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The Fort Knox Eagles will have plenty of fresh faces, including a new one leading the team this season.
Fort Knox principal Dr. Gregg Mowen takes over the program, becoming the third coach in as many years. The Eagles went 4-25 under Coach Jennifer Sanders last year.
The Eagles only had 10 players last season, but they begin this year with 22. The influx of new players gives the Eagles one of their deepest teams in recent years.
Seniors Rashaan Allen and Spencer Moore and sophomore Camden Doerer are the only returners from last year’s squad, giving the Eagles a completely different look.
“I think what concerns us is this is a new team,” Fort Knox assistant coach Ed Box said. “They’re still getting comfortable with each other. I think we’ve made some errors in our first few games but everyone’s new. They are starting to bond. To pull out a win like we did today was important. It was our first home game, so it was big to win.”
Saturday’s 13-12 victory over Louisville Waggener was a big step for the program. The Eagles trailed 11-3 before rallying for the win.
“The great thing about this team is they don’t get stumped by a bad play,” Box said. “They come back and make the next play. They had an error but on the next play we got a double play. Those are the things we need to do. That’s very promising.”
Allen figures to anchor the outfield in center field, Doerer will start at first and Moore will see time at first base or shortstop.
Freshman Mason Stacy takes over behind the plate, while freshman Gavin Hurtado will back him up.
Hurtado will start at second, while sophomore Jon Box takes over at shortstop. Sophomore Andrew Junek-DeSpain gets the nod at third. Box could see time at second and Stacy might get time at shortstop.
Playing alongside Allen in the outfield will be junior Antonio Copeland in right and freshman Colton Stabler in left. Junior Kyle Gibson and freshman Alex Wendel also could see playing time in the outfield.
Fort Knox’s rotation will be made up of Doerer, Stacy and Box. Moore and Allen also will time on the mound, but probably in relief roles.
“I think our hitting and definitely our pitching will be strengths,” Box said. “We have three really good pitchers.”
The key for Mowen and the coaching staff is blending the team together.
“The great thing about this bunch has been the teamwork,” Box said. “Guys are doing different roles, but they are pulling in the same direction. They are coming together as a team. They are a very cohesive group.”
Chuck Jones can be reached at (270) 505-1759 or firstname.lastname@example.org.