The American Legion season has begun and Eureka Post 177 looking to defend its District 10 championship.
Post 177 went 25-15 last summer. Eureka won District 10 championship for third consecutive season before falling just short in Zone 4 play.
In his second season at the helm, coach Alex Wolters believes he has another strong team back. He welcomes back six starters.
Eureka Post 177 2018 Record: 25-15. In postseason defeated Ballwin 6-5 (walk-off), and defeated Thoman Boothe 11-2 and 1-0 to win District 10 championship for third consecutive season. Defeated Cape Girardeau 4-1 in first round of Zone 4 Tournament, then lost to Festus 8-2 in the winner’s bracket championship game and lost to Cape Girardeau 10-0 in the losers bracket championship game to end the season. Cape Girardeau went on to advance to the Mid- South Regional in New Orleans, LA.
Coach: Alex Wolters is entering his second season as the head coach of the varsity team. Assistant coaches: John Burton (bench coach), Jacob Wurtz (hitting coach for second season) and Noah Baker (infielders coach in his first season).
Returning starters: 6. Players on team to watch for this summer: P Carter Beecher, 1B/LF Nathan Humphrey, 3B Rett Corley, CF Oliver Wolters, RF Ethan Gossman, Utility Ben Musgraves. Newcomers expected to contribute: P Garrett Fagan, P Jackson Blackwell, P Nate Ulsas, C Connor Sensenney, C Dylan Yallaly, 2B Drew Holtmeyer, SS Drew Neptune, Utility Brendan Meyers.
Team strengths: The top of our rotation is strong. Carter Beecher and Garrett Fagan will compete with most 1’s and 2’s in the state. Our baserunning will be excellent and we’ll track the ball down very well in the outfield. Other areas will develop and grow as the coaching staff has more time with the players.
Team goals: We’ve implemented “Standards of Performance” that we believe lead to a strong culture and strong play on the field. They have to do with attitude, work ethic, as well as meeting certain statistical marks. There’s an emphasis on things such as limiting strikeouts offensively and throwing first pitch strikes as a staff. Outside of those standards, we’ve set the following goals: Advance to bracket play in each tournament we play in, win at least one tournament, finish first in District 10 during the regular season, win the District 10 tournament to advance to the Zone 4 tournament. This is one of the only times we’ll actually discuss winning. We stress the process, not the result. Favorites to win District 10: Tie between Eureka Post 177 and Lemay Post 162. Quote: “I like our group and know we’ll see constant improvement from them over the course of the season,” Wolters said. “Lemay’s group of seniors is strong. It’ll take everything we have to come out on top.”