> SOUTHERN INDIANA —
• COACH: Brent Falcone (first season).
• LAST YEAR’S RECORD: N/A.
• RETURNING LETTERWINNERS: Travis Jones, Jr., C; Tim Moseley, Jr. 3B; Luke Castleman, So., CF; Joey Koenig, So., P/IF; Will Hussung, So. OF/IF; Taylor Fisher, So., 1B.
• KEY NEWCOMERS: Justin Brown, Fr., SS; Matt Hamby, Fr., 2B; Dawson Dooley, Fr., util.
• OUTLOOK: The Warriors are playing a full varsity schedule this after playing a mixture of varsity and junior varsity teams a season ago. Falcone says last season taught his players many lessons about playing varsity competition. The new CAI coach likes his team’s speed.
• FALCONE SAYS: “We learned a whole lot on what it takes to play at the varsity level last year. I think [the Warriors’] awareness of the game has grown a lot. We’ve got good team speed.”
• COACH: Jamie Knight (first season).
• LAST YEAR’S RECORD: 6-19.
• RETURNING LETTERWINNERS: Nick Jones, Jr., OF/P; Wyatt Kissel, Jr., IF/P; Justin Lind, Jr., P/util.; Cody Leonhardt, So., IF.
• KEY NEWCOMERS: Josh Robinson, So., util.; Jacob Costello, So., OF; Clayton Haus, Fr., IF/P; Matthew Hauber, Fr., IF/P.
• OUTLOOK: Knight, a Clarksville graduate, has a tall task at hand in rebuilding his alma mater’s baseball program. Knight inherits a program that lacks varsity experience and a difficult schedule. The slate includes Jeff, New Albany, Floyd Central, Providence, Charlestown, Silver Creek and North Harrison.
• KNIGHT SAYS: “Considering the fact that we are a fairly young team and with not very many players having varsity experience, we hope to be competitive in the [Mid-Southern] conference and to make steady improvement as the season progresses. Hopefully, we are playing our best baseball at sectional time.”
• COACH: Casey LaDuke (16th season).
• LAST YEAR’S RECORD: 29-3.
• RETURNING LETTERWINNERS: Mike Springer, Sr., SS; Trey Fulton, Jr., C; Colton Kimm, Jr., 3B; Brandon Smith, Jr., OF/P; Kyle Beach, Jr., P; Alex Koopman, Sr., P; Ross Lundy, Sr., 1B.
• KEY NEWCOMERS: Phillip Archer, So., OF; Charlie Loveall, Jr., 2B; Aiden Cora, Jr. OF.
• OUTLOOK: Despite graduating eight seniors from last year’s team, the Highlanders have enough talent and experience to compete for the HHC Tournament and Class 4A sectional titles. LaDuke says the strengths of his team should be its pitching and defense. He thinks Jeff, New Albany and Columbus East will be tough to beat in the HHC. Floyd’s no conference schedule is tough as well with Louisville St. Xavier, Evansville Harrison and Heritage Hills.
• LADUKE SAYS: “We lost a lot, but we’ve got some key players back. I think our pitching is deeper now because I’ve got three sophomores who can flat out throw it. We’re excited. I’ve got some younger kids who can play. We think we’ve got a chance to compete for the sectional championship and the conference championship.”