The Future Of Round Lake Baseball

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Leo Garcia, Staff Writer

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Windy Saturday mornings are the perfect time to play baseball. Actually, windy weather is the complete opposite of perfect weather for baseball. Outfielders dread windy days because it leaves them vulnerable when trying to track down a ball. However, the wind gave sophomore outfielder, Wyatt Hill no problem as he got an out and then displayed his tremendous arm by getting the ball all the way to home plate. Hill’s play ended that inning and saved Round Lake from conceding more runs. Hill is one of many sophomores that contribute to a young varsity team.

The Round Lake High School varsity baseball team started off the season with a loss. In comparison from last year, the baseball team has improved defensively, but still needs some help offensively. For the second year in a row, Coach Adamson was forced to not have a sophomore team due to lack of sophomores and therefore, had to bump up all the sophomore players to varsity. The Panthers still have many more games to come back and prove themselves.

There is a significant change to the varsity team this year in terms of grade level of the players. One of the reasons is that there were more upperclassmen last year. “We graduated 12 seniors last year, anytime you lose that many, you are going to be very young the next year,” said Coach Ed Adamson. This year’s team is made up of mainly lower classmen, which proves difficult when RLHS faces other teams with older, more seasoned players. “We lost a few kids to jobs, they couldn’t make the commitment of a sport and still work as many hours as we wanted,“ Adamson added. “There are so many things different in varsity,” said pitcher and second baseman Sophomore Bryant Cruz. “It’s worth it though because I get to learn so much from the guys on the team and from the coaching staff. It’s an honor to play those positions on varsity.”

Cruz really struggled with moving up to varsity at first. “I felt like I wasn’t fitting in with them [upperclassmen on varsity]” Cruz mentioned. Fortunately, RLHS varsity baseball players came together as a family playing the sport they love.

Junior third baseman Amadeus Pope believes coaches should be more strict. “The sophomores that are on varsity and play for the most part have earned it, but some shouldn’t be on varsity because they’d rather mess around,” Pope stated. Players like Pope are really serious about baseball and give it their all whether it’s during practice or a game. “If players aren’t trying to represent what’s on their chest and don’t have a love for the game, I don’t think they should be playing varsity,” Pope claimed. “And that goes for any grade level.” That said, Pope believes the serious sophomores are dedicated and talented and deserve to be out on the field with the upperclassmen. “As long as you love the sport and perform your best on the regular and give it your all, age shouldn’t matter,” he said.

The good thing about having a young team however, is room for improvement and development. “Each day we have a goal to get better in some aspect of the game,” said coach Adamson. “We are still trying to develop pitchers and trying to be consistent defensively and at the plate.”

A varsity team full of young players can be tough to get used to, but the dedication and talent of all the players shows a bright future for RLHS baseball. Hard losses contribute to lessons learned and now the Panthers can overcome those losses and hopefully turn them into wins for the rest of the season and continue on to the next season as well. “I believe my guys will continue to get better,” stated coach Adamson. “I predict that we will be playing our best baseball by the end of the season.”

 

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