ZACHARY, LA (WAFB) - Zachary High School is always competing for 5A titles in various sports and for the last three years, Keilon Brown has been a major part of the Broncos’ baseball and football programs.
Brown the quarterback has been making plays for Zachary since his freshman year in 2016. Brown the baseball player started doing the same on the diamond as his role expanded that spring from pinch runner to designated hitter to playing outfield.
“I knew right away that we had a special kid in our hands because he came to practice every day and was ready to work,” said Zachary baseball head coach Jacob Fisher.
“When I subbed in my freshman year, I think, I don’t know, I can’t remember what game we played, but it’s like the more reps I got, the more comfortable I got,” said Brown.
Brown said he started playing both sports at just five years old. His uncle and cousin played, so it was natural he tried it, too.
“It just ran in the family and it ended up that baseball was my sport. When I picked it up, I knew, I knew that it would take some time to develop. When I was young, I didn’t know too much of the game,” Brown explained.
But more reps turned into progress. And with each experience in both sports, his confidence in himself grew, creating a level headed poise and demeanor that’s easy to see, no matter the ball he’s working with.
“I want to lead by example. I’m not much of a vocal person. I just lead by doing the right thing and I’m always getting looked at on and off the field, so I always have to do everything right,” Brown added.
“Now, in high school baseball, you normally don’t get the crowd you do at football games. So, I know when we go on the road and the crowd’s big or if it’s at home, Keilon is just going to be Keilon. He’s not going to let the atmosphere get to him because he’s played in those moments,” Fisher stated.
And in terms of the biggest differences and similarities in the games, Brown broke that down, too.
“Baseball is more of an individual sport rather than football. You have playmakers around you. And it’s like in baseball, when you strike out, you don’t have to have nothing like, another inning or two to get another at bat. Other than football, you got the next play, then the next play, then the next play. In football, you get hyped in the locker room, but in baseball, it’s like you’re more to yourself,” said Brown.
Dissecting the defense on the football field compared to dissecting a pitch.
“Football, I have to look at multiple people at the same time in one play. Baseball ain’t nothing but like this big, so you don’t got the time to look at it. Then, you have to see where it is, see if it’s going to be a strike or not,” Brown explained.
How about throwing a touchdown compared to maybe gunning down someone at the plate from right field?
“It’s the same emotion because when you throw a touchdown, I’ll probably go crazy. And when you throw somebody out, either way, the crowd goes crazy,” Brown explained.
A two-time state champ in football, Brown would like nothing more than to climb that same mountaintop for the baseball team. The Broncos’ last title was 10 years ago.
“We just always wake up to holding up that trophy at the end and we just don’t want to peak too early. And we just have to play a game at a time and go 1-0 each day,” Brown added.