The EMU baseball team is used to seeing senior Joe Hall (Gladys, Va./Rustburg) flourish at the plate. The utility player has created a name for himself as one of the top hitters in the ODAC since his sophomore year.
In Joe’s final season as a Royal, he currently sits atop the ODAC leaderboards in batting average, with a slate of .445, and stolen bases with 16. The season is shaping up like his sophomore year, where he took home the batting title for the season and was All-ODAC First Team. Joe also has knocked two home runs on the season, a feat that he hadn’t done in his first three years.
Last year, Joe recorded his lowest batting average since becoming a regular starter at .347, but he has revamped his approach and the improvement is showing.
“At the plate, I’m just trying to get on base anyway that I can and not trying to do too much,” Joe said.
Playing time did not come right away for Joe. As a freshman, he only played in 19 games. When his sophomore year came, Joe’s offseason work paid off, as he became the regular starter in the outfield and third base.
“In my sophomore year I got the chance to be a starter and I took advantage of it,” Joe said. “Ever since then, I have been a regular starter and worked hard to keep that job.”
Being an upperclassman and an everyday player, Joe holds ground as a quiet leader on the team. With his performance and work ethic, the senior hopes that some of the underclassmen take notice of it in order to leave a positive mark for the EMU baseball program.
“I feel like I have been able to help my team every year,” Joe said. “As a freshman I had a role on the team and now being a senior, I feel like the younger players can learn from me and I can help them get better day in and day out.”
With Joe being one of the 12 seniors that will be graduating this year, his leadership along with the rest of the seniors will be looked upon as younger players will have to step in next season.
With his days as a Royal coming to an end, Joe looks back at his time at EMU and the importance that being a student-athlete has had on his life.
“The most important thing I have gotten from baseball is just meeting lifelong friends,” he said.
Joe will be graduating with a degree in recreational leadership and sports promotion with minors in business and psychology this spring. Upon graduation, Joe hopes to work in a recreational department.
--- by Jake Brown, Sports Information Intern