Tigers seeking to make more school history
The Holy Trinity baseball team should be fun to watch this season as the Tigers not only try to win another district championship, but also the first regional playoff game in school history.
VIERA VOICE Carl Kotala
Two years ago, they were part of the first Holy Trinity baseball team to win a district championship.
This season, the Tigers want something else.
“We want to win the first regional playoff game,” senior Joc Perry said.
With returners like Perry, Tony Jenkins, junior Jack Szachacz and new catcher and co-captain Oscar Gonzalez, the Tigers certainly have the talent to do just that.
“We are probably one of the most talented Holy Trinity teams I’ve ever had across the board,” Tigers coach Tracy Biggs said.
With junior second baseman Jaden Smith at the top of the lineup, Szachacz in the No. 2 spot and a 3-4-5 combination of seniors Perry, Jenkins and Gonzalez, the Tigers will certainly have a potent lineup.
In fact, Biggs joked that opposing pitchers aren’t the only ones who figure to have trouble with the senior-led heart of the order.
Just try throwing batting practice.
“Between (Oscar), Tony and Jacquel … trying to keep balls in this little park with those guys is a nightmare,” Biggs said.
Jenkins, who has signed to play at the University of Miami, is expected to be selected at some point during the Major League Baseball Draft in June.
The addition of Gonzalez, meanwhile, could have a major impact this season. Not only does the lefty give the Tigers another quality power bat, he provides a presence behind the plate they have been lacking.
“If you know the catcher’s good, you’re going to think twice about sending a guy to second,” Perry said. “He gives you a chance to get double plays. He blocks balls. You feel more comfortable pitching to a guy when you know if you throw a bad pitch it’s going to get blocked up.”
Another transfer, Zach Pfile, will strengthen the outfield.
Senior Harvey Jenkins and junior lefty Ryan Shields will lead Holy Trinity on the mound along with Perry, who will see most of his action at third base or first base.
The team also will count on some of its younger players such as eighth-graders Cole Teply and Liam Samuels, who will pitch and play some outfield. Freshman Pedro Gonzalez will give the Tigers another left-hander on the mound.
All of that could easily lead to another district title for the Tigers.
“We know we have the team to win,” Perry said. “We’re all focused. We all push each other. And we’re close.”
They also have a sense of urgency to get that first regional playoff victory this season.
“We’ve got a sense of determination this year,” Szachacz said “We’ve got four seniors leaving and we don’t know who is coming in next, so it’s got to be this year. We all know that.”