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ECC baseball team prepares for season

Ethan Wiles, Staff Writer

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Kristen Flojo
ECC’s baseball loses their first home game of the season versing Morton College 0-3 on Friday, March 22.

The Elgin Community College baseball team returned home from their spring trip to Myrtle Beach last week after finishing with three wins and four losses.

The start of our spring trip was a bit shaky,” second-year student Jose Venegas said. “You expect some mistakes to happen early on, especially when the team had not practiced outside or seen anything live off the bats.”

The Spartans won their opening game by defeating Penn State Beaver 10-0. They hit a slump after that, losing their next four games and being outscored 27-10. The trip ended on a high note for the team after winning the last two games and beating the number three ranked Cumberland team 6-5.

“It was a very good game overall by our whole team so I think that will give us a good boost confidence-wise going into our season back home,” Venegas said.

One positive note heading into the season is the amount of returning players that will hit the field for the Spartans this spring.

“I think one of the most exciting things about this team is the experience that we have,” second-year student Colin Fowich said. “We’ve got a lot of guys returning that played big roles in last season’s conference championship and playoff-run that can bring what we learned from last year to the freshmen and transfers on this year’s squad.”

The Spartans have had a successful past in playoff situations in years past and they look forward to making another big run come playoff time.

“Everyone needs to focus on doing the little things correctly,” second-year student Clayton Milas said. “Sometimes we’ll get too focused on the big picture and overlook the small details, which will cost us. If we keep the same intensity and focus on the minute details as we do on trying to win games, we’ll have a great shot to make a deep run in the playoffs.”

Venegas returns to the Spartans pitching rotation this season and is excited to get back on the mound and help his team win games.

“I think to be successful this season it will all revolve around our pitching staff and defense,” Venegas said. “We have a great group of pitchers so if we can control the pace of the game, we can give our hitters a chance to win us a ball game. Hand in hand, our defense must have our pitchers’ backs and make big plays when we need them most.”

Despite the season just getting underway, there are plenty of positives that Milas and his team are looking to carry forward throughout the year.

“Right now we have great chemistry as a team,” Milas said. “For being so early in the season, we are very comfortable playing alongside each other, and we’re invested in our teammate’s success just as much as we are in our own.”

For Venegas, he is counting on the returning players to play a key role in the offense help this season.

“I think one of our strengths as a team is our hitting,” Venegas said. “Our one, three and four hitters are returning players that had great years along with other guys in our lineup that have made great progress over the last year. Along with that, we have a great group of freshmen filling in for the guys who transferred out. They all have great potential and will make key impacts for us all year.”

Fowich, who is also a returning player to the Spartans roster, knows that, during a long season, things will not always go as smooth as any team wants.

“We just have to believe in each other and in ourselves,” Fowich said. “There’s no doubt that this is a very talented team. We just have to make sure to not let the little speed bumps that every team is bound to hit over a 50+ game season get to us.”

The Spartans will play their first home game against Morton College on Saturday, March 23, at 12:00 p.m.

About the Writer
Ethan Wiles, Staff Writer

I'm studying broadcast communications and it's my third-year at ECC. I chose to join The Observer because my dream job is to be a journalist and I feel...

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ECC baseball team prepares for season