Most area high school baseball teams are taking this week off for spring break before returning to continue the 2012 season next week.
The 46th annual state tournament begins on the local level with sectionals that are slated for May 24-28. Two-game regionals are scheduled for Saturday, June 2 and one-game semistates on Saturday, June 9. The state finals are set for Saturday, June 16 at Victory Field in Indianapolis.
The local Class 4A sectional site is Elkhart Memorial. Other teams are Concord, Elkhart Central, Goshen, Northridge and Warsaw. The area 3A venue is Wawasee. Joining the host Warriors are Fairfield, Lakeland, NorthWood, Tippecanoe Valley and West Noble. Westview is paired with Bremen, Central Noble, Fremont and Prairie Heights in the 2A field at LaVille. The local 1A sectional is at Fort Wayne Canterbury. Bethany Christian, Elkhart Christian Academy, Fort Wayne Blackhawk, Hamilton, Howe School and Lakewood Park Christian are other schools.
The sectional draw is Tuesday, May 15.
Following are capsule previews on area teams.
Coach: Brent Reinhardt, 15th season (101-240 in 14).
Assistant Coaches: Steve Slagel, Nick Vandermolen.
2011 Record: 4-16.
Graduation losses: Ben Bontreger, James Helmuth, Russell Klassen, Kyle Miller, Scott Weaver.
Returning letterwinners: Seniors — c-if Jared Miller (.245 BA), p-of Josh Plank, if Peter Schrock, 1b-p Andy Slagel (.320 BA). Juniors — p-if-of Ike Lehman, p-of Jesse Loewen.
Other varsity candidates: Seniors — c AJ Newcomer, 2b-ss Jeremy Troyer, 2b Cody Yoder. Sophomores — of Jordan Glasgow, p-of Dylan Slabach, Freshmen — 2b-of Ryan Duckworth, 3b Jordan Haarer, 2b-ss-p Ethan Miller, if Young Kwang Sun.
Comments: “The middle of our order could provide some pop,” coach Reinhardt said. “We could score some runs if we get someone to set the tables for the heart of the order. We are physically bigger than most teams we’ve had at Bethany. Our pitching is untested. We lost most of our innings and all our wins from last year. Newcomer is a nice addition to the team. He has gap power and has nice catch and release times to second. Slagel has batted over .300 the past two seasons. A couple of freshmen will push the older players for playing time.”