'Cats, Tigers ready for baseball

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

The weather makes it feel like baseball season, so it's a good thing baseball season has finally come for the Berryville Bobcats and Green Forest Tigers.

Berryville coach David Broseus feels confident as the season begins next week.

"I am returning a lot of experience," Broseus said. "More experience than we have the last two seasons. We have four seniors and most of those guys have had significant playing time."

Broseus knows there are plenty of younger guys who will be able to help the Bobcats this year as well.

"We have a couple of juniors,” Broseus said. “Austin Woods is coming back. Chay Myers has a lot of game experience. He was a starter from last year. We expect Brady Smith to make some contributions. And then we have a sophomore, Kooper Logan, who started 19 of our 21 games last year. We expect him to make a significant contribution as well. We have six or seven spots filled."

Broseus is confident he has the talent on his team to fill the remaining spots on the roster.

"Right now we have some competition going on at one of our outfield spots, probably right field," Broseus said. "We have a sophomore, Jesse Poteet, and a junior, Chris Timmons, and a freshman Austin Franklin who will be competing for that spot. I also have another sophomore, our quarterback, Luke Britt. He hasn't played organized baseball in several years, but he has been coming to practice and been looking solid out there. The other spot I'm looking to fill is the catcher position. I've got a sophomore, Charlie Davis who is competing for that position along with Rusty Colbert."

Broseus said he has some experienced pitchers coming back, but he is still in the process of trying to figure out the rotation.

"I first see us pitching by committee quite a bit," Broseus said. "We have some experience coming back, but with the pitching limitations and the amount of pitches a kid can throw and then turn around and play the next day will be tough. Our schedule is brutal and it will really be taxing on our pitching."

Broseus knows this year's schedule won't be easy, but he is excited to see what the season brings.

"The guys that are on the bubble, they are so close," Broseus said. "It makes it tough for coach Logan, coach Meyers and myself trying to make those decisions, but at the same time it's kind of a good problem to have. We feel like we are bringing back the most experienced bunch that we have had in two years."

The Tigers had a benefit game at Huntsville on Monday and coach Tony Coffey said he was pleased with how things went.

"The guys that I had at their positions did what they were supposed to do," Coffey said. "You are trying to get all of the kids in so you go through that, too. Overall, it was pretty good. The kids are working hard and have a good attitude with what's going on."

Last year, Green Forest only had one senior in Baylor Deislinger. This year, the Tigers bring back six seniors, including David Nelson, Luis Lopez and Cory Bryant. Coffey hopes someone is able to step up as a leader on this year's team.

"These guys will be called upon to be leaders, but you don't have to be a senior to be a leader," Coffey said. "That is something that I am trying to instill in these guys. I need leadership, but they don't have to be seniors. I just have to have someone step up and be a leader for me."

Junior Andrew Guzman is the one newcomer for the Tigers this year. He will play in the infield and also pitch. Aside from Guzman, it is largely the same cast from last year's team.

"I have coached these guys for four or five years now, so that ought to be a good thing," Coffey said.

The Tigers will compete in the Anstaff Bank Tournament starting next Thursday. Coffey hopes his team can learn from the unique tournament.

"We start with the 2-1 count, so right off the bat your pitchers have to pitch strikes and everyone has to stay engaged in the game because it moves so fast," Coffey said. "It's an hour and a half time limit. By doing it that way, hopefully I put all of my players in a high-stress situation and see how they perform from it."

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: