Spring practices kick off at Basehor-Linwood
For the past couple of weeks, Basehor-Linwood High School has had its own version of spring training.
But instead of only including baseball, four other Bobcat sports teams have begun preparing for the season. The softball, track and field, golf and girls soccer teams all began practice Monday, Feb. 25.
According to the coaches, practices have gone well.
Perhaps the team most looking forward to the upcoming season is the BLHS baseball team.
After winning its first-ever Kaw Valley League title last season, the BLHS baseball team is anxious to defend its title. The team returns several players from last season's 16-5 squad, and most of them are determined to advance past the regional semifinal.
Leading the Bobcats this season will be first-year BLHS coach Curtis Press. Press, 40, came to BLHS after two successful seasons at Pleasant Ridge High School.
Several players said they've enjoyed Press' coaching style.
"It's been a lot of fun so far," junior Brandon Dye said. "You can tell he wants to win and he's a pretty cool guy, too."
The BLHS softball team also went 16-5 last season and it too was eliminated in the regional semifinals. Like the baseball team, several girls from last year's squad return in 2002, but the most glaring omission is all-Kaw Valley League pitcher Courtney Reed.
Reed, a senior, tore her ACL, MCL and meniscus during a basketball game in January. She has now been reduced to the role of student-coach.
Despite Reed's absence, BLHS coach Susan Mayberry said she was optimistic about the season.
"We have a couple huge holes that we need to fill," Mayberry said. "We lost some players to graduation and then we lost Courtney, too. So right now, we're really trying to revamp the whole program. It should be fun and I'm glad we've finally started."
Both the track and field team and the golf team return state qualifiers from a season ago. Sophomore thrower Katie Dukes is back with the track team. She qualified for state as a freshman