It has been a fun year and season of growth for DC Baseball. Our team made it to the elite 8 for the second year in a row. Our young team has grown so much this year as players and as a community. We are proud of their accomplishments and excited to see what the next year has in store for DC Baseball!
Growing as a young team
Coach Sam Jones reflects that this season has been unique because we have zero seniors on the roster. Our young guys have grown up fast and matured this year. Roman Raffaeli (Junior) commented, “We had no seniors on the team this year which is always difficult. This meant we had to start multiple freshmen each game and as the season progressed, the team built around them and turned into something truly special.” This was also an opportunity for sophomores and juniors to take on a larger leadership role than they might otherwise. Roman says, “This season I grew in many ways but the biggest was my growth as a leader. Despite being a junior, this was only my second year with Denver Christian baseball because of the pandemic my freshman year. However, our lack of seniors made me one of our most experienced players. Not only did I have to make up for the lost leadership there, but I had to work on improving my own skills too.”
Coach Jones says, “This year our team motto has been “run to the battle” which comes from 1 Samuel where it says that David “ran quickly toward the battleline” to meet Goliath. Our guys have really embraced this and been able to run boldly toward all challenges that they have faced knowing that God is with them. We’ve also focused on playing for an “Audience of One” and not worrying about anything else. It has been cool to see the guys play free and for God’s glory.”
The team had the opportunity to go to Arizona as a team this year for spring break. This was a great trip and important for team culture. A lot of bonding time happened on those 13-hour drives each way! Brayden Epperhart (Sophomore) noted that this trip was one of the most special memories of the season: “it was fun to play in a different state against different schools as well as hang out and bond with teammates.” He says, the team grew overall in their play as well as being “more accepting and inviting of the younger guys.”
Several games stand out from the spring season. Roman says that an overtime win against Dawson stands out to him. “ Dawson was a tough opponent we knew would put up a fight and when we got down early, it was a big step-up moment from our team. It was a true team win and a game I’ll always remember.” Coach Jones thought of the same moment. He says, “One of the biggest moments of the season was when Sam Waanders hit a walk-off single to win the game in extra innings against Dawson. This was an awesome moment to see the guys celebrate. We’ve also had the opportunity to ask other teams and coaches to pray with us after games and these are always special moments.” Brayden’s favorite memory is the game against Burlington at Regionals: “The atmosphere and intensity made it fun as we weren’t supposed to win that game as we were the #13 seed and Burlington was #4. We won 8-6.”
We are proud of our team’s sportsmanship and culture. They do a great job maintaining integrity and being respectful on the field. Their growth on and off the field is exactly what DC Athletics is all about!