Wednesday, February 6, 2013
The Timberland Wolves are a young baseball team coming of age. THS will look to rely on its stable of freshmen and sophomores to shoulder much of the workload this spring.
With just three seniors returning in Dylan Craig, Chevy Dennis and Roderick McCray, and a pair of juniors in Matt Gabel and Tripp Wilkie, this is a young team hoping to improve and learn on the job.
“Hopefully we can play some better defense this year compared to last year,” said Coach Chris Pond. “We’re young so batting is where it’s the unknown quantity. Hopefully we can hit the ball consistently and pitching can keep us in the ballgame.”
The Wolves want to improve in 2013 and advance farther than a pair of first round losses in the 2012 Class AA playoffs, 4-2 to Marion and 13-5 to Swansea. To do that Pond will have to rely on some young arms.
“Pitching is young but that’s the most experience I have on the field,” he said. “Josh Winningham and Lucas Carr both had over 50 innings apiece.”
Winningham is a freshman and Carr, a sophomore.
Pond will also rely on sophomores Wyatt Craig and Ryan Hood to contribute significant innings this spring.
Dennis and Gabel will both see some work if needed, according to Pond.
Around the infield Wyatt Craig and Hood will rotate at third whenever the other is pitching, while Hood will see action at second as well when Dennis takes the mound. Carr will split time between first and the mound with freshman Jace Pond spelling Carr whenever he pitches.
In the outfield, Dylan Craig will be in right, with Winningham in center and McCray in left.
“Austin Stevens will fill in for those three as well as J.T. Dennis with J.T. also as a backup catcher,” Pond said. “The next couple of weeks we will get tested which is nice so we can get ready for a chance to win the region.”
Timberland will take part in the Post 166 Pre-Season Invitational tournament, facing Berkeley on Feb. 22.