Wed June 27, 2012
South Side High School’s Will Coursen-Carr has been named the 2012 PBR Indiana High School Player of the year. The 6-foot-3 lefty went 10-1 on the mound with 134 strikeouts and a 0.40 ERA. Not only was he dominant on the mound, but also excelled at the plate. Carr, an Indiana University commit, hit .488 with 12 doubles, 4 homeruns, and 36 RBI.
We recently had the opportunity to sit down with the Player of year and discuss his outstanding season:
PBR: Going into the season what were your goals individually and for the team?
Carr: As a team, we knew we were going to be better than previous years. We had more players with baseball skills and experience, but, we weren’t even thinking about sectionals. Our team goal was to finish with a record above .500 for the first time in over a decade. In the back of our heads we thought a conference championship was possible, but not likely. As sectionals came closer, my teammate Evan VanSumeren and I would joke around about winning, and then sure enough, we got a perfect draw and won! It was a surreal moment given the circumstances and the other teams in our sectional. As for my individual goals, I wanted to break the school strikeout record, make all-state, increase my velocity, gain command with my off-speed, and find better ways to support my teammates so we could build off each other’s success.
PBR: Were you surprised at all on the amount of success you had on the mound and offensively?
Carr: To be honest, yes I was very surprised. I really struggled last summer pitching wise. I was pretty disappointed in myself. My velocity had dropped and I could not throw pitches for strikes when I needed to. Over the winter I knew I did not want to feel like that again, so I worked with a couple of coaches. I went to pitching coach Mark Delagarza who is the founder of the Summit City Sluggers, the travel team I played for. (Dustin Sebastian was our coach). I was determined to not have another season like last summer, so I worked with Delagarza conditioning, especially doing squats which got my core in shape. I also went to Ken Jones, World Baseball Academy. I played basketball at school and I think the running helped. But the thing that really made me improve – actually getting me to where I felt I should’ve been last year - was a new mental approach. I read Mind Gym and all of us working with Delagarza would discuss it. We always spent a good amount of time on the mental aspect. I think that allowed me to re-gain confidence in myself, which then allowed me to gain confidence in pitching and certain pitches.
Offensively, I didn’t focus as much on batting as pitching. I feel less pressure when at the plate because it is not what most people think is my “thing” and I was confident, but having that high of an average was pretty surprising. I have really grown to love hitting and want to do it at the next level also.
PBR: What did you do to prepare for your senior year? Did you do anything different than in the previous years?
Carr: I took focus away from always throwing and worked on conditioning, mental approach, nutrition and mechanics.
PBR: What are your expectations when you head down to Bloomington to play for the Hoosiers this Fall?
Carr: I want to go in and be a weekend starter on the mound and try to play first base. However, I know I will have to prove myself and it will take a lot of dedication because IU has a ton of really great talent plus the new people coming in.
PBR: Now that you've completed your high school career, what is some advice you would give today's freshman and how to handle their high school playing days?
Carr: Start off strong academically so you don’t have to stress about grades. Play a lot of sports. It’s fun being involved in different things and allows you not to get burnt out. You are going to fail at some point in your career, learn from it but don’t let it overwhelm you, you have to let go of those things and move on. When you need help, ask for it. Work hard and have fun.