Teammates wake up early for signing
By Bill Foley
Rylan Richards did not even realize how popular he was.
A group of about 40 showed up to Butte High’s Richardson Gym Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. to watch the Butte High senior sign an NAIA National Letter of Intent to play baseball at Dickinson State.
“A lot more showed up than I thought,” Richards said, looking around at the group of family friends and teammates from baseball and football.
Even a baseball teammate who attends Montana Tech (Reece Cox) and one who goes to Butte Central (Eyston Lakkala) were on hand along with his parents, Tom and Traci, and his sister, Emmarie. Butte Miners coach Jeff LeProwse and Butte High football coach Arie Grey also looked on.
Richards, a three-year letter winner in football, committed to play for the Blue Hawks two months ago. On Tuesday, he made it official.
It’s finally all done,” he said. “It feels great.”
Richards, a hard-throwing righty, plans to focus on pitching at Dickinson. The speedster also contributes in the outfield for the Miners.
The signing comes as Richards and the Butte Miners get ready to build on a 2020 season that was one of Butte’s best. The team has been working out indoors and hoping to get on the field sometime in the coming weeks.
The Miners open the season on May 1.
Tuesday, though, was about the Blue Hawks. Richards said he will be ready to roll when he heads to the North Dakota school in the fall. He will major in business finance.
“I’m very excited,” Richards said. “It should be fun.”