October 20, 2003
Cowley baseball has productive fall
After going through some growing pains last season, the Cowley County Community College baseball team displayed a much more experienced team during its fall schedule.
The Tigers had just three returning players with any extensive playing time entering last season. That inexperience hurt as Cowley finished second in the Jayhawk Conference Eastern Division for the first time since 1994.
Still, coach Dave Burroughs had his young squad in the hunt for a ninth consecutive conference title until the very end as the Tigers finished last season with a record of 36-22 overall and 24-12 in the Jayhawk East.
This fall, the Tigers have showed signs that they are ready to take back their place atop the Jayhawk East standings.
“We’ve made a step forward, but we have got to keep working if we want to get back to Grand Junction, Colo. (the home of the JUCO World Series),” Burroughs said. “I don’t want to get too excited about how we do in the fall. But, overall, the kids have made progress. I have been pleased with everyone we have had out there.”
Cowley recently showed off its experienced pitching staff, using five sophomores in a 9-0 and 10-1 doubleheader sweep of Northeastern Oklahoma College Tuesday in Tonkawa, Okla. Sophomores Josh Wahpepah, the Jayhawk Conference’s Freshman of the Year last season, Andrew Smith, Trey Randa, Adam Henry and Dustin Richardson all were impressive on the mound.
“They all threw the ball well and threw a lot of strikes,” Burroughs said. “We were pretty business like since we are getting closer to the end of the fall schedule.”
Also back for the Tigers is first-team All-Jayhawk East designated hitter/catcher Clay Blevins, Hunter Harrigan, Kellen Linville, Brad Schick, Adam Ewy, Steven Wright, and Dewayne White.
Cowley again looked strong in a pair of games against Butler County Community College Thursday in Arkansas City.
While the fall games are strictly exhibition contests, they serve as a way for Burroughs and his staff to see how the newcomers are progressing, and see how far the returners have come since last season.
Burroughs, who is entering his 17th season at Cowley, and has amassed a record of 610 wins and just 265 losses, likes what he has seen from this group of players.
“Really, it has been a productive fall from the very start,” Burroughs said. “I think we have a chance to be a pretty solid offensive and defensive team. I don’t worry about the records in the fall, I worry about our development and improving.”
The Cowley baseball team will complete its fall activity by playing its annual split-squad World Series beginning today at City Ball Park. The best-of-three World Series will run Monday through Wednesday.