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Erick Arizpe signs letter of intent to play for Odessa Junior College

It’s been a memorable 2016 for the San Benito High School baseball program after making the playoffs in consecutive years for the first time.

Now, things continue to get sweeter after Greyhound ace Erick Arizpe signed his national letter of intent to play baseball at Odessa Junior College Wednesday afternoon.

“I’m excited but a little nervous,” Arizpe said. “I’ve lived here in San Benito my whole life, but I’m excited to start the new chapter in my life.

“Mostly, I’m just excited to get the chance to continue to play baseball.”

Arizpe may be a Greyhound, but he was definitely a bulldog on the mound for his team this year.

Despite a 5-4 record, Arizpe boasted a 1.8 era, recorded 52 strikeouts and was a 32-6A All-District First team selection.

Now, he joins the Odessa College Wranglers of the NJCAA, who went 28-28 (17-19 in conference play) this past year.

As a freshman, Arizpe hopes his contact style can bring a different feel to a rotation of an already-young pitching staff.

No matter what happens, however, San Benito head coach Ram Partida believes the Wranglers are getting more than a good pitcher in Arizpe.

“I think Erick’s strength is his leadership and his heart,” Partida said. “I told (Odessa assistant coach Logan Parker) that you aren’t going to get a kid who throws 90 mph, but you’ll get a kid who is going to give you all he has and is going to fight on the mound.

“He’s going to get better.”

Arizpe’s signing is the second this offseason for the ‘Hounds.

Greyhound standout JR Gaitan signed his letter to play with Southeastern Community College.

Partida is hoping to use their signings and success as a motivational tool going forward.

“I’m hoping it will send a message to the young ones coming to us next year,” He said. “I had two incoming seniors come up and asked me if they could go play in college, too and I told them ‘most definitely’.

“It’s a big step for these kids, especially knowing that it’s also happening for us and not just to other schools.”

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