Cathedral enters baseball fray

Published 7:48 pm Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Eight years after opening its doors to an enrollment of nine students, Cathedral Academy is prepared to open its inaugural baseball season on Tuesday at Lowndes Academy.

The team is the first organized, varsity athletics team in the school’s history.

“Little by little, we’ve established ourselves,” said Cathedral headmaster, the Rev. Brent Keith. “It’s just like any other school — people often look at athletics. A lot of times, a school – whether it’s good or not — is measured by athletics.”

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The lack of athletics was one of the school’s weakness. It is hoped that the baseball program’s addition — combined with other sports in time — will turn athletics into a strong suit.

“I think there’s a lot of kids out there who — maybe their parents — desire a real, Christian parochial education,” said Keith. “But maybe the lack of an athletic program keeps them away. This is a step in the right direction.”

The team’s first players believe they will have a place in the school’s history as well. Brothers — and team captains — Wes and Wil Tipton couldn’t contain their excitement during the team’s practice at the Four Seams baseball complex on Wednesday.

“I’m just glad we started,” said Wes. “You’ve got to start somewhere.”

Chris Mumford — the team’s third captain — is looking forward to his first year of organized baseball.

“I feel like we’re blessed. The school can grow,” said Mumford. “Win or lose, we’re going to give God the praise.”

Cathedral will play 10 games this year, and will not have a championship to compete for at season’s end. The school has submitted an application to join the Independent Christian Schools of Georgia and Alabama Athletic Association. Pending its approval, Cathedral will compete for ICSGA titles in future years.

But, for this season, just fielding a team is its own accomplishment.

“We’re just letting all those other schools know we’re here,” said athletic director Jamie Tellier. “The real trophy for them is stepping on that field with Cathedral Academy uniforms on for the first time. Any win would be like winning the championship.”