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Warrenfeltz signs early with UMBC

November 16, 2004|by DAN KAUFFMAN

kauffman@herald-mail.com

Thanks in large part to his ability to catch a baseball, Williamsport senior David Warrenfeltz made one of the best catches of his life Monday, signing a letter of intent to continue his career at University of Maryland-Baltimore County.

Warrenfeltz, a 2004 Herald-Mail All-Area First Team selection whose defensive prowess behind the plate helped the Wildcats reach the Class 1A state final last season, made his decision during the early signing period, allowing his full attention to focus on the upcoming basketball and baseball seasons.

"I wanted to take the opportunity to sign early if I could," Warrenfeltz said. "I wanted to make sure it was the right choice, but it's nice to have it out of the way. ... I just want to enjoy the year and hopefully just have another good winning season like we've had the past two years, enjoy playing baseball and enjoy my senior year."

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Warrenfeltz, who plans to major in elementary education, said location and academics were key in his decision.

"I really like the location, it's far enough away to have my own space and also close enough so people around here, my family, will be able to see me," he said. "The Level of competition is really good, it will give me a chance to continue to grow as a player, and academically it's one of the best schools around. It's a perfect fit."

As has been the catcher's box, where Warrenfeltz has made a home since little league.

It's no coincidence that playing with Nick Adenhart -- the 2004 Herald-Mail Player of the Year who signed with the Anaheim Angels after being drafted in the 14th round -- from youth baseball through high school helped Warrenfeltz develop behind the plate.

"As (Adenhart) continued to grow as a pitcher, I had to continue to raise my game defensively," Warrenfeltz said. "Hes created a lot of opportunities for me and other players in the area to get the recognition they deserve but may not have gotten."

"He's caught Adenhart since little league, so he's able to catch any pitcher you throw with him and is real good defensively," Williamsport coach Rod Steiner said. "I think hes really motivated to be a good defensive catcher."

Warrenfeltz's offensive skills improved dramatically last season. He batted .443 with 32 RBI and was one of the Wildcats' most consistent hitters.

"Ive always been considered a fairly good defensive player, and from working in the off-season, Ive developed into a more complete player," Warrenfeltz said. "Last year I really improved a lot from where I was before."

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