Back in Class A where they dominated, Dawgs dig in
Expectations are especially high as the 2013 season gets underway as the Bulldogs prepare to venture out once again into Class A, a domain they have dominated in the past.
In its last six years in Class A, no other team in the state had made as many trips to the state tournament as Thorndale—in any classification.
“Dropping down to 1A we will be able to encounter some of our old rivals,” Thorndale Coach Kelly Kuhl said. “It will be fun to play those teams again.
“But as our motto for this year goes, ‘you deserve what you earn’. We preach this to the kids every day. Whatever you put into it each day is how much you will get out of it in the end.
“So far the kids are buying in and are working hard to get there.”
Coming off an uncharacteristic 11-12 record in 2012, Kuhl (112-57 overall, three trips to the state tournament) begins his seventh season at the helm and never has he had such an inexperienced group.
Kuhl can count on two seniors and three juniors to set an example for 11 sophomores and five freshmen.
“We played in the Bremond Tournament after one day of practice which was inside due to the weather,” said Kuhl.” I was really impressed with our team. We are really young this year.
“The good thing is if we are able to have two teams everyone should get a lot of playing time.”
Battling state champions Rogers and Cameron, Thorndale was 28-21 in its two season in District 27-2A.
“Coming into this year I didn’t really know what to expect with a lot of these guys not having varsity experience as well as not having much mound experience coming back. After this past weekend there is no doubt these guys are hungry and have a common goal.
The Bulldogs placed third in the Leon Tournament over the weekend with wins over Normangee (16-2), Palestine (8-3) and Leon (13-4) and losses to Elkhart (11-1) and Buffalo (10-9).
Despite Schaefer’s 10 strikeouts, the Bulldogs faltered against Thrall 3-1 in the district opener.