Play Ball, Griffins

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Rhea Thakkar, Staff Writer

LMP’s varsity baseball team travelled around Florida this season working to expand the program and build a successful team. Besides being a rising sports program, the team has had more members than ever.

Team members included Ethan Artman, Lavonn Crumpler, Crete Emerton, James Gorman, Deven Hanstein, Noah Hill, Aidan Hosler, Noah Johnson, Kaden Sturgill, Ethan Walker, and Aidan Warner. The notable addition to the team this year was Brianna Letterio, who was previously the captain of the girls’ softball team.

As a result of a lack of players on the softball team this season, she decided to join the boys’ baseball team. Gorman, Hill, Warner, and Sturgill were selected for the All-District team as well. This year’s coaches were Jonathon Krot and Justin Varitek. Warner was the only senior on the team, and Hill took up the captain position as he led the team through stretches, warmups, and pre-game pep talks. 

Junior Hill said, “For me, it’s an honor to be the captain of the team. I’ve been with this program since 6th grade and I’ve been able to learn from the older guys before me how to be the best leader possible. It’s definitely something I don’t take for granted.”

The team worked hard to build its family-like culture while helping the new players improve their skills. Coaches and teammates bonded to create a rewarding experience and environment. They have become close friends and bonded, while guiding each other along the way. 

Ninth-grader Aidan Hosler said, “The experience has been extremely welcoming, especially being new to the school with not knowing anyone. Before I joined the team, I hadn’t played baseball in just over two years, but with the help from the coaches and my teammates, I was able to get right back into it.”

Throughout the year, the team progressed in their emerging natural talent to help them succeed. 

Hosler said, “Over the season, I’ve noticed that we have improved both at fielding and batting. I enjoy the environment the most when it comes to our baseball team. The majority of the time that we play our games, we’re locked in and focused.”

Hill said, “I just love to play the game any chance I get and to come out every day and become that 1 percent better. I’ve been playing baseball as early as I can remember, and I’m more than excited to come back for my senior year and put the LMP jersey on and lead the team one last time.”

With that being said, it is clear that the baseball team has been a victorious surprise that LMP didn’t know they needed, but definitely deserved.