By KENNAE HUNTER – Staff Writer
By KARLA DOUGAN – Broadcast Editor
With the baseball season approaching, coaches and players are preparing to put their offseason work into action during the regular season.
Clarke Central High School’s Trey Henson is entering his fourth year as head baseball coach for CCHS’ varsity baseball team. He has witnessed many improvements in the team since he began coaching and is hoping to continue progressing forward as the spring season approaches.
“Baseball season last year was an improvement from the years past. We won 10 games which is probably the most games since 2008,” Henson said. “My first year we won five games, second, seven and last year we won 10, so (it’s) an improvement.”
According to Henson, in the past seasons there were many positive aspects about the way the team played last season, however they are looking to target weaknesses and grow on them. The team made some mistakes that caused them to lose some games last year.
“(We need to) shore up defense a little bit more,” Henson said. “I think us making routine plays and not so many errors, making defensive plays, would really be the difference in winning 10 games versus 12, 13 or 14 games. We made some costly errors in some big time situations that cost us some games.”
CCHS is in region 8-AAAAA which means the teams they play are highly ranked. Therefore, Henson says they must train and work hard to win games.
“We’re in a region right now that has four legitimate teams that can win a state championship. We’ve got our whole region as competition,” Henson said. “Every day you can get it handed to you if you don’t come ready to play.”
The players began preparing for the upcoming season in August to be sure they are ready in the spring.
“We run weights all year. We start in August. We lift before school, two days a week at 7am in the weight room. We’ve had a really good turn out for that,” Henson said. “In the fall, we run 2 on 1s, we run bull pins, and then we open the field for guys to come catch and throw.”
Henson began adding more workouts when he saw how much they helped in previous seasons. He developed the routine over the years of him being head coach to see how much practice is too much or just enough.
“We do what need to here with 2 on 1s and workouts and that type of thing,” Henson said. “It’s kind of changed over the past few years but I think we’re getting at a point where we have figured out the best approach.”
The team has recreated the game day atmosphere by creating a playlist with up to date songs that they want to hear when the walk up and prior to the game.
“Last year we had an announcer that was a UGA hockey announcer so I mean it was real energetic and real lively for people that think baseball is a boring sport so it brings more excitement and vibe to (the game),” Henson said. “I think if people would come to the games they’d enjoy them.
”The players have also made some goals for the team that they will work towards together.
“(I am looking forward to) the program succeeding. We want to win more than half our games this year. I want to win regions, but we’ll see how that goes,” junior catcher Cole Melancon said.