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On the sidelines with Weatherford College baseball player Dayton Tockey

Apr. 26—Get to know Weatherford College sophomore baseball player Dayton Tockey on and off the field.

How did you start playing baseball when you were younger and what keeps you motivated today?

"My dad played when he was younger and my mom played softball, so I grew up with a bat and ball in my hands. I've been doing it ever since I was 3 years old."

You had a great career at Weatherford and have continued to play at a very high level for Weatherford College. What's next for you after this chapter?

"I'm still not too sure yet, but I guess we will see once this season finishes up. It's been really good playing in Weatherford, though. There's been a lot of support here around me. I grew up here and played some good high school ball here, and now I'm playing for Coach (Jeff) Lightfoot — it's been great."

After placing third in the program's first-ever JuCo World Series berth, you guys have continued to be a dominant team this year. How much has the success you've experienced and contributed to at Weatherford College will help you at the next level of college ball?

"Obviously, I think it's going to help me out a lot. We play really good competition here and we did all last year as well. I have a really good coaching staff behind me to help me succeed every day and have helped me become the player I am today."

What would you say was the best home run and bat flip combo you've had as a player?

"Last week we played Ranger and I hit a home run in the first inning. I was kind of excited about it so I threw my bat in the air pretty high. It hung in the air for a long time."

Many baseball players and coaches alike hold true to their superstitions. Do you have any traditions that you follow whether it be a certain at bat approach or a certain snack you eat in the dugout?

"Usually when I'm on deck and I'm about to go up to hit, I'll retighten my batting gloves, I'll take off my helmet, look to the sky, take a deep breath and then put my helmet back on before I walk up to the plate."

The JuCo route has proven to be very successful and has caught a great deal of traction in recent years. Why should others consider going to a JuCo before pursuing another college?

"If you go to a JuCo, there aren't as many players on the rosters, so coaches can work with you hands on a lot more. You can play right away, become a good player and, after two years, you can go somewhere bigger than you could've straight out of high school."

On the Sidelines is sponsored by Bratton Family + Sports Medicine.