Baseball will move forward after last season’s scandal

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“Your team will forfeit the playoffs.”
Upon hearing those words from the administration, everyone’s heads fell, and we buried our faces in our hands. Tears began streaming down the faces of kids I would have never thought I’d see cry. We had lost our season, and for some, the last opportunity they would have to step onto a baseball field.
Evanston baseball suffered a crushing blow last year. Due to the circulation of illicit pictures, the administration deemed we were an unfit representation of the school, and we were forced to forfeit the remainder of the season. We lost our opportunity to compete in the playoffs. But that was then. We have put that behind us as we have set our sights on this season, and reestablishing the pride of the program, for what is does on and off the field.
There’s no denying that once this season begins, last year’s incident will be rehashed on some level. Many still may cast a shadow over our program, while maybe not as prevalent; when baseball is brought up it’s still in the back of their minds. Any uncertainty or skepticism only adds to the weight of this season, and as we usher it in we know of ours goal on the field, and what our responsibilities are off of it.
This has the potential to be a storied season, one in which we revitalize the program for all it’s worth and keep the focus where it should be, on the field. If there is a strong enough effort to lead the program in the right direction, and uphold ourselves to be the well-rounded players and people we are, then we can erase the past.
The administration stated that last year was an eye opener, and has since amended the activity code, clarifying the issues related to sexual misconduct and team punishment and suspension. We were blind sided by last year’s verdict, but now moving forward teams are aware of the possible action that can be carried out by the administration.
We were all greatly shaken, but we moved on. There is no sense living in that shadow, and we as a team know what to put forth this year.
People may not know what to expect coming into a new season, as the last thing they heard from Evanston baseball was in the form of a breaking news report. We want to bring it back to the game, and just playing baseball. Let this community and everyone else know that the focus should be on this season, and everything we achieve moving forward.
For me, this season means more than any I’ve played before. Baseball has been in my life since I was five years old, and coming into my senior season I recognize this may be the last time I get to play this game. This team has something to prove this year, and I want us to leave our mark. Our coach always asks us how we want to be remembered, and last year it was for the wrong thing. When I step off that field for the last time, I want to know I’ve done everything I can to make people remember this program for something more than just a scandal. I want people to remember my teammates, my coaches, everyone within Evanston baseball for upholding an honorable program. One that this school and community are proud of.