Are the Larks ready for the 2016 baseball season?

by John Ruth – Horizon Sports Editor

A new season is underway for the Hesston College Larks baseball team. With a few new faces – and a new coach – added to the roster, the Lark bats want to slug and the aces want to dominate. The question is, are they ready?

Sophomore pitcher Collin Loutensock thinks so.

“We are better this year than we we were last year and have more potential to be great,” he said. “The biggest improvement over spring training has been team chemistry: It’s stronger than last year.”

Along with those new faces is a new head coach. Kyle Howell brings a new look to Larks baseball and has the team learning from their mistakes. Howell is cautious, though.

“Anytime you change staff its an adjusting period,” he said. “You get support and it’s a positive experience,” he said.

The team will depend on their team chemistry and coach to succeed in this new season. Loutensock says the team puts their trust in Howell.

“With it being Kyle’s first season as head coach, he has brought in players that know what they are doing,” he said. “When the coaches tell us stuff, we know its to help us get better.”

With a record of 1-3 coming out of an error-filled season opening, the biggest question mark for the Larks this season is their maturity and game IQ. Will they be able to adapt their skills to each position down the stretch?

“We are so young, it’s a day-in day-out struggle to try and get better,” said Howell. “They just have to continue to play.”

Loutensock agrees. He knows the team will need to stay focused if they want a winning season.

“One thing we could do as a team is try to control what we can control on the field,” he said. “Yeah, things are going to happen and they don’t always go our way, but as we get more games under our belts those will take care of themselves.”

The Larks go up against York College (Neb.) JV at 3 p.m. today at home.

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