YORKTOWN, N.Y.— Yorktown is coming off another winning season as it finished 13-8 a year ago and participated in the Section 1 Class A tournament, where it lost as the No. 6 seed to No. 11 Beacon 4-3 in the opening round.
This year if the Huskers are to compete in the sectionals, they will do it back up in the Class AA tournament after a season in Class A because of increased enrollment.
Which is fine by Yorktown coach Sean Kennedy, who is in his 14th year as Husker head coach and 22nd overall with the program.
“It doesn’t make a difference to us,” said Kennedy, who is assisted by Sal Gallinelli. “The league that we are is the same, the only difference is some of the teams we’ll play in the sectional playoffs. We’re still in the same league with Fox Lane and Greeley, all of the same teams. The only difference is now when it comes to the playoffs, we’ll play some different guys.”
Part of Yorktown’s preparation for its season was its weeklong trip to Florida during spring break, which included playing in 10 scrimmages, including three on March 25.
“We’ve been doing it since I started — 14 years,” Kennedy said. “The benefit is kids get a lot of scrimmage time in. They do a lot of bonding. The benefit for me is I get to see kids in game action and can evaluate a little bit more before the season.”
Leading the Huskers into the season are its captains, seniors Scott Weaver (RF) and Andy Greene (2B) and junior Joe Veca (3B/P).
“They are real enthusiastic guys,” Kennedy said. “They bring energy — a lot of fire. They are vocal leaders.”
Yorktown also has plenty of other talented, experienced players to go along with its captains in senior Jack Kelly (P/3B), who will be playing next year at Manhattan College, senior Jim Sharkey (P), who will be at Fairleigh Dickinson University, senior Mike Rothman (P), who will compete at Manhattanville College, senior Jan Kluk (DH), junior Jake Bichler (SS/P), senior Matt Boccia (OF) and senior Mike Rodriguez (OF).
“We have a lot of experience, we think we have a lot of talent,” Kennedy said. “We have three college bound pitchers, two in Division 1, and we have lot of depth behind them on the mound.”
Along with the above talent, Yorktown will also add two key newcomers to the mix in juniors Tanner Dyslin and Tom Cole, a pair of first basemen.
“Tanner is obviously a good athlete — a basketball player — he’s going to get in the middle of our lineup,” Kennedy said. “He’s got real good hands. Tommy is a solid outfielder. He’s got a good bat, he’s got good speed.”
As for expectations, the goal is as always to compete for a league championship, the Huskers were co-league champs in 2014, and go as far as possible in the sectionals.
“Based off what we are seeing in scrimmages, it’s just really trying to make teams earn what they get,” Kennedy said. “We need to just be a little less charitable in giving teams free bases.”
Yorktown will open the season at Putnam Valley at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 31.