The Jackson Prep baseball team had their first summer ball practice today and head coach Brent Heavener and the team couldn’t be more thrilled to be back out on the field again.
“Yeah it just feels so good,” Heavener said. “It’s hard because everybody knows today that we probably would have been defending a state championship, but it feels good just to get out in the fresh air. The field looks great and more than anything right now it’s just about trying to get the guys back in baseball shape and back out on the field to do a little work.”
While the Patriots will practice and play games against other schools in the area during the week, Heavener still encourages his players to play for independent travel teams over the summer.
“We play a lot of the same teams including MRA, J.A., Hartfield, St. Joe, and St. Andrews we have a little league that we’re in with them,” said Heavener. “ We still want our guys to go off and play travel ball. It’s good experience they can get playing with different guys. They will go to Hoover and Atlanta and down in Florida and play some big time travel tournaments, but for us it’s important to try to get some good work in and to try to form this team a little bit.”
Senior Mississippi State commit Jeffrey Ince and senior Ole Miss commit Mason Nichols are looking forward to making up for the canceled spring season this summer.
“Well I’m trying to improve on my hitting the most right now,” said Ince. “I’ve been through some struggles lately and I’m just trying to figure it out. I love being around all my guys and all my friends and teammates and it’s really good that we’re allowed to do this now.”
Mason Nichols is also happy to see his friends again.
“It’s nice to see my friends too,” said Nichols. “People don’t think about that. I’ve been in my house and I get tired of not seeing people but it’s good to get in shape and get you’re feet moving.”
Coach Heavener is reminding his team to stay more spread out than usual on the field and he will also be disinfecting everything that was touched after each practice.
“The most important thing is just to try to keep them a little bit away from each other, not just grabbing a hold of water bottles and that kind of a thing,” he said. “They just need to pay attention to what’s going on and these guys are smart. They know how to handle that.”