By Ryan Butler

This could be the year when the Newsome baseball team puts it all together.

A perennially-strong program now has the talent and experience to take the team further than it’s ever been. The 2011 Saladino Tournament champions are looking to replicate their tournament title in 2013 and make a deep run in the post season.

“This year with the pitching we have, I think we’ll be ok,” said head coach, William Highsmith. “We have a great coaching staff. We’re looking for big things. This is going to be a fun season. “

If the early season is any indication, the Wolves are well on the way to fulfilling their lofty goals. The Wolves have started 3-1 in the regular season, outscoring opponents 25-5 during the stretch. The lone loss was a 1-0 defeat at home against Brandon, the reigning class 7A state runner-ups.

The biggest early win was another pitcher’s duel, this time a 2-1 win over Wharton in the district opener. Senior Ryan Tauscher pitched a gem against the Wildcats, allowing one run over six innings. Junior John Mason came in the seventh and posted a shut-out inning for the save.

“This game was a big win,” Highsmith said.  “There are many big games going on, but our district is so tough this game means a lot for us.”

The win highlighted Newsome’s biggest strength- pitching. Along with Tauscher and Mason, the Wolves boost talented senior arms with Michael Farley and Erik Dowse. When not on the mound, Farley and Dowse will team up with Daulton Donini (second base), Alex Kerr (third base and catcher) and Devin Cerrato (outfield) to anchor a strong Wolves defense.

“We need to work on (hitting) a little more. But our pitching is outstanding and so is our defense. That’s what we’re counting on this year,” Highsmith said.

Along with senior talent, Highsmith is confident that the Wolves’ attitude at practice and competitive nature in games will allow his team to fulfill their goals.

“I don’t think we’re going to struggle too bad. They know what to do every day in practice. They know how to set up and how to get going,” Highsmith said.

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