Baseball teams swing into action

By Luke Casola ’20
Freshman player Brendan Kang ’20 steps up to bat. Printed with the permission of Aaron Park ’18

The baseball season has begun for the Wolverines.  The program competes on five levels: varsity, junior varsity, freshmen, eighth grade and seventh grade.

Despite a crushing 3-2 loss in last year’s CIF Championship, the varsity squad is looking to bounce back this season. The squad has won the CIF-SS Division I Championship in the past and looks to continue that success by bringing back another trophy. Prior to league, the team will have tournaments to improve.  The squad started the season strong, winning the Easton Tournament on March 7.  This season, the varsity team consists of two freshman, shortstop Drew Bowser ‘20 and outfielder Pete Crow-Armstrong ‘20. Crow-Armstrong said that he is excited to get his first taste at a high school sport and believes that the team can do very well this season.

“[Our goal] is to win CIF, and I have loads of confidence that we will, but our team is very young, and I want these young players to grow together throughout the season,” Crow-Armstrong said.

Similar to varsity, the JV squad practices about six days a week depending on the game schedule.  With a current record of 7-2 as of press time, the JV squad is demonstrating hard work during games and practices.  However, the team can struggle at times because of the new roster. JV players said that they believe practices are definitely a great way to improve.  Despite the new roster, the team should eventually gel as the season progresses.

“As a team, I hope that we grow in chemistry and grow closer as group. I hope we can use that chemistry to be successful and win many games,” outfielder Sam Biller ‘20 said.

The freshmen team is composed of freshmen and a few sophomores.  The squad only consists of 11 players, so each athlete gets to play.  This is the first time that many players are competing at the high school level, and many freshmen said that they believe the program is very welcoming and wants the best from each player.  As the youngest team, much time is spent learning from the upperclassmen.

“This season, each and every person is doing what they can to help the team win games. Baseball is all about team effort and chemistry, and that all starts from our practices. Everyone is working their hardest and doing what they need to do to get better. We translate this work ethic and teamwork into our games. If we play our hardest and do what we do in practice, we are going to accomplish what we want in having a successful season,” pitcher Justin Spitz ‘20 said.

Program Head Jared Halpert applies the same mindset from the high school squads to both middle school squads.  The eighth grade teams consists of most players from last year’s seventh grade squad.  On March 16, the black team opened their season with a loss to Chaminade.  Shortstop George Cooper ‘21 said that he believes the baseball program is great.

“I am most excited for the school rivalries and playing against guys I grew up playing with. My favorite thing about playing HW baseball is the great coaching and atmosphere around the sport that the coaches provide,” Cooper said.

For the seventh graders, this is their first time that they will be playing baseball for the Wolverines.  Second baseman Chad Bacon ‘22 said that he is looking forward to playing with his friends.  Overall, the seventh grade squad is strong and shows great signs of improvement during practices. The squad will play in five games or more this season, depending on if they make playoffs. Outfielder Alexander Shane ‘22 said that he believes the team can win the championship.

“I’m really excited to play with this team this year because we have great chemistry together and we have lots of talent and we can definitely win the championship with this group of guys. My favorite thing about playing for this team is always being around my best friends and just having a blast playing the game we all love,” Shane said.

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