College Signing

Utterback signs with Knights to continue baseball career


LINDEN ­— Marian University baseball has a special connection with Montgomery County and its players. Thursday the Knights added another MoCo player to their team as North Montgomery senior Roman Utterback signed with the Knights to continue his baseball career. The Knights and Charger coach Matt Voorhees also have a special connection as its well-known that Voorhees was an assistant coach with Marian.

That connection was a big reason for Utterback and his decision to sign with the Knights as he knows it will be a smooth transition to the college game knowing that his high school coach has special ties there.

“I know that if I ever have a question that I can just go to coach Voorhees and he’ll guide me in the right direction,” Utterback said of signing with the Knights. “I come to practice everyday and show up to games confident in my abilities and I put in so many hours in the off-season to get to where I am today. Marian’s only 45 minutes away so I feel like it was the best fit for me to still be able to have that connection here back home.”

Voorhees added in that Marian Coach Todd Bacon continually looks out for area players and the signing of Utterback continues to show that the Knights want county players to find a home at the next level.

“They care so much about the players that we have here and want our kids to succeed,” Voorhees said. “Even if our guys aren’t a fit for their program, they help us find somewhere where they can succeed. They know the types of kids and players they’re getting from our area schools. For Roman, he’s been really special. He had to sit behind some talented shortstops with the likes of Brookes Walters and Jacob Kirsch. Through it all Roman just never gave up and continued to ask me what can I do to get better. He has all the physical skills to play at the next level and he’s really turned into a complete athlete.”

On the mound for the Chargers in 2024, Utterback has appeared in eight games and in 14.2 innings has a stellar .48 earned run average. He’s also struck out 25 hitters in those 14.2 innings.

Utterback noted how he’s seen his role change the last two seasons with the Chargers but still goes out and has the same mindset every time he steps on the mound.

“I’ve really found my groove since I’ve had more of that closer-type role,” Utterback said. “Being able to give my team two or so innings is where I’ve found my stride. That just allows me to hit my spots better and not have to worry about a longer outing and getting tired and things that come with being a starter.”

Utterback has also been the everyday shortstop for the Chargers this season when he’s not on the mound. He’s tied for third on the team with 10 RBI’s and tied for the team lead with 15 runs scored.

The ability to be a versatile player at short and have a great presence on the mound is something that’s made Utterback a valuable piece to the Chargers in his senior season.

“This year it’s been really cool to see his competitive nature on display,” Voorhees said. “He plays with not much emotion at shortstop but when he gets on that mound, you see that emotion come through. We’d love for him to be a starter for us this year but being a small-school baseball team, you have to have those guys at so many other spots too. When he’s been on the mound he’s done a terrific job of attacking hitters and that’s why you see him right around that .5 ERA.”

The Charger senior is the second to sign to play collegiately as he joins Jarrod Kirsch who signed with Wabash earlier this spring. North baseball continues to send players to the next level.