Nalevanko making his move on diamond at Jeannette
Jordan Nalevanko, a senior at Jeannette High School, is a baseball player for the Jayhawks.
He began playing baseball when he was 8 years old because he enjoyed the sport. Nalevanko said he just likes to play the game and its been his favorite sport ever since he started to play.
Baseball is also his favorite sport to watch and the New York Yankees are his favorite team. He likes to watch Derek Jeter, the Yankees' longtime shortstop.
This season, Nalevanko is playing second base and is a starting pitcher. He doesn't have a preference between the two positions and said, “It doesn't matter as long as I'm playing.”
At second base, Nalevanko enjoys fielding ground balls and when he's pitching, “I like being on the mound and having fun.”
He most enjoys getting the chance to hang out with his friends while playing the sport he likes so much. This team is full of players who have been playing together for a long time.
Coach Marcus Clarkson is a good coach who Nalevanko likes very much.
“He's more than a coach. He's nice, someone I can talk to,” said Nalevanko. “He's good with the team, he doesn't get mad but if we do something wrong, he'll tell us.”
This year's team is a group of guys who just like to have fun and play the sport of baseball, Nalevanko said.
“Our goal is just to make the playoffs. We're just working hard, practicing every day and getting conditioned,” he said.
As of late last week, the team hadn't played any games as the first few contests of the season were postponed due to ongoing cold weather.
“We're just stuck in the gym, we're ready to get on the field and play.”
Clarkson is keeping his team's spirits up while the cold days dragged on, Nalevanko said. One day the team skipped practice and had a pizza party Pitzer's as a way of getting out of the gym at least temporarily.
“We have hitting games, too,” he said. “There's a cage, though, so it's different from hitting on the field.”
After graduation this spring, Nalevanko wants to attend college and would like to continue playing baseball. He hasn't settled on a college or a major yet but said he's enjoying the process of figuring it all out.
Nalevanko is the son of Sharon Seybold, his stepfather Rick Seybold and his father, John Nalevanko. He has an older brother, Ryan.
“My goal is to just go out and try to help my team make the playoffs,” he said.
Kristie Linden is an editor for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 724-838-5154.