The baseball program held its First Pitch Banquet Dinner, on Tuesday in an effort to better acquaint the faculty, alumni, new baseball players and their families with one another before the baseball season starts.
“It’s the first year we’re having it,” said Donovan Petta, junior outfielder. “It’s great for the new guys.”
The event was well attended, filling the banquet room on the third floor of the newly built Campus Center with faculty, alumni and family alike, meeting together and socializing before the event began.
“It’s good for the families and the new guys,” Petta said. “It’s the only other time where we can meet with the alumni.”
“It seems like when we get to January, we don’t know each other very well,” said head coach Scott Winterburn, who started off the banquet with his opening remarks.
“This seems like a great event to get together and catch up,” Winterburn said.
Winterburn also talked about past coaches and others who have contributed to the baseball program.
In addition to the start of a new ULV tradition, a group of freshman players came up to the front and in school spirit, sang the La Verne alma mater with a guitar accompanying them, to great applause from the audience attending the event.
A slight preview was also given on the changes the baseball team were making in preparation for the upcoming season, such as shifting coaching around and putting concentration on pitching.
The ideas for the banquet were the result of a brainstorming session between Winterburn and Scott Marcus, a former La Verne baseball player and graduate.
Marcus, now a ULV baseball graduate assistant, organized the event and notes that around $3,300 to $3,500 were made from the banquet, and plans to keep it a tradition.
A large email listing to better communicate on what is happening, Marcus said.
“We’re going to do it again next year, and then help out the next person who will be doing it,” said Marcus.
The very first game of the season for the La Verne baseball team will be against ULV’s own alumni, and then will take on Biola on Feb. 5 at 2 p.m, then will host Biola at 11 a.m.
The Leopards will then go on a long roadtrip to Arizona, going up against teams from Linfield, Whitman, and George Fox, before coming back to face Redlands in back to back games at both home and away.
Dan Sayles can be reached at email@example.com.