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A New Opportunity: Baseball Program Evolves


The Mount Michael Baseball team has rarely been seen as a powerhouse in Nebraska baseball, considering they have never won an NSAA state title. Regardless, the team’s sights are set on winning their first state trophy this season.

Last season, the Knights participated in Class B with one of the lowest numbers of enrolled students, already putting them at a disadvantage. Another setback facing the team was the lack of senior leaders, as the class of 2023 was represented by only five individuals. This hurt the team in terms of depth, in the pitching staff and fielding positions, and in varsity experience. At the beginning of the season, 14 of the 20 team members had not played in a varsity game up until the first game. Ultimately, the team lost in the district final to the second-ranked Norris Titans.

Over the offseason, the team put in work nearly every day. Head Baseball Coach Tom Swanson ‘01 spent time with other Mount Michael coaches to create a structured offseason plan to help improve the athletics program as a whole. “As a team, I hope we are able to develop on both offense and defense. We need to be able to be in the best position to be successful late in the season,” Swanson said.

Another big step the program has taken this winter was renovating the field in hopes of creating a better experience for the players, as well as the fans. The first major change was the addition of new warning tracks in front of the dugouts, as well as a path to the batter’s box, which was an Eagle Scout project by Xavier Zimmerman ‘26. His project cleaned up the areas in front of the dugouts, as it was previously covered by patchy, dead grass, due to the constant foot traffic of players and coaches.

The next significant change was the renovation of both dugouts. The most prominent alteration is the removal of the old chain link fences, replaced by a dark red, wooden wall enclosing both dugouts. This was done in hopes of helping players to keep focus on the games and, therefore, being able to play to the best of their ability. The dugouts now sport an organizer for helmets and bats, as the previous layout led to many scattered bats, gloves and other equipment and left the tight dugouts feeling more cramped. The uncomfortable metal benches were also replaced with wooden benches to accommodate two levels of seating, allowing more players to rest themselves at the same time.

Much of the work put into these improvements can be accredited to Tim Earl, father of Ayden Earl ‘24, an impactful varsity returner and integral part of the Knights’ pitching staff. Last season, Tim Earl helped rebuild the bullpens on both sides of the field, as well as building a plyo wall, a wall used by pitchers to warm up using weighted balls.

Another difference for the team this year is that the Knights were reclassified from Class B to Class C (added last year during the 2023 season). This gives a positive outlook for the team, as the Knights beat three state qualifying Class C teams last year. If the team is able to make it to the state tournament this year, it is likely they will be seeded higher due to their schedule being filled with Class A and Class B schools.

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About the Contributor
Jackson Teetor
Jackson Teetor, Reporter & Photographer
Jackson joined The Mount Journalism team in 2023. Teetor also participates in baseball, cross country, wrestling, and investment club.
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