By Lindsey Munar ’16 | April 20, 2020
The COVID-19 outbreak has without a doubt tremendously impacted our current world. Schools across the country have transitioned to remote learning, businesses have closed indefinitely, and sports seasons have been cancelled. Though the current circumstances can seem dreary, Lucas Sweany clings to his hope in God’s control and sovereign plan in the midst of this pandemic. Sweany was only a third of the way into his junior season of collegiate baseball when his season faced an abrupt end. Though an obvious disappointment, Sweany expressed his understanding of the cancellation, stating he thought it was ultimately the right decision since it will protect people from being exposed to the virus.
Sweany graduated from Vacaville Christian High School in 2017 and went on to pursue his collegiate career at the University of the Pacific (UOP) in Stockton, California. Sweany initially chose Pacific for its professionalism, but the impact of the team has made a true difference in his experience.
“The baseball program at UOP is special to me because of all the relationships I have developed in my three years. I have developed such amazing connections with the guys I have played with and they are relationships that will last forever.”
Sweany is a pitcher for the Pacific Tigers. In his first year, he pitched a season-high six innings against No. 12 Indiana with three strikeouts. Sweany defines this moment as the highlight of his collegiate career thus far. “ I began [my freshman year] as a starter and started the second game of the series at Indiana, who was ranked #12 at the time. This was the best start of my career, I threw 6 innings allowing only 1 run.” In the brief season UOP had this spring, Sweany held a 1.23 WHIP in his four appearances and three starts, totalling to 21.2 innings. When Sweany is not on the field, he is developing stronger relationships with his teammates. Specifically, Sweany leads his baseball team’s Bible study group. Though the team is now dispersed and no longer on campus together, Sweany carries on the meetings through Zoom every Sunday. The relationships built with his teammates in Bible study as well as in the locker room has become Sweany’s favorite aspect of college, apart from playing the sport he loves.
Deservingly, Sweany was a highly-decorated 4-year varsity starter during his time at VCHS. Recognized as an All-League selection for 3 seasons back to back, to back, Sweany earned the League MVP accolade after his senior season. Additionally, he was chosen for the Maxpreps CA Small School All-State First Team. Back in 2017, Sweany and the VCHS baseball team made a section appearance where they walked away with the title.
“The best memory from my high school career was our playoff run my senior year. It started out with me throwing back to back no hitters to get us to the section Championship and ultimately winning. It was just so awesome finally being able to beat Bradshaw three times and win a Championship.”
The same year, Sweany held a 0.65 ERA with 159 strikeouts – the second most in the nation at the time. With the many well-earned awards and recognitions based on his high school performance, Sweany’s character and leadership were just as evident. He cared just as much about his teammates as he did the game. “I was so glad to be able to win [the section championship] with that group of guys too because I felt that we were such a tight knit squad.”
Sweany hopes to play professionally after his time at Pacific. If not that route, he hopes to work in the analytics department of some professional sports team whether it be baseball, basketball, or football. If he could share any advice to student-athletes wishing to play at the collegiate level, Sweany preaches that hard work pays off – in every aspect. “It is so important to take every rep seriously and give 100% in everything you do because when your career is over you’ll look back at it and will have so much regret if you didn’t give 100%. This also pertains to the classroom, get the best grades you can get! Good grades will make it easier for you to get recruited because coaches will trust that you can get stuff done on your own.”
From Sweany to his Vacaville Christian community: “I appreciate all of you at Vacaville Christian and miss you all a lot! I hope you’re all doing well and I can’t wait to see the baseball team bring home another section championship!”
Follow Sweany’s baseball experiences at Pacific Tigers Baseball.