Vikes to rely on pitching, defense in 2021

By Max Householder -

Without having a 2020 season, there are many unknowns for area spring sports teams. That makes it extra difficult for Evergreen baseball coach Mark Cymbolin heading into his first season at the helm.

“With only having three kids with some varsity experience, we are hoping our pitching and defense will keep us in games early. Hitting will come along as the kids get to see more varsity pitching,” said Cymbolin.

Returning for the Vikings are juniors Brock Hudik, Landen Vance and RJ Shunck (2019 honorable mention All-NWOAL). They are adding newcomers in juniors Payton Boucher, Zach Laver and Nick Smithmyer.

“Strengths for the season would be the overall depth of the pitching staff,” said Cymbolin. “Our ability to play good defensively will help keep us in games.”

The Vikings will have to replace the likes of Mason Henricks, who was second team All-Northwest Ohio Athletic League in 2019. Others gone are Jack Krispin and Garrett Betz.

“Hitting will be a weakness to start the season with only having three kids with varsity experience,” explained the Viking coach.

He also states that overall team speed will be a weakness for his squad.

Archbold and Bryan have won each NWOAL title since 2015. It may be difficult for the Vikings to challenge those squads this year, but they will certainly try.

“With not having a season last year, I don’t know what the other teams lost to graduation. I would say Archbold, Bryan, and Wauseon would be favorites and its open to discussion for everybody else. We as a team want to compete and be part of that top group at the end,” said Cymbolin.

Evergreen is slated to host Otsego for a doubleheader this Saturday, March 27 to begin the season. First pitch is at 11 a.m.

By Max Householder

Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010.

Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010.