Athlete Spotlight: Gavin West


Senior Gavin West enters his final year with Hammonton baseball this spring. West has gotten “the wheels on the bus” throughout his tenure at Hammonton High School and is looking forward to the last dance that this season will bring. While the clock counts down for Gavin, he takes it day by day staying calm, cool, and collective on the diamond. West looks forward to the challenges that this season will bring and is ready to take on anything thrown his way, not only as an individual, but Gavin looks to help lead his team to the promised land.

  • How do you feel going into your final year of baseball at HHS and what are your expectations?

I feel very confident in myself heading into my final year of baseball here at HHS. I expect to be a top player in SJ this year after all the hard work and dedication I have put in training and in the weight room these past 2 years. I expect to be successful both individually and for our team’s success.

  • What would you say your biggest achievement is over your HHS baseball career?

My biggest achievement being named captain these last two years and leading such a great, hardworking group of guys. To me it’s more then the game and these guys know that. They probably hate me sometimes for being so hard and striving for perfection but they all know I mean well. So to me my biggest achievement is making everyone around me a better player rather then worrying about myself. I’ve been with these guys my whole life and I’m excited for one last ride.

  •  Who is your biggest inspiration and why?

My biggest inspiration for this game would have to be my father. He literally taught me everything I know and how to play the game. Everyone says there positions on the first day and I go “I can play literally anywhere” that is thanks to my dad. He has made me who I am today on that Diamond. Strive to be perfect and get better everyday. “Don’t stink” has been the motto I’ve went with the past 5 years and it’s funny but it means a lot. Even when I’m in a slump he’s the first person that tells me what I have to fix. Having a South Jersey hall of fame coach and player is no joke so I make sure to listen and learn still to this day. He has taught me so much and continues to be by my side through the journey.

  • There are a lot of expectations for you, how do you handle that pressure?

There are a lot of expectations for me this year. I’ve been named all conference pre-season so that’s something to look forward too. Also, my team depends on me to do well and so does everyone else. Coming into my final year still undecided on college I look to put up some big numbers and make a bigger name for myself. I handle pressure very well in my opinion but that doesn’t come from me. It would have to be seen from outsiders looking in. You will never see me pout or put my head down on that field because it doesn’t matter. It’s already over with and you can’t change it. I have a team to lead and the next play to get so me acting out and making a fool of myself doesn’t mean anything. I get that from my mom to never let emotions show so I juts stay calm and let my playing do the talking. 

  • In your final ride for Hammonton baseball, what would you say your favorite memory is, on or off the field?

My favorite memory is probably going to have to be our junior year banquet. Everyone was sitting there getting awards from Coach Silvesti all knowing that Coach Velardi was ending with his goodbye presentation. I was pretty upset knowing the coach I was closest with was leaving. While the presentations going on you can see the guys get emotional and just know that this is the last of him but the very last slide is him saying he isn’t leaving. That really put things into perspective to me seeing that he isn’t giving up on us as a coach and knows we have one last push in us. He wanted to be apart of this awesome group of guys and we all love him. So my greatest memory would have to be Coach Verlardi coming back and believing in all of us to make one last ride.