Prep Baseball Report

Utah HS Team Preview: American Fork HS

Jeff Scholzen
Utah Scouting Director

Utah HS Team Previews - American Fork Caveman

Opening Day and the weekend has arrived! The Utah High School Activities Association has announced that opening day of the 2022 season will commence on Monday March 6th. Jeff Scholzen (Utah Scouting Director) begins the 2023 season coverage with our annual preseason team previews, where we will take notes from coaches, and highlight returning players, newcomers, and some sleepers. Over the next couple of weeks and leading up to opening day, we will be highlighting some of the top programs in the state with our team previews.

As our ardent readers are aware, Team Previews are answered by the Head Coaches of those programs and the scouting reports embedded in the PBR player profiles of the top players, are written by state scouting director Jeff Scholzen, the states only full-time MLB Area Scouting supervisor ever. 

With data partners Trackman Baseball, the leaders in measuring the ball flight and its characteristics off the bat for position players and out of the hand for pitchers. No one does it better. Blast Motion captures key swing metrics in evaluating the efficiency of the swing and where a player's swing is good or bad and what needs to be worked on. Swift Performance measures power output as an athlete with the EZ jump mat and collecting not only the 60 yard dash, but the 10 and 30 yard dashes as well. 3M technology measures key pitching mechanics and how the delivery through the body moves in sequence to produce and provide a more effortless and efficient delivery. 

This season as in every past season, stats are collected across the state at the end of that week's play, with input from coaches, assistant coaches and ultimately myself in putting together comprehensive player content on a weekly basis with the following. 

1. Weekly Utah Power 25 Overall Team Rankings (Monday)

2. Player and Pitcher of the Week, along with other notable player performances (Tuesday)

3. Player Spotlights throughout the spring of top players who are making their mark on the HS scene in capturing college recruiting looks. 

4. I will be scouting games throughout the state and posting player videos on Twitter for college marketing purposes on a weekly basis and in some cases where action is flowing and games are staggered, such as the preseason tourneys down south on a daily basis. 

Quick Footnote: Only 7% of all HS baseball players will play college baseball and the elite of that group, which consists of only 2% will play at the D1 level. These are the players I’m watching and gleaning information on. This is determined by objective data from events, as well as the subjective eye evaluations, honed from my 30 years at the college and professional level. 

American Fork by the numbers

Head Coach: Jarod Ingersoll (2021 6A Coach of the Year / NHSBCA West Region Coach of the Year)

Classification: 6A

Region: 4

2021 Win-Loss: 25-8

State Playoff appearances in last 10 years: 10

State Championship appearances last 10 years: 4

State Championships last 10 years: 3

2021 Final MaxPreps Ranking: 6th in the country

2022 Preseason MaxPreps Ranking: 22

2021 Final PBR Utah Ranking: 1st

2023 #1 Ranked Team

2021 6A State Champions

2022 6A State Runner-Ups

Recent History and Present

The Caveman have become not only a state powerhouse, but a regional and nationally ranked team, full of college baseball talent, while leading the state with 15 current college players at some level of college baseball. The area is chalk full of “now” players, as well as up and coming young players at the youth level and entering school now. 

This club is once again gonna be a high powered lineup full of next level type hitters, and it starts with TCU signee and former PBR Future Game and Super 60 (Pro Showcase) alum, Ryder Robinson (See breakdown in key returning players). Robinson is the only player in the state that scored 50+ runs a year ago, and has accomplished the feat in back to back years, while putting up stellar batting averages of .440 and .439 with only 13 K outs over the past two seasons. Not only is Robinson a P5 signee to national power TCU, but will draw attention from MLB scouts and executives. The key to this club will be what kind of staff the Caveman can muster behind another P5 signee in ace RHP-Austin Laycock, who is BYU bound this coming fall. Laycock can run his FB up to 92, but works mainly in the 87-90 range. This years starting 2B-Jett Walker will see considerable time on the mound with a mid to high 80’s FB and plus athleticism on defense and running the bases. This club is well rounded from an offensive perspective and has college commits dotting most positions. The club is also very well coached and has a tradition that can be intimidating from an opposition's standpoint. The Caveman are now squarely a PBR networked team, with the vast majority of their players attending PBR events in marketing themselves to the next level, and also the club is preseason ranked not only #1 in Utah, but #11 on the entire West Coast ranking through Prep Baseball Report. 

The 2023 version of the Caveman kick off their season tonight vs the #12 Jordan Beetdigggers and their high powered lineup. Stay tuned for weekly updates on the Caveman throughout the spring and watch for player highlights weekly. The anticipated matchup of the regular season comes on March 30th at BYU, when the rematch of the 2022 6A state title game occurs vs last year's state champion Riverton HS. 

Key Returners with Class/Position

Ryder Robinson SS / 2B / American Fork, UT / 2023


Committed: Texas Christian U

2021 1st Team All-Region 4 / 6A 1st Team All-State 
2022 1st Team All-Region 4 / 6A 1st Team All-State


 Super 60 Report

Robinson arrived in Chicago ready to prove a point, and show why he should be included among the best HS players in the country. As a rising junior at the PBR Future Games, Robinson was coming off a .440 1st Team All-State season as a sophomore, and checking in at 6-2 165, Robinson was a high contact bat over power at that point in his development, but after turning in another 1st Team All-State campaign as a junior, hitting a the top of a loaded American Fork lineup, Ryder followed up with a .436 average to go along with 6 HR’s, and his second 50+ run scored season. Now a still lanky 6-2 190, Robinson has the frame and structure to reach 6-2 205 and is now showing big power potential, along with the high contact rates. At the Super 60, Robinson showed off a smooth and easy mirrored hitting stroke from both sides of the plate, with big sweet spot contact. With Blast Motion capturing his hand speed at 25.4 and the max bat speed at 78.4 and an EV of 99 from Trackman. Now remember this event was a pro style event using wood, and if this was a standard showcase style event in a home state, aluminum bats would be used and the EV could have been measured in the 100-102 range. Robinson also showed off educated feet and hands at SS with twitchy actions, along with range and agility. The big improvement to his game, was his increase in arm strength, as Robinson was 79-80 mph in 2021-2022, and was clocked at 85 mph at the Super 60, giving promise that the arm will continue to trend towards 90 mph at maturity, giving him a chance to remain in the dirt, on the left side of the INF at the next levels of play. To say that Robinson was a name that scouts may or may not have known, but do now, would be an understatement. 



Josh Rojas C / 1B / American Fork, UT / 2023


Committed: Utah Tech U


Gavin Schoonover SS / 3B / American Fork, UT / 2023


Committed: College of Southern Idaho



Davin Pace 2B / 3B / American Fork, UT / 2023


Committed: College of Southern Idaho



Austin Laycock RHP / 1B / American Fork, UT / 2023


Committed: Brigham Young U


The BYU commit, is one of 3 aces on the national powerhouse Cavemen program. Laycock is one of 6 D1 commits on a loaded roster that went 30-1 a year ago, enroute to the 6A state title. Laycock, a secondary arm a year ago, will be out in front this year, along with Kaden Carpenter and Dax Newman to form a trio that will be tough for opponents to handle. Austin has a strong, sturdy athletic build and has grown an inch and put on 15 lbs since we last saw him this last July. Austin features a high flexible kick to a tucked delivery and maintains balance and creates deception from a short, ball to ear type arm slot, that makes it tough for hitters to pick up his pitches. He shows a FB/Lateral SLV and CH, with the FB 87-89 and ripping his fingers through the ball, he creates 2419 spin and the pitch has natural cutting action and darts off the barrel of hitters. The SL 71-73 has CB velo and SL action, which from his lower arm slot, looks like a frisbee and can be a tough pitch for both RHH/LHH’s to handle. The CH 78 has kill spin and is evident of the spin rate of 1418, which is one of the lower spins in the state. It fades really well, but needs to maintain his arm speed and create added turnover sync. A K thrower, repeating his delivery with his natural deception, should create a ton of mis-matches in Laycock’s corner this coming spring. 


Another surprise young pitching prospect that I didn’t know about coming in and left impressed and mentioned as much to him after his time on the mound. A strong lower ½ with present strength throughout, along with present arm strength. Features a compact tucked delivery and a medium arm stroke from a TQ/LTQ slot that creates carry through the zone with natural run and sink. The FB 85-88 looks to add velocity over the next 2 years coupled with a spin rate of 2263 which is avg on the big league scale. Wouldn’t surprise me if this is a 90-93 arm waiting to happen. The CB 68-70 is a short tight sweeper and showed the ability to land to both corners as he backdoored a couple and also was able to land and spot to his glove side. The CH 75-77 slows his delivery a bit with lower spin, yet dives at the plate with fade. Look for big things over the next couple of years from Austin as he is another next level pitching prospect. 


Jett Walker SS / 2B / American Fork, UT / 2024




2022 PBR Future Games

2022 PBR West Coast Games

One of the best athletes and “movers” at the event or any PBR event for the 2022 calendar year. A Future Games alum, that will get his first shot at the varsity level next spring as a junior, but keep in mind that he plays at a nationally ranked program that was filled with an entire D1 infield and was blocked. This kid would start at 90% of all HS’s in the state already, if he was somewhere else. The bloodlines are in place, as his father Jason was an All-WAC defensive back at BYU in the mid to late 90’s, and was a two sport star in HS, being drafted in the 24th Rd by the Montreal Expos out of HS as a CF. His brother Jack is an OF’er at Utah Tech. Jett is flashy, acrobatic and smooth at SS and it’s not manufactured, it’s natural and instinctive by nature. His feet and hands are “cat” quick, along with having extremely fast feet and feel for the ball. Can throw on the run with ease and flare, along with gaining ground quickly in coming in to charge balls. The arm is gonna be plus in time as he is 85-86 across the diamond and it’s easy. Look for a low 90’s over the next 2 years! One thing that stands out among the Swift Vertical jump metrics, was there was only 10 players of the 69, that had a vertical of 30+ inches and Walker was #2 at 34.99, essentially 35! The bat has hand and bat speed of metrics of 24.3 and 70.6, while producing a lower EV of 87.9, which suggests his bat speed is in place, now the strength is yet to come, but will as he is 5-11 165 and his Dad played at 6-1 195, so projected gains are expected, which when you put the hit tool that gets hits and legs out 2B’s, those hits will clear the gaps and his 6.76 speed at LakePoint will play up in the batter's box. Excited for his future! 


A versatile defender that can play all 3 INF spots and was used at both MIF positions at the Future Games, Walker played clean defense and showed real well in the workout on day one. Jett drove hard shots on a line from RCF to LCF, staying in the middle of the field, as he took a solid round of BP. The setup features a wide base in the box, with his hands held high over his back shoulder. He loads the bat well, and when on approach, he tends to drive his back shoulder underneath, which creates an uphill path, this is something he didn’t do in my earlier summer looks, when he was swinging the bat really well. When in sync, he drives his back shoulder towards the path of the ball and though there is some uphill, he created a flatter plane and wore the gaps out with an MVP award in a mid June tournament in CA. The glove is advanced for a 16 year old, as he has natural flash, educated feet and soft, subtle hands with an energetic rhythm to his twitchy athletic movement patterns. The arm is strong for his age as he posted an 86 mph arm across the INF at the Future Games and 83 at the Top Prospect Games. Also a runner as he posted a 6.84/60 at the TP Games and a 6.76 at the Future Games. Just needs to add overall body strength and size to maximize his hitting abilities, and with that added size and additional leg strength, look for some 90’s across the diamond and 6.6/60’s in his next two years of HS baseball. 




Dax Watts 1B / OF / American Fork, UT / 2024




2022 PBR Future Games

One of the better athletes in the state and led #TeamUtah in 6 of 8 hitting data categories (Trackman/Blast Motion) at the Future Games. Watts took a very impressive BP on Sunday with missile after missile on a line to LCF and cleared the yard a handful of times. Watts has consistently maxed out between 100.8 and 102.8 all year. A flatter setup from a semi crouched open stance, Watts gets and coils back into square and then just drives his hands inside the baseball with impressive hand and bat speed. Consistently in the low 80’s, the bat speed remained 83 with an affinity for finding the barrel during game play. Able to spoil pitches and take pitches, while making pitchers work. Watts looks the part of a hitter, but does some things in a crude way, yet has abv avg hand/eye coordination w/natural twitchy strength. Some four year school needs to jump on this guy!


A two sport baseball/football star, Watts was a standout on workout day at the PBR Future Games, as he led Team Utah in 6 of the 8 metrics recorded by Trackman and Blast Motion. At 6-0 190, Watts looks the part of a next level player! Built like a halfback w/broad shoulders, and tapered into a small waist, w/a well defined lower half. Powerful and strong with twitchy movement patterns, Watts ran a 7.09/60 for a CIF, but he showed light feet at 1B w/proper angles in working through balls out front and from the ground up. He showed a strong arm at 83 mph across the INF with online accurate throws. The bat was on point all week, as Watts was spotlighted by LakePoint Sports on social media, as he led the Future Games event with 5 hits in 3 games. Watts had a 2 hit game with a 2B vs Team Arkansas in game one and followed it up in game three w/a 3 hit affair as well. Playing for one of the best HS programs in the country, American Fork HS had half a dozen D1 signees, ranging from BYU, Utah and TCU. Watts was a member of the 30-1 6A state champions in 2021 and the state runner up in 2022! Colleges, you don’t want to miss out on this one, as it’s hard to find a 1B that not only can hit, but is athletic and can pick it at 1B defensively! 





Isaac Murdoch C / OF / American Fork, UT / 2024




Another surprise player that showed extremely well at the Winter Update event. A long ultra wiry athletic build at 6-1 150, that needs to add another 20-25 lbs of size and muscle over the next 2 years. However the actions and movement patterns are in place and he comes from a baseball factory of future college players at American Fork. Has a senior in front of him and as a junior, with what I saw in a workout setting, he should be someone that could take a spot or a need to find a spot in the lineup for him. A quick bat that features a crisp LD swing pattern and the ball jumps off his bat w/an EV of 92.7. The twitch and exchange behind the plate is abv avg with a 1.95-1.96 pop time and also works underneath the ball receiving, to get the low K. He also shows clean actions in the middle of the diamond w/solid actions and has a confidence about him and carries himself like a “ballplayer”. Will be interesting to see how his ability plays out this coming season!





CJ Mascaro OF / LHP / American Fork , UT / 2025




A 6.96/60 with a 93.3 EV, will get you noticed as a freshman, especially when you are projected to see some time as a freshman at national powerhouse American Fork. Already receiving D1 offers and a variety of college interest in-state as well as out of state from power 5 programs, Mascaro is a PBR Future Games invite for this July and will most likely be a very early D1 commit. 





Cache Poulson C / 3B / American Fork, UT / 2026




Positional Profile: C/3B

Hits: RHH.
Power: 89 max exit velocity, averaged 81.5 MPH. 331' max distance.
Arm: RH. C-73,72, 73, 72, 73 mph.
Run: 7.49 runner in the 60.



Young 14 yr old C/UTL with advanced tools and skills for his age. A 2021 Jr Future Games alum with a father who played college baseball. Plays for top rated ‘26 Trosky National and was voted top performer at the PBR Rising Stars ID. Features a long lean athletic build that has plenty of room for growth, development and maturity. An upright, open stance with flex to the knees and shows hand and body rhythm in the box. Coils his front knee inward as he makes his way back to square and is soft out front at foot strike. The swing is quick for his age w/a compact, knob to ball fluid stroke w/a full two hand finish around his back shoulder. The glove behind the plate is advanced and he receives softly and lets the ball travel, while he is quick to block and keeps balls in front and is tough to advance on, as he is quick out front and side to side in recovering. Has solid footwork and a quick clean exchange and his throws have something on them and carry thru the bag with on the money throws. At SS, Cache shows educated feet w/athletic actions, while playing from the ground up and out front. Solid player who is putting himself out front and on the radar within his grad class. 







Coleman Parry/Senior/1B

Taysom Howard/Utility

Key players lost to graduation 

Kaden Carpenter/Utah (2022 PBR Super 60)

Fisher Ingersoll/TCU (2022 PBR Super 60)

Easton Jones/BYU

Dax Newman/CSI

Brighton Neilson/SLCC

Who is your X Factor to your success

Pitching Staff

Returning players who were named All-Region / All-State 

Ryder Robinson/1st team All State (Region 4 Player of the Year)

Josh Rojas/2nd team all state

Players who are now playing College Baseball from 2022

Kaden Carpenter/Utah

Fisher Ingersoll/TCU

Easton Jones/BYU

Dax Newman/CSI

Brighton Nielson/SLCC

List players you feel have college baseball potential*

Ryder Robinson/TCU

Josh Rojas/Utah Tech

Gavin Schoonover/CSI

Davin Pace/CSI

Coleman Parry/Miles CC

Collin Fortier/Miles CC

Jett Walker/uncommitted

Dax Watts/uncommitted

Isaac Murdoch/uncommitted

Taysom Howard/uncommitted

CJ Mascaro/uncommitted

Bode Gaggero/Frosh

Cache Poulsen/Frosh

List players in your region you feel have the potential to play professional baseball, either out of HS or College*

Brayden Marx, RHP, Pleasant Grove HS (Hawaii)

Ryker Schow, SS/OF, Pleasant Grove HS (BYU)

Tua Wolfgramm, C/OF/RHP, Pleasant Grove HS (BYU)

Tyler Ball, RHP, Skyridge HS (BYU)

Coaches Summary and Outlook

We lost a pretty incredible group of seniors to college baseball but we are really excited about the guys that will be filling in behind them. Our region is a grind and one of the toughest in the state every year. We feel our defense is always a strong point, our offense is young and a bit inexperienced but should be able to play fast. It will really depend on our guys throwing strikes and competing on the bump. We just hope we can work hard to come together as a team that can compete up to the very end again. 

  • Jarod Ingersoll (Head Coach)




Scholzen was brought on as the Utah Scouting Director for Prep Baseball Report after serving 9 years as the Four Corners Scouting Supervisor with the Milwaukee Brewers (2011-2020). Prior to his run with the Brewers, Scholzen worked for the Los Angeles Angels for 11 years (1999-2010), serving in a similar capacity as the Four Corners Scouting Supervisor. In all, Scholzen served as a full-time scout for 20 years. Scholzen also received a 2002 World Series ring for his contributions as a scout. 

With the Angels, Scholzen created an Angels Scout Team, in which he coached the likes of current and former major league players: Kris Bryant, Kevin Gausman, Greg Bird, Tyler Wagner, Aaron Blair, Joey Rickard, Donn Roach, Johnny Field, Taylor Cole and Paul Sewald to name a few. During his run with the the Angels, Scholzen served as the hitting coach for the Angels rookie ball affiliate with the Pioneer League Orem Owlz, helping guide the Owlz to the 2005 and 2007 Pioneer League titles.

Prior to becoming a professional scout, Scholzen served as the head coach at Southern Utah University between 1993-1997. At the time, Scholzen was the youngest Division I head coach when he was first hired at 24 years old. The Southern Utah baseball program was dropped after the 2012 season. While coaching at Southern Utah, Scholzen served as the hitting coach for the Alaska Goldpanners in 1995, as they won the Alaska League Championship. 

A native of Utah, Scholzen played at Hurricane HS and was twice named 1st team All-State and an AAU HM All-American, before moving on to Utah Valley CC and Eastern Oregon University, earning All-Conference honors on three separate occasions. Scholzen played in the Angels’ organization from 1991-1992.