Pride hits it out of the park

Tartan Pride baseball team are continuing their season run with some home runs and big wins.

Head coach Steve Dintaman explains that there have been some major contributors on the team despite being plagued with injuries.

“We are banged up a little bit on the pitching side, but the guys we do have are doing an outstanding job of having guys throw strikes and be able to compete in the zone,” Dintaman said.

According to Dintaman, the team’s biggest reason for success in past games has been their offense.

“We took two out of three [three weekends ago] against Kellogg but the biggest thing that helped us was our offense,” Dintaman said.

This includes Brandon Hanson, who is one of the leaders on the team in batting average and quality at-bats. Azim Qadri had a big game last weekend against Tiffin, where he hit for the cycle (single, double, triple and home run in the same game) to go along with two doubles and a grand slam. Sean Darmafall was named Conference Player of the Week three weeks ago.

“So [the production] is coming from a lot of guys, but primarily those three guys as far as production goes,” Dintaman said.

He said that they usually try to play four games in three days on the weekend. In addition, they have scrimmages every Wednesday so that the players on the bench get some action.

“We are just practicing while staying fit to make sure that we are ready for games and preparing every week,” Dintaman said.

He hopes that the weather will get better as the season goes on.

“Hopefully this is the last week that we will deal with cold weather and we will get decent temperatures here,” Dintaman said.

In addition to playing baseball, the players are also expected to do well in academics.

In order to be able to compete college baseball, players are asked to maintain at least a 2.0 GPA.

Dintaman’s own standards are for the players to maintain a 2.5 GPA and attend class regularly.

“We have to understand our roles and make sure we are there and if we are not there, then we are going to pay the price,” Dintaman said.

The fans are a big element that has added to the atmosphere for the baseball team. Dintaman explains that Grady Field is a great place to watch baseball for all ages.

“Kids can come onto the field between games and hang out with our guys. With our guys, you can give them a high-five, ask them for an autograph. This is very family oriented,” Dintaman said.

The Tartan Pride is currently ranked 11 after jumping four spots in the NJCAA Division II baseball poll.

They are currently the only team in Region 12 that has a Top 20 ranking.

They have had 112 runs over 13 games and pulled out seven home runs that includes a Grand Slam.

Tartan Pride faced Mercyhurst North East in a double header last weekend. This week they will play Vincennes University and then Edison Community College over the weekend.

Matthew Greathouse

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