Colorado Top 50 Countdown: No. 17 Lutheran Lions


John Cackowski and PBR Staff

 

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Leading up to the start of the high school season, we will count down the Top 50 preseason teams every day as part of our comprehensive season coverage. 

Like any preseason ranking for any sport, last year our list created a lot of fun conversations, debate, and opinions among players, coaches, and families. To see what we got right, and what we got wrong in 2017 Click Here

What makes our list unique is it combines all classifications (1A through 5A), and leading up to the start of the high school season, we will count down the Top 50 preseason teams every day as part of our comprehensive season coverage.

Factors that are considered when creating the Top 50 List are the following:

- How many current players are returning that are in PBR Colorado rankings
- How many overall players committed or non-committed are returning
- How many starting pitchers are returning
- Success the previous season
- History of success in the program

* We expect the teams in the Top 50 Countdown will compete for at least a district playoff spot in 2018

Team No. 17: Lutheran Lions

2018 Preseason Rank: 18
2017 Preseason Rank: NA
2017 Record: 19-2
Conference: 3A Metro
CHSAA Class: 3A
Head Coach: Seth Sorensen
2017 Playoff Run: Lost to Eaton 12-7 in 3A Region 5 District Championship Game
2017 Final Rank: 11
Offensive Starters Returning: 2
Pitchers Returning: 4
RBI's Returning: 20
Innings on Mound Returning: 85

STAT RAT: 
The Lions started 2017 off with an 18-0 record, but then lost 2 of their last 3 games. 

X-FACTORS: 
The Lions graduate 6 senior starters that made a significant impact on offense, so it will be a test to the program's depth in 2018, however they return most of their impact pitchers. 

BOTTOM LINE: 
The Lions during the regular season have established themselves as one of the top 3A schools in the state. Last year going into the 3A district playoffs they had won 18 of their previous 19 games, but got a tough draw in Eaton in the 3A Region 5 District Championship game. A game in which they were holding on to a 1 run lead going into the 4th inning. The program has had talent, but 2018 will be a true test of how much depth the program has. We expect the Lions to be in the mix to make the 3A quarterfinals in 2018. 

 

Key Player Lost

Tyler Essegian SS / Lutheran Parker, CO / 2017

Essegian hit .493 last spring with 7 doubles, 4 triples, and 2 homeruns. Essgegian also led the team with 26 runs scored, and stole 19 bases. His speed and defensive play at shortstop will be hard to replace. 

 

 

 

Key Players Returning

 

Corbyn Seymore LHP / Lutheran, CO / 2019

No. 1 pitcher in 2017, Seymore went 4-0 with a 1.45 ERA striking out 28 batters in 29 innings. Also hit .300 in limited at bats. 

 

 

 

 

Dane Gopsill RHP / Lutheran, CO / 2018

Big presence on the mound at 6-foot-5, 220 pounds. Threw 25 innings in 2017 striking out 17 batters. Went 3-1 on the season with a 3.36. 

 

 

 

 

Luke Gopsill RHP / Lutheran, CO / 2018

Big presence on the mound at 6-foot-5, 220 pounds. Last year went 3-0 in 19 innings pitched with a 2.95 ERA. Struck out 13 batters. 

 

 

 

 

Aaron Holdridge OF / Lutheran, CO / 2018

Hit .333 in 2017 driving in 12 runs. Also scored 20 runs and stole 10 bases for the Lions.