Beau Edwards, head coach, prepared the baseball team for a season filled with success and friendships. Thomas Bennet, freshman, Talon Holland, sophomore, Hunter Hendrix, junior, and Baylen Sanders, senior, plan to make this season even better than the past.
“Last year is last year. I don’t put a whole lot of stock in last year at all. With this year, it is a brand new team,” Edwards said.
Going to the State Championships came with benefits, like knowing what the team has to do to get there.
“I think we enjoyed the hype of last year, and we know the work effort that we are going to have to do to get back there, and we are more determined to win it this year because we have been there before,” Hendrix said.
The team will have to put in a lot of work, in and out of practice, to achieve the goals they have set. Working harder to get faster and stronger will help to get back to playoffs.
“I think the team really wants to go back and win it this time, so I think we are going to work harder, get stronger and faster and be more ripped and ready for this,” Bennet said.
The players must be ready for what is coming for them and do what is best for the team. In order to win the state championship, each player has to pay attention to what the coaches say and not take the criticism negatively.
“We repeat everything over and over and over again. It’s a progression we go through and then, obviously, when we get through the progressions, we just keep repeating and repeating and repeating, and hopefully, it sticks and then when we get on in the game there is not much coaching that goes on, and they just play,” Edwards said.
The team will have to play together like they have been a team before, and they already know what everybody is thinking. They have to go out to practice and think that it is the last time that the whole team will practice in the Mustang Stadium.
“Practices are going good. Just hard work is all we need and dedication and just listening to coaches and what they say,” Bennet said.
Work and dedication will make a great team, especially if there are big leaders who help the coaches share their ideas. The coaches have exercise that they can share with the team; they have to find a way to keep them focused and engaged in the game ahead of them.
“Keep a level head. Focus on the little things and don’t worry about the big moments so much, control what you can,” Holland said.
Baseball is all about living in the moment and focusing on what is happening.
“Mental training, you just got to be able to think fast and do the right thing at the right time and don’t fold under pressure,” Bennet said.
Baseball helps a player learn how to find their breath track it and allow it to center and focus them. The players have to get in the zone and understand where they want to be: locked into the game.
“It takes a lot of work off the field and on the field, like back to the mentality thing. Baseball has a lot of mentalities, and you have to know what you are doing,” Sanders said.
A good team comes from a balance with players who complement each other. In order to do so, the team has to become and stay close and work together on simple things.
“I think we need to stay closer together, we need to work together, and bond together. We need to keep fundamentals in check, and make sure we keep it all good,” Hendrix said.
Baseball is work with lots of play; it is a game, so the players have to work hard and have fun. It is a team sport, so the bond between players is important. It may be a competition, but it is important to have respect for the opposing players, coaches, and fans. Even if the game does not go how some expected, it to the players can still learn from each other.
“I think [state] has brought us closer together, and it has united the team, and we know what we can do,” Hendrix said.
The team has taken things they have learned from last season and applied it to how they will go about this season.
The boys are looking good this season; the Varsity team is five in two at the moment. The next Varsity game is Friday, Feb 28, at 5:30 p.m. against Eastside at the Mustang Baseball Field.
“This is a big season. I feel like we have big things coming again. Last year was good, but I want to make 2020 our year—the best year,” Sanders said.