Spirit of JacksonvilleREAD ONLINE
Bald Knob: Hard work will be key to team’s return to state tourneyPublished March 10, 2013 at 6:00 a.m.
After finishing third in the conference and winning the district and Sharp County Invitational tournaments last year, head baseball coach Randy Johnston said the Bald Knob Bulldogs are looking forward to an exciting season and a return to the state tournament for the third year in a row.
“We have a great group of seniors this year that have played together since grade school. We are working hard on coming together as a team,” said Johnston, who has coached the Bulldogs for the past five years.
For Johnston and his team, the key to success is simple: hard work and determination.
“Nothing is easy about this game,” he said. “Other teams in our conference work extremely hard. We have to be prepared to match that — and do more.”
Best Hitter for Average: When it comes to making contact with the ball, Johnston said Tristen Falwell and Jacob Brimer are at the top. “Both players work very hard, both in practice and on their own,” Johnston said, adding that Falwell will play infield and outfield this year, while Brimer will serve as third baseman and pitcher.
Best Power Hitter: Nate Johnston, center field. “I’m looking for Nate to be our guy to hit for power,” the coach said. “Nate is very coachable, and he works hard at what we tell him to do.”
Best Speed: Johnston said he expects great things from Riley Mason. “Riley will play in the 6 hole,” Johnston said. “He’s got good speed and will have a chance at leading off for us.”
Best Fielder: When asked about the team’s fielding prospects, the coach named center fielder Nate Johnston again. “Nate reads the ball well off the bat, and he has good hands,” the coach said.
Best Arm: Coach Johnston said he is looking to right fielder Falwell. “Tristen’s got good mechanics with an athletic build,” the coach said.