With the return seven regulars, Buckhannon-Upshur is hoping to improve on last season's 9-20 mark.
"We're hoping to have a good season this year," Buckhannon-Upshur coach Adam Squires said. "Last year we were a young team with not much experience. We have a lot of kids back this year, so we should be much improved."
Headlining the list of Buccaneer returners is senior catcher Jeremy Davidson, who was one of the team's top hitters a year ago.
The Inter-Mountain photo by John Clise
The Buckhannon-Upshur baseball team will return several players from last year’s team. Back this season are, from left, Daniel Powell, Jeremy Davison, Corey Reed, Dalton Westfall, Nathan Matthews and Josh Heathcoe.
"I'm excited to have Jeremy back as our starting catcher," Squires said. "He's really going to help us at the plate this year."
Also returning to the infield with experience are senior shortstop Daniel Powell, senior third baseman Brantley Hamrick, junior first baseman Dalton Westfall and junior utility player Corey Reed.
"We're happy to have most of our infield players back this season," Squires said. "I think our defense will be one of our strong points this year, and it's because of all the experience we have back in the infield."
The Buccaneers will return two starters to the outfield in juniors Nathan Matthews and Josh Heathcoe.
"Nathan and Josh are going to make our outfield as strong as our infield," Squires said. "They both have a lot of speed and have experience."
Buckhannon-Upshur will return three starters to the mound this season in Powell, Westfall and Reed.
"With the three pitchers we have back, I'm confident that our pitching will be better this season as well," Squires said. "We have a tremendous 1-2 punch with Powell and Westfall, and I think that Reed can have a good year as well."
Three newcomers expected to contribute are sophomores Jacob Goss, Dalton Crislip and Dylan Smith.
Goss and Crislip are expected to see time in the infield, while Smith will be used primarily as an outfielder.
"I think our new players can step in and contribute," Squires said. "They've shown good stuff to start off the preseason and I'm anxious to see what they can do on the field."
The Buccaneers will open the season with six straight home contests, beginning with Webster on March 19.
"We have a very good chance of getting off to a good start," Squires. "We're happy to start off with a lot of home games in a row and there are definitely some winnable games at the start of the season."