Cavs ready to let bats swing

Published 9:17 pm Friday, March 9, 2018

The Lakeland High School baseball team is looking forward to its season starting next week.

Spring sports are gearing up, and the Cavaliers are excited to start a new year. Coach David Devers returns at the helm for the Cavs as they embark on a new season in a talented Southeastern District.

With the Virginia High School League format changing this season, all Southeastern District teams will make up each other’s schedule. They will play each other twice with maybe a couple out-of-district games sprinkled in. From there, teams will advance to their respective region tournaments. With Lakeland being the lowest classification in the district, they likely won’t face any Class 3 Region A teams until the postseason.

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However, Devers and the Cavs enjoy the competition, and he likes what he has added and what he has returning to his team this season. For Devers, this time of the year is always special with the weather, the grass and the chance to go out and watch his team.

“We are excited, and we are ready to roll into the next week,” Devers said. “We have a good team put together, and we just want to go out there and compete.”

Expected contributors returning for the Cavs this season are Andrew Kelley, Demonta Hawkins and Cody Anderson. Kelley is a senior for whom the team has high expectations. He fills a lot of roles for Lakeland. Anderson has matured as a leader for the Cavs and bats lead-off for the team. Hawkins plays centerfield, and his athleticism will help Lakeland this season. Tyler Spencer is a sophomore pitcher from whom Devers is looking forward to good things.

Many consider the Southeastern District one of the best baseball districts in the state of Virginia. With Lakeland being a Class 3 team, they feel they are in the position to compete and hope playing against the bigger classifications will help them in the future for the postseason.

“We talk about this all the time,” Devers said. “It is an honor to play some of the Class 4, 5 and 6 teams that we play because of how talented the SED is. To be able to go up against the talent during the regular season we try to use it as a measuring stick, and it helps the kids’ confidence.

Offensively and defensively, the Cavs want to remain consistent throughout the season. They don’t want to make the same critical mistakes they made early on last year, which put them behind.

Lakeland will open up the season against Hickory High School on the road at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.