With eleven new recruits, the Seahawks baseball team shows potential to have their first winning season in seven years, according to Head Coach Lewis Jenkins.
The Seahawks opened their season with a 1-1 record following the Randolph-Macon College double-header on Feb. 12.
The team is looking forward to their first home conference game Feb. 19, against City College of New York, where President Urgo is expected to throw the first pitch.
“I think the team has looked very good in the fall.” Jenkins said.
“In the spring, it’s been a nightmare. We’ve been out on the field three times [since Jan. 18], which is a long period considering we’ve been working out every Saturday and Sunday. The weather has been very tough on us, and the three days that we’ve been outside it’s been muddy, and windy, and cold.”
The uncooperative weather forced practices to be held in Somerset Hall in the Micheal P. O’Brien Athletics and Recreation Center, which caused problems for the team as well.
“There’s only so much we can do inside,” Jenkins added.
“They’ve already hit the fire alarm and broken a window, so we’re kind of in the doghouse. It all happened within about a week. I’m just holding my breath that we don’t do anymore damage. It certainly wasn’t done on purpose, but the day we hit the fire alarm they were having a swimming meet. It was kind of chaotic.”
The biggest challenge this season will be the conference games, according to Jenkins. Nonetheless, the team is optimistic about improving this year, compared to previous years.
“We had a horrible season last year,” Jenkins said. “I never had a year that bad as a coach and I’ve been coaching my whole life. There was only one outstanding player last year, and that was Matt Baden. He’s a senior and he’s had a good year every year he’s been here. The rest of them weren’t able to work up to their ability. Consequently we only won nine games.”
Despite setbacks, the team shows optimism for the upcoming games.
According to Jenkins, although recruiting has always been a challenge for sports teams, the Seahawks have added seven new first-years to their roster, many of whom are already impressing teammates.
“The guys have been working hard, playing hard, and really competing,” senior captain Ian Simpson-Shelton said.
“We’ve got a lot of new faces this year, a couple young kids, and transfers who came in ready to go. They’re not afraid to step on the field. We’ve also got a lot of older guys that are ready to be leaders and step up and take responsibility for the team too. I think we’ll be a whole lot better this year.”