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The City Journals

Herriman Players End Up in Minnesota

Oct 06, 2016 03:09PM ● By Greg James

Herriman graduate Evin Beck has traveled nearly 1,200 miles from home to continue his baseball career. (Korina Beck/resident)

By Greg James |  [email protected]

Two local baseball players have taken their talents a long way from home—18 hours by car, nearly 1,200 miles to northern Minnesota to play for the Northland Community and Technical College Pioneers. Herriman’s Evin Beck and Jarren Peterson are pursuing their dreams.

“They both have high ceilings of talent,” Northland head baseball coach Barry Dowers said. “They are coming to us raw but are very skilled. Right now I believe [Evin] is our top option at first base, but he is also a solid outfielder. He will see time at both positions.  They have a little way to go but are playing for us this fall.”

Beck was a two-year starter for the Mustangs. His senior year he played first base; as a junior he played left field. Peterson played as a junior at Herriman some at first base, and he pitched in two games. 

The two Herriman residents arrived in Thief River Falls from somewhat peculiar circumstances. They were not highly recruited or glamorous potential college athletes. Dreams of opportunities thrust the pair to post athletic profiles online to recruiting websites. Dowers discovered the pair online.

“It is interesting that our school is in hockey country,” Dowers said. “We have kids from everywhere: Florida, New York, Texas and Utah. There are many resources for coaches that there never was before. I think that is how we found these kids.”

Online recruiting site combines self-made athlete profiles with coaching endorsements and recommendation letters. High school, college and club coaches are able to help the athlete place feelers to other teams looking for talent. The online connection then promotes the athlete and allows the colleges to communicate with potential recruits.

Beck and Peterson played for the Riverton Rats baseball club (a super league baseball team) before reaching high school. Beck began playing when he was 3 years old. He was voted Region 4 Honorable Mention this spring for the Mustangs when he hit .293 and had 15 runs batted in.

“I really like it here (In Minnesota); I have made lots of friends,” Beck said.

The Pioneers finished last season with a 15-21 overall record. They compete in Region 13 of the National Junior College Athletic Association. Region 13 includes 22 schools from eastern Montana, North Dakota, Minnesota, upper Michigan and northern Wisconsin.  

Northland has about 5,000 students and offers opportunities for baseball, football, mens and womens basketball, softball, volleyball and wrestling athletes. The college is approximately 70 miles from the Canadian border. The town of Thief River Falls has about 8,400 residents.  

“It is good to see how Jarren and Evin have fit right in,” Dowers said. “When they came in for their visit they made friends right away, and that really helps with our team chemistry. They have hit the ground running.” 

The Pioneers baseball team is currently participating in fall workouts and scrimmages.