Nick Thibodeau, a right-handed hitting catcher, only spent one year with the Great Lake Canadians; however, that year was integral in helping him accomplish his goal of playing college baseball.
Thibodeau acknowledged not only the coaches but the players for pushing him, a credit to the overall environment. “GLC impacted my career a lot, the coaching staff and players helped push me harder and harder every practice, which overall made me better as a player and a person,” he said.
“They [GLC] were able to reach out to schools in the states which allowed myself to get looked at and I was able to commit to a school.”
He committed to Howard College in Big Spring, Texas, and since arriving on campus in late August, the baseball club has had regularly scheduled practices and have also been able to play games. Thibodeau has greatly enjoyed the experience thus far.
“Howard was a good fit for me because it was everything I was looking for in a school. From being able to have a good amount of playing time to having a comfortable feeling with the players and coaches…My experience has been amazing so far. At the start, it was a little difficult coming from not practicing every day to practicing every day for hours in the heat, but after a while, I got used to it,” said Thibodeau.
“The school’s surrounding are a lot different from back in Canada, but something about the city has a really good feeling. The other players on the team are very good people and fun to be around, even though school was online, we were still able to make good fun of what we had.”
Thibodeau, who says his hitting and throwing abilities are strengths in his game, looks to improve defensively behind the player. “I hope to keep improving my hitting and arm strength, but the main things would be my receiving and blocking aspects to my catching. I have always known that my receiving has not been the greatest compared to other catchers, and same with my blocking. Which is why I want to try and work hard at those aspects of the game because I feel it will make me even better as a player all around.”
Meanwhile, the backstop has high expectations for himself from a performance standpoint, and he looks to compete for a NJCAA National Championship when things pick up again after the holidays.
“Some of my goals for the upcoming season would be to hit .400 or better, have one or less passed balls during a game every time I catch, be a leader on and off the field, and win a national championship,” he said.
His advice for current GLC players:
“Some advice to give to the younger generation would be never stop working even if you do not have practice, there is always something to do because once you get older you never want to look back and wish that you could have done something more to get to somewhere better. Also always stay on top of school work, never want to fall behind and potentially lose playing time or even be kicked off a team because you do not have good enough marks,” said Nick Thibodeau – 2020 GLC Grad.