Baseball Preview

Mountie baseball to feature youth in 2024


Southmont baseball will be under the guidance of Bill Woods who enters his second season at the helm of the Mountie program in 2024. After graduating a very large senior class from a season ago, this year’s Mountie team will feature plenty of youth with the team being primarily comprised of freshman and sophomores. The Mounties have one game under their belts already this season and it was a narrow 2-0 loss to Parke Heritage as the offense struggled at the plate.

A season ago the Mounties went 5-18 and graduate their top two hitters from a year ago in Mason Hall (.357 7HR 20RBI) and Adam Cox who played in 12 games and hit .361

Southmont does have some experience returning as senior Carter Hubble along with sophomores Phisher Benge, Gunnar Shirk, and Cale Chadd all will be focal points for this year’s squad.

“This season is going to be a real learning one and we’re just going to take things one game at a time,” Woods said. “With us playing a bulk of freshman and sophomores, we’ve also talked with them about how we’re going to measure success. Sometimes it’s not always going to be on wins and losses. With this group it’s just about getting better with every practice and every game that we play and ultimately be playing our best baseball when the sectional rolls around.”

Hubble, Benge, Shirk, and Chadd all saw innings on the mound as well for the Mounties a year ago as well as at the plate. Shirk batted .283, Benge .270, and Hubble .231. Other new faces for South this season will be freshman Dean McGaughey, Cooper Scott, and Landon Grimes along with fellow sophomores CJ Newgent and Max Rivers.

“A bright spot for us is some of those sophomores played as freshman last year and were able to get experience right away,” Woods said. “I really think we’ll see good things from Dean behind the plate this year along with Landon Grimes. We start four freshman and when we look down the road, with all of these young guys, the future is bright. We’re happy to have so many young players in our program and excited about where we could be in a few years.”

Southmont, like every other team, has been battling the elements and mother nature’s wrath. Last week the Mounties were scheduled to play four games but only got last Monday’s game in vs the Wolves. Now with only a single game under their belt, the young Mounties team will now open up Sagamore Conference play tonight at Tri-West who come in as the defending SAC champions.

“Conference play is never easy with teams like Tri-West, Frankfort, North, and Crawfordsville all who a very good every year,” Woods said. “Pitching is going to be the key for us. Having Carter and then a bunch of young arms behind him, we’re going to have to manage our pitch counts pretty well to try and save guys for when we need them later in the year.”