JDCC’s Blevins recaps 2012 baseball season and looks to future

Published 7:34am Thursday, May 10, 2012

After seeing their final regular season game with Shelton State in Montgomery last Friday get rained out and not rescheduled, the JDCC Warhawk baseball team saw their 2012 season come to an end.
With the cancelled game to end the season, the Warhawks ended their season with a 26-26 overall record and a 12-18 record in conference play.
JDCC head coach Darrell Blevins said he was pleased at the improvements that were made by this year’s squad.
“They played the game the way it should be played all year long,” Blevins said. “Their effort, their focus on each game, their willingness to continue to do what they needed to do to get better, and their intensity on a daily basis was exactly what it should have been. It was a lot of fun being able to watch this squad play.”
Blevins said because of the approach to this season, his team was able to experience certain successes including winning nine more games than last year’s team.
“Of these nine wins, they also experienced five more conference wins,” Blevins said. “This included winning three of the six conference series late in the year. This allowed us to hang in the playoff race until the very last weekend of our conference play. These guys showed a lot of heart staying in the race as long as they did. Many teams would have cashed the season in after getting off to such a slow start at the beginning of conference play. This says much about the character of this team.”
Blevins also noted an encouraging fact about the team was that seven of the 10 Warhawk sophomores were given the opportunity to move forward to the next level at a four-year school to continue their playing careers.
“Three have actually signed early prior to the beginning of our spring season—Jeremy Barnes, Jordan Creel, and Corey Thompson,” Blevins said. “Brandon Blackwelder, Dustin Bickmeyer, and Nathan Edwards are finalizing their plans on where to attend school and play next year. Finally, Joey Hedden is currently considering an
opportunity presented from Huntingdon College in Montgomery.”
Over the next week or so, Blevins said that freshman shortstop Andrew Tindell and
freshman left-handed pitcher Tyler Howell will be considered for Academic All-American honors.
“These two guys not only had great years between the foul lines for us, but they really took care of their business in the classroom,” Blevins said.
Other honors for the JDCC baseball team that may be coming soon according to Blevins include All-Conference and All-Southern Division possibilities for Tindell, Dillan Schaniel, Corey Thompson, and Michael Yarborough.
“They all put up really good statistical numbers throughout the season,” Blevins said. “One of the biggest things that I personally am proud of is how the sophomore class of this squad took it upon themselves to actually show great leadership this year. They were committed from day one on what they wanted to do and how they wanted to go about doing it. They were all committed to giving themselves the best chance they could by
working as hard as they could on the field during practice and in the
games, in the weight-room and in our conditioning programs, and in their activities off the field and in our community. These guys represented themselves, their families, our baseball program, our institution, and our community well.”
Blevins said he is confident that this type leadership will carry over to next year’s squad as well.
“There are several of the guys returning who will be able to step up and lead next year,” he said. “Of the returning players, the experience they gained this season is sure to help them. We had several of our freshmen play on a daily basis with may of these kids
getting over 100 at-bats on the year, and freshman pitchers John Williams, Tyler Howell, and Michael Yarborough saw significant innings on the mound. Along with their accomplishments on the field, these guys are of the type who want to do even better. They want to accomplish more and do things the right way by doing the right things,
on and off the field.”
Blevins said even with as many improvements as were made this season, and as encouraging as it is to have the program moving forward in the right direction on and off the field, he and every one of the returning players realize and know that Jeff Davis baseball was built on greatness.
“From coach Floyd Adams’ days through to coach Keith Griffin’s days here, this is the level of play we want to achieve and this is where we want to go,” Blevins said. “We know that we can continue to get better and we are committed to achieving this level of play.”

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