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Conestoga infielder Owen Margolis is Main Line Boys Athlete of the Week

The senior second baseman is a skilled batsman, compiling a batting average of .481 with 25 hits (as of May 13) with 13 RBIs, 10 runs scored and only four strikeouts.  Conestoga head coach Matt Diamond noted, “He is also playing phenomenal defense at second base.” The University of South Carolina-bound senior has played the keystone position since his Little League tournament days at age 11.

Q: What sparked your interest in becoming a second baseman?

A: I’ve liked playing the infield, and especially middle infield, my entire life. Second base is the position of my favorite player, Chase Utley. I have always looked up to him and wanted to be like him and play like him.

Q: What do you feel is the strongest aspect of your defense, and what are you working on most currently?

A: I like to think I can do pretty much everything you could ask from a second baseman fielding-wise, but if I had to choose, I think I have good footwork and body control, so even more difficult balls I can set myself up to make a play or set myself up to make a throw that might be at a weird angle. The one thing I work on a lot and that everyone can get better at is hand quickness. I am always striving to get faster with them to make more double plays.

Q: What do you think has been the most important thing you’ve learned this season regarding hitting?

A: Hitting-wise I have definitely taken a big stride from last year, and I think a big reason for that is learning about timing and the importance of timing a pitcher up. I used to hit a lot of foul balls because I would be late on a pitcher because I was reacting to the ball too late, but now that I time pitchers I hit more balls up the middle or left and right center. I connect more with the ball now.

Q: You were a starting infielder last year. Tell us a little about your on-field leadership role as a senior.

A: I know that juniors will look at me and see how I do things because I have been there before. I like to lead by example, and I think if juniors see how I practice and play, they understand the importance of not taking a play off and staying energetic and in the game at all times. That being said, sometimes you need to say something to help lead a kid in the right direction, or let them know what they need to do, and I do speak up when I think someone may need more vocal help than just visual.

Q: What has been your most memorable experience as a Conestoga baseball player? 

A: The most memorable thing as a Conestoga baseball player is Sonny and his energy and excitement he brings to the game. He always has everyone’s back and supports all the players. As a team we can all rally around him, and I hope he keeps his role for years to come.

Q: Who have been your biggest baseball mentors, and what was the most important thing each of them taught you about baseball?

A: One of my biggest baseball mentors is Alex Melconian. He has worked with me since Little League and has coached a few teams I have been on. He really helped me along the way, especially with just learning the game more so I have a higher baseball IQ. He was the one that really got me to know the game throughout the years I have worked with him and I owe him a lot for all the help he has given me. He was the one that really embedded my love for defense and helped me get to where I am defensively.

Q: Who is your favorite baseball player, and why?

A: Chase Utley has been my favorite baseball player for my entire life. I have always loved how hard he plays the game, and have always thought of him as an amazing player. Him throwing righty and batting lefty just like me helped me connect to him as my favorite player as well, because I like to think I play sort of like him, or at least I would like to play like him.

Q: What is your favorite ballpark and why?

A: Citizens Bank Park is my favorite ballpark, because the Phillies are my favorite team. I have so many memories of going to games there, that if I had an opportunity to play anywhere, I would choose Citizens Bank Park 10 out of 10 times, it just would mean so much for an opportunity like that.

Q: Tell us a little about your pre-game preparation the day of a game.

A: I tape both my wrists before games – I like how it feels and looks, and I feel so much more comfortable with it than without it. I like to eat a little bit of candy before the game to get a bit of sugar in my system and get going. I like to stretch a lot before games. I usually stretch the longest on the team. I make sure I feel loose and not tight before doing anything else. After that I throw and then I like to get a few swings in the cage before taking infield/outfield practice with the team.

Q: You wear uniform jersey No. 3 for Conestoga. Is there a reason you picked that number?

A: I have always loved that number, I am not sure what sparked the love for No. 3, but it has always been my number of choice, so when I had the opportunity I had to snag it for this year.

Q: What do you think you would like to major in at college? 

A: For college I am going into the business school, I think some things in business are very interesting, especially economics.

Fun facts – Owen Margolis

Favorite book: Shoe Dog.
Favorite TV show: The Office.
Favorite movie: Avengers: Infinity War.
Favorite athlete: Chase Utley.
Favorite pre-game pump-up song: Paramedic!
Favorite team: Phillies.
Favorite place to visit: Garden City, S.C.
Favorite pre-game meal: apple slices and peanut butter.
Family members: parents Neil and Susan, sister Mia, brother Randy.

(To be selected as Main Line Boys Athlete of the Week, a student-athlete must first be nominated by his coach.)

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