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West Fargo Baseball Letter to the Seniors 2018

                        As a coach when you have been in a program for a while you get to see athletic development. Ryan Froemke and Carter Dodd  What I will remember the most of this group is not the outcome or outcomes that we will have, but the memories that we made throughout the process. Whether it was the trips to the Valley Fair or the Mall of America. The long bus rides out West or to Omaha. Hitting indoors when its 0 degrees out or doing triangles when its 100 degrees those are the types of things that will stick with me the most. Each senior has done some pretty special things in our program whether it was with no one watching or it was a packed house. I want to share with you guys some of my memories that I have of this senior class.

                  Brady Beyl- I might get on you for jogging one out from time to time, but I think sometimes people underrate how good of a teammate you actually are. Whether you don’t get in a certain game or in a certain position every time I see you, your always having fun and your always positive. On the back of the bus you’re usually the one cracking girlfriend jokes and keeping everyone loose. My favorite quote that you have said is “I only pitch championships.” If everything works out, hopefully we get to see you throwing in a championship this week.

Ryan Bourassa- As you know I was your freshman coach for the Packers in 2015 and to be honest I had no idea who you were. We were a couple doubleheaders into the season and you came and asked me a question before a game, “Hey Coach, when can I pitch?” As all of you guys know when someone asks me a question like that I usually get pissy and give a sarcastic comment. Time went on and we finally put you in to pitch and there ya went, and I sat back and after you pitched I thought, “How dumb was I.” Fast forward a couple years later and you turned yourself into a collegiate pitcher with major potential. I can’t wait to ask you the question in four years in regards to your playing career, “Hey Ryan, where you at right now?

Andrew Enno- Legion State tournament 2017 we just lost out to Minot and we were eating in a Taco Johns in Williston before a long bus ride home. You just graduated high school and were going to NDSU for engineering, but as a coach I knew you had one year left of legion eligibility. We got a video of you stating that you were going to come back and man did that make me happy. Not just as a player, but as a friend I was ecstatic to hear that you were coming back to play. The improvements you have made throughout your years is largely related to your dedication to the weight room. I hope every young player in our program realize that they can also be the best version of their selves if they put the work in, just like Andrew Enno.

Jake Faircloth- 2-0 Count summer of 2015 Aces at Bennett playing Post 400, I’m giving signs in the third base coaches box and give a take sign and Jake swings through it. After that game was over I think I chewed your ass for a solid three minutes in front of everyone. A couple days later we were right back to it like nothing ever happened and that is a representation of how coachable you are and how you always persevere through adversity. It has been exciting to see your work ethic take your game to the next level, but also exciting to see how you have grown as a leader. We have ran a camp the past two summers and watching you coach the player’s in the camp and having the player’s look up to you is awesome. How you teach the game to the young guys is exciting because it exemplifies how good of an athlete and person you are.

                  Drake Flesche- You guys have all heard me say before that we all show leadership in different ways, but we all need to be leaders. Drake Flesche you are someone that leads by example at all times. Whether it is putting in the extra work on the field or at 6:00 am at work off the field it has been exciting to watch your leadership grow. The clear passion and intent to win that I see in your eyes throughout games throughout the season is extraordinary. I have now seen you win two state championships and walk around like a kid in a candy store holding that trophy and I hope we can add one more to that resume.

Morgan Kapaun- I will remember you for the shut out you threw in Minnetonka’s until we lost in extras. I will remember hearing you throw a complete game junior year in the legion state tournament. I will remember you beating Millard West in the Gopher Classic who was one of the best Nebraska teams that year. You have thrown in and had the success in a lot of big games throughout your career in West Fargo, including this summer. What I will also remember you for is your tremendous character as an individual. Baseball can test you as an individual in so many different ways and to see you persevere through the ups and downs of this season is a representation of who you are as a person. You will always keep fighting and competing no matter the circumstances and as we all know through the ups and downs when you got on that mound you want it more than anyone else.

Tristen Roehrich- Sometimes you wonder how someone progresses so fast in the game of baseball, but then a certain event happens and it clicks. The event that happened was down in Omaha this year, and as we all remember we had a rainy day and we went for a little “character building conditioning.” We were doing wheelbarrows and people were face planting left and right, your team however had less people that could get on the ground and use their arms because two of the members on the team were pitching that next day. Someone on your team mentioned how they could potentially shorten the distance because their team had less guys and your exact words were “no shortcuts.” “No shortcuts” on that day represented something larger than finishing a conditioning session it represented who you are as an athlete. You always exemplify being coachable as well. Whenever I am speaking and I am wondering as a coach who’s truly engaged all you have to do is look at Tristen and see his eyes as wide as they can be, fully engaged. The extra effort you give and how coachable you are will take your career as far as possible.

This is a letter directly related to the seniors, but it also is a letter to the 2018 West Fargo Patriots. I hope we all understand the difficulties that we have overcome to get here and be in the position we are in to hopefully win a state tournament. All the intense weightlifting and conditioning sessions. Driving through snow in the winter to get to the Loeden Center for a few hacks. All the tough practices and all of the late night road trips. Keep attacking the process, be mentally and physical prepared at all times. ALL PLAYERS ON OUR TEAM COMPETE EVERY PITCH IN WHATEVER ROLE THAT IS AND HITTERS REFUSE TO GET OUT. SENIORS NEVER LET ANYONE TAKE THAT JERSEY OFF OF YOU AND YOUNGER GUYS FIGHT FOR THEM TO HAVE AN EXTRA DAY BECAUSE SOMEDAY SOON A YOUNGER GUY WILL BE FIGHTING FOR YOU. #ALLOUT #BURNTHEBOATS #FINISHTHECLIMB #42OUTS #BILLGATES

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West Fargo Baseball Letter to the Seniors 2019

              As a coach when you have been in a program for a while you get to see athletic development. It has been fun to see our senior groups development over the years. Although it is a smaller Senior class, Ryan Froemke and Carter Dodd you guys have once again set a positive example for the younger guys to follow. What I will remember the most of this group is not the outcome or outcomes that we will have, but the memories that we made throughout the process. Whether it was Topp Golf, the Mall of America, the music we listen to, or playing Mafia on our long bus rides. I would like to share some stories on Ryan and Carter in the following letter:

              Carter Dodd- Around a year ago, I was walking around a field in Minot talking about you not taking a bean in BP before one of our state tournament  games. Recently, you were saying in the Gopher Classic how you will take an elbow for the boys. Your leadership has truly developed. Although soft spoken, you lead by example. You prepare for every pitch at a high level and you are a competitor. The growth I have seen from you this year has been exponential and I am truly proud to have coached you before you leave for college to play college baseball.

              Ryan Froemke- What more can you ask of a senior, in regards to accepting and embracing a role. Your role is truly important you have thrown a ton of big innings for us this year, but you also probably would have liked more chances to hit. With that being said you have created a positive example for the younger guys in our program who will step into a role like yours in the future. Now let’s talk about how you got there, I saw you at more offseason practices than almost anyone. You were working hard and you had a goal to make the Patriots and your hard work paid off. Once again your commitment to yourself, to other’s, and to the program will have a lasting impact on the people that you were around.

This is a letter directly related to the seniors, but it also is a letter to the 2019 West Fargo Patriots. I hope we all understand the difficulties that we have overcome to get here and be in the position we are in to hopefully win a state tournament. Think about the process that we have encountered. Whether it was in the offseason, the start of the season, the mid season struggles, and now the momentum we have carried into the postseason. We are truly battle tested and prepared for war. ALL PLAYERS ON OUR TEAM COMPETE EVERY PITCH IN WHATEVER ROLE THAT IS AND HITTERS REFUSE TO GET OUT. SENIORS NEVER LET ANYONE TAKE THAT JERSEY OFF OF YOU AND YOUNGER GUYS FIGHT FOR THEM TO HAVE AN EXTRA DAY BECAUSE SOMEDAY SOON A YOUNGER GUY WILL BE FIGHTING FOR YOU. #100 Miles #LilPump #TakingSouls #NextManUp #WestFargoBaseball

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Letter to the Seniors 2020

 

This years group of seniors have been tested in a different way than any other group before. The uncertainty of actually having a season is something new to everyone, but their preparation for the year never changed, even if there were constant questions in regards to the potential of playing baseball this summer. Each of them went through something a little different before our year started, Dustin had his senior year of Packer baseball taken away from him, Adison and Ryan had their freshman year of college baseball and college altogether abruptly ended because of the virus. With that being said each individual has been successful in their role for the Patriots for the 2020 summer. Something that I hope the future Patriots take  very seriously is that you can’t control the uncontrollables, but what you can always do is be prepared for the moment. I would like to share some stories on how each player has made a huge impact on me and the West Fargo Baseball program.

 

              Adison Krank- August 12th, 2018 it was a 100 degree day in Dickinson, North Dakota. We had just lost a very heartbreaking two games to Dubuque, Iowa to fall one game short of the World Series. A young left handed pitcher who who came up at the end of the year from the Aces to pitch for us had a ton of success in our State Championship game and was the winning pitcher in the game to get us to the regional championship walked up to me after the game. He said “Hey Coach thank you for the opportunities.” What I had to remind him of was the fact that he was prepared and ready for that moment and he put himself in that position and he was prepared to succeed. Among a lot of things Adison has done and various ways he has impacted the program all of our young kids who don’t quite make the Patriots at the start of the year should try to be Adison Krank.

 

              Dustin Mertz- To be honest throughout my first three years of coaching, I don’t think there has been an athlete that I have been tougher on, but Dustin is coachable he never yells back and he takes the words of encouragement like a man. This characteristic that Dustin has will not only help him be super successful in the rest of his baseball career, but this characteristic will help him be successful in whatever Dustin decided to do when he is a student-athlete and after his baseball career. Dustin’s ability to play multiple positions and multiple sports is astonishing.

 

              Ryan Reynolds- Kory Wolden, who was a volunteer coach for Ryan’s first two years always pointed out how Ryan did the simple thing of grabbing buckets. Even though Ryan wasn’t an everyday starter his first year he was still a leader. One thing I try to point out to every team is “little things turn into big things.” Ryan did the little things and still does and that’s why he has turned himself from a spot starter to an everyday starter and the cleanup hitter. He puts in the extra effort, focus, and attention to detail to be successful. Ryan is a team guy at all times, whether its helping set up for practice, hitting a double, or helping me drive the bus. His extra effort is extraordinary.

 

I want to thank this years group of seniors for the lasting impact that they have on this program. Its unfortunate that there is no World Series for this group to strive for, but what they can do is be the first team ever at this age to end the year on a win. This group deserves a state championship and if we as a collective whole can get one notch better for the rest of this summer this group will get what they deserve. #42Outs #FinishStrong #WestFargoBaseball

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