Wildcats regroup under new skipper

Wednesday, March 15, 2017
Collin Pearman was named to the Big 8 basketball All-Conference Second Team for the 2016-2017 season. Jared Lankford/sports@cassville-democrat.com

Cassville baseball opens Saturday at home

For the third consecutive year, the Cassville baseball team will have a different coach at the helm of the program.

After Jade Samborski left at the end of last season for his dream job in Arizona, Cassville grabbed Brandon Cobb to stabilize the program that went 15-10 last year and bring it back to the stage where the Wildcats were perennial Big 8 Conference Champions.

“I’m excited for this great opportunity,” Cobb said. “I’ve heard nothing but great things about Cassville and know that their program has a proud tradition. I hope to continue to build on that foundation.”

Cobb, a 2011 graduate at Nixa High School, earned All-Conference and All-District honors for the Eagles. He continued his college career at Evangel, where he was a two-time all-conference player and won a gold glove for his play in left field.

“I plan to bring my energy and hard work to Cassville,” Cobb said. “My team will hustle every play, sprint down the baseline, play small ball and give me their best effort every day.”

Cassville graduated four starters that were the heart and soul of last year’s squad in Chad Howerton, Noah Hadlow, Leigh Cox and Alex Dyer.

This year’s team will be led by a trio of seniors in Gilbert Medina, Troy Rose and Gavin White.

“We have a good group of guys that are willing to work hard,” Cobb said. “They are prepared to play good, fundamental baseball and play aggressively.

“We have a mindset to play the game hard. Some of our key matchups this season will be any of our Big 8 conference games. There is always a little more intensity when you are playing the great teams in your own conference.”

Medina, according to his coach, is expected to have a big impact at third base and be a part of the pitching rotation. He will also bat near the top of the order.

Rose is considered to be the team’s defensive specialist at short stop. He will also be asked to chew up innings on the mound.

White and Rose will alternate at the short stop and pitching positions.

The Wildcats also have a healthy mix of new varsity players in Denny Wierman, Austin McClintock, Liam Doughtery and Cole York, seniors; and Dylan McCormack, sophomore.

“I would expect us to learn our roles on the team early in the season,” Cobb said. “Our goal is to be playing our best baseball toward the end of the season toward the district tournament.”

The Wildcats open the season with a split-double header on Saturday. At 10 a.m. Cassville hosts Glendale and then they host Carthage at 3 p.m.

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