P.O. Male Athlete of the Week: Kyle Hoffman
Waynesboro has zipped out to a 4-0 record in baseball, and is obviously playing well as a team.
But there's no doubt who has been the spark plug of that unbeaten streak.
Junior Kyle Hoffman has two wins from the pitching mound, plus a save. In 12.1 innings pitched, he's given up only seven hits. But he's been even better at the plate, rapping out nine hits in 14 at-bats, with a double and two runs batted in.
Hoffman is the Public Opinion Male Athlete of the Week.
"I think the hitting just came with getting varsity experience," Hoffman said. "And once I starting hitting, the confidence set in."
Indian coach Greg Chandler - who coached Hoffman's father Tom in football and basketball when he was in high school - said, "He makes good contact. He had some good at bats last spring toward the end of the season and carried that right through the fall and into this spring. He's really matured as a player."
As far as his pitching, he is described as a "crafty left-hander" by Chandler. Which means he won't blow batters away with his speed, but can make them hit into outs.
Hoffman said, "I'm not overpowering at all, so I have to rely on my defense. Our defense has consistently backed up our pitchers so far and they've made me look good."
Chandler said, "Kyle fields his position well and he holds runners on, too. He's athletic and he doesn't let anything bother him. Stuff just rolls off him - good or bad - and that's a good thing for baseball."
Hoffman said he's a little surprised with his team's start, and it may have changed their goals.
"I thought we could do well, even though we're kind of young," he said, "but we had to prove it. So it's been a little surprising. We want to finish over .500 and maybe win a game or two in the playoffs."
Kyle Hoffman, Waynesboro
Positions: Pitcher, centerfield
Parents: Tom & Jen Hoffman
Interests: Also plays basketball for the Indians and the AAU team Franklin Force.
Surprising fact: Before games, Hoffman eats a peanut butter and strawberry jelly sandwich.
Favorite player: Marcus Paige (UNC basketball)
Favorite team: Pittsburgh Pirates