When Jonah Weisner of Mission, was growing up playing baseball in the Fraser Valley, he was often one of the smaller kids on the team, said his father.
Now, coming off a record-breaking season playing collegiate ball in Kansas as a junior second baseman, the 22-year old has earned an All-American honour with the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).
“I couldn’t be happier where I’m at right now,” Weisner said. “For me, as a kid, it’s always been about trying to get to the next level.
“Obviously (going) pro is a dream of mine – things have to fall perfectly into place for that to happen.”
Being named to the honourary All-American Second Team means Weisner was selected one of the best second basemen in the entire country in the NAIA, an association made up of 252 colleges and universities.
Weisner played for the Ottawa Braves, out of Ottawa, Kansas – a city of about 12,000 people.
The team clinched its first Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference (KCAK) conference title in 12 years in 2022.
He credited the record-breaking season with the team’s work ethic and good coaching staff.
“I’m super happy that I can be a part of that,” Weisner said. “That’s definitely something I’ll look back on and cherish. Super proud of our guys.”
Weisner led the Braves with a batting average of .429. He scored 16 home runs, six triples, 17 doubles, 72 runs and had an on-base percentage of .524.
He set a university record for the most hits with 87, and tied a nearly 20-year record for stealing bases with 32 steals. He went All State as the best second baseman.
“His numbers were silly,” said Rod, his father. “It’s absolutely humbling to see what he’s doing.”
Rod said he was “over the moon” when he learned that his son was named as an All-American. Rod also played junior college ball and coached Weisner from when he started playing at just five or six years old.
He has watched Weisner go from being the “smallest kid on the team” to an all-star in the U.S.
Weisner just finished a short tour in Europe and settled down in Brooks, Alberta to play for the Brooks Bombers in the Western Canadian Baseball League over the summer.
He said it’s refreshing to be back playing again in Canada, after his “leap of faith” to the U.S. some three year ago.
“I knew from my peers and from coaches that the level of baseball would increase substantially. And it was just a matter of getting my feet wet,” Weisner said.
“I’m really hoping that in the near future here, as I enter my senior season, that I get an opportunity to go pro.”