HAHNVILLE - The Hahnville Tigers were unexpectedly bounced from the first round of the playoffs in baseball last spring, and first year Head Coach Kade Rogers said it's going to take reaching the State Championship this season to wipe out the memory of that loss.
"It left a very bitter taste losing in the first round," Rogers said. "But we've still got a lot of guys who were here for that loss, so they remember what it felt like and what it's going to take to make sure it doesn't happen again."
The team started practicing near the end of Christmas break for a season that doesn't begin until the middle of February, and Rogers says he likes the focus he's getting from his players. He feels they have really become a well-oiled machine ready to head into the regular season and beyond.
Rogers said he gets a lot of help from the veteran leadership on the team coming from seven returning starters from the junior and senior classes, four have all-district honors under their belts.
Having great assistants makes a head coaches job a lot easier Rogers said, which is why he added Chris Mire, Frank Harding and Eric Jacobi to the coaching squad.
"Harding coached previously with us and all three are great guys and great leaders," Rogers said. "They've certainly make my job easier."
With 44 kids in the program spilt across junior varsity and varsity programs, Rogers said he has his work cut out for him, but it's exciting to start a new season with a single goal.
"Our goal is to play on the last game of the last day," Rogers said. "We want to win, but just getting to the state championship would be a great accomplishment and I think we're definitely up to the challenge."
The Tigers start the regular season Feb. 19 against Jesuit. The location of the game is still to be announced as Jesuit works to secure a location.