Seal ready for first season
Published 10:20 pm Tuesday, March 6, 2018
Nansemond-Suffolk Academy’s baseball team officially gets its season under way this Friday with a first-year coach.
Joey Seal was hired in July 2017 to take over as the new head coach at NSA. This week, he will embark upon his first official game with the team. It is something he has been looking forward to and is hoping to build with his team throughout the season.
“They have been doing a good job buying into everything we have been telling them,” Seal said.
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Seal comes from the college ranks after being an assistant at Norfolk State University for the last couple of years. In college, there was more time to prepare, but in high school, it is different because so many athletes play different sports. NSA is currently getting up to speed as a team, as the basketball season just ended. Seal described preparation right down as cramming for a test.
“We probably practice differently than a lot of other teams,” he said. “A lot of our stuff is up-tempo. They have bought into our philosophy quickly, even though it has been an adjustment for them. There is probably still going to be a lot of learning on the fly and some growing pains. For the most part, they have bought in and have been extremely coachable. We are all excited.”
NSA will return most of its core from last season. Robby Tew, Nic Psimas, Jake Smith and Caden Anselm are just a few members of a large returning nucleus that should be productive this season. The senior group has played together for the last few years and will set the example for the Saints going forward.
“This senior group is a strong group,” Seal said. “They have played together for a while. With the best teams in sports, not only do they have good coaches, but they have good leaders as well. That’s what I see a lot of in our program, and that’s exciting. When you have a bunch of guys who are pulling from the same end of the rope and helping each other get better, that’s when you have a successful program, and I see that here.”
With NSA’s first game being this Friday, Seal may be in a unique situation. He and his wife are expecting a child any day this week. In the case of his absence, assistant coach Drew Suttmiller will take over.
The Saints will take on Potomac School on the road Friday and will play Highland High School and Fishburne Military Academy in a double-header Saturday at Highland High School.