Written by Peter Cappiello Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00
If there’s strength in numbers, the Farmingdale baseball team is in for good fortune during the upcoming season.
On Thursday, Dec. 20, the Farmingdale State College Rams were ranked No. 19 in the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper’s NCAA Division III preseason poll after finishing the 2012 season with a 32-12 overall record, including a 15-1 mark in Skyline Conference play.
Coach Keith Osik, who has been at the helm of Farmingdale since July 6, 2005, believes the accolade is a culmination of his team’s efforts.
“I think it’s a product of the hard work that’s been put in in the last eight years and how we’ve represented ourselves,” Osik said. “Whenever you’re ranked preseason, it’s a [result] of what you’ve done in the past, but we look forward to moving up, not just staying at 19. We’d hopefully like to crack the top 10 and keep moving forward.”
Leading his team to five straight Skyline Championships that resulted in NCAA tournament berths since 2008, Osik said the ranking doesn’t change the preparation for the 2013 campaign.
“Overall it is a nice feather in our cap that people from around the United States have taken notice of what we’ve done in our program,” Osik said. “But to be ranked really doesn’t change anything. I think people would be lying if they tell you they didn’t want to be ranked, but all teams play for the ends, not the beginning.”
With high expectations heading into next season, Osik said the Rams are primed to meet any challenge.
“Our kids know going into this, regardless of who we have to play, every year the NCAA tournament is why they work hard,” Osik said. “They’re probably lifting weights and running on their own to be prepared come first practice. My kids know that anything less than a Skyline Championship, for us, would be a failure.”
Farmingdale kicks off its 2013 season in Florida on Feb. 21-25 during an annual spring trip.