When you meet Matt Contreras for the first time you find a quiet young man who seems to be in his own thought. What you don't realize is that inside he has the drive to give his all and to do more for his teammates than he would for himself.
Matt was often found out in right field for the Zebras varsity baseball team, but often came in to pitch in tough spots for Lincoln, winning 3 games.
During the season Coach Jon O'Connor praised Contreras, "Matt is the ultimate gamer. He is always there for you and he consistently comes up big for us in many ways that you don't always see on the stat sheet."
Matt is one of the guys on a team that you don't hear a lot from, sometimes you forget he is there, but you would know if he wasn't because the team would be missing a huge piece.
Although Matt didn't have the highest batting average with a.250, he was extremely patient earning 16walks, putting him third on the team as well as the fourth best on base percentage .446.
Contreras had one of the highlight plays of the year as he took a fly ball in the Sac Joaquin section championship game and the runner at third tagged up to head home. The throw home was a strike and ended the rally by the Hillmen in the fifth inning of the game. Without that throw Placer would have been within shooting distance and ready to take control.
"I was surprised that kid would run on me," said Contreras after the game. "That throw was what I was waiting for all season and that's the first one I've gotten."
Contreras was recognized by his team coaches and even the league garnering the teams Charlie Hustle award and the Golden Glove. He was also an Honorable Mention in the Pioneer Valley Athletic league All-League honors.
Matt was very humble in his individual awards recognizing the team as a whole and what they accomplished together. "It is amazing to be able to take (the section championships) home and be able to think about it every day forever." Contreras is reflecting. "But it was all of them. They all worked so hard for this. We did this together and that I will never forget"
Contreras is plans on becoming a fireman in the future, so this was his last baseball run. His coach Jon O'Conner when talking about Matt at the team banquet held on their baseball field spoke of how, "although Matt is going on to be a fireman, he clearly has the ability to play at the next level."