With the spring sports season cancelled by the UIL because of the coronavirus pandemic, the Herald Democrat is putting a spotlight on the seniors who had their high school careers abruptly come to an end.
College Plans: Attend Oklahoma Christian University to play baseball and major in biology with hopes of attending medical school.
Superstitions, rituals, or traditions before or after competing: When putting my uniform on I go left sock, right sock, left stirrup, right stirrup, left shoe, right shoe.
Song or music that prepares you for competition: I don’t usually listen to music because I am either doing homework or thinking about and getting myself prepared for the upcoming game.
Favorite subject/class: Math/calculus
Favorite teacher and why: Mrs. McLaren because I have had her as a teacher for the last two years, and she has been my UIL coach all four years. She is always there to help us whenever we need it and wants us to succeed.
Favorite coach and why: I have had several great coaches throughout my high school career, but I would have to say my favorite coach was Coach Bart Williams because he loved what he did, he cared for each and every one of his players, and he wanted what was best for each one of us. Coach Williams always put the needs of the team before his own needs and set a great example for all of his players. Coach Williams believed in me as a freshman and gave me a fair chance to play, and he is a big part of the reason I am in the position I am in right now. Coach Willy was always encouraging to his players, and helped me build my confidence by telling me to relax and just play my game. There were times my freshman year where I was nervous about things, but he would help calm me down by telling me that I belonged on the team and that I was out there because he trusted me. Coach Willy would also do anything for any of his players. He always taught us to work hard and give our best effort, and he would stay after practice and work with anyone who wanted to get in some extra reps. He set a great example for all of his players by how dedicated he was to the team and our success. Even when he was sick and taking chemo, he never missed a practice and was always there to help us get better as a team so that we could achieve our goals. No matter how hot or cold it was during practice or a game, you would never hear him complain once about anything. He was an excellent role model both on and off the field, and he will always be a reason why I play.
Best teammate and why: Jackson Lipscomb because he is always willing to put in extra work with me, and he is encouraging when things aren’t going my way.
Best high school sports memory: Getting a Slurpee after big wins and yelling the name as you get it.
Best high school non-sports memory: Going to practice my UIL events with Jackson Lipscomb during our study period and always finding a way to end up talking about baseball.
What you love about your sport: Everything! It’s the greatest game ever.
Favorite sports movie and why: "Rookie of the Year" because it is how I got the nickname "Rook" from Coach Smith.
Describe the Pottsboro Class of 2020: Hard-working, resilient and competitive in both athletics and academics.
Biggest lesson learned: Enjoy the things you do and don’t take them for granted because you never know when it’s your last.
Biggest influence in your life: My family has had a big influence in my life. They have always supported me in everything I do, and they have given up their summer vacations the last few years so that I can play baseball all summer instead.
Athlete you look up to: I have always looked up to Dustin Pedroia of the Boston Red Sox. He is the reason I wear No. 15 and I look up to him because he loves the game and always plays hard.
Reaction to the season being cancelled: I was disappointed about not getting to play because I had looked forward to baseball season all year and I knew that we had a chance to be pretty good again this year.
Message to your teammates: Keep working hard and go do big things next year.
Message to your freshman self: Relax more and have fun.
Thing you won’t miss at all: All the makeup work I get from missing class for tournaments and games.
Thing you will miss the most: I will miss seeing all of my friends and playing with such a great group of guys.