December 30 - Freedom High School in South Riding has been named the magazine’s 2018 High School Varsity Team of the Year after losing just one of 19 games last spring.
The 2018 Teams of the Year are sponsored by Pitchers Edge in Vienna.
Coached by Matt Markosky, the Eagles had an 11-game winning streak to begin the season and then finished strong, posting three straight shutouts to end the season after suffering their lone loss. This year’s other nominees included Battlefield, which went 12-2, and last year’s category winner, Madison, which finished 11-3.
In the seventh story in our Year in Review series, the magazine summarizes each of the nominees for our High School JV Team of the Year:
Team: Freedom High School (South Riding)
League: Potomac District (VHSL Class 5)
Head Coach: Matt Markosky
Assistant Coaches: Nelson Santiago
Record: 17-1-1 overall
Team Summary: The Eagles won their first 11 games before a 5-5 tie with Tuscarora, and their only setback was a 4-1 decision to Potomac Falls. They allowed two runs or fewer in 13 of 19 games and posted six shutouts, including three straight to finish the season. Casey Cook was the team’s top player prior to being pulled up to the varsity team after 10 games, and other standouts included Josh Lu, Val Taddei and Dylan Tasker at the plate and Connor Kolarov and Billy Adkins on the mound. No individual statistics were provided.
Team: Battlefield High School
League: Cedar Run District (VHSL Class 6)
Head Coach: Bill Thompson
Assistant Coaches: Bryant Burns
Record: 12-2 overall
Team Summary: The Bobcats had a nine-game winning streak to begin the season, averaged 9.6 runs per game, won seven games by the 10-run mercy rule and had a season run-differential of plus-106. Their pitching was just as good, posting a 1.01 ERA and 139 strikeouts in 89 innings. Leading the lineup were Tyler Klus (.439 batting average), Luis Hernandez (18 hits) and Blake Cuddington (16 RBI), while Colby Vollmer and Cole Snead anchored the pitching staff. Vollmer had team-highs in wins (5), strikeouts (28) and innings (24), while Snead posted a 1.28 ERA to pace the staff.
Team: Madison High School
League: Concorde District (VHSL Class 6)
Head Coach: Robbie Robeson
Assistant Coaches: Bob Cesca, Joe Canova, Alex Andrews, Nick Brunori
Record: 11-3 overall
Team Summary: The reigning JV Team of the Year category barely missed a beat in its first season in the Concorde District, as the Warhawks won a league-best six of eight games against district opponents. They have compiled a 143-25 mark in coach Robbie Robeson’s 12 seasons at the helm, and this year outscored their opponents 135-61 while compiling a cumulative 2.96 ERA. The team was led on the mound by Fitz Halloran and offensively by Colin Tuft, Mason Satterfield and T.C. Sylvia.
Photo of Freedom’s Dylan Tasker by Fred Ingham