The “Boys of Summer” open their baseball season in the dead of winter.
The Tyler Junior College Apaches, who were a powerhouse in NJCAA Division III, will play their second season in Division I with a roster of young and talented scholarship players.
The Apaches returned to D-I last season, but competed without any scholarships. The squad was 34-24 overall and 22-15 in Region XIV.
TJC opens with a doubleheader against Frank Phillips College, a school located in the west Texas town of Borger.
Two games are set for Friday with the first game slated to begin at noon (7-innings), followed by a contest at 3 p.m. (9-innings).
The third game of the series is slated for noon Saturday (9-innings).
Doug Wren is the coach of the Apaches with assistant Cody Jamison and pitching coach Nathan Finn.
TJC teams members include:
The pitching staff: Clayton Kelley (North Richland Hills, Richland HS); Aden Lucas (freshman, Conroe, Oak Ridge HS); Kade Budd (freshman, Corpus Christi, London HS); Grayson Murry (Tyler, Brook Hill School); Brandon McNeely (sophomore, Carthage); Douglas Bauer (freshman, Houston, Lamar HS); Jose Bludau (freshman, Sealy); Cade Wallace (freshman, Magnolia, Home School); Brayden Hodges (sophomore, Hallsville); Kyler Carpenter (sophomore, Parker, Colorado, Legend HS); Steele Bardwell (sophomore, Willis); Noah Ruen (sophomore, Leander); Trevor Esparza (freshman, Katy, Tompkins HS); Alex Merkel (sophomore, Rockwall); Reid Trimble (freshman, Whitehouse); Kolby Parker (sophomore, Shelbyville);
Catchers: Will Bush (North Richland Hills, Birdville HS); Tanner Chelette (freshman, Houston, Home School); Colby Harris (sophomore, Tyler, Tyler Legacy HS);
Infielders: Mikey Gallegos (sophomore, Richmond, Fort Bend Travis HS); Thomas Soto (freshman, Round Rock); Jaron Lyness (freshman, Montgomery, Lake Creek HS); Jake Vobbe (freshman, Houston, Houston Lamar HS); Nico Ruedas (freshman, Dripping Springs); Nicholson Anderson (sophomore, Humble, Atascocita)
Outfielders: Zach Zarko (sophomore, Hurst, L.D. Bell); Ryan Walker (sophomore, Coppell); Colin Martin (sophomore, Longview, Spring Hill HS); Rene Galvan (freshman, Sinton); Ryan Brown (freshman, Sugar Land, Fort Bend Clements HS); Caden Queck (sophomore, The Woodlands, The Woodlands Christian); Cam Credeur (freshman, Castle Rock, Colorado, Valor Christian); Brody Miller (freshman, Austin, Bowie HS); Luke Sheppard (freshman, Emory, Rains HS).
Outfielders/Infielders: Jake Castillo (freshman, Round Rock); Wesley Mitchell (sophomore, Katy, Houston Christian);
Pitchers/Infielders: Jonny Lowe (freshman, Rockwall, Rockwall-Heath HS); Cody Brasch (freshman, Haslet, V.R. Eaton HS); Jake White (freshman, Forney);
Pitcher/Utility: Reid Hensley (sophomore, Lufkin, Incarnate Word).