Take a quick look at the Tri-County Athletic League standings for spring sports and one thing immediately becomes clear: The spring season really is the time for the Balers to shine.
After a winter season full of struggles from the boys soccer team and the wrestling squad, losses are hard to come by in the spring so far.
In baseball, the Balers sit in first place. In softball, San Benito is atop their league once again. Track and field — in first place with ease.
Swimming, volleyball, tennis — all in first place.
The only sport that isn’t — golf — is in a close second behind bitter rival Palma. But there really shouldn’t be any complaints from the school or the team for a second-place finish — at least one team can’t finish in first place, right?
Whether it’s because San Benito is the sole high school in the city — and one of only two with an athletic department in the county — or it’s the coaches, San Benito sports are usually successful. It’s a little bit of both, if you ask me, but this year, something is a little different. Sure, the normal successful sports are doing what they usually — which isn’t surprising — but the type of success is new. It’s coming almost easy.
Regardless of the age or experience of the team, there is no competition within the TCAL for San Benito this spring.
Historically, San Benito has always had success in baseball, softball and even track. In the last 10 years, more often than not, San Benito is the champion in those three sports.
But here is where there is a change. Success in tennis, volleyball and golf isn’t usual.
The volleyball team — despite a mid-season coaching change — is well on its way to clinching a second TCAL championship in five years. Other than baseball, softball, swim and track, the volleyball team holds the Balers only other recent championship in the spring.
The tennis team has all but sewn up a Mountain Division TCAL champion with only a few more matches left to play.
And the golf team — led by three sophomores — is shooting to a second-place finish behind only Palma, which has beaten San Benito six times this year.
The biggest thing, though, for all three sports is their youth — meaning they may only get better. It truly is a remarkable accomplishment for the school, which can do no wrong this spring.
It isn’t just baseball and softball in the spring anymore, though, the two teams are a strong as they have ever been.
Behind a high-scoring offense and strong pitching, San Benito’s baseball team once again finds itself atop the TCAL standings. Unlike previous years, though, the offense that’s is the biggest key to their success. Without Division I college pitchers Darin Gillies and Bryan Granger, San Benito was forced to rely on its offense this year – and so far it’s worked.
San Benito (13-4, 9-1) leads the league with more than six runs per game.
With a one game lead over Palma and Salinas, the Balers are more than capable of winning a seventh-straight league title.
And on the softball diamond, winning is still expected for the Balers, who are 9-1 overall and 4-0 within the TCAL. Despite a staring lineup of no seniors — only two seniors are on the team — a Central Coast Section championship is still the goal.
That’s the same for track and the Quinn Six-led swim team.
Every sport has a standout and a team worth following. Regardless of what happens the rest of the way, the 2012 spring is something to celebrate for San Benito.
The Balers proclaim themselves as a school of champions. This spring only proves it.