Kemper Academy counting on mixture of youth, seniors
Coach Colt Kilpatrick and the Kemper Academy Rams will be relying on young talent and senior leadership this baseball season as Kilpatrick has high hopes for this team.
“We can be a pretty solid team”, Kilpatrick said. ’It’s going to take some time because we’re young.’ Kilpatrick says the goal is to win the district, and then make it through the first round of playoffs.
Kilpatrick says he has high expectations for the dynamic duo of Zane Knight and Kix Wilson. Knight will be the ace pitcher this season while also starting in centerfield when not pitching. Wilson will start at catcher. “They have been leaders on and off the field,’ Kilpatrick said. “Not only are they getting better because of it, but everyone else is as well.” If the Wilson and Knight are as dominant on the diamond as they were the hardwood, the Rams will be in good standing.
Kilpatrick said that defense will be they key to this season. “We are going to go as far as our defense takes us”, he said. The Rams will have to work many young guys into the pitching rotation as only two starting pitchers return to the team this year.
“If we play solid defense we will score enough to win a bunch of games,’ he said. The Rams played their first game on Saturday, as they faced off against the Meridian Flyers. The Rams lost 8-4. Knight was on the mound for the Rams, and pitched three innings, striking out five, while giving up three earned runs. Knight also had one hit, with two runs scored.
Knight was a base-running nightmare as he stole five bases in the game. Cooper Thornton came in the game later to pitch and struck out four batters. He also gave up three runs.
Eli Miles and Casen Holmes were strong at the plate as each recorded two hits. Holmes batted in two runs and Miles stole one base. Kix Wilson also had one hit with a stolen base.
The Rams were set to host Kemper County Tuesday before heading to Meridian today (Thursday) to face Meridian Homeschool, and will host Pickens on Friday. The Rams will also host Hebron Christian on Monday.