Published on Monday, April 11, 2011 by Jamie Berthold
While baseball serves as America’s pastime, to senior Brent Westmoreland, baseball is a passion and a sport that provides valuable life lessons.
“I’ve had a handful of coaches that don’t just coach the game, but coach life too,” Westmoreland said. “I remember Coach Sam Smith’s daily proverbs on how to be a good Christian and lead a family one day. We laughed and scoffed then, but he is definitely responsible for the maturity and growth of many young baseball players.”
Westmorland started playing T-Ball at Harvey Little League 14 years ago and has been playing on various teams since then. Through baseball, Westmoreland has developed life lessons and friendships along the way.
“The majority of the guys on the team have been playing together or against each other on All-Star and tournament teams since we were five,” Westmoreland said. “Bryan High brings all of us together and develops a bond that pulls us together through times of adversity. That is the best part about Bryan High baseball.”
In every team a great leader is necessary in order to achieve success. Having known Westmoreland since he was 10 years old, Coach Powers has seen Westmoreland’s leadership skills shine over the past 4 years of coaching.
“He picks up his teammates when they need help,” Powers said. “He’s always willing to do the hard things when somebody else may want to slack off; Brent is always up front waiting.”
Though he has been playing for a while, Westmoreland says he still feels anxious before pitching in a big game.
“I’m usually pretty nervous before I pitch,” Westmoreland said. “If you screw up on the mound, you are stuck and you have to work yourself out of the hole you dug, all the while everyone in the stands is watching you.”
Being the pitcher and a leader can be overwhelming at times, but Westmoreland relies on his faith to help get him through.
“I pray before every game that I will perform well, and if I don’t, I tell God I know it’s his plan. I also pray for the safety of our team as well as our opponent,” Westmoreland said. “I have a few verses written on the bill of my hat and I’ll sit in the dugout and look over them to calm myself down.”
Westmoreland’s faith has not only helped him succeed in baseball, but has left an impression on his coach.
“His best quality is his faith in God,” Powers said, “I see it in how he picks up his teammates when they are down and restores their determination, including when he is doing well but the rest of his team is not. He doesn’t want just himself to succeed but his team as well.”
Through baseball, Westmoreland has learned life lessons, made friendships and developed passion along the way. He expresses his talent both on and off the field.
“Brent is going to be a great college student and he will be successful in anything and everything he does,” Powers said.