CEDAR RAPIDS — With spring sports coming to an end, baseball and softball season are in full swing.
Cedar Rapids Xavier’s baseball and softball teams have one common goal — the state tournament.
The baseball team lost last year in the second round of substate and the softball team placed fifth at state. Both teams are looking to finish their seasons better than they did last year.
The baseball team opened the season with a 13-0 win over Mount Vernon in the Metro tournament. The Saints’ semifinal game against Prairie was postponed to Wednesday, at 7 p.m. at Marion.
“We want to drop what happened at the end of last season and refocus our attention on this year’s team,” senior Kyle Moeder said. “We all know what happened last year, and it gives us motivation to work even harder this year.”
Although the softball team advanced to the state tournament in 2018, for the first time since 2010, they still are not content with the outcome.
The Saints are scheduled to open the season Tuesday at home against City High.
“It makes me want to work harder to get back, and it inspires me even more to have my teammates work hard with me to accomplish this,” senior Keera Ball said.
Both teams believe they have potential to be really good — if they put in the time and work together.
“I think a lot of people will overlook us this season, but if we can focus and dedicate ourselves to the team we could have a great season,” Ball said.
“There are lots of younger guys on the team that have an opportunity to make a huge impact this year,” Moeder said. “Everyone on the team has their own special skill set that can really help our team to succeed.”
The seniors on both teams are looking to lead by example on and off the field.
“I want to make the underclassmen feel comfortable and be a great role model,” senior Jenae Marshall said. “Most importantly, I want to be someone who stays positive when things are not going our way. Having a positive mind-set is ultimately what determines how well our team will do.”
While winning is important to both of these teams, the seniors also are looking forward to spending one more year together.
“My favorite part about this team is that we are all very close and have great team chemistry,” Moeder said. “We are all brothers who have each other’s backs and want nothing but success for everyone.”
Not only do the seniors want to be remembered as great baseball and softball players, but as great leaders and people, as well.
“I hope people see me as a great teammate, someone who was always a hard worker, and who was always coachable,” Moeder said.
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“I want to be known as someone who worked hard, inspired others, and lead on and off the field,” Ball said. “Xavier softball has taught me so many life lessons and brought me great friends and memories.”