The Javelinas took home the LSC title for the season, but for first basemen and pitcher Taylor Taska the victory was especially sweet.
Taska was named MVP of the 2013 LSC conference tournament in Canyon as TAMUK won their first LSC title since 2008.
“Winning the tournament was the main goal,” he said. “Any time we can get together and win a tournament and get a ring, it always feels great. Getting named MVP was just the icing on the cake.”
For Taska, the MVP award paled in comparison to his team’s overall performance at the tournament.
A junior majoring in business finance, Taska has been able to fulfill multiple needs for the Javelinas. He started the season as first basemen, but moved to his natural pitching role later on.
“Growing up, everyone is usually a pitcher and hitter,” he said. “When I had gone to high school, I played pitcher and outfield. I didn’t play first base until last season as a way to get into the line up, and I just got progressively better at that.”
Taska currently sits with a team-low ERA of 3.00 with a 9-2 record on the mound. His hitting has also proven valuable to the Hogs, as he has a batting average of .350 and a team-high 49 RBI.
“The fact that I can go out there and be able to pitch and be able to hit for my team is a great thing,” Taska said.
Teammate and pitcher Tres Tyler has noticed his versatility.
“He came up clutch for us every time we needed him whether it was on the mound or at bat,” he said. “He picks us up in the key spots.”
The team found rhythm because of their collective effort, rather than individual accomplishments Tyler said.
“Everyone is playing as a team and really sticking to the plan that our coaches have put in place for us,” he said.
As the Javelinas look ahead to the regional tournament, Taska said one theme has kept the team motivated through the good and bad times alike.
“One of the things it boils down to is family,” he said. “It helps remind us that we’re playing for our baseball family out there and no individual is greater than the team.”