Northampton Press

Thursday, January 23, 2020
Ian Luberti took over for his self-proclaimed idol, Cody Kramer, after backing him up last season. Ian Luberti took over for his self-proclaimed idol, Cody Kramer, after backing him up last season.

Luberti making presence known

Thursday, April 17, 2014 by JEFF MOELLER Special to the Press in Sports

Ian Luberti is living his dream.

A few years ago, Luberti began watching recent graduate Cody Kramer play with the varsity program. Last season, Luberti had the opportunity to serve as the K-Kids' backup catcher as a freshman behind Kramer.

This season, he has taken over the reins from his self-proclaimed hero.

"When I was younger, I never really tried to be like any professional player," noted Luberti. "Instead, I would always watch the high school teams play and I noticed (Kramer) playing a few years ago.

"Once I did, I knew I wanted to be like him. He was really an idol to me. Last year was special because I had the chance to be his backup. Now, it is up to me to take over."

So far this season, Luberti has continued to carry the torch for the much-heralded Kramer. He has been among the team's leaders in RBIs and has made a quick adjustment with the K-Kids pitching staff calling the game.

"Ian has really fit in nicely for us this year," said K-Kids head coach Mick Sugra. "He is a very good defensive catcher. (Luberti) is a hard worker and he is constantly making adjustments. He is new to everything this year and he is the type of player who can lead us through this season."

Luberti has prided himself on his defensive game, and he spent some extra time in the offseason looking to elevate his offensive game.

"I really wanted to work on my hitting," said the sophomore. "Last year, I thought I didn't do that well (hitting). I worked to make some adjustments. I knew I had to get on base more. It is not just a matter of trying to hit for extra bases every time up. I just want to make contacts and look to hit line drives."

His extra effort has already paid dividends.

Luberti also relishes the opportunity to be a leader in the field. Along with being appreciative to being Kramer's understudy last season, Luberti also has cherished the advice from his parents Wendy and Mike Luberti Jr., who both have been instrumental in the beginning of his baseball career.

"I really think I am seeing the ball better and making better contact overall," stated Luberti. "I feel better at the plate overall. I know that I have to be a vocal leader and I have always enjoyed being in the leadership role.

"We're looking to make a run at districts down the stretch. All I can do is work the hardest I can every single day. I feel fortunate to being able to play and am looking forward to a great year."