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New Jimmies GA Noah Soltero plays for the Jamestown Hounds

Soltero replaces former Jimmies GA Aaron Pugh.

Noah Soltero
Jimmies pitcher Noah Soltero delivers a pitch during the 2022 GPAC Tournament in Crete, Nebraska.
Contributed / Ryan Mikkelson
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JAMESTOWN — After his final two years for the University of Jamestown baseball team was up, Noah Soltero thought his educational career was over. An opportunity to stay in the game he loves changed that.

“One of the main reasons I wanted to do my master’s program was really if I could get the spot as a (graduate assistant) to tell you the truth, Soltero said. “I think if I wouldn’t have gotten the coaching job, I wouldn’t have done my master's. I value education and I think that it’s important but my internal clock for school was clicking, time was running out. But once I had the opportunity to be a GA, we flipped the hourglass over.”

In addition to sticking around and helping Jimmies head coach Tom Hager as the new graduate assistant, Soltero has continued to play for the Jamestown Hounds amateur baseball team. Soltero is in his third year playing for the Hounds. He said his favorite part of playing for the Hounds is his ability to soak in the moment and have fun while playing the game.

“My favorite part of playing for the Hounds is the fact that everyone wants to win and that always comes first,” Soltero said. “But as we’ve grown a lot of them have played college baseball and they know from their experience and even now looking back at my playing career you just have to stop thinking and really enjoy the moment for what it is.”

Soltero is not the only former Jimmie on the roster as he is joined by Bobby Evans and Brian Rice. As a result, Hager said he pays attention to his alumni and how they are doing on the Hounds.

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“Once you develop a relationship with your players I think you want to maintain that relationship no matter what team they’re playing on,” Hager said.

That relationship was key in helping Soltero get hired to join Hager’s staff.

“Noah is a tremendous person and has shown that he has the right characteristics to be a good assistant coach,” Hager said. “He made a big impression on us when he was playing and so the way in which he went about his business as a player led us to believe that he might be the right guy to be our graduate assistant. He’s got a high baseball IQ, he’s got good charisma and he’s an overall really good person. So, we thought he could be a really good fit.”

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Soltero said the lack of a set routine has hurt his performance on the mound for the Elks.

“Individually not being on an everyday plan and schedule as far as stretching and throwing and all the other stuff like (cardio) every day has definitely made a difference,” Soltero said. “I’m a lot more sporadic in times that I do well. I never know when I’m going to throw, showing up to the ballfield based on how my body feels. So, individually it’s been so-so, but good for not taking baseball as seriously from a player’s standpoint.”

While a member of the Jimmies, Soltero did not get any at-bats and was solely used as a pitcher. Despite that, he is getting at-bats for the Hounds and is trying to emulate Jimmies assistant coach Ryan Iliff.

“Definitely gonna be a two-way (player) in the next few years here in town ball,” Soltero said. “I wouldn’t call myself Shohei (Ohtani). I would call myself a Ryan Iliff.”

By virtue of being a recent grad, his role as a graduate assistant is not as easy as it could be.

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“One of the hardest things about being a player and then turning to a GA is that I have to create some sort of separation as far as professionalism,” Soltero said. “The players that are on the Jimmies roster were my teammates and they are my friends still. We can still share that friendship but there has to be some sort of professionalism because now I’m a graduate assistant coach.”

Soltero has already started his job as a graduate assistant and said he is working on learning the systems that Hager and his staff have in place for scouting as well as helping players out when they need it.

“My grind as a college coach is to constantly try to gain more intelligence in the game, gain more ground, learn more about other people, be open to new ideas and how other people coach,” Soltero said. “But also be there for people when they need to throw BP. I throw BP probably five times a week. That’s the grind and it’s easy. If I could do the physical playing the part of the grind, coaching, that part of the grind I think it might be easier but you have to be all in.”

Hello,
My name is Max O'Neill. I am the Sports Lead at The Jamestown Sun. I am a native New Yorker, who graduated from Ithaca College in 2020 with a degree in Television-Radio.
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