New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - February 25, 1993, New Braunfels, Texas
Page 8SportsHerald-Ze/fung, New Braunfels
Thursday, February 25,1993
Unicorns quietly embark on 1593 baseball season
By DOUGLAS PILS Harald-Zattung
They’re not making much noise about it — most teams coming off 10>15 seasons tend not to do that — but the New Braunfels Unicom baseball team is out to prove they will be reckoned with in 1993.
Head Coach Neil Miller said his team does not have any real rahrrah players. It's not that the team is laid back, it’s more of a quiet confidence.
“I'd say it (team leadership) is an all-around effort,'' Miller said. “Our team is really pretty quiet We have a lot of real soft-spoken guys and I think that they really try to express themselves out on the field. They’re not guys who are going to say a whole lot. They’re quiet guys in the classroom."
With the exception of some returning seniors who will use 1992 as a motivating tool, Miller said the team’s classroom attributes could be a the next best characteristic of this team.
“This may be one of the most scholarly groups of athletes I’ve ever coached," he said. "This is a real good group as far as grades are concerned. There are a lot of National Honor Society guys on this list That helps because baseball can be a complicated game. ‘They’ve got a great work ethic.
I don’t have to beg them to do things. We set up the drills and they stay on the job. There’s very little prodding by Coach (Bruce) McConaghy or me."
Two areas where Miller said the team will have to improve over last year will be at the plate and in the field. The Unicorns had solid starters last year with juniors Erie Lieke and Brent Borgfeld, who had 2.76 and 2.11 ERAs respectively. Overall, the staffs ERA was 2.63, giving up only 62 earned runs in 165 innings.
“Hitting and defense were our weaknesses last year,” Miller said. “Our pitching was adequate to win more than IO games, but when you bat .250 you’re not going to score many runs. When you make errors, you’re not going to be able to keep them from them.
Those are respectable ERAs. In high school, if you have an ERA under 3.00 you ought to win a bunch of games. But you’ve got to get guys to get runs in."
Miller expects the seniors who return from the 1992 squad to be solid leaders from their experience, but adds that an infusion of talented youth will help the team as well.
Three sophomores, Erie Martinez, Jeff Gonzales and Jeff Juarez, all stand to make big contributions to the ’93 squad.
Those guys that played last year as juniors, we’re counting on their experience," Miller said. “We’ve got some guys that are coming off the JV that we expect to do well. In last night’s (Tuesday) game, we finished the game with three sophomores in the lineup and all three of them did real well. Jeff Gonzales was a shortstop, Erie Martinez was at third and Jeff Juarez was in right field.
“We're going to get some production out of those guys and all of them can run real well.”
Baserunning is another area Miller expects to much improved over last year. He said the three sophomores are probably the fastest on the team, but the main improvement will come from being smarter on the base paths with experience.
The Unicorns are loaded with players capable of playing anywhere in the infield. Miller had Martinez at third, Gonzales at shortstop, Albert Villarreal at second and Borgfeld at first in the team’s season opening win over Austin Lanier, but said he has great flexibility in who can play where.
“We’re real fortunate to have a lot of real smart infielders” Miller said.. “We’ve got a number of guys that we can move around and play at different positions. Jessie
Se* NB Baseball, Pag* 12
No. Nam# Class
7 Cruz Sots
8 Jamie Crowder
9 Eric Martinez
10 Brent Borgfeld
11 Jaye Garza
12 Raymond Juarez Sr.
14 Albert Villarreal
18 Eric Lieke
20 Jeff Gonzales
21 Joe Esquivel
23 Jeff Juarez
24 David Gomez
25 Jessie Morales
30 Jason Owens - *
32 Chris Gonzales
44 Sal Diaz
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Brent Borgfeld fihished with a stellar 2.11 ERA after 1992, but poor hitting and fielding left him with a 3-7 record. Head Coach Neil Miller expects to to correct those problems this year. Photo by John Huseth.
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By JOO MCDONALD Special lo tho Horatd-Zeitung
The New Braunfels Unicom soccer team remains on top with a District 52 second-round knockout against the Kerrville Tivy Antlers Eight of the 41 Unicom flurries hit the net, while the Antlers’ only shot was denied for an 8-0 victory Tuesday night.
The Unicorns are now 14-0-0,8-CM) in district and in sole possession of first in District 52-4A. After the 2-1 Unicom win over Alamo Heights, New Braunfels moved up to No. 3 in the area, toppling Heights from their month-long No. I claim down to No. 6.
Three Unicorn starters were noticeably absent from Tuesday night’s lineup Ryan Haupert and Stephen Rodriguez traveled to California with the regional ODP players, while senior Ezell Sanchez sat out most of tile game to recover from an injury sustained in Friday night’s Canyon matchup.
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