High School

COACH OF THE YEAR: Burlington’s Staude won school’s first baseball state title

It’s been more than six months since the Burlington baseball team won the school’s first state championship, but the postseason awards keep piling up for head coach Scott Staude.

The 18-year head man had his ups and downs, including a total of seven victories in his first two seasons in the late 1990s.

But everything came together in 2016, as the Demons went 25-5 and enjoyed an unforgettable state tournament where they knocked off the defending state champion and overcame a 4-0 deficit in the sixth inning to win the state championship game.

Staude’s strategy in the title game, which included a clutch suicide squeeze to give Burlington the lead and the reliance on a senior pitcher that had only thrown a handful of innings all season, helped take the talented squad and turn it into one for the ages.

For his efforts, Staude is the area’s 2016 Coach of the Year, an award that considers Burlington, Catholic Central, Waterford and Union Grove high schools

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USABat Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions about the USABat standard:

Which national member organizations are implementing this new standard?
To date, the following organizations are participating (in alphabetical order): American Amateur Baseball Congress (AABC), Amateur Athletic Union (AAU), Babe Ruth Baseball/Cal Ripken Baseball, Dixie Youth Baseball, Little League Baseball and PONY Baseball.

Why the change to a wood-like standard?
USA Baseball’s national member organizations believe that a wood-like performance standard will best provide for the long-term integrity of the game. The new standard will not have a drop-weight limit, so young players can use bats made with light-weight materials.

Why not just use wood bats?
Wood is a scarce resource. The new bats will be designed to perform much like wood, where its performance will be limited to the highest performing wood.

How is the USABat standard different from the BBCOR standard used by the NCAA and NFHS?
Both the USA Baseball and NCAA bat performance tests are based on the coefficient of restitution from a bat-ball impact. The scale of results is different, however, since they use different test balls and test speeds. The testing difference is necessary to address the various levels of play in the respective age groups.

Why is USA Baseball involved?  
The national member organizations asked USA Baseball as the national governing body to take the lead in this process to establish a new standard. Many other national governing bodies set and enforce standards for the equipment in their respective sports. To that end, USA Baseball established a Bat Study Committee of leading scientists and conducted theoretical modeling, field testing and lab testing. The committee shared its findings with the national member organizations, who then endorsed the new USABat standard.

Who were the scientists on the USA Baseball Bat Study Committee?
Alan Nathan, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Physics at the University of Illinois
Dan Russell, Ph.D. Professor of Acoustics at Penn State University
Glenn Fleisig, Ph.D. Research Director of American Sports Medicine Institute

Why wait until 2018?
The implementation date of 2018 will allow bat manufacturers sufficient time to conduct the appropriate research, design, testing, manufacturing and shipping needed to get new bats into retail outlets. This date also allows the participating national member organizations adequate time to educate their memberships of the USABat standard.

Is my current bat good for league play?
Yes. Current league-approved bats can be used through December 31, 2017.

Is safety the reason for the change?
No. Youth baseball continues to be one of the safest of all sports for youth participants.

How will I know which bat to buy?
All new bats that bear the USABat licensing mark will be permissible for play in the leagues and tournaments of the participating youth baseball organizations.

When can I buy the new bat?
It is the intention of the bat manufacturers to make the new bats available in the fall of 2017, in sufficient time for the 2018 season.

14U Warriors Sports Academy/Ladainian Tomlinson Prep Baseball wins Piper Davis National Championship

The 14U Warriors Sports Academy/Ladainian Tomlinson Prep Baseball finished the summer on a strong note, winning the Piper Davis National Championship in Birmingham, Ala.tomlinsonprep

Karl Brooks’ side did so by going undefeated through pool play and defeating a team from the Bahamas 10-9.

Brooks, who started the program earlier this year in conjunction with the Ladanian Tomlinson Prep Academy and Satchel Paige ATL Travel Baseball, was thrilled for his players.

“Just watching them grow and remembering everything we worked on practice was the best part for me,” he said. “We make practice competition-based. We work them tirelessly. It came down to the championship game and we were down 9-7 in the bottom of the seventh inning. To see the growth and the determination to not go home a loser, so to speak, and to come out as a winner, that was the most gratifying thing for me.”

Brooks said that his players relished the opportunity to play teams from around the southeast, as well as a squad that came all the way from the Bahamas.

“They enjoyed winning the championship game, especially against a team from the Bahamas,” he said. “That’s not every day you get to do that.”

More importantly, Brooks said that the tournament was an outstanding bonding opportunity for his team. By staying in the same hotel with other teams from different areas, the players were able to create lasting relationships.

“The kids really enjoyed it,” Brooks said. “A lot of them have never won a championship. They bonded well staying in the same hotel. After the games, I saw them outside with other teams playing pick-up baseball games in the middle of the night. Those types of things are what it’s all about — creating those friendships and long-lasting relationships.”

Brooks had plenty to do with his team’s performance at the Piper Davis National Championship. He is the program director for Satchel Paige ATL Baseball and the Chairman of the Board for Piper Davis Youth Baseball and will be partnering with LTPA.

He played collegiality at the University of Maryland-Eastern Shore before injuries derailed his baseball career prematurely. He moved to Georgia, where he was asked to run a post-graduate baseball program from 2010 to 2012. Brooks recruited over 100 players to participate in his program. Those players came from all over the map, including the Bahamas, Puerto Rico and Venezuela.

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