuing to put East Meadow on the map, and Sean said he was glad to represent his hometown.
“For us, it lets the kids now see that this is possible,” LaSala said. “Training, practice, playing hard — this could happen. It just doesn’t happen to other kids in other towns; it happens here, too.”