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Athletes Beyond Bartow: Former Canes excelling on the college and pro diamonds

Mason Barnett, Auburn pitcher
Auburn sophomore and former Cartersville High pitcher Mason Barnett was dominant in his start against Little Rock Saturday at home. Barnett threw seven scoreless innings, allowing two hits, one walk and one hit batsman. The right-hander struck out nine in his second straight scoreless outing.

Several former Canes are enjoying success on the baseball diamond at this point of their seasons.

In the professional ranks, Pittsburgh Pirates southpaw Sam Howard continued to put up hitless, scoreless innings — notching his third and fourth of spring training — over the past week. Meanwhile, Anthony Seigler saw action in his first two games with the New York Yankees, recording a walk, a hit and a run scored across two brief appearances.

Howard and Seigler weren't the only CHS products to shine on the diamond, as college players Mason Barnett and Preston Welchel also put together impressive weeks with their respective teams.

Barnett continued his stellar start to his sophomore season, throwing seven shutout innings against Little Rock Saturday at home. The right-hander struck out nine, while allowing two hits, one walk and one hit batsman. In four games, Welchel went 4-for-10, with a two-run home run, two doubles and three runs scored for Coastal Alabama-Bay Minette.


Sam Howard (Pittsburgh Pirates; 8th yr. pro; Cartersville HS) — Howard made a pair of seventh-inning, relief appearances last Tuesday and Saturday, his third and fourth of the Spring. Howard retired the Atlanta Braves and the New York Yankees in a pair of one-inning stints last week — a 10-1 win over Atlanta and a 7-5 loss to the Yankees. The southpaw has not allowed a hit or an earned run in four innings of work. He has walked three and struck out four.

Anthony Seigler (New York Yankees; 4th yr. pro; Cartersville HS) — The former first-round pick made a pair of appearances last week with the Major League club as a pinch hitter, pinch runner and designated hitter. In a 6-1 win over the Philadelphia Phillies last Thursday, Seigler was entered at designated hitter. He coaxed a walk, scored a run and struck out once. Sunday against Toronto, he entered as a pinch runner in the seventh inning and remained in the game as the DH. In the ninth inning, he singled and later scored a run, as the Yankees beat the Blue Jays, 5-1.


Levi Ayers (Young Harris So., Cartersville HS) — Ayers walked one and gave up one hit in an eighth-inning appearance Saturday at Flagler College, but he also retired the third out of that inning in a 10-3 Peach Belt Conference win. YHC swept the three-game series at Flagler and improved to 7-6 overall and 7-5 in the PBC. The Mountain Lions host Mars Hill College Wednesday and Claflin Friday and Saturday in a three-game conference series.

Mason Barnett (Auburn So., Cartersville HS) — Barnett went seven innings, allowing only two hits, one walk and one hit batsman to earn the pitching victory, as the Tigers beat visiting Little Rock Saturday. The right-hander struck out nine. It was Barnett’s second straight start without allowing an earned run and dropped his season ERA to 0.51 in 17 2/3 innings. Auburn (11-4) was set to host Lipscomb Tuesday before starting SEC play with a three-game series this weekend at Ole Miss.

Clifton Dempsey (Toccoa Falls Sr., Cartersville HS) — The Screaming Eagles’ shortstop went 3-for-12 with a double, two RBIs and a run scored in a three-game series with Edward Waters College last weekend at home. In 20 starts this season and 83 plate appearances, Dempsey has a .319 batting average, with two home runs and 12 RBIs. Toccoa Falls (8-12) was scheduled to host Middle Georgia State Tuesday and entertain Talladega College Friday and Saturday in a three-game series.

Jake Gooch (Central Alabama CC So., Cartersville HS) — Gooch was a combined 1-for-8 and scored one run in a home game against Wallace State-Dothan and a road game at Marion Military. The Trojans went 3-2 for the week, winning three of four at Marion Military. CACC (13-9, 3-1 Alabama Community College Conference) plays a Thursday doubleheader at Calhoun CC and hosts the same team Saturday to conclude a four-game series.

Lane Griffith (West Georgia Sr., Adairsville HS) — Griffith went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBIs and a sacrifice last Wednesday in a non-conference loss at ninth-ranked Columbus State. West Georgia (7-9, 7-8) returns to Gulf South Conference play against West Alabama in a three-game series this weekend at home.

Brycen Jones (Central Alabama CC Fr., Cartersville HS) — Jones retired the side in order last Tuesday in an eighth-inning appearance, as the Trojans fell 12-8 to Wallace State-Dothan at home. Despite allowing only one walk and striking out the side, he was also tagged with a tough-luck pitching loss in a sixth-inning appearance Thursday at Marion Military.

Logan Nelson (Truett McConnell Fr., Cass HS) — Nelson went 1-for-2 in the Bears’ 18-4 blowout of visiting Bob Jones last Tuesday and was 0-for-3 in a start against St. Andrews (North Carolina) Saturday. Nelson is hitting .276 in 35 plate appearances this season with six RBIs. TMU (11-9, 2-4 Appalachian Athletic Conference) was scheduled to play Tuesday at Montreat College and travel Friday and Saturday to Point for a three-game AAC series.

Harrison Osborn (Point Jr., Cartersville HS) — In an eighth-inning relief appearance Friday, Osborn faced five batters, allowing one earned run on two hits, as the Skyhawks beat Columbia International, 15-10. Point (13-6, 7-2 Appalachian Athletic Conference) travels Wednesday to Georgia Gwinnett College Wednesday and will host Truett McConnell Friday and Saturday in a three-game conference series.

Preston Welchel (Coastal Alabama-Bay Minette Fr., Cartersville HS) — Welchel went 4-for-10 across four games last week with a two-run home run, two doubles and three runs scored. Coastal split a four-game, home-and-home series with Enterprise State CC. The Sun Chiefs (10-15, 2-2 Alabama Community College Conference) were set to host Nunez CC in a non-conference doubleheader Tuesday before playing a four-game series with Wallace State-Dothan Thursday and Saturday.

Jordan Wilkie (Augusta Fr., Cartersville HS) — Wilkie started three of four games last week and appeared in all four, as the Jaguars went 1-3. Wilkie started at third base and went 2-for-4, with a double, a walk, a run scored and one RBI during the Jaguars’ 9-8 win over Emmanuel College last Tuesday at home. Over the weekend, he was 1-for-9 in a pair of starts at second base and one pinch-hitting appearance, as Augusta was swept in a three-game series at North Georgia. Augusta (2-9, 1-8 Peach Belt Conference) was scheduled to travel Tuesday to Emmanuel and host Francis Marion Friday and Saturday in a three-game conference series.


DiAnthony Heathcock (Columbia International Fr., Woodland HS) — Heathcock didn’t attempt a shot in 16 minutes of action but did record two rebounds, a steal and a block in a 79-74 win over Erskine Thursday in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The game represented the championship game of the National Christian College Athletic Association south region tournament. CIU will now compete in the eight-team NCCAA national championship as the No. 2 seed, with a first-round matchup against seventh-seeded Alice Lloyd Wednesday in Winona Lake, Indiana.


Terry Berdin (Reinhardt Jr., Cartersville HS) — Berdin had a 2-yard carry during a 42-14 win over St. Andrew’s Saturday at home.

Bryce Burgess (Reinhardt Jr., Adairsville HS) — Burgess returned a kickoff 14 yards, as the Eagles moved to 5-0 on the season and 3-0 in the Mid-South Conference.

Kurtis Feanny (Lenoir-Rhyne Jr., Woodland HS) — Feanny made the participation report in a season-opening 27-20 win Friday at Newberry.

Sean Holton (Davidson Sr., Cartersville HS) — Holton made two solo stops, as Davidson edged Stetson by a 26-20 final score Saturday in DeLand, Florida.

Jacob Potter (Kennesaw State Jr., Adairsville HS) — The Owls long snapper contributed in a 24-19 triumph over Charleston Southern Saturday in Kennesaw.

Matthew Surrett (Olivet Nazarene Fr., Cartersville HS) — Surrett helped No. 25 Olivet Nazarene’s offense produce 381 yards, and he also chipped in with a tackle off an interception in a 31-27 win over St. Francis Saturday at home.

Jake Walker (Furman Sr., Cartersville native, Darlington HS) — Walker saw action but didn’t record any stats in 15th-ranked Furman’s 17-13 victory Saturday at East Tennessee State.


Russell Shealy (Syracuse R-So., Cartersville native, Darlington HS) — Shealy made three saves in a 3-1 defeat Friday at Louisville.


Colbi Ballard (Shorter So., Cartersville HS) — Ballard started all three games of the Hawks’ series at West Alabama last weekend. She was 1-for-4 at the plate with three walks and scored one run, as Shorter lost all three games in the Gulf South Conference series. Shorter (4-13, 0-9) travels to Mississippi College for a three-game conference series Saturday and Sunday.

Bella Carnes (Georgia College Fr., Woodland HS) — Carnes saw action in two games last week, going 1-for-4 at the plate with a sacrifice. The Bobcats were swept in doubleheaders last Wednesday at West Georgia and Saturday at Augusta. Georgia College (4-12, 0-2 Peach Belt Conference) plays a nonconference doubleheader Thursday at Coker College and has a PBC twin bill Sunday at Columbus State.

Skylar Chappell (Cottey College So., Woodland HS) — Chappell went 1-for-2 in separate pinch-hitting appearances Friday, when the Comets lost to Hastings College and beat Midland University in games at York College in Nebraska. Cottey (13-3) hosts University of Health Sciences & Pharmacy (Missouri) Tuesday in a doubleheader and Saturday at Missouri Baptist.

Presly Edwards (Wesleyan So., Cartersville HS) — Edwards was 3-for-13 with a double in a four-game series Saturday and Sunday at Huntingdon College. The Wolves won the opening game 6-4, but they dropped the final three games in the series. Wesleyan (3-11, 1-1 USA South Athletic Conference) hosts a four-game conference series this Saturday and Sunday with Brevard College.

Brianna Hill (Covenant Fr., Woodland HS) — Hill went 3-for-7, scored a run, and drove in one run as the Scots split a doubleheader with visiting Emory last Thursday. Covenant also had a doubleheader at Brevard College canceled Saturday. Covenant (7-11) will host a four-game USA South Athletic Conference series with Huntingdon College Friday and Saturday.

Hannah Todd (Kansas Sr., Cartersville HS) — Playing in the Rock Chalk Challenge, Todd faced four batters and retired the last two outs last Thursday in a 6-3 loss to South Dakota State. Todd allowed one hit, walked one and struck out one in the appearance. Kansas (11-8) will host the Jayhawk Invitational this Friday through Sunday, when they will face Tulsa, North Dakota State twice and South Dakota twice.

Alexa Varner (Shorter Fr., Adairsville HS) — Varner saw action as a pinch runner last Friday night in a 10-2 loss at West Alabama.


Connor Gunnell (Shorter Fr., Woodland HS) — Gunnell and his doubles partner fell 6-3 on Line 2 in a 6-1 loss to Valdosta State Friday at home.

Houston Medlock (Piedmont Jr., Adairsville HS) — Medlock helped Piedmont to its first win of the season against Maryville (Tennessee) Saturday at home. He won 6-2, 6-0 on Line 1 singles and 8-0 on Line 1 doubles. Last Tuesday, the former Tigers standout dropped narrow matches on Line 1 singles (7-5, 6-2) and Line 2 doubles (7-6) in a loss to Point.

Bryce VanOrder (Piedmont Fr., Woodland HS) — VanOrder fell 6-1, 6-2 on Line 2 singles against Point but did not feature against Maryville.

— Nicholas Sullivan of The Daily Tribune News contributed to this report.


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