The Voice of Wakefield High School

The Howler

The Voice of Wakefield High School

The Howler

The Voice of Wakefield High School

The Howler

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Junior varsity provides stepping stone for varsity baseball team

As ‘America’s favorite pastime,’ it’s no wonder Wakefield High School’s baseball team has become so popular. This past February, nearly 40 students tried out for a place on junior varsity (JV), and with well under 20 people on the team, the sport has solidified its place as one of Wakefield’s more competitive sports for yet another year. With both JV and varsity teams receiving praise from college recruiters and locals alike, Wakefield’s JV coaches and players discuss the trials and tribulations that accompany preparing for a spot on the varsity roster. 

Coach Brandon Williams has been coaching high school JV for four years, and this is his third year coaching for Wakefield. He finds that the junior varsity team helps the players prepare for the varsity team by growing their mindset.

“A lot of our JV players end up playing varsity when they get to their junior and senior year, so [playing on the JV team] really helps them get their work ethic [stronger and] their love of the game helps them to become better students and players,” Williams said. “That developmental aspect is super important to getting them to the varsity level.”

Bailey Brock is a freshman and third baseman has been dedicated to the JV team for the past year. For Brock, the JV team allows players to grow and develop before they make the strides to the varsity level.

That developmental aspect is super important to getting them to the varsity level.

— Williams

“JV has allowed me to meet a lot of new people,” Brock said. “It helps me build character and develop as a player

This preparation is no easy feat for the boys, however. The JV team keeps their schedule busy with daily practices and games twice a week. Hunter Lentz is a sophomore and shortstop who is spending his second year on the JV team. Lentz views the JV team as the perfect transition between the middle school baseball program and the varsity team. 

“[You] get a taste of high school sports and [learn] to get comfortable with playing for a team,” Lentz said.

With more rigorous coaching and intense training regimes comes harder competition, making games more challenging and the payoff more rewarding.

“Competition [has] gotten a lot better [since middle school,]” sophomore pitcher John Monahan said.

The JV team has a current record of 5-4-1. The players have a positive mindset as they head into the remainder of the year and varsity tryouts.

“JV prepares you to be coached at a higher level,” Lentz said.

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