Powell preparing for junior sports season at Pine River

LEROY — Mason Powell ended one busy sports season and has already started another.

Powell and the Bucks baseball team ended the spring on June 6 at Newaygo with a 6-3 loss to Muskegon Oakridge. Last month, Powell was with the Pine River summer baseball team on a Friday in a home game, then was playing with the basketball squad the next day during a Ferris basketball camp.

He and his teammates were hoping for a longer baseball postseason. The Bucks enjoyed a 32-4 record.

“We’re both good teams,” Powell said. “They executed when they needed to and we didn’t. They hit the ball and we didn’t. It’s hard to beat a team that way.”

The Bucks struggled early in the season on offense and relied a lot on pitching and defense. But Powell recalls the hitting eventually improved.

“We hit very well during our district,” Powell said. “We hit a slump (in regionals). When your head gets down, it’s hard to get get out of the hole.”

It was still a memorable season for Powell, a sophomore.

“Winning the district and being with friends” were among the highlights,” he recalled.

“Our pitching was good,” Powell said. “We had good leadership from our seniors.”

Powell will be among the top players returning next season. He played outfield and occasionally saw infield action.

“I thought I had an OK season, obviously not where I wanted it to be,” he said. “It’s hard to be where you want to be all the time. It gives you something to strive for.”

The Bucks graduated a lot of seniors, but Powell is encouraged with the future. He has already seen action on the mound this summer and could be among the team’s top pitchers next season.

“My grade is solid when it comes to baseball,” he said. “It always has been. The grade above me is good. We’ll have a good group of seniors and juniors next year.”

Powell also will have a busy summer with football. He returns as the Bucks’ starting quarterback this fall.