Ryan Engh is a baseball player.
The way the Indian River senior talks, walks and presents himself, it’s pretty clear.
Baseball is the life for Engh. Whether it is 100 degrees or snowing, Engh is working on his game, his parents, Andy and Natalie said.
Playing since T-ball, Engh always enjoyed baseball, but it wasn’t until making states with the Lower Sussex Little League majors team that Engh really pursued the game.
“It was more than just a baseball game for him,” Natalie Engh said. “As the years went on, he played for school and got into travel ball, there wasn’t a day that went by — whether it was 95 degrees outside or 3 degrees outside and snowing — he always was playing baseball.”
It was all in pursuit of a dream — college ball and then as far after as that goes. In early November, it all paid off as Engh signed his national letter of intent to play at High Point University.
The day was surreal for Engh in the Indian River High School media center, where family and friends packed in to congratulate him and softball’s Eliza Bomhardt.
“Ever since I heard about college baseball my goal has been to play college baseball,” he said. “I think once I got started in traveling it seemed like the real competition, especially the east coast, I thought I had a legit shot.”
Though it was a proud day for him and his parents, it didn’t come easy.
Baseball is not the easiest sport to get recognized in, especially as an outfielder.
“Every day you have to work hard,” he said. “Day-in and day-out every day there’s always someone getting better so you got to realize that and put in the work.”
Engh’s mentality stemmed from the state tournament when he was 12.
Once travel ball got started, he just kept buying into baseball even more.
When his team got to go to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York, it was the shot in the arm of baseball passion.
And Engh happened to hit a grand slam. Between playing, and watching the Orioles, Engh took off.
“I didn’t have to encourage him in anyway,” Andy Engh said. “He’s like a sponge. He just absorbed it.”
As Engh’s travel ball increased, so did the colleges interested in him.
On a trip back after the coaches at High Point had seen him, they suggested he stop and see the campus.
“I first went down to High Point this summer, and it was an unofficial visit so it was just me and my dad walking around campus,” Engh said. “The moment I was there I just fell in love with it. It is a beautiful campus, great baseball field, great baseball school.”
It was an instant hit for Engh to continue his baseball dream.
The senior outfielder did all the work to make sure he would sign that piece of paper in November and that’s what made his parents the most proud, they said.
But for Engh, it was just an opportunity to keep grinding.
“I fell in love with the game ever since I began playing it,” he said. “It’s one of those things, it’s just a passion of mine. I do it every day. I don’t know what I would do if I didn’t play baseball.”
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