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GRC’s Mitchell has success from hard work, dedication

The recent success from George Rogers Clark baseball has been no secret.

What seems to hidden and not seen from the public eye is the dedication, sacrifice and hard work that student-athletes put into being successful.

GRC Freshman Trace Mitchell has to slid his way into the starting lineup for varsity and football and made his first appearance for varsity baseball no more than a week ago.

Mitchell had a surprise thrown to him at the plate when he managed to hit one over the fence for his first career home run and his first career varsity at-bat no more than a week ago.

“I wasn’t even looking for a home run, I was looking for a base hit,” Mitchell said. “From what my teammates said, it was a line drive shot.”

Mitchell admitted that he was nervous when the coaches shouted his name to go to the plate.

“I was really nervous because I didn’t want to be that kid to strike out in the inning,” he said. “I went to bat and found my pitch and hit it and my coaches were really happy and I could hear my teammates yelling. They were already trying to jump and hop on my back as I was rounding third base. It couldn’t have been a better moment.”

Mitchell said that he wouldn’t be the player and person that he is without his family and teammates always encouraging him to give it his best.

“My teammates and coaches pushing me to the max has been keeping me going all this time,” Mitchell said. “Whether it’s hitting in the cage or playing first base they are always there making me give it everything I have. Tyler Walton is someone that is always pushing me and correcting or critique me if I do something wrong. People pushing me and believing in me has always encouraged me.”

Mitchell gave credit to his dad and his football and baseball travel teams.

“Coach Kenny Davis would always push me and believe in me,” he said. “He put me in tough situations like if I wanted to come out out during pitching he wouldn’t let it happen because he knew I could do it. Coach Mark, coach Davis and my dad are role models to me.”

“Practice how you play” has always been Mitchell’s motto.

“What keeps me in the zone and what has usually helped me perform better is how serious I take things in practice,” he said. “If I don’t practice good then I’m not going to play good. If i practice good then I’m going to play good. Your determination is what determines your at-bats or maybe your moves in football.”

Mitchell said there isn’t a better feeling when he is out on the baseball or football field.

“It inspires me to do best when I’m out on the field,” he said. “Watching people on TV and see how they work, watching videos of how they critique things. My dad always pushes me to get out of bed and go run, go hit or go work on my football moves or just hit the field in general.”

GRC baseball will head to Madison Southern on Monday and will play at 5:30 p.m. The Cards will not return home until Saturday, May 5.