Spiro senior Braden Riggs has been on a home run binge. How has he done that?
Braden Riggs didn't think the home run he hit during Spiro's game Monday at the LeFlore County Baseball Tournament was anything special.
"The home run I hit (Monday) was just a regular at-bat," Riggs said. "I just kept my head down and hit it hard."
However, Monday's homer was part of an impressive stretch for the senior shortstop. Riggs has hit six of his eight home runs in nine games.
The latest blast cleared the left-field wall at Poteau's Town Creek Park during a 10-run third inning as Spiro downed Leflore, 16-4, in the second round of the LCT.
"I think just staying within myself and staying positive is the reason I've had so much success," Riggs said. "Not trying to do too much has helped me as well.
"I wouldn't really consider myself a power hitter; I would consider myself more of a balanced hitter. But I would say the reason for the home runs is probably my bat speed."
Riggs improved his average to a robust .625 (30-for-48) following Monday's game. He has also scored 32 runs while driving in 36.
"I would say my best attribute is my ability to swing the bat," Riggs said. "I try to just put the ball in play and be a hard out at the plate."
And Spiro (16-3) has been benefited from the outburst.
"I believe the reason behind our success is that we have played together since we were 8 or 9 years old," Riggs said. "I think our team chemistry is an advantage we hold over other teams."
Riggs is also carrying over what has already been a successful senior year. As a center for Spiro's basketball team, he averaged 16 points and nine rebounds to help the Bulldogs reach the Class 3A area tournament.
"I would consider my basketball career as successful," he said. "My sophomore year, we made it to state (as Spiro reached the semifinals) and my senior year, we made a pretty deep run that no one expected us to make."
But when asked which sport he truly prefers, basketball or baseball, for Riggs there is no comparison.
"Baseball is by far my favorite sport," he said. "I have been playing since I was 3 years old and just fell in love with it immediately."
He's going to continue to play baseball, signing with Johnson County Community College, located in Overland Park, Kansas.
Riggs also plans to play for the Arkansas Express travel team for the third consecutive summer.
"I'm hoping to see some really good pitching before I go off to college," he said.