POTTSBORO — For his entire high school career, Jake Williams has patrolled the outfield at Leo Tuel Field with speed and precision to go with versatility throughout the batting order.
As a successful cog in the Cardinals baseball program, the variety of his contributions has not gone unnoticed by opposing coaches.
Williams signed his letter of intent to play for Oklahoma Christian University and hopes to bring that presence to his future team.
“Learning to work hard. It's not been easy for us to win a lot of those games,” he said. “But we'd find a way to win. I think that will help at the next level.”
He chose the Division II program over Cameron University, LeTourneau and UT-Dallas.
“Oklahoma Christian was better all around — for academics, they have a great coaching staff and the place felt like home,” Williams said.
As a four-year starter for the Cardinals, Williams will look for another strong season when Pottsboro kicks things off in two weeks.
“We're going to try and win another district championship,” he said. “That's our goal. We're going to do everything we can to get there.”
Williams was a first-team all-district selection as a junior when Pottsboro went 24-7 overall and undefeated in District 9-3A play, reaching the region quarterfinals before losing against eventual state semifinalist Van Alstyne.
Williams was also a first-team all-district pick in 2018 as the Cardinals finished 23-7 and lost to White Oak in the Class 3A Region II semifinals for the program's best season in three years.
During his freshman year he hit .361 with 14 RBI and nine steals.
Oklahoma Christian moved from the Heartland Conference to the Lone Star Conference starting with this season and was picked eighth in the conference's preseason poll.
In 2019 the team was 28-20 and ranked as high as No. 6 in the NCAA Division II South Central Region poll. The Eagles opened this season No. 10 in the South Central Region poll.
The program played in the 1972 NAIA World Series and participated in three straight National Christian College Athletic Association World Series, the last coming in 2015.
Denison's Chris Eichler and Van Alstyne's J.D. Frazier are on the roster this season.
“If you can play, you'll play. Last year they started five freshmen,” Williams said. “Just getting the chance to go there and work hard and get as much playing time as possible, as long as I'm playing it's fine with me wherever they want me.”