The 2019 Fluco baseball team in the dugout before winning the Virginia Class 3 State Championship.

Keeping Up With Past Success

March 23, 2021

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Over the past few years, a number of Fluco sports programs have started to excel more and more with new coaching staffs or the assistance of transferring athletes from schools all around the district. One of their big standouts was the 2018 baseball team, which kick-started it all for the baseball program.

Coming back from a hard loss in the Virginia State Class 3 Quarter-Finals in 2018, the team had a goal: to get revenge for what they believed they deserved. At the start of the 2019 season, the boys and the coaching staff were determined to make it back to the State Quarter-Finals and prove that together as a family, they would show their worth and ultimately win the Class 3 Championship. They craved the feeling of competition at the higher level.

With that intense and competitive atmosphere carrying on from 2018, the boys persevered through the 2019 season and won the school’s first baseball state championship. This was the second year in a row making it to States, enabling the team to carve its mark in school history.

Family is an important motto for the Fluvanna baseball program and is the basis of chemistry for the boys. “Being a part of a family-oriented team is something you have to experience to understand,“ said 2020 graduate and previous starting shortstop Cameron Shields. During the 2018-2020 seasons, Shields and the other players experienced this atmosphere together. They then helped to share the feeling while keeping the tradition alive for the 2021 team, especially after the loss of some key players. The current team is planning to take the pent-up energy from the long break (due to Covid-19) and turn it into motivation to work harder than ever. They plan to show that they too can go to States like the previous teams, and maybe win another state championship.

The underclassmen and varsity players returning from the previous season remember the devastating feeling of getting shut down due to the pandemic and are using that remembrance to grow their love and appreciation for the game. Reps, reps, and more reps have been crucial for preparing for the spring season. Things like lifting during the week for strength and hitting in batting cages along with throwing in order to build that muscle memory back are all the team can do according to VHSL at this moment in time.

Sophomore and pitcher John (JJ) Glasscock took advantage of his at home gym and built strength in his arms to be at his best for his baseball family in hopes to win their first game on April 29. “I’ve been lifting a lot and throwing as consistently as I can in order to be 100% for our first game,” said Glasscock.

The team’s seniors extremely eager to begin play and feel a type of normalcy for the game they love. Senior and third baseman Pierson Barnabei remembers what it was like to play in the midst of the 2020 team and plans to continue the determination he and his teammates had for success and keep on the legacy. “All of these boys were like family and keeping that going will be important,” said Barnabei.

Being leaders on and off the field has been a major role to fill, but this year’s seniors are trying to rise to the occasion. They agree that keeping the team hyped and motivated to carry on the tradition of going to the Virginia Class 3 State Tournament will play a huge role in their road to accomplishing another successful season.

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