Culbert excels in senior season

Published 9:46 pm Saturday, April 7, 2018

Matt Culbert was voted Suffolk News-Herald Player of the Week after going 2-3 with three RBIs and a home run against Indian River High School.

Culbert, a senior for the Nansemond River High School baseball team, has been showing well for the Warriors this season. Last week in the win against Indian River, Culbert collected multiple hits and RBIs, and to top it off he hit a home run. The senior said he had felt good before the game because of the pitching and defense the Warriors had in previous games.

“We knew that if we could get our offense going that we could be successful,” he said. “Several of my teammates started the game off hitting well, and that helped me focus on my hitting. It’s awesome to add runs to help the team to victory, and it’s also great seeing your team fired up after a home run.”

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With the senior heading into this season, he knew every game was going to be critical this year with the change to the Virginia High School League alignment. So, his goal for this season is to have enough wins to make the playoffs, and from there he wants to make a run in the playoffs with his team. Personally, Culbert wants to get better every time he steps on the field.

“I want to continue to better my game while contributing to my team any way possible,” he said. “I feel like we are continuing to grow every time that we step onto the field, and we are going to keep taking it game by game to get into postseason form.”

His coaches push him to strive to be the best player he can be every day. Since eighth grade, he has been working with his current coaching staff, and that has helped him develop into the player he is today. He draws inspiration from his father, who has worked hard to make sure he has had the best opportunities in every area of life, from education to baseball.

Daniel Murphy, a second baseman for the Washington Nationals, is one of Culbert’s favorite players in the MLB. The senior believes Murphy is very hardworking and versatile and has the ability to step up in big situations.

In the fall, Culbert will be headed to Virginia Wesleyan University to play baseball. He was invited to one of their prospect camps last November, and after a discussion with coaches and a visit to the school, he felt like it was the right fit for him.

“The team seemed very close and were very welcoming towards me,” he said. “Playing baseball in college has been a long-term goal of mine, and I am looking forward to taking full advantage of the opportunity that Coach Francis and his staff are offering me.”

In his off time, Culbert enjoys fishing, playing golf, watching football and baseball as well as going to the beach. Nansemond River will be back in action again at home Tuesday against rival Lakeland High School. During spring break the Warriors went 2-1 at a tournament in South Carolina, and Culbert collected a hit and two runs.