They didn’t know what to expect from a club baseball team or the National Club Baseball Association, but they’ve turned into two of the Cyclones’ go-to guys for the starting lineup late in the season.
Freshmen Adam and Austin Fichter, twins from Shenandoah, Iowa, both stand at 5 feet 10 inches and weigh 150 pounds, and they have found their way into the starting lineup for at least one conference game per weekend by the end of the season.
“They’re probably the two most fundamental players on the team,” said ISU coach Aaron Hinnah. “They’ve both got great vision at bat, very selective in their pitches.”
When the Cyclones played at Northern Iowa on April 7 and 8, Hinnah made a point of putting them in the starting lineup together in one of the conference games.
“I like having them in the lineup together,” Hinnah said. “It’s a real challenge for pitchers, from what I’ve seen, is being able to pitch to both of them. It’s kind of like deja vu; you don’t get that much in baseball.”
Hinnah said putting them back to back in the lineup messes with the opposing pitchers.
Adam and Austin grew up playing baseball together their whole lives and have always been there for each other through that.
“I always have someone to just go out and play catch with,” Austin said. “Sometimes we could yell at each other a little more than we would to other people just because we knew that we were just trying to make each other better.”
The brothers played high school baseball at Shenandoah High School in the Hawkeye Ten conference, and described their team’s situation as being a “small fish in a big pond.” Shenandoah High School is a 2A school and most of the schools in the Hawkeye Ten conference are 3A and 4A schools.
“It was a really good experience when it came to district play when we were playing teams of our own skill level,” Adam said. “It was good to really play up against competition.”
Despite the team's struggle to win, Adam was able to pick up all-conference honors as an infielder his senior year. Austin, who was a captain his junior and senior year, received all-conference honorable mention his junior and senior years as an outfielder.
Now that they are college students at Iowa State, they said they find baseball to be a relaxing end to their day.
“I’m taking 18 credits, but you can always find time for baseball,” Austin said. “It’s something fun to do every day.”
Adam said he likes the idea of the club baseball team in the absence of an NCAA team.
“I think it’s really a cool thing we have going here,” Adam said. “It’s great that we can still play baseball here at Cap Timm and keep it going.”
Both Fichters are majoring in agricultural business, economics, international agriculture and finance. On top of having four majors, they both live in FarmHouse fraternity. Austin said baseball helps him through the stress of having four majors.
“There’s some stress sometimes, but I kind of like it,” Fichter said. “I think I work well under stress. It kind of helps me figure out some time management skills, I guess, be productive with the extra time that I have.”