HOOSICK FALLS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The high school baseball season is rapidly approaching, but one member of the Hoosick Falls High School team is already making history.

Senior Jake Sparks signed his letter of intent to Marshall University Wednesday night. He’s the first Panther baseball player to commit to the Division I level in over 30 years.

Sparks proves that no matter where you’re from, a drive to succeed can take you a long way.

“I think everyone here knows it’s (Hoosick Falls) a small town,” said Sparks. “They see it as an obstacle, and it’s not. As long as you put the work in, they’ll (scouts) find you. It doesn’t matter what school you come from; if you’re good, you’re good. There’s always a chance.”

Sparks went on to explain his reasoning for how he finally landed on playing for the Thundering Herd as the next step in his baseball career.

“I knew I wanted to go down south to get out of the northeast weather,” said Sparks. “I love the campus. I went down there; loved the players that toured me around. (The) coaches are great. I’m excited.”

Hoosick Falls head coach Mike Lilac believes there’s one distinguishing characteristic of Sparks’ game that allowed him to reach the Division I level.

“The biggest thing about him is his work ethic,” said Lilac. “Whether it’s football, basketball, or baseball, his work ethic is as good as any kid we’ve had. You don’t have to push him; he pushes himself. And it’s really good to see that work ethic pay off.”

Sparks and the Panthers open up the 2023 season Tuesday, March 28 with a home game against Lake George.