Hello and good evening my name is Grant Wallace, a junior on our baseball team. It is my pleasure to be able to represent our baseball team, and what the RISES value of excellence means to us. Excellence is defined as the quality of being outstanding or extremely good. Most people associate excellence with winning, whether it’s individual wins or accomplishments, conference championships, or world championships. However, Neumann University Baseball looks at excellence through a different light. We define excellence by doing everything the right way. You may be wondering, what defines a right way, well we learn quickly from the coaching staff the difference between the right thing to do and the wrong thing to do. But it is all done to make us not only the best we can be on the field, but the highest quality people off of it.
It is important to remember that one day we will all have to hang up our cleats and move on in life. Until then, we will work towards achieving excellence. Excellence on our team is waking up at 5:30 in the morning to compete against our teammates in the gym. Excellence is showing up to practice over an hour early, not to benefit ourselves, but to help out a teammate who is trying to get better. Excellence is running until you cannot run anymore, because we know it will help us out come May. Excellence is giving 100% effort, when you may only have 75% left in the tank.
Excellence is the relationships we build as a team that will last a lifetime. Excellence is accepting the highs and lows of the season, and never taking anything for granted. The time that sticks out in our mind of when we exemplified excellence was back in the fall baseball season. We had a double-header against Cumberland Community College, who was coming off of a forty-win season. We won the first game 10-2 and the second game 5-2. It was a fun day for sure, but what made it the most fun was our ability to execute, hustle, and play the right way. It was a great sendoff for the fall season, but we know that was just the beginning of the work. So here is to a season of working hard from the beginning of the first practice, to the last pitch of our final game. Thank you very much for your time and support, Go Knights!