Week 11 Blog Post

Stepping into new environments is something that has never come easy to me, yet I seem to overcome it every time it comes about. I came to Mary Washington knowing I would have a core group of guys to bond with(baseball team), but I didn’t realize that they would almost instantly become a second family and have my back in times of trouble.

Having a group hobby is a great way to enjoy and work together with people of your interests, but sports teams seem to offer more than your average club. The baseball team welcomed me and the other incoming freshmen with open arms treated us like we belonged and had been there all along. I was in an environment that was going to push me my mental and physical limits to their maxes, and that made everything from lifting to intersqauds very competitive. The competitive nature of college baseball is what makes this team a team; and UMW exceeded my expectations. I had the chance to not only play for a galvanizing group of ball players, but to represent my school and further my athletic career.

One of my biggest childhood dreams was to play baseball in college and represent the school I’d study at. Becoming a college student-athlete was something professed by many if my high school and travel coach that hooked me in, immediately. This was an integral decision to my collegiate career because I did not want to stop playing this sport and felt like I had the drive to play and get better more then ever. This was something I picked up in other players as well. Many Division III athletes know that they may not be as talented as players from bigger D1 schools, but still retain that ambition to compete and outwork their opponents and teammates. UMW Baseball provided me with the tools and teammates to continue what is not only my sport, but also my life-long passion.

COVID-19 has definitely impacted the scheduling and our resources for baseball, but it did not discourage our team or dissuade us from chasing after championships and the shiny hardware that comes with it. The aforementioned virus had affected out lifting schedule and the types of team lifting that we do. We could no longer used a traditional indoor gym and instead had to practice outside on a turf practice field in frigid conditions. I thought the competetive nature of this team would wane with the change in lifting style, but that could not be further from the truth. COVID has only challenged my teammates and I to dig deeper and fight harder to achieve our goals of becoming better ball players; something that has made the “grind” even more satisfying.

This community if baseball players has been nothing short of exceptional and has far exceeded my expectations of a college sports team. These next four years will be filled with great memories and valuable lessons that will shape me into the person I want to become.

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