Editor’s Note: For 20 days in April, the Deseret News will profile 20 elite high school athletes from the 2020 graduating class and how they’re coping with the premature end of senior life on and off the field.
HIGHLAND — For one week at least, Trey Gambill’s senior season was perfection.
In the final week before high school sports were suspended back in March, the Lone Peak outfielder batted .500 with a blistering .765 on-base percentage, while ripping a pair of doubles and one home run — all while leading the Knights to a perfect 4-0 record.
“We had an undefeated season,” Gambill likes to joke.
That strong start to 2020 validated what everyone in the Lone Peak dugout believed going into the season, and Gambill is saddened he and his teammates won’t get the chance to prove it over 30 games instead of just four.
“We thought this was our year,” said Gambill. “The mood from the seniors is we are going to win it. We have the team, we have the arms, and we thought we were the best and nobody could compete with us.”
It’s a mentality many teams have, but Lone Peak had the talent to back it up after last year’s state runner-up finish to Pleasant Grove.
Gamblil, a Salt Lake Community College signee, was one of the focal points of those high expectations, and he proved it during a dominant week at the plate as the season began.
“I was ready to tear it up a little bit. Us as a whole, we were all ready, top to bottom. We were all ready and able to go out there and play our best,” said Gambill.
Even though the season was cut way, way short, it ended on a very memorable high note for Lone Peak.
Two days after Lone Peak beat Spanish Fork 13-3 in its opening game of the season on March 10, the UHSAA announced it was suspending the season for two weeks between March 16-29. Lone Peak was scheduled to participate in a tournament in St. George over that span and, knowing his team would miss those games, coach Jeremy Berg scrambled to find a couple of replacement games on the Saturday before sports shutdown.
At the time, it was only supposed to be a two-week suspension, but Gambill said there was a sense within the dugout that these might be the only games of 2020.
Playing three games on three different fields on that Saturday, Lone Peak beat Herriman 8-7, Skyridge 7-2 and Timpanogos 6-3.
“We finished up the three games that day, we were excited, we just went 3-0, but in the locker room there was just that feeling of, ‘Is this the last game?’ There were a lot of unknowns at that point,” said Gambill.
Indeed, those were the last games. For Gambill though, he still has competitive baseball in his future.
After he serves his two-year church mission to Ecuador — which will tentatively begin on July 15 — Gambill will enroll at SLCC where he hopes to follow in his older brother’s footsteps.
As a freshman for the Bruins last year, Cole Gambill finished with a .322 batting average with 16 doubles and a team-high 47 RBI. This year, he was batting .311 with a team-high 27 RBI when play was halted because of the pandemic.
Last November, he signed a Letter of Intent to continue his career at BYU.
“The things my brother told me is it’s a great program, great school, great coaches, just a great environment for him,” said Trey Gambill of SLCC.
While the future looks bright on the diamond for Gambill, it’s the games not played and the school activities that won’t happen that he’s missing most right now.
“It’s been brutal,” said Gambill. “All of my teammates and me included and have been waiting and working really hard for the season. We’ve been working for this senior year since I was 10 years old.”