Tonawanda News — Tonawanda must also replace its one-two combo on the hill of Nick Pullo and Jared Zellner, who were so very crucial to winning sectionals. That chore will fall on the shoulders of Stich and McGregor, who both saw significant time on the mound last season.
Junior Andrew Ball brings speed in the outfield and base paths, while sophomore Cody Diaz (OF/INF/P) and freshman Zach Stapf are among the bright prospects who can contribute in a big way. Though the Warriors face the challenge of guys having to step up, fill holes and play bigger roles, Stich pointed out that younger guys in the program have a history of stepping up and pulling their share of the weight.
“We've had young guys step up in the past,” said Stich. “Bret last year and me a couple years ago. So I think a couple games in we'll be fine. We'll be right back into it.”
While most team have been stuck indoors throughout March and most of early April, thanks to the new turf field at the new Small Stadium the Warriors have been able to get in some quality time outside.
“Just the sun along kind of gives you a little bit of a sign of spring,” Frank said. “Obviously it's a real advantage, being able to get out on the turf field (as opposed) to a parking lot or inside for the entire spring. We've been out a good half-dozen times.”
The Warriors, like most teams in WNY, are contending with missing scrimmages and non-league games that would have gone a long way in solidifying players in certain spots and helping them gain continuity as a team in the field.
Stich, Diaz, Ball and Kelly appear to have locked down the top four spots in the Warriors batting order.
Josh Large (OF) Cody Kisiel, Erik Ellman, Tyler Gomez and Garrett Gardner round out the Tonawanda roster.