Baseball springs into season: A look back at the beginnings of baseball at Elon

Pam Richter – Class of 2011
April 1, 2010

As the Phoenix baseball team is currently fully underway in its season, let’s take a look back at the first baseball team at Elon 110 years ago.

In 1900, baseball became the first sport at Elon College to be approved by the Board of Trustees for intercollegiate competition.  This approval came after two Elon students, George L. Clendenin and J.M. Roberts petitioned the Elon faculty for permission to play an intercollegiate baseball game at Guilford College. Even though the faculty approved this request, it was under strict conditions that the players on the team had to meet. In the first season, Elon played Guilford College twice, once at Guilford and once at Elon. Elon wasn’t able to secure a victory, losing both games by considerable margins.

The next season, in 1901, students went to the faculty to have intercollegiate competition approved again, but were denied. The faculty told the students that it would not be approved until the group was better organized.  The same ruling happened in 1902 as well.

The 1904 baseball team. The players are identified by number as followed: 1. O.R. Rogers 2. Will Holt 3. R.V. Haizlip 4. D.M. Davidson 5. R.J. Kernodle 6. F.M. Clements 7. Henry Barnes 8. Koontz 9. C.A. Hughes 10. F.T. Banks

Baseball was finally restored in 1903 when the faculty approved the team to play games once again. The faculty granted permission for the team to play against Bingham Military Academy in Mebane. Against Bingham, Elon lost all three games 21-3, 30-4, and 11-4 respectively. Elon also played a practice game with Whitsett that year.

The 1904 season brought success to the Elon program with the team going 4-1 in its five games that season. The team defeated Burlington twice, Graham, and Trinity Park of Durham. The team lost to Guilford 3-1.

At Elon today, baseball has been arguably the most successful sport. The team most recently won back-to-back Southern Conference championships in 2008 and 2009.

For more information on Elon’s baseball team this season: http://www.elonphoenix.com/team.aspx?sid=bb

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