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Hershland Trojans back on the field for 2020

 Hershland Trojans head coach Jason Pflughaupt addresses his team at a practice. (Credit: Patrick Johnstone/KNOP-TV)
Hershland Trojans head coach Jason Pflughaupt addresses his team at a practice. (Credit: Patrick Johnstone/KNOP-TV) (KNOP)
Published: Jun. 17, 2020 at 5:46 PM CDT
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The Hershland Trojans have not taken the field in two years. Through work by Mitch Moorhead, and the people of the surrounding community, the team is back for the 2020 season.

"It was a hard process, Mitch did most of the work, he went out to canvas the communities, the players, and the players parents, and got them all together, and basically just put this whole thing together. If it wasn't for him, we wouldn't be here right now," said Trojans head coach Jason Pflughaupt.

The roster includes just 15 players, and the Trojans will only have a juniors team this season, but Pflughaupt hopes getting the team back together means it will expand in the future.

"We're going to build on that and hopefully build a program, and get it going so that we have both the junior and senior team in the years to come," Pflughaupt said.

The Trojans team consists of players from Hershey, Sutherland, Paxton, Wallace, and Hayes Center. The players come from different communities, and attend different high schools, but bonded quickly.

"It's always tricky to melt with new kids you've never met," said Trojans third baseman and pitcher Kolton Hager, who is from Wallace. "It's definitely something different trying to melt with kids you've never played before, never hung out with, or talked to. Getting a chance to play with these kids has been a blast."

"We've been clicking pretty much since day one," said catcher and third baseman Devon McCreery, a Hershey High School student, "everybody started working together, well everybody was keeping each other up and never put each other down."

Hager and McCreery are both playing Legion baseball for the first time in years, and while they were a little rusty at first, they have taken the last few weeks to get into playing shape.

"Watching the ball go over the kid's heads when I threw it for the first time was definitely a sign of rust," Hager said. "With Coach Pflughaupt's long tossing skills, and all his pitching stuff, I've been able to get my arm back into the shape it used to be, and I feel good right now."

"It's a slow process getting back into it, you've got to feel your way back into it, you can't just dive head first," McCreery said.

The Trojans play their first game of the season on Thursday, June 18, hosting Imperial.

For McCreery, stepping onto the field for the first time will come with a little bit of nerves. "[I'll be] a little nervous maybe, since I haven't played in a while, but I think after a few, we're going to be rolling, we're going to be a fun team to watch this year," he said.

Coach Pflughaupt is proud of the work that has been put in by everyone to get the team back together.

"This team has really worked hard and they've really wanted to be out here. The parents have worked hard, everybody in these communities have worked hard to get this team going, and it'll just show on Thursday night, and throughout the season, how much people love baseball and want to be out here," Pflughaupt said.

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