Freshmen duo looks to continue their friendship in high school January 17, 2012 — by Dylan Jew As Sachin Bettadapur and Andrew Ferguson walked to the bullpen mound to practice pitching during off season, it was not the first time they had been on the same team. The first time the pair had played catch had been on their sixth grade baseball team. As Sachin Bettadapur and Andrew Ferguson walked to the bullpen mound to practice pitching during off season, it was not the first time they had been on the same team. The first time the pair had played catch had been on their sixth grade baseball team. The two have been together on and off the field ever since. “It’s fun to play with him,” Ferguson said. “Over the years, my relationship with him has evolved from teammates to friends.” They had known each other before sixth grade, but were not close friends yet. They have played together in sixth grade baseball, sixth and seventh grade all-net, and the Redwood basketball team from sixth to eighth grade. “If we didn’t play sports together, we would still have known each other,” Bettadapur said. “But we wouldn’t have been as close as we are now.” One reason for the tight bond between them is that they play the same positions in most of their sports. Both are pitchers, so they get to spend the majority of their time on the field with each other. “We like to pitch to each other,” Ferguson said. “Because we’re friends we work hard to push each other to get better.” Ferguson was injured during football season, but was able to recover with the help of his teammates and Bettadapur. Their favorite moment together in sports was winning championships together in basketball in seventh grade, which helped connect them as friends, according to Ferguson. Although their favorite moment was in seventh grade, their favorite team to play on with each other was basketball in eighth grade. “Our eighth grade team was definitely the most fun,” Ferguson said. “We had great team chemistry.” Ferguson and Bettadur also played on a Saratoga Little League Majors division team in sixth grade with freshman Billy Vithanage. Vithanage also believes that the two would not have been as close without sports. “Their friendship has been built over the years because of them being on teams together,” Vithanage said. “Being close friends helps them communicate better and play better as individual players.” With such a great history together on sports teams, both Bettadapur and Ferguson are looking forward to their next few seasons in high school. “Now that we are in high school together, I want to keep playing on teams with him,” Ferguson said. “Hopefully we can improve our friendship further on and off the field.