There was a steep learning curve for the Wolverines baseball team before its first game on Saturday, March 9, according to coaches Rich Warin and Steve Schramm.
“We have a lot of freshmen this year,” Warin explained. There are a number of returning players, however, and the coaches optimism remains high that they can achieve the season goal to win the league championship and go to state.
This will be the last season for Warin and Schramm. After nearly 30 years, they said they feel it is time to hang up the gloves. The two have been coaching for the Friday Harbor Wolverines since the 1990s, and have a good record under their belt. Students have continued on to play both college and professional ball. Former athletes Brian and Austin Lambright now play in the minor league for the Rockies and the Royals.
When asked what their coaching trick is, the two coaches said in unison, “Good players!”
Schramm added that they try to have fun as well, “If the kids aren’t having fun, we might as well just go home.”
Returning players seniors Marshall Clark, pitcher, and Yadir Plaza, infielder, didn’t hesitate when asked what their goals for the year are: win top of the league and go to state.
The teams to beat this season will be Darrington Loggers and Concrete Lions, according to Clark, Plaza, Warin and Schramm.
“We played against them in basketball and they were great teams,” Clark said. “We will be going up against a lot of those same players.”
Both Plaza and Clark are avid athletes, but baseball holds a special place in their hearts. Clark explained he played baseball since at least elementary school, and that it has always been a part of his life. Plaza also began playing baseball at a young age. He explained that his mother played softball and encouraged him to give baseball a try.
Plaza and Clark are among the team members Warin expects to see some great plays from.
“Marshal Clark will be our ace on the mound,” he said. “Gavin Flaum will take over at catcher.”
Warin added that he also believes juniors Buck Mason and Jaden Jones have enough experience under their belt that they are ready to have a big year in the infield, anchored by junior Nick Herko and Plaza — who Warin said he sees as the strength of the team due to their solid playing abilities. He is also excited to see great years from outfielders juniors Ethan Germain, Ty Anderson and senior Lucas Chevalier.
The Wolverine baseball team faced Lynden Christian High School at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 9. They won 9-8.
The next home game is on March 16, against Mount Baker at 11:30 a.m.
“Come watch us play,” Clark said.