Eagles adjust to a new coach for 2007 season

Thursday, March 22, 2007
Adam Nees

Sports Editor

Putnamville -- If new South Putnam baseball coach Harold Campbell thinks he knows how his team is going to perform this season, he is not telling anyone. The first-year teacher and coach at South Putnam has a small and rather young squad.

"You know what you have in practice, but you really don't know much until you see it in a game," said Campbell.

In game situations, Campbell will not simply look for his upper classmen to perform well.

"We have three or four freshmen who will see time at the varsity level this year," he said. Additionally, he mentioned his starting catcher is a sophomore who returns after playing varsity as a freshman.

When it came to actually naming any individuals, Campbell was tight-lipped, emphasizing baseball is a team game. Instead, he spoke of what he expected from classes.

"We have a good junior core coming back who played at the varsity level last year," said Campbell.

As for seniors, Campbell has only two, Adam Nees and Derek Cash. However, the coach is happy with the leadership this duo gives him. He is pleased with his team as a whole, in terms of its age and strengths.

"We have a really good mix of kids."

Campbell knows the players are also having to adjust to a new coach, since he is replacing Matt Griswold, who is now athletic director. He called his team "really resilient," noting they are adapting to him quickly.

"Things are coming together. It's really a lot to get together in a short amount of time," Campbell said.

In trying to accelerate the adaptation, Campbell spent the last week before spring break with extra practice time on the schedule, beginning with a team lock-in during the weekend and two-a-days all week.

"This is our really intense week," he said.

All this is in preparation for an opener on the day the kids return from break. The Eagles open at Cloverdale April 2 at 4:30 p.m.

"It's wait and see. We'll get to April 2 and see who can step up," said Campbell.

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