Baseball team rebuilds, retools for 2017 season
The boys’ baseball team has been hard at work since before Christmas break. Although their season did not start until February, they have been busy practicing their skills and training to learn new ones. With many key players from last year gone, Senior Co-Captain Jonathan Jones is unsure of the team’s impending season.
“We lost all of our pitching from last year, so this is going to be a rebuilding year because we have a lot of young kids,” Jones said.
Head Baseball Coach Joseph Laird has a more positive outlook on things. With this being his second year as head coach, he feels some of the underclassmen have the potential to rebuild the team.
Sophomores Kolby McWilliams and Ethan Everitt will be the pitching-catching duo this year. Jones, a new pitcher, and Junior Andrew Devall, with a year under his belt, are also backup pitchers.
“The younger ones like McWilliams and Everitt are going to have to step it up,” Laird said. “McWilliams has been doing pretty good. Sophomore Barret Shepherd has been swinging the bat real good.”
The coach is looking forward to having McWilliams return to the team. After being named All-District catcher last year as a freshman, he will be moving around in different positions and helping out where he can.
“McWilliams will pitch, catch, and play first base,” Laird said. “We have a lot more flexibility than we did last year.”
Even with these solid returning players, Laird has been surprised by the initiative of Senior Curry Cappel and Senior Co-Captain Johnathan Glenn.
“Cappel has surprised me a lot,” Laird said. “He’s going to help a lot in hitting and outfield. Glenn will be able to contribute on the mound and the field.”
“Defensively, we’ve been solid most of the time,” Laird said. “As a team overall, they’ve surprised me with what they’re able to do. We’ve played a lot of good teams.”
Despite losing the top four pitchers last year and having to rebuild the team this year, Laird has high hopes for the season as long as his players do what is expected of them.
“We ought to be able to compete for district if we do what we need to do in the field and in the classroom,” Laird said. “It’s definitely going to be interesting.”
The Baseball team currently has a 8-12-1 record, with District in two weeks.