Two Bulldogs ink futures

Published 9:12 pm Friday, February 24, 2017

Two King’s Fork High School baseball players have committed to their college futures.

Seniors Blake Sargent and Tristen DeGuzman both recently signed their national letters of intent to play baseball at the next level. Sargent will be attending Eastern Mennonite University, while DeGuzman will attend Bridgewater College.

For Sargent, the EMU coaches invited him for a visit to the school. He liked the area and the quality of education. Sargent has been a second team All-Conference player for the Bulldogs since his freshman year. Last year he received the team’s offensive MVP award.

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At EMU, he plans to major in engineering. He also has plans to play first base there. Last year, EMU had a record of 16-21. Sargent also believes that he can be a good hitter in the lineup.

DeGuzman felt like Bridgewater was a good fit for him. Around October, he went up there to a baseball camp. About a week later, he received a call from head coach Curt Kendall offering him a spot on the team.

“It was a good fit for me,” DeGuzman said. “I like the area, and they have what I want to study in. I really liked the coaching staff. They have been in touch with me since my junior year.”

DeGuzman’s family played a big role in him deciding to continue his baseball career at the next level. Before he attended the camp, he had decided to attend another school and not play baseball. But after he had been offered a spot, it was tough for him to decide what he wanted to do. His mother reminded him that many people don’t get the chance to play college ball and felt that Bridgewater was a great opportunity for him.

“My mom told me that I don’t want to look back on my life and think that I missed out on a really good opportunity. I love playing baseball. I’ve been playing it my whole life. So that’s what pretty much helped me make my mind up.”

Bridgewater went 22-19 in the 2016 season. DeGuzman plans to major in health services. He hopes to be playing outfield — hopefully centerfield — when he attends Bridgewater.

“My strengths are in my defense and speed,” DeGuzman said. “I can cover a lot of ground in the outfield. Hopefully, I’ll see some playing time out there next year. I’ll continue to work on my offense and gain size and strength at the next level, and I feel I can make an impact.”

King’s Fork’s baseball season starts March 14 at Hickory High School.