Strake Jesuit hurler has grid ambitions, too

HOUSTON "In the fall, I think he's a good football player. In the spring, he's a good baseball player."

That's what Strake Jesuit baseball coach Raul Garcia-Rameau said of lefty Jeff McVaney. On Thursday night, Garcia-Rameau sent McVaney to the mound knowing he had the toughness to deal with anything that might come his way.

A toughness McVaney has developed while playing quarterback for the Crusaders.

"I'd like to think I'm good at both, and I just really enjoy playing both," McVaney said.

And he signed a letter of intent to play football and baseball at Texas State next year.

On Thursday, That football toughness was needed because all 4 Cy Creek runs came as the result of Strake Jesuit errors, the first a wild pickoff toss by McVaney that led to a run on a fielder's choice. But while McVaney is a two-sport star, baseball seems to be his future, a future with which he came face-to-face last summer.

"I really didn't think it was a possibility until last summer. I started throwing, I hit 90 on the gun, and I thought, 'Wow,'" McVaney said.

And that started the pro scouts talking.

"They think I might get drafted in maybe a low round or something, so, I'm really not sure about that, though," McVaney said.

"His mental toughness, on and off the field, is what's really carrying him. And his teammates play around him so well," Garcia-Rameau said of McVaney.

McVaney is also hitting over .600. But on Thursday night, McVaney and the Crusaders ran into Cy Creek's Brad Orosey, who did not give up a hit through 6 1/3 innings and finished with a one-hitter.

"I was just competing the whole game," Orosey said. "Tough team. I was hitting my spots, getting a lot of movement tonight, working that curveball."

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