Timeout with: St. Edmond senior Gage Johnson
When the St. Edmond baseball team needed an upperclassmen to step in on the mound, Gage Johnson answered the call.
Johnson, one of a handful of seniors for the Gaels this summer, has found himself rising up to the challenge.
He’ll look to help St. Edmond’s postseason run continue Tuesday night in Peterson when the Gaels take on Sioux Central in a district semifinal at 7 p.m.
“I really just can’t believe that I have been performing this well myself,” Johnson admitted. “I have been just getting up there and pitching my heart out. I tell myself every time I get up there ‘this could be your last time on a baseball diamond.’
“That has been really pushing me.”
Johnson got the start on Senior Night at Rogers Park, logging three innings with six strikeouts and just two hits allowed. He was called upon in the postseason opener out of the bullpen, recording seven outs with five strikeouts.
On the season, Johnson, who also plays third base when he isn’t pitching, is batting .245 with eight RBI, two doubles, six runs and nine walks drawn. He has 12 strikeouts in five-plus innings with just four hits allowed and four walks.
“Being part of this baseball team has been the best part of my high school sports career,” he said. “I have made so many great memories including driving to away games, our trip to the College World Series and talking with my teammates.”
With just nine seniors and juniors on the roster, leadership has been a key task for Johnson and his teammates to shoulder this season.
“Everyday I ask this question to myself: how have I helped lead the younger players on the team,” Johnson said. “I believe I have helped a bunch of underclassmen learn that baseball is not just about winning. I have taught them to have fun.”
Along with his time on the diamond, Johnson also played football and tennis for St. Edmond, along with competing for the Fort Dodge Senior High swim team.
He recorded 16 tackles on defense this past fall on the gridiron. Johnson was also the top singles players for SEHS on the tennis courts in the spring, and he’ll continue that sport at Iowa Central.
“Being a Gael in my eyes means treating everyone with respect,” Johnson said. “Every team that I have played against as a Gael has told me how nice we are. The faculty at St. Edmond has really taught us to be kind.”
Johnson will be majoring in criminal justice and psychology at Iowa Central.
Vacation destination: Canada.
People I would like to have dinner with: my grandpa, Stan Lee, Joe Maddon.
It would surprise people that I: love yoga.
My sports role model: Kris Bryant.
My everyday role model: my brother, Reid.
I can’t go a day without: my mom, she gets me through the day.
Superstition: the No. 13 is actually lucky for me.
Most heated rivalry: Bishop Garrigan.
Favorite road trip: going to Arizona when I was eight.
What are you listening to right now? Coldplay.
Team: Chicago Cubs.
Class: Forensic Science.
Magazine: Sports Illustrated.
Phone app: Snapchat.