Meadowdale assistant coach Allen Paves hits to infielders during practice Thursday afternoon at Meadowdale High School in Lynnwood. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Meadowdale assistant coach Allen Paves hits to infielders during practice Thursday afternoon at Meadowdale High School in Lynnwood. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Meadowdale baseball team reacts to lengthy season delay

The senior-laden Mavericks with state aspirations are disappointed, but keeping a positive outlook.

LYNNWOOD — The Meadowdale High School baseball team’s practice Thursday afternoon seemed just like any other mid-March outing during the prep sports season to the average bystander.

Players could be heard shouting directions and encouragement to teammates, with occasional light-hearted ribbing following a botched play. And the crack of bats connecting with baseballs echoed throughout the frigid and partly cloudy afternoon at Meadowdale High School.

It certainly wasn’t a run-of-the-mill March practice, though. It was the last time the Mavericks will take the field for an official practice for over a month.

The Edmonds School District announced Wednesday night all schools would be closed from Monday, March 16, until at least Friday, April 24, after Gov. Jay Inslee ordered for school closures in Snohomish, King and Pierce counties in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

“You’re gonna run across things in life, situations that you can’t control, and here’s one of them,” Meadowdale coach Bill Hummel said. “What the adults have kind of told (the players) is that there isn’t an event in our lifetimes that we can point to that has been anything like this. We’re just gonna control the things that we can control and not worry about the rest of it.”

Hummel said the team could still practice Friday and Saturday, but weather forecasts of heavy rain led to the decision to make Thursday’s meeting the final one until at least late-April.

The Edmonds School District had previously suspended all athletic competitions through April 12, but practices would still be allowed to go on as they are viewed as an extension of the school day.

“It definitely hit hard when we heard about it,” senior Zach Matson said of Wednesday’s announcement.

Meadowdale’s players have tried to stay positive despite the uncertainty surrounding their upcoming season.

“(We) just wanna put in as much work as we can and just hope for the best,” Matson said. “We’re not gonna take it like, ‘Oh, we’re done.’ We’re gonna do our best to push forward and move on with where this is going.”

Ultimately, there’s still some disappointment amongst the players.

Senior Casey Toler’s role on the team is as a pitcher only, so playing time is already limited in a full season.

“I don’t have a lot of games to play in,” he said, “and it’s a little more disappointing for us (pitchers only) because we don’t get as much playing time.”

The letdown isn’t just about playing time, either. The senior-laden Mavericks have high hopes for this season and believe it could be something special. They return all but two players and their entire pitching staff from a team that fell only one win shy of a state berth last season.

“If we don’t play any games, that would probably be the worst-case scenario because I’m gonna miss playing with all my friends out here,” senior Mason Vaughn said. “Especially for all the seniors, this would be a huge letdown because we had such high expectations coming into the season — state aspirations. It would be a big loss. But (we’re) just trying to take it one day at a time and have fun and get better.”

Hummel, who took over as Meadowdale’s head coach prior to the 2005 season after leading the junior varsity team from 2001-2004, said this is the best pitching staff he’s seen since arriving on campus.

“This is a talented team,” Hummel said. “I really feel bad for these kids if things get shut down completely. This is a group that you can see progressing a long way this year.”

Meadowdale’s players plan on keeping ready for whatever lies ahead this season by getting together over the break for unofficial captain-led practices to stay sharp.

“A lot of this stuff is nothing we can really control,” senior Luke Hunnewell said. “So whenever we can, we just come out here and work hard and get better. We’re hoping to have a season.”

One thing the Mavericks could control was enjoying their final official practice for the foreseeable future.

“We’re having as much fun as we can with it,” Matson said. “Just get some hard-work in and everything we need to do, but also like take it for what it is and enjoy it.“

Talk to us

More in Sports

FILE - Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda autographs a baseball in the Dodgertown locker-room in Vero Beach, Fla., in this Wednesday, Feb. 15, 1990, file photo. Tommy Lasorda, the fiery Hall of Fame manager who guided the Los Angeles Dodgers to two World Series titles and later became an ambassador for the sport he loved during his 71 years with the franchise, has died. He was 93. The Dodgers said Friday, Jan. 8, 2021, that he had a heart attack at his home in Fullerton, California. Resuscitation attempts were made on the way to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead shortly before 11 p.m. Thursday.  (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)
Former Cascade baseball coach remembers time with MLB legend

Bob Smithson spent time in the minor leagues playing against up-and-coming manager Tommy Lasorda.

Seattle Sounders forward Jordan Morris (13) in the second half of an MLS soccer match Sunday, Nov. 1 2020, in Commerce City, Colo. The Rapids won 3-1. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Sounders star Morris may leave team to play in Europe

The 26-year-old forward is reportedly in talks with Swansea City AFC.

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) talks with head coach Pete Carroll before an NFL football game against the New England Patriots, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Seahawks’ Wilson: ‘We want to win more Super Bowls’

The star quarterback says he expects to have input on who will be the next offensive coordinator.

Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle Poona Ford turns away from the field as he stands at the bench late in the second half of Seattle’s playoff loss to the Los Angels Rams last Saturday at Lumen Field. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
POLL RESULTS: Seahawks’ season was not a success

Despite Seattle going 12-4, more than double the voters considered the season a failure than a success.

Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) gets instruction from quarterbacks coach Pep Hamilton during an NFL football game against the Las Vegas Raiders, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020, in Inglewood, Calif. The most recognizable trend in hiring NFL head coaches has been to target young, innovative offensive teachers with a track record of developing quarterbacks. (AP Photo/Peter Joneleit)
Who will become Seahawks’ next offensive coordinator?

A look at some candidates who may be able to step in for the recently ousted Brian Schottenheimer.

Lakewood's Landen Pruitt runs the ball during the 2A State playoff game against Sequim on Friday, Nov. 15, 2018 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
WIAA announces another change to prep sports schedule

The announcement comes after new plans from the governor. Wesco is still submitting its own proposal.

Washington forward Hameir Wright (13) shoots between Southern California forward Isaiah Mobley (3) and forward Evan Mobley (4) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
UW men lose to USC, fall to 1-10 on season

The Huskies remain winless in Pac-12 play after a 95-68 road loss to the Trojans.

Gonzaga forward Drew Timme (2) shoots while pressured by Pepperdine forward Kene Chukwuka (24) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Spokane, Wash., Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)
No. 1 Gonzaga overcomes poor 1st half, rolls past Pepperdine

The Bulldogs were up just four at halftime, but cruise down the stretch to win 95-70.

Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider walks on the field during warmups before an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams, Thursday, Oct. 3, 2019, in Seattle. The Seahawks have agreed to a contract extension with general manager John Schneider that will keep him tied to the franchise through the 2027 draft. The Seahawks announced Schneider’s extension on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021, three days after their season ended in a 30-20 loss to the Los Angeles Rams in the NFC wild-card playoff game. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Seahawks agree to contract extension with Schneider

The well-regarded general manager is now tied to the team through the 2027 draft.

Most Read