West coach says baseball defense strong

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(Photo by Mark Robinson)
Isaiah Childress, a baseball player at Greenbrier West, worked inside with coaches and teammates Tuesday, March 7, because of rainy weather. The team used the auxiliary gym to work on a variety of drills, including picking up grounders and throwing to a player on the far side of the gym.

Doug Nickell is the head baseball coach at Greenbrier West High School, his third year in that role.

Nickell has 18 boys on the roster, most returning from last year’s 11-13 squad. “We have a good mix,” he says, “some new guys showing potential, and some older guys who will need to step up.

“I think defensively we’re going to be alright. If we have a weakness, we need to work at the plate. It’s all about our strategy, what kind of team we want to be. Do we want to bunt, do we want to run, do we want to put pressure on the defense, do we want to wait for the big hit? I’m not sure we have the roster to do that. We’re going to have to run the bases, approach it like a full court press in basketball. You can be fast in baseball, but you can also be smart. You can make up for a lack of speed by using your head,” Nickell says, tapping the side of his head.

The team will rely on a couple of seniors, and a big junior class, and Nickell says there will be a couple of freshmen who probably contribute. The first game is March 23 at Midland Trail.