Rollins hopes to help ´Jacks reach team goals
Sophomore to be featured in Palm Beach Challenge program
WYE MILLS, February 14 It didn´t take long for Clarke Rollins to make his mark at Chesapeake College.
"Clarke established himself as our No. 3 hitter about a quarter of the way through last season," Chesapeake head baseball coach Frank Szymanski said of Rollins, who will be featured in the program for this spring´s Palm Beach Challenge. "He took a lot of pressure off (2003 All-American) Tim St. Clair and Jed Vess. His emergence made us a better team."
The Skipjacks will be participating in the Palm Beach Challenge next month as part of their annual spring trip. Szymanski said Rollins´ inclusion in the program is good for both Rollins and the college.
"Recruiters from four-year colleges and universities will be seeing the program. That is great exposure for Clarke and for Chesapeake College baseball," said Szymanski.
Rollins hit .349 with nine home runs and 44 runs batted in (RBI) in 47 games last spring for the Skipjacks, who set a team record with 26 victories playing in the high-powered Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference. Szymanski said Rollins was a big reason the Skipjacks qualified for the regional playoffs for the fifth straight season, winning a first-round game and finishing tied for fifth.
Rollins said he´s never been one to get caught up in personal numbers.
"If you just worry about doing what you can do, the numbers will take care of themselves," said Rollins, who scored 50 runs and cranked out 24 extra-base hits in 146 at bats last season. "My goals for this year include breaking the team record for wins again and trying to go a little bit deeper into the playoffs."
Szymanski said there is more to Rollins than the numbers he posts.
"He´s one of the hardest-working players to ever play for me, not only on the field but in the classroom and the community," said Szymanski of Rollins. "He does a lot for the athletic department working camps for kids, working our basketball scorer´s table, setting up the gym for games. He does whatever´s needed."
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