Ligonier Valley baseball team starts 2013 season
The Ligonier Valley High School baseball team began its 2013 season this month. Head coach John Jones said his goals for the season are to win the Heritage Six Conference, do well in the District Six playoffs, and qualify for the state championship.
“We've had a nice run of success the last two years, but last year we thought our season ended kind of short,” Jones said. “We had higher hopes and better expectations for last year and quite honestly we didn't get where we thought we should have gotten to, so they are chomping at the bit to get going.”
This season, Jones has 29 players on the team. The seniors on the team are William Elliot, Ty Ferlin, Jacob Hall, Matthew Ryan, Yran Torrance, and Zachary Yeskey. Juniors include Bryce Burtosky, Daniel Croyle, Matthew Ebberts, Jacob Nemeth, Nickolas Payne, Andrew Schultz, Brent Stiles, and Alex Tutino. Max Caldwell, Luke Ferlin, Jordan Jones, Samuel Marsh, Richard Ross, Victor Sansing, and Jacob Tuk are the sophomores on the team. And the freshmen include Jordan Bretz, Philip Cornell, Brian Custer, Brent Henderson, Jacob Schott, Thomas Sibal, Alexander Vigliotti, and Austin Williams.
Jones said the toughest opponents the Rams will face this year include conference rivals Homer Center, Marion Center, and Blairsville. However, Jones believes the hard work the team has put in so far this season will yield positive results.
“I really like the work ethic of the team,” Jones stated. “I have been very pleased with that. There has been a lot of adversity this spring, as far as the weather. It's tough when you keep having to practice in the gym, but I like the way the guys have been approaching things.”
Though he does not have set captains, Jones said each game he chooses two or three seniors to take on the ceremonial position.
Jones said one of biggest strengths of the team is the sense of unity they have, not forming into small cliques within the team.
He also said he has high expectations for all of the seniors to lead the team to victory.
“They've really taken ownership of the team and the leadership role that they have taken has really impressed me,” Jones commented. “They're all good workers. They know what they have to do and they get it taken care of. They are willing to help the underclassmen out and show them the way we expect things to be done.”
Peter Turcik is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.