The J. Taylor Finley Middle School baseball can’t wait for the first pitch of the season next week. The squad has been practicing daily with returning head coach Paul Caleca, who believes he has the talent to be very competitive over the course of a 10 game schedule.
The Finley squad consists of seventh graders Harris Alba, Harrison Baliber, Kaedon Halbeisen, Peter, Leavy, Theodore Leavy, Nikolai Lulewich, Matthew O’Connor, Dante Salgado, Dominic Verme and Jose Villatoro and eighth graders John Acompora-Miller, Christopher Acompora-Miller, Joseph Algieri, Nicholas Cesario, John Crousillat, Matthew Gerardi, Gavin Kata, Jack Koopman, Michael Mugno, Costantino Posillico, Enzo Pupillo, James Rosselli, Nicholas Sineno, Joseph Toscano and Nicholas Zahn.
Finley will open the season at Hauppauge on April 16. The team’s home opener is set for May 6 against West Islip-Udall. Caleca has invited retiring Finley Principal John Amato to throw out the first ball at the game.
Finley will also play games against Smithtown-Nesaquake, West Hollow, Northport, Elwood, Bay Shore, Oldfield, Commack and West Islip-Beach.
Caleca has been putting the squad through hitting and fielding drills, reviewing base running and working with the pitchers and catchers. Finley has been working on various fundamentals as well as different aspects of the game, including hitting the cutoff man, taking signs from the coach, backing each other up in the field, etc.
Finley is returning 11 players from last year’s team. Caleca believes that experience will help make for a successful spring for the squad.