By Jeremy McDonald
AURORA, Ore.—The Green Machine at North Marion find themselves sending three more athlete’s to college from the baseball diamond.
It’s hard to not think of the Brack’s when you think of baseball in Oregon, especially in Northern Oregon.
But even though the Spring season was cut short of it’s first game, Huskie Head Coach Randy Brack and his sons Tucker and Ty have found themselves sending the Wierstra Twins of Noah and Hunter and Brady Hansen to join the Chemeketa Baseball team next year.
Each part as important learned the past four years under the Brack’s are as the next that’ll help each athlete for their time with the Storm.
They taught that baseball IQ and that mental game. Something that helped Hansen during his years in the program.
“Randy, Tucker and Ty have taught me a lot about my swing, but more importantly have taught me an incredible amount of baseball intelligence,” said Hansen. “The mental aspect of my game is what has changed most rapidly while playing high school baseball. Everything from base running to how I approach every at bat has changed for the better. I have grown to understand the game much better, and that has lead to better results on the field.
“Coming from a very team oriented focused coaches and team, it will help extremely well at the collegiate level with getting to know new coaches, teammates, and the new atmosphere and the way they all work together.”
The college atmosphere through school ball and American Legion-play. A push and belief to help build self-confidence is what helped Noah Wierstra during his time playing at Bob Brack Stadium, playing alongside Grant Henry behind the dish through the years that has helped the taller of the two Wierstra twin.
“Throughout my high school years (which sadly came to an early end), my coaches pushed me even when I did not want to be pushed and put me in positions that I was not comfortable in,” said Noah Wierstra. “Be comfortable being uncomfortable…” “trust the process” Tuck would always say.
“I really think that I took that to heart and embraced being put in uncomfortable positions. As well as my coaches pushing me to do better, my teammates would constantly support me in my lows and in my highs, and I commend and thank them for that. When learning how to perform in uncomfortable situations, it was crucial that I kept a good attitude during these times even if things went wrong. As I became more comfortable in these situations, it helped boost my confidence as a player and as a person.”
Hunter Wierstra spoke towards the leadership traits that his coaches taught them. Hard work, work ethic, respect on and off the field while trying to improve all aspects of his game.
“While on the Brack’s team, I have learned to be a better team oriented player, get along well with others, and put the team before myself. All the Brack coaches helped with taking individual players and making them into a well-rounded team who all played for the NM on their chest,” said Hunter Wierstra. “It was crucial throughout all seasons to set high goals, and with Randy, Ty, and Tuck’s leadership, we set high yet achievable goals for every year during my high school experience
“With the great leadership and teaching skills of all Brack coaches, they turned my teammates and I into well rounded baseball players as well as well-rounded citizens in our community.”
Now their High School careers are over. Having gone 63-13, two league titles in two separate leagues (Oregon West Conference and Tri-Valley in 2018, 2019 respectively), a Northwest Regional Appearance in American Legion Single-A and appearing in a Sub-Regional Series in American Legion Triple-A under the ‘North Willamette Valley’-name with their North Marion teammates; there is still work to be done.
They’ll (hopefully) will be playing some summer ball once more before heading to Chemeketa in the Fall. The Storm finished the shortened-season 9-3 after going 25-19 and 12-12 in the NWAC South Region in 2019.
For the Wierstra’s and Hansen, the trio had been playing together since the fourth-grade. They still have hopes of this summer, but know the opportunities are ahead beyond that with college baseball too.
“After meeting with (Head Coach) JJ (Mascolo) a few times and talking about playing for Chemeketa before the start of this season, I realized that I have an amazing opportunity to play college ball and I can continue my career in college,” said Noah Wierstra. “Because of the program that Randall has built over the years, two of my teammates will be joining me to play baseball for Chemeketa.
“I am very excited to further my career with Brady and my brother. It’s nice to know that I will have past teammates on the same team in the future. Although my Senior season really didn’t start and ended prematurely, I am thankful to be able to play for Randall and his amazing programs for three years,” Noah Wierstra continued.
“Playing college baseball has been a goal of mine since I was little, and has now became a reality,” adds Hansen. “I am thankful for all the time my parents and coaches have put into helping me and my teammates achieve great things. The memories and experiences I have taken from North Marion have prepared me for the next chapter of my life as I continue living my dream of playing college baseball.”