CB West Quintet Commits to Play Collegiate Baseball

On Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022, five Central Bucks West seniors were recognized for committing to play collegiate baseball.

Luke Birkhead – PennWest Clarion University (Baseball)
Final list of colleges: PennWest Clarion, Goldey-Beacom, The College of New Jersey (TCNJ)
Reasons for choosing PennWest Clarion: “Clarion was the right choice because it just felt like home. It’s a cool spot, I feel like I’m really going to improve there, and it seems like a good team environment. The coach is really cool, and it seems like there’s a lot of exciting things in the future for Clarion.”
What was the progression that led you to competing in baseball at the collegiate level? “I’ve always known I wanted to play college sports, whether it be basketball or baseball. My whole family played college sports, and I knew baseball was the way.  When I got into pitching again, that helped me get more opportunities.”
Coach Brian Weaver says: “Over the course of the year last year, Luke slowly climbed the depth chart and ended up getting some at-bats in key situations. This summer, he really took off in all phases of the game and earned serious attention from colleges. He's an exciting player because his physical and mental talents continue to grow, but he's never satisfied. Anybody who congratulated him on committing, his response was this awesome mix of gratitude and ‘still plenty of work left to do.’ That talent and humility and drive are things you hope your team pays attention to, because they're characteristics that will continue to make him a special player as he finishes high school and moves on to college ball.”
About Luke:
Favorite food:
Crab Legs
Favorite TV show: Breaking Bad
Favorite music: 80s Jams

Kevin Bukowski – Widener University (Baseball)
Final list of colleges: Widener, Arcadia
Reasons for choosing Widener:  “I decided on Widener pretty early on. I took a visit there with the coach – he was a great guy. I really enjoyed the environment and what I saw from the campus.”
What was the progression that led you to competing in baseball at the collegiate level?  “My freshman and sophomore, I was not convinced on playing college sports. I just progressed, I saw it as a possibility. Junior year going into the season, I was like – I should start the recruiting process, and early on, I met the Widener coach at a tournament and kind of hit it off from there.”
Coach Brian Weaver says: “When we brought Julio up, we also brought Kevin up as a sophomore. Toward the end of that year, he caught up to varsity pitching and got a few hits, but nothing prepared us for last year. He's generally unflappable, so we dropped him in the leadoff spot, and he erupted for a blend of power and clutch hitting that was a huge catalyst for getting us to the playoffs. In the field, he's not flashy, but he's got an incredibly sharp situational awareness, always making the right decision, the right throw. For the last three seasons, even as we've had question marks at other spots at times, we've known that at shortstop he has things covered. He's been an anchor for us for two years and is one of the guys we know we can lean on to steer our next generation in the right direction.” 
About Kevin:
Favorite food:
Mashed Potatoes
Favorite TV show: Breaking Bad
Favorite music: Classic Rock

Matt Carr – Gettysburg College (Baseball)
Final list of colleges: Gettysburg, Ursinus, Swarthmore, Millersville, Dickenson, St. Joe’s
Reasons for choosing Gettysburg:  “I toured all of the schools and I found Gettysburg to be the one. Just the feel when I walked on campus, it was something that was unmatched, and it felt like I could call it home for the next four years.”
What was the progression that led you to competing in baseball at the collegiate level:  “I started playing when I was five years old, just t-ball in the backyard with my dad. From there, it progressed to Little League, there travel ball, through high school up to this point. College was the end goal.”
Coach Brian Weaver says: “Matty emerged as a five-tool threat last year, a result of years of working hard on every facet of the game. We've asked a lot of him, had him playing multiple positions, had him up and down the lineup, and he's responded with big hits and plays in big situations. It'd be tough to find a guy who loves the game more, and from the moment he walked in as a freshman, it was clear that he was going to be a contributor that would put in the hours to help turn the program around. He's exactly the kind of young man you want your underclassmen to watch.”
About Matt:
Favorite food: 
Chicken Parmesan
Favorite movie: Top Gun (the original)
Favorite music: Rap & Country

Julio Ermigiotti – Lehigh University (Baseball)
Computer Science
Final list of colleges: Lehigh, NJIT, Wagner
Reasons for choosing Lehigh: “A  couple of my friends went there, and a friend who played for West went to Lehigh, and I went up there for a couple of visits and saw them at a couple camps. I thought it was really interesting when I went to see it. My friends said they loved it, so it was one of my first choices.”
What was the progression that led you to competing in baseball at the collegiate level? “Ever since I was young, I always wanted to play as far as I could, and that’s still the goal. I’m really glad I get to do it.”
Coach Brian Weaver says: “As a sophomore, we brought Julio up because we desperately needed to make plays in the infield, and he was a solid second baseman. We had an emergency situation against Pennridge where we needed a long reliever, so we said, ‘Listen, no pressure, but instead of playing lockdown infield, we need you to bail us out in a must-win game.’ He did, then he earned a spot in the rotation and exploded over that summer into a Division 1 pitcher. In the field and on the mound, he epitomizes doing the fundamentals well, and pound for pound, he's one of the toughest competitors in the league. Last year he got a few starts on the mound, then closed out some huge games at the end of the season. He's become more confident and vocal as both a player and a leader and has emerged as an indispensable presence on the team.”
About Julio:
Favorite food:
Favorite movie: Sandlot
Favorite music: Rock/Hip Hop/Rap

Max McGlone – United States Military Academy West Point (Baseball)
Final list of colleges:  West Point, University of Pennsylvania, Columbia
Reasons for choosing West Point: “Obviously, the education is really top tier. The military really interested me, and being able to play baseball was great. I liked the coaching staff and all that.”
What was the progression that led you to competing in baseball at the collegiate level? “Around the time I was a sophomore in high school is when I decided I wanted to play. It was just a lot of hard work but having fun with it, doing what I had to do, trusting my coaches to help me get better and talking to schools.”
Coach Brian Weaver says:  Like most programs, we talk about ‘leaving the jersey better than you found it.’ That's Max. He came in as a highly touted catcher and has lived up to the billing, becoming one of the best defensive catchers in the state. Even with all that talent, though, it's his leadership that separates him. His teammates voted him captain as a junior, and he's been one of our most important glue guys. He's out front in workouts, out front in the weight room, and out front in leading by example. He's got the bulldog toughness that you hope every dude in your program would have. Max worked brilliantly with our pitching staff last year, and when we hit a must-win two week stretch at the end of the season, he turned on his bat and got key hit after key hit to spark a rally every game. He makes you better as a coach, because you want to be sure you're running a program worthy of his talents and leadership.”
About Max:
Favorite food:
Favorite movie: Remember the Titans
Favorite music: Country