Last weekend, the Longwood baseball team held its annual Blue-White World Series at Buddy Bolding Stadium to conclude the fall practice section of their offseason program. The series pit two halves of the team led by captains against each other. It was the first game action the team had since the pandemic cut last season short.
Head coach Ryan Mau described what it was like to finally be playing baseball again. “It was shocking. It felt like it had been too long. It was great to compete, it was great to see the guys having fun. Game one was a really well-played game and that was what we missed: Solid baseball.”
The white team swept the series, taking game one by a score of 15-7, and game two by a score of 16-7. All nine players in the white lineup recorded at least two base hits. Many of Longwood’s freshmen, both true freshman and freshman from last year who were granted an extra year of eligibility because of the pandemic, showed great promise during the series for both teams.
Mau spoke about the impact these freshmen made. “Aiden Tierney was spectacular all fall. He had a great summer and I think that helped his confidence and he came in here with a ton of energy and he was a lot more impactful than you expect for freshmen to be. Corbin McCloud displayed a work ethic that you knew was going to allow him to contribute sooner rather than later and he one of our best throwers behind the plate. Zach Stanko was a COVID freshman, so he got a little taste last year. He got bigger this offseason and has taken his body to a whole new level.” Mau went on to say that he was impressed with the way the “COVID freshmen” came back stronger from last season and was pleasantly surprised with some of the true freshmen.
One of the freshman standouts was the aforementioned Aiden Tierney, an outfielder from Colonial Forge High School in Fredericksburg. Tierney was named Co-MVP of the series along with sophomore outfielder, Cullan Wadsworth. Tierney scored a whopping eight runs in his 15 plate appearances during the series.
Tierney spoke on how the series helped him and his teammates. “It definitely brought us closer. It’s a new team every year and I definitely think it helped with our chemistry and gelled us together.” Tierney knew how important it was for him to play well during the series to show the coaches what he could do. Tierney said, “I wanted to play well and help my team win by any means, and I think I did that.”
Tierney went on to say that fans should look forward to a high energy team that will do whatever it takes to win this season. While the schedule has yet to be released, with Mau saying that he’s aiming for late February, there is a sense of optimism around the baseball program as they continue to prepare for the 2021 season.