CC-Crystal baseball improves throughout season

By Bruce Bentley • Last Updated 10:04 am on Thursday, June 20, 2013

Carson City-Crystal’s Garner Cusack gets ready to make a tag at second base during a game this year. Cusack was MSAC honorable mention.

CARSON CITY — It was a season of continued improvement for the Carson City-Crystal Eagles baseball team in 2013.

Longtime area coach and athletic director Wes Cummings returned to the bench to lead the Eagles in 2013. Cummings last coached baseball for Davenport University (2009-2011) and also coached baseball at Belding and Cedar Springs in the past.

Cummings enjoyed his return to high school baseball.

“I enjoyed it. We had great kids, they worked hard, were always attentive and seemed to want to learn,” Cummings said. “They worked hard in practice and I think we made a lot of improvements from the first two or three games of the season to our last two or three games.”

Carson City (10-17-1) improved in every facet of the game, but Cummings said the defensive improvement stood out.

“I think the biggest improvement was overall defense,” Cummings said. “We made a lot of plays toward the end of the season. We didn’t seem to make any plays early. Routine grounder and pop flies, everything was a problem early. They were routine at the end of the year, so I think we came a long way defensively.”

The Eagles’ season ended with a 4-3 loss to eventual district champion Sanford Meridian in the district semifinal at Shepherd on June 1.

Carson City had three players earn Mid-State Activities Conference honors.

Senior Hunter Clark was all-conference and all-district, senior Caleb Geselman was all-conference and junior Garner Cusack was MSAC honorable mention.

Clark led the Eagles with a .363 average. He had 33 hits, scored 29 runs, drove in 12 runs and had one home run. The center fielder was 19-for-20 in stolen base attempts.

“Hunter was a great center fielder. He covers a lot of ground, has a good glove and he throws well from the outfield,” Cummings said. “Pitching, he had a great strikeout to walk ratio. We could count on him to throw a pretty good ballgame and go six or seven innings.”

Geselman played third base. Geselman hit .288, had 23 hits 18 runs, 12 stolen bases and 16 RBI for the Eagles.

“Caleb improved a lot as the season went on. He played third base and at the end of the year I would describe him as steady,” Cummings said. “He had a little bit of a rough start, but he was one of our better hitters all year. Offensively, we will miss him.”

Cusack started the year as shortstop before switching to catcher, a position he will play next year for the Eagles.

“We switched him to catcher the final two weeks of the season and that is what he is going to do next year,” Cummings said. “I think he will do a great job there. He has a good arm, moves well behind the plater and I think he will shine there.”

Cusack hit .310 with 26 hits, 25 runs, 15 RBI and 15 stolen bases for the Eagles.

Cummings said most of his team is playing baseball this summer as they look to improve for next season.

“We are playing in a league this summer on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s. It is going well so far,” Cummings said. “We have some individuals playing on some other teams and that will make a big difference.”

Losing just four seniors gives the Eagles some hope for an improved season next year.

“We will miss our seniors, but that happens to everybody,” Cummings said. “For the most part, we have a pretty good group coming back.”

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