Winningest prep baseball coach eyes more innings at Cherry Creek

Johnson says baseball teaches the value of hard work and the pursuit of improvement

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Marc Johnson’s teams at Cherry Creek have won a lot of baseball games.

Johnson is now the winningest baseball coach in Colorado.

He set the record on May 12 when Creek rallied to defeat Grandview, 6-5, in nine innings which was the 808th win for Johnson as he surpassed the previous high of 807 victories by Eaton’s Jim Danley.

“I’ve had a good run,” said Johnson.

Cherry Creek collected a 7-4, eight-inning win over Grandview on May 13 and pounded Eaglecrest, 10-0, on May 15.

After the mercy rule victory over Eaglecrest on May 15, Johnson’s record was 810-205 in 48 seasons as the Bruins’ head coach and it should be noted that the baseball season was cancelled last spring because of COVID.

“Obviously it feels great,” admitted Johnson. “I never have played a game, so I have great great fans and great administration. Even this year’s team is learning and working to get better. I couldn’t be more pleased. It’s been very exciting. The team has showed some grit.

Out deal is we are trying to continually improve.”

Johnson has been a coach at Creek for 50 years. He was the head boys soccer coach from 1971-1999 and won five state titles in his 28-year reign.

He as an assistant baseball coach in 1972 and become head coach in 1973. Johnson’s teams have won 32 league crowns, eight state champions and have been the state runner-up six times.

“You think about all the great players I’ve had and like I said I never played in a the game so these guys deserve all the accolades,” said Johnson. “I’m probably the luckiest guy in the world coaching. I’ve had guys coach under me that had chances to take head coaching jobs and they said, ‘no I’m going to stay here.’”

Johnson is 76 years old and has to keep answering the question of how long he will continue to coach.

“I still have an amazing passion for the game,” he pointed out. “I’ve always felt my calling was this, and I was suppose to work with kids and teach them the game. The bottom line is you can have an effect on people’s lives just by teaching them the game. Through the game you teach them what hard work means and what continually try to improve means. You teach them some character and how to handle tough times.

“I still absolutely love the game. I get asked every year, ‘is this it, is this it?’ I say I’m going to evaluate at the end of the year.”

In the meantime, Creek is off to a 4-1 start prior to a May 17 game.

“This has been exciting,” continued Johnson. “I told the kids, just prove to me that you are tying to get better. That’s all I care. If we win, we win but we’re going to go out and play the best we can.

“I’ve had real good response from the players this season. They were so excited about the win the other day (May 12). It was crazy. It looks like a big individual accomplishment but I’ve always been a team guy. I tell the players ‘a better you makes a better we.’”

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