Boys of Summer

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 2, 2010

For some, the baseball season never ends.

While their seasons may have ended in early May, several high school players from Pike Liberal Arts and Charles Henderson have joined together to form a travel team.

“The main objective of the team is to help players get better and develop and also to allow players to continue to play,” coach Scott Ross said.

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Will and Josh Starling, Sam Carroll and Blake Floyd are the members from the varsity Patriot team while Chance Shaver and Quay Lawson come from the Trojans’ varsity squad.

The team is specifically a tournament team, which can be broken into two different teams, one made up of older players and another made up of younger players.

“We were trying to make a team where every player would be able to benefit, coach Ashley Floyd said.

“We practice all together, but depending on the tournament, only one age group will play. And with something like this, the younger guys are able to develop and get ready for the next level, while the older guys stay fresh through the summer.”

The team just got back from a tournament this past weekend in Opp, where it went 2-2.

“I think we could have played better,” Ross said.

“We had a few errors that hurt us in the losses, but we were swinging the bats well in the game we won.

“It’s all about improving,” he added.

One of the older players on the team is looking to stay fresh for his transition into the college ranks.

Will Starling was a big part of the Patriots’ success the past two seasons, and now is looking to continue that success with Southern Union Community College.

“(Playing on this team) is a lot of fun,” Starling said.

“It’s summer ball, it’s a very relaxed environment, but we are looking to stay fresh and to continue to improve.”

The team also unites Starling with two of his former Trojan teammates in Lawson and Shaver.

“That’s the really fun thing about a team like this – playing with some of the guys I used to play with.

“I’m enjoying it, and I think everyone else is too,” he added.

The team has only been together for a couple weeks now, however, things are going well, according to Floyd, despite the weather the past couple of days.

“All the guys are gaining experience and that is the most important thing in something like this.

“We want to be on the field and we want to play good teams and we will do that until the kids get tired of playing,” the coach said.