Freshman baseball is up and rolling

Charlotte Stephan

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MHSAA spring sports are up and running and our freshman baseball team is ready to play. With over thirty games on the schedule, the Rangers are prepared for a busy but competitive year. 

The freshman team brings a lot of new talent to FHC that we haven’t seen thus far. Most of the boys have been playing together for the past few years and have made many strong connections through both different travel teams and the Thornapple Valley Baseball League. With this being said, the team is ready to go out to try and beat last year’s freshman team record of 26-2-1.

“We are looking pretty good this year,” Nick Williams said. “I think we might be able to do better than last year’s freshman team because we have deep pitching and good hitting.”

While beating last year’s freshman team is a solid goal for the players, head coach Paul Grady isn’t worried about how many games they win or lose, rather than just improving their skills. Grady also understands the importance of attitudes in sports and he looks forward to shaping his players outside of just baseball.

“With this being the freshmen level, it is all about getting better each day, the players might care about winning and losing, but, my focus is to get them ready for JV and varsity baseball,” coach Grady said. “The last four years, the freshman team has won a lot of games, but more importantly I’m most proud that they won and lost with class and humility, they played the game the right way and were great teammates to each other.”

The team had its first game on Thursday, March 23 against the Unity Christian Crusaders and it was a great way to begin the season. Although the boys lost the game 8-7, there were some incredible plays after just one week of practice and they are looking strong as they head into the rest of the season. Oliver Pelon hit two singles and one double to start his year off with a 1.000 batting average. Similarly, Keyan Roelfzema, Elias Cumings, Will McClain, and Caden Harleton all had some great at-bats where they all ended the night with a solid 0.333 batting average.

Despite what happens this year, the team is looking forward to a great season of finally playing with their friends again. The Rangers’ next game will be home on Tuesday, April 11, at 4:15 where they will play two, five-inning games against Byron Center.