Young Bellaire baseball starts rebuilding

By: 
Chris Dobrowolski

BELLAIRE — There’s bound to be some growing pains for a Bellaire baseball team that has just two seniors and a roster that is junior heavy.

The season opener against Alanson on Monday could be a microcosm for the ups and downs a youthful team can have as the Eagles split a pair of games with the Vikings, winning 3-2 in the opener and falling 9-3 in the nightcap at Craven Park.

“We’re going to be down a bit compared to what we have been the past couple of years, mainly because we lost some of the consistent and good pitching we’ve had,” said Bellaire head coach Steven Conkle. “That’s going to be our building point for this year. We’ve got to build our pitching staff back up. I would anticipate we’re going to have our struggles through the season a little bit. But I’m hoping by the end of the season we’re in fine form and we’re ready to compete with anybody. I think we will be competitive. It’s just going to be a little harder to win games this year as it has been the last couple years.”

The Eagles, who finished at .500 last year, will have junior Griffon Niepoth and senior Michael Niepoth leading the rotation. C.J. Camp and Andrew Dennis also will be expected to eat up innings on the mound, too.

Michael Niepoth also will play in the infield and bat leadoff as he looks for a big year in his fourth season starting on the varsity.

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