courtesy photo/ Shawana Coxcourtesy photo/ Shawana Cox

Coach Views Adversity as Opportunity

In an interview ahead of the Hartville Tournament, Coach Forrest said he expected competition to be tough, but recognized it as a great opportunity for the Bears to play against top talent and become better ball players. "Hartville is a top 5 team in the state. Gainesville is ranked tenth, but they're better than that," said Forrest, "I feel there's at least three really good teams in it, but if we play clean ball, we can compete."
With a 1-4 record going into the tournament, there was no doubt in his mind that there is room for improvement, explaining that the team has only had 4 full practices, so they are "playing catch-up".
Weather has certainly played a role in the practice schedule, but he said it was nothing out of the ordinary. "We've never been through a spring where you're not freezing," he explained. "We've had a lot of rain, mid-week, so we haven't been able to practice a's cost us a couple of games, but I think we will make those up. As it gets warmer, they play better."
But after a 10-20 loss in Salem Thursday night, Coach Forrest's cited frigid temperatures, rain, and 30-40 mph sustained winds. "I don't usually complain," he said, "but that was probably the most miserable game I've ever seen."
Looking ahead to the weekend, he said there had been brief discussion of not playing in Hartville, due to forecasted weather, but he wasn't interested in pulling out. "We played last night," he reasoned, "There's no way it could be worse than that."
Asked if any players had stood out so far this season, he was quick to mention Rogan Traver, who pitched a shutout in the season opener against Winona. He also said shortstop Chase Rogers has played four games without a single error, and Ryan Coleman was batting .390, so far.  
"For us to win, we've gotta have these guys to set the tone," said Coach Forrest. "The kids are working hard, every day, to improve. We've gotta continue to do the little things...put the ball in play, throw strikes, and not walk people. If we do that, we can win."
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