By Jason Arndt
Editor

The Report looks to recognize senior student-athletes from all spring sports teams, which saw their seasons cut short because of COVID-19.

Senior student-athletes will be profiled for the next several weeks in The Report as more information is submitted via email. Coaches, senior-student athletes, parents and athletic directors are welcome to reach out to The Report by emailing jarndt@southernlakesnewspapers.com for suggestions.

The Report asked Westosha Central baseball seniors about their favorite memories, what they loved about their teams, notable achievements and future plans.

Here are the thoughts of seniors who responded by email.

Bryce Kerkman

Bryce Kerkman

Kerkman played multiple positions on the Central baseball team, including shortstop and second base, as well as relief pitcher.

He acknowledged the canceled season was a disappointment after putting in additional work leading up his last year.

“I was very excited for this upcoming season. Waking up on Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 4:30, to go to open gyms was the closest thing I had to a final season,” he said. “I was quite upset hearing about the cancelation of the season, however, I understand the reasoning behind it.”

Looking back, Kerkman said earning a varsity spot as a sophomore was most memorable, and remembers running to his sister, Kayla, with the news.

“My best memory of Central baseball was when Coach (Jacob) Morman and the other coaching staff told me that I would be on varsity as a sophomore,” he said. “I told my sister right away who was at softball practice, and I told my grandpa as soon as I got in his truck with him.”

The Falcons, he said, built strong bonds through his two years on the varsity team.

“What I loved most about my team is how well we got along,” he said. “Our team chemistry was phenomenal the two years I was on varsity.”

Kerkman remains undecided on plans after Westosha Central, but as of last week, he could attend University of Wisconsin-Whitewater to become a chiropractor or enroll at Gateway Technical College with carpentry as a potential career.

Myles Kazumura

Myles Kazumura

Kazumura, a multi-sport athlete, played catcher for the Westosha Central baseball team.

The catcher found the team had a strong chemistry and always looked to have fun while playing.

“I loved the team chemistry we had these past three years. Everybody was so tightly knit together, and we had fun on the diamond every single day,” he said.

Kazumura, meanwhile, said his sophomore season brought the most memorable moments because the team captured a WIAA Division 1 regional title on its home diamond.

“My most memorable moment was winning the regional championship at home my sophomore year and getting the chance to play in sectionals in front of a huge crowd,” said Kazumura.
Kazumura, meanwhile, previously said in a Senior Reflection on the Westosha Central website underclassmen should not take anything for granted.

“To all the underclassmen, all I can say is to not take advantage of the extremely short four years you get of high school. These years will be the best of your life that you will never forget, and it will be over before you know it. Be crazy, break the rules, and leave absolutely no regrets,” he noted.

Kazumura plans to attend Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland this fall and play football.

Tyler Horton

Tyler Horton

Horton, a middle infielder, will play baseball at Rock Valley College, where he will study marketing and fire science.

At Westosha Central, he enjoyed playing with his teammates, calling all of them his friend.

“I love playing baseball because all the good times with my friends,” he said.

Horton indicates his best game was in a Southern Lakes Conference contest with Waterford.

“(My most memorable game was) probably against Waterford when I made multiple diving plays at second base,” he said.

Andrew Hrncar

Andrew Hrncar

Playing baseball at Westosha Central carried extra meaning for Hrncar because of the strong community bonds with his teammates.

Hrncar, of Bristol, said the community bonds built great chemistry and kept the team together.

“What I loved most was the fact I grew up with mostly all of those guys, we come out of the same grade schools and we share such great chemistry across the board,” he said.

Hrncar, a left fielder, produced critical hits for the Falcons during his sophomore season.

“Getting the game winning hit against Elkhorn and Horlick my sophomore year was most memorable,” he said.

Hrncar looks to enroll at Central Alabama Community College to study political science and play baseball.

Cooper Griffiths

Cooper Griffiths

Griffiths, who plans to play baseball at Rend Lake College in Ina, Illinois, primarily pitched for Westosha Central.

The right-hander said he became comfortable as a player during his sophomore season with Westosha Central.

“One of my most memorable moments was my first game of my sophomore season. Sophomore season was where I finally had gotten comfortable with my group of guys because freshman year I only played a handful of games on varsity,” he said.

“I started our first game of the season sophomore year and ended up throwing a six inning no-hitter against Racine Park. I believe I was only two walks away from it being a perfect game, both came down to full counts.”

Griffiths believes this appearance two years earlier garnered him exposure as a competitive pitcher by opposing teams.

“I felt like this was when I first had been noticed as an honorable pitcher in our area and I felt very accomplished,” he said.

Griffiths, meanwhile, said he will always remember playing with Westosha Central because of the friends he made on the team.

“What I loved most about our team is the impact the sport had on us off the field. There were many guys I might not have had the chance to hang around with if I hadn’t played the sport and the guys changed my entire high school experience,” he said. “These boys I played with were most of my closest friends during my high school career and I hope to stay friends with them for a long time.”

Griffiths, like others, said the season cancelation was disappointing because he wanted to play one last year with his Westosha Central teammates.

“It makes me upset that this had to happen during my senior year because I believe we could’ve done great things this year and we could’ve gone quite far,” he said. “I’m said that I won’t be able to play with this group of guys again but I’m glad I worked hard over these past four years so that my baseball career didn’t have to stop here.”

Griffiths plans to focus on general studies at Rend Lake College.

Preston Bronson

Preston Bronson

Bronson primarily played outfield and pitched for the Westosha Central baseball program.

“My biggest highlight is being able to pitch on varsity last year for the first and last time,” said Bronson.

Bronson, meanwhile, said he enjoyed the time he spent with his teammates.

“The thing I loved most about the team is how much fun we had during practices and games, we all got along well and had a lot of fun,” he said.

He plans to attend University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and remains undecided on a field of study.

 
 

No comments

Be the first one to leave a comment.

Post a Comment


 
 
 

Local weather