IWU baseball ends fall with intrasquad series

By Andrew Zienty Oct 9, 2020
 IWU’s Horenberger field was the home of the team’s fall series.
Photo: Andrew Zienty

This past week Illinois Wesleyan University baseball finished up their fall practice season with the best of seven series intrasquad scrimmage.

Last spring the team had their season cut short after going 7-3 in non-conference play. 

Seniors Nick Watson and Eric Bennes were captains of a draft to decide the teams for competition. Team Bennes won the series 4-2. 

“I can attribute my teams success to having fun. We have a lot of freshmen who tend to play tight and reserved. My goal was to go out there play loose, have fun, and win a series.” Bennes said.

Although his team came out as victors of the series, Bennes noticed some things that the players should continue to work on for future competition.   

“One thing we still need to work on is strengthening our arms. For our team to be successful in the spring we need to stay healthy and that starts with proper arm care and strength,” said Bennes.

The team started practicing early September after a few delays due to COVID-19 protocols. They practiced four days a week for four weeks which totaled sixteen fall practices.

The fall season is now over and this gives the team a short two-month break until they start winter practice in January for the spring season.

“We need to work on the little things, making routine plays, having strong at-bats, making better pitches,” Watson said. 

“The fall has been a great time to meet new teammates and build chemistry for the spring, we are all looking forward to competing at a higher level in the spring and going after a championship,” Watson said.

Right now, the CCIW has not said anything about limiting the season or canceling it as we have seen for fall sports. “We are on pace for a regular 40 game season, we should know more around January 1” Head Coach Dennis Martel said. 

The only difference for the upcoming season is the loss of the spring break trip to Florida. The team will instead look to compete against more local teams.

 The team consists of forty-six players and is led by coaches Dennis Martel, Michael Kellar, Tim Siegworth and Matt Wiley. Although the team lost five position player starters last year, they brought in a large freshmen class of nineteen in their place.

“I am very happy with how the younger guys have adjusted to the college game, they are a very promising group of players” Martel said.

“Getting bigger, faster, stronger is going to be the focus in the weight room. Building arm strength and continuing to practice hitting for position guys will be key this winter,” freshman Will Kafer said.

Freshmen and seniors alike now have areas of focus for this winter that they identified in the fall. They are working through a pandemic and staying focused on spring competition.

“No matter how you look at the results of the fall scrimmage IWU came out on top and is ready to work” Bennes said.

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