May 18th, 2024

Young Miners have lots of upside this season


By Lethbridge Herald on May 8, 2024.

By Justin Seward

Lethbridge Herald

 

The Lethbridge Miners American Legion  ‘A’ baseball team open the season tomorrow with plenty of upside as a  young group.

“We’re quite excited with the group of kids we have,” said Miners head coach Nicholas Ankermann.

The Miners have only two 18 year olds returning from last year who are combined with 14 new player that are mostly 15,16 and 17 year olds.

The Miners are familiar with a few of  the new names on the roster.

“So we kind of knew what they’re kind of bringing to the table for us,” said Ankermann.

Ankermann sees the new players having grit.

“They’re work horses,” said Ankermann 

“They’re willing to put in as much work as they can, they’re willing to group together as a team, run through a brick wall.”

The Miners have some new up and coming  arms coming through the system to help replace pitchers from last season.

“So giving these 15, 16 year old pitchers the opportunity to go and  play against a lot of these teams which are 17 to 19 years old, and we know that they’re going to be able to compete just fine with them,” he said.

“We’ve seen how they are and they have that grit to them and they have that work ethic.”

The returning players are Ethan Honess and Lowen Kitagawa and are expected to lead by example.

“We want them to be vocal, be loud, keep the younger guys in line. Like I was saying, they  know what it takes to get to that level and get to the State tournament,” said Ankermann.

 What may be a big motivator for this team this year is building on competing in last year’s State tournament and trying to make it  consecutive trips to the tournament which the Miners program has never done.

“It’s good for these younger kids to have that pressure on them and stuff because we know that they’re going to be up for that challenge,” said Ankermann.

The Miners kick the 2024 season with their Ron Matthews home tournament this weekend.

The Miners will look to redefend their title in the tournament.

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