Platte Valley baseball achieves conference success

Junior Braxton Wentworth is up to bat against Beatrice. Wentworth is the leadoff hitter for the team. (Delaney Shield)

Every team looks for an end-of-season success. This year the Platte Valley Patriots achieved this goal with a conference championship.

“Winning [conference] felt pretty good. We knew we had a good chance of winning it,” junior Braxton Wentworth said. “Just putting it all together really made it feel good.”

This didn’t come as a surprise for the players because of the time they spent preparing during the off-season and early spring.

“Working all winter and just throwing bullpens and hitting in the cages just allowed us to be prepared,” Wentworth said.

In order for success, the players had to set goals for the team to look up to.

“The biggest goals were just being teammates, believing in yourself and being able to fight through adversity when you need to get the job done,” senior Janson Pilkington said.

There were many highlights during the conference tournament, including 18 total hits and 13 stolen bases. 

Senior Janson Pilkington throws the ball in during the game against DC West. Pilkington commonly played left field this year. (Delaney Shield)

“My favorite part about conference was when the team got multiple outs and double plays,” Wentworth said.

The Platte Valley Patriots also won conference last year, but due to there not being very many teams, there was no plaque or medals handed out. This year, though, that was not the case. 

“It was great to see the players hold the plaque and take a team photo with it. I was very happy for them,” head coach Shawn Emanuel said. 

After the boys had won, they were left with a rush of adrenaline and excitement for the rest of the season to come.

“It definitely boosts your confidence a little bit to know there are teams that you can beat,” Pilkington said.

Emanuel hopes the team’s winning streak will continue to move forward at state.

We know that we can go beat anyone when we play our style of game. I feel the players are very confident and excited to compete for a state tournament,” Emanuel said.