Scott Zuback has always had drive.
Had it when he helped put Keystone Little League on the map with back-to-back state tournament appearances in 2003 and 2004.
Carried it over to Central Mountain High School where he was a four-year starter and still holds 12 batting records.
Did you think he would lose it when he entered Lock Haven University?
"He's one of our top guys, and he hits the ball real well," LHU manager Smokey Stover said. "He knows how tough it is now. You can see that he's starting to bear down and play the game well. He's still having fun, but he understands what this league is all about now.
"No one understands that the PSAC is just like a Division I conference. Tuesday's games, maybe you don't see every team's top pitcher. But when you get into those weekend series, you are seeing Division I pitchers. It takes some time to get adjusted to that."
There was Zuback, sitting with a big grin on his face after a 3-for-5 performance in a come-from-behind win over Shippensburg as the Bald Eagles are right in the thick of things in regards to the PSAC postseason.
For Zuback, it was just another day of living the baseball dream.
"We knew we would be young because we lost a lot of pitching from last year," he said. "We just want to play hard and do what we can do."
There has been no sophomore jinx for the area standout.
Coming off a freshman season where he started 39 games, hit a touch over .300 with 36 rips, four doubles and four RBIs, he's right on pace to reach that again in 2012.
Currently, he's hitting at a .283 clip with 28 hits, seven doubles and 10 RBIs.
Not bad, considering he's been bothered by a nagging hamstring injury most of the season.
Speed was also Zuback's game. He never took a play off. A rountine infield grounder was never routine with the outfielder flying down the first-base line.
He was dangerous on the basepads. He stole 26 in just one season at Central Mountain, and 57 for this career.
"I have to hit the ball to the outfield a lot more," he said with a grin. "I don't know how many infield grounders I am going to beat out anymore. I just want to do whatever I can do.
"It's tough, and at times, frustarting. I'm used to going 100 percent every single play, but it's tough to do that with the injury. I'm starting to feel a lot better, and I'm working hard to get to where I used to be."
And he's willing to do whatever it takes.
When speedy wide receiver Jay Hartman decided to come out for the baseball team this season with two years of eligibilty left, Zuback had no problems shifting over to left field.
Although, again, it's been an adjustment.
"The ball comes off the bat a little different, and you have to learn to judge the depth as well," Zuback said. "There is a lot more spin. Playing center most of the time, I thought it would be pretty easy to move from center to left, but it's not that easy."
He showed how far he's come in just 33 games at the spot.
He made a nice running stab near the line, covering a good majority of the outfield green and snaring the ball into his leather mitt.
While the injuries may be lingering, there are no signs.
"Zuback has come a long way," Stover said. "People don't know that he's been playing through injuries all year. It's a nagging injury that just won't go away."
The smile doesn't leave his face.
He still loves the game the same way.
"The first year, it's a big transition from high school to college," he said. "The game is much faster, and the kids are bigger and stronger. You adjust and get used to it after the first year. I'm starting to feel pretty good again."
Tom Fox is sports editor at The Express. He can be reached at email@example.com.