By ALEX SPONSELLER Bishop Hendricken seniors Xavier Quezada and Anthony Iamarone made their college decisions official recently, committing to playing baseball for Division III Worcester State University in Massachusetts next year. The duo have been
By ALEX SPONSELLER Bishop Hendricken seniors Xavier Quezada and Anthony Iamarone made their college decisions official recently, committing to playing baseball for Division III Worcester State University in Massachusetts next year.
The duo have been teammates and friends since their Little League days and were members of the Hawks’ state championship run two years ago. Now, the two will seek another title this spring and prepare to take their talents north together once again.
“Anthony is my best friend, we have been playing together since Little League. It was a coincidence that we were drawing interest from the same school, so a few days before committing I called him and was like, ‘Let’s take a ride,’” said Quezada.
“We’re pretty tight so it’ll definitely make things easier. Having someone to go to the gym with, practice with, it’ll be easier,” added Iamarone.
The two were relieved to make their decision official, especially considering the unusual recruiting process which was regularly affected by the ongoing pandemic.
“It was all over the place. Throughout the summer, the coaches would always ask for your schedule but I never really had a set schedule. It was a whirlwind,” said Quezada, who was impressed by the school’s academics and style of play. “The biggest thing was the education and the fact that they have my major. I also love the coaching staff with Coach (Dirk) Baker. Seeing the way they play and practice, aggressive, small ball baseball, that’s the style I have always liked.”
Iamarone enjoyed visiting the campus and felt right at home during the recruitment process.
“It feels really good because it was a stressful process with the coronavirus and missing the entire season. It felt good to commit. It was the campus, the campus is beautiful and their academics are great. I’m very excited about it,” said Iamarone.
Iamarone will be starting off in the outfield as well as pitcher. With only one more season of high school left, he will be zeroing in on sharpening his arsenal and getting stronger.
“I’ll have to focus on my pitching, that will be big for me. It’s going to be a big bump up in competition, guys are going to take it more seriously, the weight room is always available. At Worcester, everyone is going to want to be the top guy so not only will I have to compete with the competition but I’ll have to compete with my teammates too,” said Iamarone.
Quezada will compete for a role in the middle infield and looks forward to taking on some of the best DIII programs in the country.
“They told me that I would have to compete for my spot. Since high school, I have always focused on being in shape and in college I will have to go even harder. There’s a different type of competitiveness that college brings so I am hoping to play high level competition in the spring and summer,” said Quezada. “I just want to play the best. Northeast baseball is super competitive, seeing the schedule that Worcester State is playing, ranked teams, I’m just super excited to play the best.”
Looking ahead, Quezada is confident and appreciates the guidance that Hendricken has provided him throughout his high school career.
“They prepare you in every way, it’s the best coaching staff that I have ever played for,” said Quezada. “They prepare you for not only the ins and outs of the game but the long run. Everything, how to play your position, how to play as a team. How to win.”