Two Xaverian seniors score baseball scholarships

As any high school athlete knows, finding the balance betweensports and school is far from child’s play. But two members ofXaverian High Schools championship baseball team have found theright pitch for success, recently receiving full collegescholarships from two institutions as well known for their academicprograms as their athletic prowess.

Third baseman Eric Kalman received an athletic scholarship toGeorge Washington University in Washington, D.C. Middle infielderGabe Hernandez’s baseball scholarship is at Boston College. Bothwill attend school next fall.

They’re pictures of what Xaverian is all about, said XaverianAthletic Director Jeff O’Brien. They’re both good students, goodathletes and more importantly, just downright good kids.

School President Robert Alesi agrees that the equal vigor withwhich the two students attacked academics and athletics is a bigreason for their success.

They’re very serious young men – very intense, Alesi said.Everything they do, they’re intense about it. They’re as seriouspreparing for a test as they are preparing for a playoffgame.

For Hernandez, part of that intensity he credits to having twobrothers who play baseball professionally for AA minor leagueteams. He says they are his reason for wanting to be a baseballplayer.

I always used to come to my brothers’ games and see what they wentthrough, he said. It made me want to play and just learn fromthem.

With his own aspirations to make the major leagues, Hernandez has astrict plan on how he’s going to get there.

I’m going to try to work harder than anyone in the world, hesaid. Good things happen to people who work hard – harder thananyone else.

Kalman, who was an All Brooklyn Championship All-Star last seasonand the MVP of his junior varsity team, also has his sights set onthe majors.

I would love to, he said. I mean, that’s everyone’s dream. GW’shad a good track [record] of that in the last 12 years. I believethey’ve had a player drafted every year. So obviously the coachesthere know how to develop players.

But he understands the tremendous competition involved in achievingthat goal.

If that doesn’t work out, a degree from George Washington is agreat place to start a working career, Kalman said.

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