Same Game, Different Times

Daniel Jones, Staff Writer

MATTHEWS, NC- First place in the class rankings. 4-1 to begin the season, the best start in school history, the Cougar’s 2020 baseball season was taken away in the blink of an eye.

The global pandemic that struck in March of 2020, cost the team a chance at a state championship that seemed so attainable at the time. After three weeks of quarantine, the players got a call saying the season was officially over.

Many would have given up at this point; however, several Charlotte area coaches decided to come together and find a way to get the boys back on the field.

A group of six schools around the Charlotte area agreed to play an eight-game schedule to make up for the time lost during the school season. The league also allowed seniors from other schools to play on the teams. This was sentimental because some of the players would have never gotten the chance to play in another baseball game.

This league allowed the players to compete and have fun during a time of worry and corruption in the world. It was viewed as an escape from everything else going on around them. “Getting back on the field helped to clear my head and gave me something else to focus on,” said CCS senior baseball player Tyler Roakes.

It was a special experience for all of us, and I am so thankful I got to make some last memories with the seniors before they left.”

— Kyle Bean

As news about the virus bombarded the players in their educational and personal lives, playing in the league was an escape from the pandemic and a true blessing to all involved.

The Cougars were also grateful for this opportunity because it gave the underclassmen a final chance to play with their senior teammates. The team got to experience camaraderie that would have been lost if not for this makeshift league.

“It was a special experience for all of us, and I am so thankful I got to make some last memories with the seniors before they left,” said CCS junior Kyle Bean.

And while this ad-hoc league was a silver lining, the season was still very abnormal. Things like senior night, team bus rides to games, and the annual spring break trip were stripped away from the Cougars. That being said, all the players who participated were extremely thankful for the chance to continue the experience.