Baseball season comes to an end
BY MARTHA BENNETT ON JUNE 5, 2014
Fourth in the state, a 23-2 season and an endless amount of support is what made the 2013-2014 baseball season what it was. Filled with pride and a whole lot of heart, this year’s baseball team was special to Rose and its student body. Sadly, the baseball team lost to Richmond on May 23 in the fourth round of state playoffs, ending the road to a championship.
“We’ve been with each other since little league,” junior JD Clark said. “Just the chemistry that this team has has made this year’s team what it is.”
In fact, almost half of the team is made up of players that were on the same little league championship team.
“It has been really nice to keep playing with the same group of guys,” junior Addison Taylor said. “The unity that we all have with each other has made us have a better season than [previous] seasons and I’m really happy that we’ve been able to play this year like we did.”
The Rampants have overall been consistent in their wins . In terms of conference play, players were mostly proud of defeating rivals like D.H. Conley and South Central.
“I think just beating both of those schools and New Bern has been the highlight for me this season,” Clark said. “Winning is by far the [best] feeling.”
To seniors especially, playing through playoffs was a reminder of how precious their time was on Rose’s baseball team.
“We’ve all just worked so hard,” senior Mason Keen said. “We were a lot better than last year I think because we worked more during off-season and we had more of a chance to enhance our team.”
This year had felt different than most by advancing in playoffs; but even more so in player’s own assessment of their own skills.
“I think my pitching has really improved,” Taylor said. “I’ve been really comfortable being on this team because we all are just so [familiar] with each other and maybe that has something to do with how we’ve done this season.”
Regardless of having an outstanding season consistent with wins and keeping Rose students excited for their school, it is still bitter-sweet to have the season come to an end.
"Winning would've been nice," Clark laughed off. "It's mostly hard for the seniors, but for someone in my position, it makes me even more motivated for next year."
Fortunately, two of the baseball team’s seniors will continue to play in their college years . Seniors Bailey Sugg and Mason Keen both will be playing college ball at ECU on scholarship next year.
"I'm [extremely] happy," Keen said. "It's really nice to see hard work pay off and have the [opportunity] to keep doing something that you love."
This team has sure brought more excitement to a stressed and exhausted student body. When students are studying hard, graduating and generally preparing for summer, having a successful baseball team has given students something to talk about. The team has gained bounds of support through the Rowdie Rampants and the Greenville community, and are truly thankful for all the praise they received throughout the season.
“Knowing how well we’ve done this season has just given us more of a reason to keep going,” Clark said. “Winning is incredible, but even [more so] with this group of guys.”