Team of the Week: Iowa Park Hawks Baseball - May 4, 2017

The Iowa Park Hawks didn't expect to be district champions.

Head coach Michael Swenson says, "We have a lot of new faces and a lot of young kids that have had to step up in some roles and the biggest part is we weren't able to put them on our JV and let them catch up with everybody else, we weren't able to go slow with them. We had to just throw them into the fire, and they've started off slow, but they've responded nicely over the last month, month and a half."

Swenson says the Hawks have been led this year by...everyone, "To be honest with you, it's somebody different every game, every single game. But overall, my secondbaseman, Ty Sheehan, he's been a four year starter for us, he's played in some big games for us. He's won some big games. He's not your ra-ra guy, he's a leader by example. He comes out here to practice every singe day, he's going to dive, he's going to take balls off the chest, off the neck, whatever it takes to get the job done. My biggest surprise is my short stop, Kase Johnson. He played up as a freshman last year, and he's leaving our team in batting average. And he's kind of the catalyst. When he goes, we go, so to speak. Obviously my pitching staff, they've done a great job for a bunch of young kids."

"I like teaching! I like helping other people, and for them to get better makes me feel good," says senior second baseman, Ty Sheehan.

The Hawks defeated Burkburnett 13-3 last Friday, claiming the number one seed in district 6-4A. But after the game, more than just a district championship was celebrated. Head Coach Michael Swenson earned his 200th career win.

"It was rather embarassing to be honest with you," says Swenson. "I had no idea they were making t-shirts and all that! After the game I ended up getting a t-shirt. That was icing on the cake right there. I've been fortunate enough to coach a lot of players over my ten years here. These guys, like I said, not expecting much of them, it just made it very very sweet, and very gratifying."

Sheehan says Swenson has taught him more than just how to play baseball, "He's my model. He's like a dad to me. He's always picking me up, picking everybody up on the team. If you're down on yourself, he's the first one to pick you up."

Swenson and the Hawks look for wins number 201 and 202 this weekend in Mineral Wells against Snyder, and they feel they're peaking at the perfect time.


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