Golden Memories For Auburn Baseball Signees

Auburn baseball signees David Dahl and Addison Russell won the gold medal as part of the Under 18 Team USA.

Birmingham, Ala.—It has been an eventful few weeks for Auburn baseball signee David Dahl from Oak Mountain High School.

Signing with Coach John Pawlowski's program last month, he recently returned from a trip to Colombia where he was part of the gold medal winning Team USA Under-18 team at the Junior Pan Am Games.

Having the opportunity to play for his country in South America along with fellow Auburn signee Addison Russell from Pace, Fla., is something Dahl said he'll never forget.

"Probably just all the people there, they didn't really have anything just begging us, they just wanted anything baseball," Dahl said. "I learned to not take anything for granted here. It's a different world there; crazy.

"When we first got there, I was kind of nervous," Dahl added. "We always had two FBI agents with us at all times. We got bussed everywhere and the FBI, or the bodyguard guys, would be on the bus with us. I was kind of scared at first, but after a couple of days it was okay."

Part of a team that went 5-0 in the tournament, including a 12-2 win over Canada for the gold medal, Dahl and Russell both played well in the wins. Starting all nine games for the team that included four preliminary wins, Dahl hit .364 with two doubles, one triple, and nine RBI. Not to be outdone Russell hit .393 with three doubles, one triple, nine RBI, and one big home run.

In the gold medal game the United States team came out swinging against Canada and Russell delivered the big blow. Hitting a grand slam as part of a seven-run first inning, Russell finished 2-3 with four RBI and three runs scored in the victory. Hitting leadoff, Dahl was 1-3 with one run scored, a walk, and one RBI.

Coach John Pawlowski is hoping it's not the last time Dahl and Russell team up for big wins on the baseball diamond as the duo both signed with the Tigers last month as part of what is expected to be yet another strong recruiting class. Dahl said for him it was a pretty easy decision to be a Tiger.

"I've always been an Auburn fan and I really like the coaches and the recruiting class that we had," Dahl said. "I've always wanted to go there."

Along with Russell, Dahl is expected to be one of the top players in the country for the 2012 class. A 6-2, 185 outfielder with above average speed, the Oak Mountain product said he's got several things he's working on with his game as he prepares for his senior season.

I think my best part is my hitting," he said. "I don't really strike out much. I've been working on getting stronger, build muscle and stuff. I'm just trying to get stronger, try to work on my feet, get even faster, just trying to get everything better about my game."

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