Two years ago, coach Benji Medure found it odd to see one player around his Huntington Beach High baseball team late in the season.
His name was Nick Pratto. He didn’t even play for Medure at the time, let alone go to the school.
Pratto knew many of the players, a handful of which he teamed up with in the summer of 2011 to bring a Little League World Series title to Huntington Beach. Two summers later, Pratto was the lone player out of the 13 from that Ocean View Little League team that enrolled at a high school outside of Huntington Beach.
Pratto, a left-handed first baseman and pitcher, chose to go to Mater Dei as a freshman.
“I knew him growing up as a Little Leaguer. I always knew he was a little bit different than everybody else,” Medure said. “He wanted a little bit of a change. Maybe he felt like Mater Dei was just a good chance to be away from all of the Little League World Series kids. He wanted to just establish himself as him, and not as a member of the Little League World Series team. I wouldn’t say I was surprised [that he went to Mater Dei]. I guess I was more disappointed than anything, because I wanted him on our team.”