Mathis gives verbal commitment to UOP

Team credits hard work and natural talent for success

Mathis gives verbal commitment to UOP

Emma Garcia, Staff Writer

In August, junior shortstop Zack Mathis got some amazing news: the opportunity to verbally commit to UOP.

“Zack’s commitment to UOP is awesome for the team’s reputation because it always seems that BC baseball is caught in schools like Lincoln’s shadow,” senior Justin Kottinger said. “Even though we compete well with them, this gives guys on the team hope that if you work as hard as Zack does, you will get noticed.”

To Mathis’ other teammates, the opinion is unanimous: Zack has worked harder than anyone they know to get to where he is.

Last season, Mathis had a batting average of .544, an on-base percentage of .562, 15 RBI’s, and 18 eighteen runs according to maxpreps.com. The national averages are a .260 batting average, an on-base percentage of .360, 6.33 RBI’s, and 7.79 runs.

“Zack is the best hitter I know my age,” junior Leo Manzo said. “He works hard day and night and strives to be better. He is just a great all-around player. It would be hard for UOP to not notice him.”
But for Mathis the whole process is happening very quickly.

“It’s overwhelming,” Mathis said. “Before when you make decisions your parents help you but from here on out I’m going to be making a lot of big decisions by myself.”

Having a verbal commitment to UOP is an admirable achievement — but Mathis says he would have wanted to go to UOP either way.

“They have the major I want to do, which is sports management, and they have a good baseball program,” Mathis said.

Mathis’s coaches agree that this is a well deserved opportunity.

“Zack has natural talent both defensively and offensively,” coach Jeff Pepper said. “However, the key to him achieving his current level of success has been the work he’s put in on the practice field and on his own time.

Zack isn’t going to relax and be content with where his game is right now, and that’s a good thing, because he has the talent to play baseball for a long time.”