If the Fairfield Prep baseball team is going to get to the state playoffs for the third year in a row, it'll need the help of its senior class.

The Jesuits graduated 11 players from a team that went 12-8. Prep lost in the first round of the state playoffs, 6-5 to Manchester to end its year in 2010.

Despite losing its first all-state player in Connor Marr, as well as four college baseball players, Prep head coach Rudy Mauritz believes his squad can still be one to watch this year.

"We came up short," Mauritz said. "I think the guys that are back expect to do better than we did."

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The Jesuits will be led by their five seniors, who will all be called on to lead by example and with words. Multi-sport athletes Alex Heiman, Matt D'Ambrisi and C.J. Donahue will be three such players who Mauritz expects to guide his squad.

"I'm excited about the guys we have there," Mauritz said. "They have great character and I think the world of them."

Mauritz also has faith that if his squad can pitch, it'll succeed. He mentioned seniors Anthony Redimonti and Lucas Rosado as pitchers to watch this year. Prep will also expect to get good innings from starter Ben Sullivan as well.

"I think our pitching staff has a great deal of potential," Mauritz said.

Prep will also expect to get innings from juniors Kyle Mallo, Andrew Talley and Brett Young and sophomore David Gerics.

"I'm pretty excited about the depth we have there," Mauritz said.

Mauritz mentioned that the Southern Connecticut Conference, and more specifically the Quinnipiac Division in which Prep resides, is a minefield of talent in the state. The division had two state runners-up in 2010, and the conference as a whole had three of the four state finalists in Classes L and LL.

"The Southern Connecticut Conference is a great baseball conference," Mauritz said. "Our division inside of it is tough."

But despite the talent and the losses, Mauritz believes that Prep will have a good year.

"We want to be one of those teams," Mauritz said. "I think we can. It's just a matter of going out there and getting after it."