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Taking his cuts: Hesson enjoying final baseball season at Avon before focusing on college football

Instead of heading straight to his college football career at Miami of Ohio, Avon senior Henry Hesson will finish his senior year at third base for the Orioles. (Photo by Dave Gansert)

By Mike Beas

Most athletes in Henry Hesson’s position would be enrolled in college, constructing a new circle of friends and learning the football program’s offensive playbook.

The Avon senior wanted to spend his spring semester being, well, an Avon senior.

In time, the 6-foot 2-inch, 195-pound Hesson, recruited to play quarterback at Miami of Ohio, will make the drive to the Oxford, Ohio, campus. For now, however, he’s enjoying being the starting third baseman and cleanup hitter for the Orioles baseball team.

One of 13 seniors on the Avon baseball roster, Hesson wanted to finish what he started with friends he’s known most of his life, particularly in light of the 2020 season being scrapped due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This shows his passion for baseball and the sport he’s played since he was little,” Avon baseball coach Troy Drosche said about Hesson, who as a sophomore belted four home runs during a postseason run that extended all the way to the Class 4A semistate at Mooresville.

“Henry is a player who can change the game every time he steps to the plate. He’s very solid defensively, too.”

In the fall, Hesson led the Orioles football team to a 5-5 record, throwing for 2,472 yards and 31 touchdowns — including four occasions in which he eclipsed 300 yards and two games where passed for five TDs (and three others where he passed for four).

Hesson tossed only five interceptions as a senior, a testament to his accuracy. A three-year starter on the gridiron, his career numbers behind center are 6,336 yards passing with 70 TDs.

He’s also an excellent student, carrying a 3.9 grade point average.

Hesson did a Q&A with ICON:

Q: A lot of future college football players wouldn’t be playing a spring sport in high school. Why are you?

A: I’ve been playing baseball my whole life, so I figured I would play it one more time. Some of my best friends are on the team, so it was important. I’m having a blast. No stress, and I’m having a lot of fun.

Q: What other schools offered you a football scholarship, and why did you choose Miami of Ohio?

A: I got my first offer from Ball State, and then offers from Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan and then Indiana State a couple of months later. Miami was the last to offer. I took a visit there before COVID hit and just fell in love with the campus. It’s beautiful with all the brick buildings. There’s just a lot of history there.

Q: Have you decided on a major?

A: I will major in finance. Honestly, math is my favorite subject at school, and Miami has a very good business school. The goal is to pursue football for as long as I can. After that, it’s to find a job in finance.

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