Spring is right around the corner, which means the snap of balls hitting leather and the crack of the bats will echo across Osborne Field once again.
Enumclaw baseball coach Eric Fiedler is drilling the boys on hitting, throwing and running as the opening day of the 3A South Puget Sound League season nears.
The team opens with a nonleague game at 7 p.m. Friday against Federal Way.
Federal Way coach Danny Graham was Fiedler’s assistant when he guided the Eagles to the state baseball title in 2001 and second in state in 2002 and 2003.
Fiedler took the Hornets to third in state in 2010 and fifth in 2011.
The 2015 Hornets team could easily find itself in the state tournament playing for the top step.
Returning to the field for Enumclaw is four-year varsity player Tyler St. John, an all-league second baseman. Fiedler said St. John may play shortstop and he is also one of the Hornets’ top pitchers.
Cooper Wicks, also a four-year varsity player, will play third and pitch.
Fiedler said Wicks can, “play anywhere in the infield.”
Another senior in the lineup for Enumclaw is Meyers Hammond playing at first and throwing from the mound.
Junior Blake Hildebrand will play center field and will be hitting in a power spot.
Casey Harberts, a junior, will handle the catching chores.
“He does a great job behind the dish and provides punch in the lineup,” Fiedler said.
Last year, the team missed the state tournament by a few swings of the bat, losing to North Thurston.
Fiedler expects the Hornets to be a very good running team with more depth this time around.
“I really like the way we practice,” Fiedler said. “They are very athletic. We’ll put together a consistent attack.”