Cubs wrap up even season
Monett goes 11-11, falls to Hollister in districts
The Monett baseball team is turning its attention to summer ball, as the No. 3 Cubs wrapped up their season this week with a 10-0 loss to No. 2 Hollister in the Class 4, District 11 Tournament.
Michael Calhoun, Monett coach, said the score was not indicative of how his team played, and he was proud of how his boys battled.
“It was one of those things where we were playing well for the first five innings,” he said. “It was only 1-0 going into the fifth, but then a few things bounced not our way and the score opened up for them. A couple things don’t go your way, and that’s baseball. I hate to see these seniors go, but they should keep their heads held high. They represented themselves and the school well this season.”
Calhoun said he was proud of how his Cubs, who finish the season at 11-11, competed throughout the year, and against good competition. In early April, Monett won its own invitational, and from April 22 to the regular season’s end, the Cubs posted a 6-2 record.
That run started off with a 6-4 win over East Newton in a nine-inning contest.
“We had several highlights this year, but the one that sticks out in my mind is that extra-innings win,” Calhoun said. “We battled with east Newton and the kids came up with big plays on the mound and at the plate. We had several great moments this year, and we played some good teams. We had a lot of kids get big plays and hits when we needed them.”
The Cubs will lose five starters to graduation — Estin McBroom, Tanner Wright, Miles Laning, Doss Nation and Cole Davis — and three more seniors in the dugout — Jack Goodman, Josh Patino and Keith Fields.
“The impact those guys had on the program is important,” Calhoun said. “They were put in a tough spot by not getting to play or have summer ball last season. Seniors usually have three years to get ready to lead, and they only had two. That lost season of experience is a big deal.
“In the middle of the year, we got going and got locked in and used to our positions and roles. Several of those seniors are four-year guys that worked hard to lead us to be successful.”
Looking forward, Monett will rely on a couple juniors coming up, but even more sophomores.
“We will be young next year and hope to get some more numbers,” Calhoun said. “We’ll get about half this team back, so that’s 9 or 10 kids. We hope to get some new players to come out for us, and we have out end-of-season meetings next week to help us see what we need to work on individually and as a team.
“Daniel Geiss will be a senior and got a lot of play time. He was big on the mound for us and was one of our best offensive players. Josh Wallace, Marcus Young, Jason Garner and Blaine Salsman will all be juniors, and with their varsity experience this year, they will be expected to step up and lead the others coming up.”
Calhoun said overall, he’s pleased with the season and proud of how his team fought in every game.
“I’m proud of how these boys competed, and I’m excited for our seniors moving on,” he said. “They are a good group of kids. And, I’m ready for the ones coming up to get back to work.”
Stat-wise, McBroom led Monett in hits with 21 and home runs with 4, adding 14 RBI and a batting average of .313. Wright had 20 hits and 3 homers, and he led the team in RBI with 19 while batting .303.
Geiss led in batting average with a .316, tallying 18 hits and 14 RBI. Wallace was second on the team in RBI with 17.
Garner stole the most bases on the year with 5, and Davis, McBroom and Laning each stole 4.
McBroom led on the mound, starting 11 games and posting a 5-3 record. He had an ERA of 2.593, allowing 44 hits, 20 earned runs and striking out 81. Geiss was the second out of the bullpen, going 2-0 in five starts and earning a save. He finished with a 3.635 ERA, allowing 32 hits, 18 earned runs and striking out 43.