Park Hill’s Jensen commits to play baseball at SEC powerhouse LSU

Carter Jensen hopes to be playing in Omaha in the near future.

The Park Hill product recently announced his intentions to play baseball at Louisiana State University.

The junior-to-be chose the Tigers over Texas Tech, Houston and Clemson among others.

“I chose LSU because of the history and the winning culture behind the program,” said the 6-foot-1, 210-pound catcher/infielder. “It was somewhere that I know that I could succeed at and I believe that they can help me get where I want to be in this game.”

A member of the Kansas City Royals Scout team in the summer, the left-handed hitting Jensen will have two more seasons with the Trojans before heading for Baton Rogue.

He was a Suburban Conference Gold Division pick in his first season with the varsity squad at Park Hill.

Jensen hit .341 with eight doubles, three triple, three home runs and 21 RBI in 28 games.

Citizen file photo  Park Hill catcher Carter Jensen swings at a pitch during a district baseball game earlier this season against Oak Park at Staley High School in Kansas City North. Jensen recently committed to Louisiana State University.

Citizen file photo

Park Hill catcher Carter Jensen swings at a pitch during a district baseball game earlier this season against Oak Park at Staley High School in Kansas City North. Jensen recently committed to Louisiana State University.

“I decided to commit there early because I knew that LSU is where I wanted to go and where me and my family could see myself succeeding. It was also a dream to go to LSU to play ball since I was a kid. When I had gotten the offer, I knew that was where I wanted to be.”

He will mainly be a catcher for the Tigers, but could see time on a corner infield spot as well.

Jensen first fell in love with the Tigers in 2015 when he saw them play in the College World Series in Omaha. Incidentally that year LSU featured a standout pitcher from Kansas City on the roster ­— Alex Lange from Lee’s Summit West. He is a pitcher in the Detroit Tigers system after a recent trade.

LSU has been in the CWS 18 times since 1986 and has six national titles to its credit during that time frame.

“It is surreal to be going to a school who is always in the race for a national title and playing in Omaha,” said Jensen, who joins Tavian Josenberger (Kansas) as future Division I players on Park Hill’s baseball team. “I can’t wait to get there and try to make it to Omaha and play for a College World Series championship.”

Blake tries out for USA JNT

Coming off a successful debut season, Platte County’s Amaya Blake continues to show her prowess on the basketball court.

Earlier this summer, the sophomore-to-be attended the USA Basketball Junior National Team trial in Colorado Springs, Colo. There were 152 players selected from 36 states.

The players went through skill drills and scrimmages before cuts were made from 152 to 98. Blake, an all-conference performer in the Greater Kansas City Suburban Conference, made the first round of cuts but didn’t survive when the list went down to 68 players.

“It was a really fun experience,” she said. “I was one of the shortest players there, I’m only 5-8 and the tallest was 6-7. It was a good experience, there was just better girls, but it will help make me better as well.”

She also attended camps at Missouri, Central Missouri, Drake and Kansas. Most recently her Next Level Elite Eclipse 16U Blue team took part in the Nike Tournament of Champions in Chicago, going 4-1.

This past week, Blake got an invitation to take part in the John Lucas 160 Girls Elite Invitational, held Aug. 31-Sept. 1

Fargo National

A number of area wrestlers picked up All-American honors at the recent Fargo Nationals.

In the 16U Division, Platte County’s Eli Rocha took eighth. In the junior division, Park Hill’s Trey Crawford (seventh), Cael Keck (third) and Ethen Miller (second) earned All-American honors.

Park Hill South’s Maddie Kubicki was an All-American in the 16U women’s division. 

Keck added All-American honors in the Greco junior division.

Park Hill’s Grayston DiBlasi and Platte County’s Grant Stathopoulos and Jaydon Walls were also at the event in Fargo, N.D.

Premier World Series

A number of local players were participants in the Premier Baseball Junior Championship held July 17-21 in Joplin.

Adam Burr and Kyle Rodgers, both from Platte County, played for the Kansas City Sluggers team. Both got at-bats during the event, while Burr threw in two games. He gave up 14 runs, but only five were earned. 

All-Stars

There were five people connected to the Platte County baseball team that took part in the Missouri High School Baseball Coaches Association’s Senior All-Star Game.

The game was held last month at College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout.

The West roster featured Pirates Dalton Riechers, Ethan Esdohr and Colby Sneed as players and Randy Sneed and Dave Baker as assistant coaches.

The West team won 7-6 in the Class 5 game and Truman’s Josh Patrick was named the MVP.

All three of the Platte County players had signed to play baseball at the next level. Esdohr at Pittsburg State, Riechers at Benedictine and Sneed at Southwest Baptist.

Contributed photo  Platte County had three players and two coaches in the MSHSBCA Senior All-Star game. Pictured from left: coach Dave Baker, Dalton Riechers, Ethan Esdohr, Colby Sneed and coach Randy Sneed.

Contributed photo

Platte County had three players and two coaches in the MSHSBCA Senior All-Star game. Pictured from left: coach Dave Baker, Dalton Riechers, Ethan Esdohr, Colby Sneed and coach Randy Sneed.

USTAF Championship

Two area track and field standouts took part in the U.S. Track and Field Championship last month in Des Moines, Iowa.

Park Hill product Chris Nilsen competed in his third meet and finished in a tie for seventh place with a jump of 17 feet, 11 inches. The South Dakota product came shy of his personal best of 19-6 ¼, which was set this spring winning the NCAA championship.

Platte County’s Kevin Schultz, who attended Northwest Missouri State, took 11th place in the high jump with a mark of 7-1.

Nilsen takes gold at Pan Am Games

Chris Nilsen brought home the gold Saturday, Aug. 10, at the 2019 Pan American Games.

A third-attempt make at 18 feet, 10 ¾ inches vaulted Nilsen ahead of Brazil’s Augusto Dutra da Silva de O in the standings. Nilsen boasted a clean sheet through the first seven bars of the competition.

Nilsen was one of two Americans in the 13-man field with Clayton Fritsch, of Sam Houston State, joining Nilsen on Team USA.

The junior also took three attempts at 19-0 ¾, which would have been a new meet record.

 Nilsen broke the NCAA Championships meet record earlier this season with a personal best vault of 19-6 ¼. He’s a three-time NCAA champion in the pole vault and six-time All-American. Nilsen was the Summit League’s Field Athlete of the Year for the third-straight season and named a semifinalist for The Bowerman for the second time of his career.