First-year Park View High School head varsity baseball coach Matt Shearin said consistency will be the key for the Dragons when they take the field on Monday, April 26 for their season opener at home against Warren County (NC).
“If we can be consistent this year, I think we will surprise some people,” he said.
With a missed season last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Shearin said every team is in the same boat as they return to the diamond.
Seniors for the Dragons’ this season include shortstop Justin Clary, pitcher/first baseman Alex Townsend, outfielder Adam Piercy and catcher Nathan Smith. Park View football/basketball standout Josh Boyd is out for the first time this season as is senior outfielder Luke Richey.
Juniors on the Dragons’ roster include outfielder Lane Kinker, pitcher/outfielder/catcher Tyler Turman and third baseman/pitcher Christian Puryear.
Junior Tamarion Thomas, who will play in the outfield, is also out this season as is sophomore pitcher/third baseman Jaxton Shook.
Freshmen Ashton Jackson who will play second base and pitch and Jake Brame who will play first base and pitch, round out the varsity roster.
Shearin said hitting their spots will be the key this season for his young Park View pitchers.
“Location will be the big thing,” he said. “We’ve got to locate our pitches. We will probably pitch by committee a lot. We need to mix up our pitches and locate the ball.”
He said consistency throughout the lineup will be important for the Dragons to produce runs.
“I think 1 through 9 we will be able to put the ball in play,” he said.
Shearin said his team should be sound defensively.
“That is where we will hang our hat,” he said. “We’ve got some speed in the outfield and we will be solid up the middle.”
Shearin said he expects Windsor and Southampton to be strong as usual in Tri-Rivers District play while Greensville has some up and coming talent.
“I hope we will be in the mix,” he said. “I am excited about the season.”
With the Virginia High School League only allowing teams to play 12 regular season games, Shearin said every contest will be extremely important.
“We have been working really hard,” he said. “We need to be in mid-season form from the start.”
Shearin will be assisted this season by Holden Sykes and Todd Seate.
The Park View JV team will be coached by Sam Sullivan and Todd Sykes while Jeff Towery is helping with both teams.
“I’m excited about our JV team,” said Shearin. “We have a lot of good eighth graders and we have some good freshmen. I think the future looks great.”
Park View will open its campaign at home on Monday against Warren County (NC), a program Shearin worked with in his early coaching days.
“I’m excited about it,” said Shearin. “I have coached some of those kids and I will have a lot of people there that I haven’t seen in a while.”
The Dragons will open district play the following day at Windsor High School before returning home to battle Southampton HS on Thursday.