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With one of the youngest teams in the 8th Region, Williamstown baseball coach A.J. Mason knew coming into the season that the road ahead would not always be smooth. So he’s not exactly shocked that his Demons remain winless after eight games.
Mason said the Demons have a strong worth ethic and good attitude. He continues to tell them that if you work hard, wins will come.
In eight games this season, Williamstown has shown flashes of what it is capable of but has never been able to put it together. Two of the Demons’ more impressive performances came in a 3-0 loss to cross-town rival Grant County and 3-2 loss in extra innings at Newport.
Mason, who is in his third year with the program, said the team is hungry for its first win and the key is hitting, which has been an issue all season long for the Demons, who average just around three hits per game thus far.
“I’m very pleased with the direction we are headed as a team,” Mason said. “If we start hitting the ball, there’s nobody that we can’t compete with, or even beat, on our schedule. And that’s talking about the Simon Kenton’s and the Grant County’s and all of them. We have the talent to be right there.”
With a roster of 17 players that has more middle school students than seniors on it, Williamstown lacks the experience of some of the bigger schools in the region. But that just gives the Demons’ more room to grow and get better than others and Mason is already seeing it, noting improved defensive play as proof.
“Most of our improvements have come on defense. We’re not giving away outs like we have in the past and we’re making the routine plays like we should,” Mason said. “We still have games where we struggle behind our pitchers. But we’re making the easy plays and hopefully the spectacular plays will come.”
Work ethic has not been an issue for the Demons, who are even spending time perfecting their craft during spring break.
“The guys really want to get better and they work hard at it,” Mason said. “Like all young people, sometimes they get a little lazy and want to do other things. But they work hard. And if we keep working and getting our swings in, we’ll start winning some baseball games.”
One area where the team is currently lacking is leadership. The coaches can only do so much in that area, said Mason, who would like to see his players begin to fill those roles. Fellow seniors Drew Harris and Jordan Barnes are two candidates to fill the void. Five juniors are also capable.
“Right now we don’t have a true leader yet,” he said. “We need somebody to step up and take that role. As coaches we try to do a lot of motivating. But some of it has to come from them, too.”