Austin Harless of St. Albans is Gamer of the Week
The Red Dragon Baseball team of St. Albans High School has come on strong as of late, winning 9 in a row and 11 of their last 12 games.
"We are just trying to get better every day and try to be playing our best baseball towards the end of the season in May. We got off to a slow start but we kind of rebounded as of late. It's great that these guys have been having some success and they are really feeding off of that," said head coach Rick Whitman.
Senior pitcher Austin Harless (4-1) has been pitching lights out in his last two outings. Last game he pitched a shut-out and only allowed 1 hit the game before that.
"Austin is really doing a great job for us, especially as a senior, he's provided our team with excellent leadership. He does great in the classroom with a 3.7 GPA and is a guy we count on to go out on the mound and give us quality innings. Our team really follows his lead in practice and the games," said Coach Whitman on his senior pitcher.
As with any sport, success rarely comes without hard work in the offseason. This is definitely the case with Austin, "During the offseason I play with the Huntington Hounds Travel Team. I got a lot of experience, played in a lot of games, and faced a lot of good competition. It really helped prepare me for the season we're having now." When asked about his team's success this year, Austin replied, "As a team, we are at our best when we can really come together and are completely focused on the task at hand. That means having a good warm up, taking good batting practice... when everything is done with the right level of focus; we know we are going to be playing our best ball."Austin is deeply in love with the game of baseball which makes it easy when it comes to being motivated to train and play hard, "Pitching is my favorite thing to do, I've always loved it. I really care about this team and this school and I want to represent them both to the best of my ability." Coach Whitman sums it up by saying, "Austin is good because he can throw 3 pitches for 3 strikes. He gets ahead of hitters and throws a lot of strikes. He's got a good fast ball, breaking and change up. In high school you can really keep hitters off balance and that's what he does."
Please look for other local area high school athletes to be named next week's Gamer of the Week sponsored by Teays Physical Therapy Center, Inc. & The Putnam Herald.
Matt Smith, MS, ATC, CSCS, works at Teays Physical Therapy Center, Inc.