Glevenyak Looking For Big 2014

Auburn shortstop Dan Glevenyak is looking to finish off his career with the Tigers in style.

Auburn, Ala.--While many of the newcomers are getting much of the attention for the Auburn Tigers heading into the 2014 baseball season, one of the players whi has received praise from Coach Sunny Golloway for his work on and off the field is senior shortstop Dan Glevenyak.

A junior college transfer two years ago for the Tigers, he had a strong season as a sophomore in 2012 when he hit .319 with a .408 on-base percentage and 13 stolen bases. That wasn't the case last season, however, as struggles in the field carried over to the plate as his average dropped to .230.

With a new coaching staff and a new-found confidence coming from Golloway, Glevenyak is looking to finish his Auburn career in style. Wearing number three this season with Golloway wearing his customary 29, Glevenyak is hoping for a new start to his career and he says everything originates from Golloway's overpowering belief in them as players.

"It creates unbelievably confident people in the locker room," Glevenyak notes. "When you sit down and look at his resume, he's been there and done that. It's easy for us to believe in what he's trying to teach us. I think we're all confident and we believe in what he teaches and preaches. I think we can get there."

Defensively, it was a tough season for a player who has good hands and a strong arm. Lacking in confidence and seeing that dwindle during the season, Glevenyak led the team with 17 errors. Many of those came from poor fundamentals and footwork, something Golloway emphasized improving from day one when he arrived on the Plains. Now focused on making plays instead of dwelling on mistakes, Glevenyak said he can't wait to get the season started.

"He's an unbelievable guy when it comes to just building confidence," Glevenyak says. "If I'm out there and I make an error he doesn't sweat it. He knows the talent I have as long as I put the hard work in. Me, him and Coach (Hunter) Vick have been working hard on the infield to get it right. Each and every day I come out early to take ground balls and I see myself making strides."

Golloway is hoping to see strides from the whole team when the Tigers take the field starting Friday at the Snowbird Classic in Port Charlotte, Fla. A group that finished 33-23 last season and let several SEC games slip through its fingers, Glevenyak points out the team is focused on proving the doubters wrong in 2014.

"It has been a lot of hard work over the fall and into this spring," Glevenyak says. "We've made some huge strides as a team, especially under Coach Golloway. You can tell looking around our new locker room that everybody is smiling and the energy is unbelievable. We can't wait to get down there."

Glevenyak is just one of a large group of seniors expected to play a key role for Auburn this season as catcher Blake Austin, third baseman Damek Tomscha, outfielders Ryan Tella and Hunter Kelly along with pitchers Michael O'Neal, Terrance Dedrick and Dillon Ortman are all expected to be key players for the Tigers.

"The good thing is that we have a bunch of seniors back that have played," Glevenyak says. "They've got experience and the new guys coming in have seen that. They know what we've done so they believe in what we're trying to teach them. I think it's good for the team."

Facing Indiana State at noon CST in Friday's season opener, Auburn will take on Ohio State on Saturday and Connecticut on Sunday before heading back to the Plains for the home opener Tuesday against Alabama State. Glevenyak notes that while a team normally likes playing at home this road trip will be a good thing for the Tigers.

"I think it's a great thing to go on the road the first weekend and get away from our comfort zone," he says. "We'll have the new guys in a different environment. It's going to be a big change for us, but I think we can adjust. I think it's going to be good."

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