EASLEY—In a season full of ups and downs, the Easley High baseball team finds itself in a familiar position heading into the post-season.
A veteran Green Wave squad earned a 16-8 regular season record, but head coach Roger Finley said he knows the toughest games are still ahead.
“In our bracket we’ve got Northwestern, Mauldin and Laurens,” Finley said. “Needless to say that’s a pretty tough bracket.”
Easley opened the double elimination playoffs at Northwestern Thursday night and Finley said he believes his team is beginning to put some things together.
“We’ve had some good pitching and our bats are beginning to come around again,” Finley said. “We went through a little slum there a couple weeks ago where we just weren’t swinging the bats, but during the last two games our bats have come alive and we’ve hit the ball a lot better. We just have to get those timely hits during the playoffs.”
The team’s most crucial asset, according to Finley, is its experience.
“Some of our guys have been four year starters and have been playing together for quite some time so we’ve got some experience,” Finley said. “Now that we’re down to double elimination, we have to focus on staying in the winner’s bracket. That makes it a whole lot easier because we could actually come back to Easley (for a home game) if we can win the first two.”
Finley said, despite having to go on the road, his team will not be easily intimidated.
“We’ve been here before,” Finley said. “We’ve got playoff experience. It’s not like this is our first go around. We’ve been there and done that, so our kids aren’t going to be scared whatsoever. We just have to get guys on base and connect with timely hits.”
Now that the Green Wave have secured a playoff spot, Finley said his team can begin a new season.
“We got in the playoffs. That was our goal. Once you get there, you never know what’s going to happen,” Finley said. “We’ve been a four-seed before and we’ve come back to win the district championship. We’re not concerned with our seed; we’re just concerned with ourselves.”
Easley’s playoff success will likely come down to defense and timely hitting, according to Finley.
“The playoffs are about pitching, defense and timely hitting,” Finley said. “If we can play the way we’re supposed to I feel we’ll be able to make a run.”