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Return to the Diamond: Anthony Wayne baseball using last year's lost season as motivation

The Generals promising season in 2020 was wiped out due to COVID-19. This year they are playing for those seniors that missed out on last season.

WHITEHOUSE, Ohio — The sunshine and the sound of bats popping can only mean one thing: baseball is back!

“I grew up on the baseball field so it is nice to have the kids back out here," said Anthony Wayne head coach Mark Nell. "It was a tough year for everyone last year.”

"We had big expectations last year. COVID and everything was really tough for us,” said senior Garret Pike. “I think it is fueling us this year. We are playing for last year’s seniors. We have the banner out in the outfield for them so we will play for them this year.”

It’s a single banner but a constant reminder to never take a pitch, an at-bat, or an inning for granted. Missing an entire season means this preseason will be huge for development and getting everyone back up to speed.

“It’s difficult,” said Nell. “Basically everyone has two freshman classes that aren’t used to their programs. Everyone is in the same boat. We have 52 kids in the program and only 15 have played a high school baseball game.”

“There are a lot of kids that don’t understand yet how the program works but they are learning,” said Pike. “We have had a great week of practice and they are learning quickly. The seniors are the only ones that have played a varsity baseball game. There are 15 kids on Anthony Wayne who know what high school baseball is like.”

The Generals scrimmaged Bryan on Monday and will head to Myrtle Beach next week for a spring break tournament.