LEWISTON, Id (KMSS/KTAL) – This year’s trip to Lewiston, Idaho, will surely be different for LSUS Baseball. If anything, the absence of COVID restrictions should give the Pilots the full experience, something they were robbed of in 2021.

“Last year, because of a positive COVID case, most of the meals were in hotel rooms. There was a lot of isolation. There wasn’t a lot of freedom,” said Pilots Head Baseball Coach Brad Neffendorf. “I’m excited for these guys to get the full experience this year.”

The Pilots are also hoping for a different experience on the diamond than the one they had last season. After opening up play in Lewiston with a win against Keiser University before falling to Southeastern and eventually Lewis-Clark. Coach Neffendorf is hoping the team’s run in 2021 can be something this year’s squad draws from.

“I just think bringing so many back that have been there, the ones that have been to Lewiston, they just know what this town looks like and know where things are at, stuff like that plays a big factor,” said Coach Neffendorf.

What about rattling off four straight wins in elimination games just to get to Lewiston? The Pilots were tested for the first time this season in RRAC Tournament and then had their backs against the wall in the Shreveport Regional, and the grit his team showed when it mattered most will hopefully pay off now that they’re playing on the biggest stage in NAIA Baseball.

“They’ve gone through it,” said Coach Neffendorf. “They’ve gone through those postseason games where we had to play out of elimination, they know what the pressure is like. That experience can only help us now.”

The Pilots face off against Bellevue this Friday at 1:30 PM CST.