Latta's Collins remains eight wins from state record

Over the course of the last 30 years, the Latta Panthers baseball team has been one of the most consistent teams in the state, winning 10 championships in those 3 decades.

Just when it seemed like Latta would make another run at the state tournament, the season came to a close, forcing the Panthers to wait in the on deck circle for a few more months.

"You get those feelings like you could do something, and that's what bothers me the most, is not the opportunity," said Latta head baseball coach Eddie Collins. "But to tell you the character of those kids, they understand that their are bigger things going on than just people playing baseball."

This years senior class managed to accomplish a lot in four years. Which included several seasons with 20 plus wins, as well as making it to the state tournament consistently. It's a class that has left an impact.

"Bless their hearts, those seniors that did not get to play this Spring, they're never going to be forgotten," said Collins. "Do not take any day, anything for granted. Take advantage of what God has given you, and blessed you with, and enjoy it."

While baseball is on hold for the moment for the underclassmen, there's one thing on hold for coach Collins, history.

Collins needs just 8 more wins to become the winningest high school baseball coach in the state of Oklahoma, which was very likely to happen this month, but that too will have to wait until the fall.

"I never started out to chase records. In fact, only a couple of years ago did I become aware of where I was at, other than my youngest son Jacob, who is now my assistant coach, and my wife surprised me and I had no clue," said Collins. "If I knew I wasn't going to coach another game, and this is where I was at, it wouldn't be bad. Because I've always felt like I've gotten more out of the game baseball, and coaching, than I was able to give it."

The current record is held by long-time Asher head coach Murl Bowen with 2,115 wins. Eddie Collins currently sits at 2,107 wins in his career.