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Athletes Beyond Bartow: Updates for the week ending March 10

March 11, 2024

Charles Wilson /


Ashton Hagans

ASHTON HAGANS — Portland Trailblazers (4th yr. pro; Cartersville native; Kentucky; Newton HS) … in home losses last week to Oklahoma City and Houston, the Blazers’ guard totaled eight points, five rebounds, six assists, and one blocked shot. Portland (18-45) plays home games this week against the Boston Celtics, Atlanta Hawks, and New York Knicks on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday.


EMILY SURCEY — Samford University (Jr., Cass HS) … in team losses last Wednesday and Thursday to College of Charleston and Campbell at Patriots Point in Charleston, Surcey and partner Grace Keller lost two doubles sets. She also split her Line 2 singles matches with a 7-5, 7-5 win against Campbell and a 3-6, 6-4, 3-6 loss to Charleston. The Bulldogs (3-8) host Mercer on Friday and play at Furman on Sunday.


Chanc Willis and Dalton Henson

DALTON HENSON — Reinhardt University (Sr., Cartersville HS) … tied for 26th of 56 players at the 10-team Point University Invitational March 4-5 at the par-72, 7,033-yard Newnan Country Club. Henson carded rounds of 85-79-71—235. The Eagles are scheduled for the William Carey Invitational March 11-12 in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.

ANDERSON McCARY — Birmingham-Southern College (Fr., Cartersville HS) … shot 93-91-85—269 and finished 93rd at the 17-team Port City Classic March 4-5 in Savannah. The tournament was won by Maryville College (Tenn.). BSC was 17th. The next event for the Panthers is the Wynlakes Invitational on April 1-2 in Montgomery, Alabama.

CHANC WILLIS — Reinhardt University (Sr., Cartersville HS) … tied for 21st of 56 players at the 10-team Point University Invitational March 4-5 at the par-72, 7,033-yard Newnan Country Club. Henson carded rounds of 82-75-75—232. The Eagles are scheduled for the William Carey Invitational March 11-12 in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.


ANGEL BANDA — Reinhardt University (Sr., Adairsville HS) …  the 125-pounder made it to the third round of the NAIA National Tournament March 3-4 before losing. That sent him to the consolation rounds where he won two matches before being eliminated.

Caleb Henson

CALEB HENSON — Virginia Tech (So., Woodland HS) … finished runner-up in the 149-pound weight class at the Atlantic Coast Conference Championships on Sunday in Chapel Hill. He lost to Jackson Arrington of NC State in a sudden victory. Henson’s semifinal win was over Finn Solomon of Pitt. He was ranked No. 2 nationally in the weight division entering the conference tournament. Next is the NCAA Championships in Kansas City on March 21-23.

TYLER McKNIGHT — Davidson College (Fr., Cass HS) … the 149-pounder finished 1-2 at the Southern Conference Championships. His win was in overtime over his VMI opponent in the consolation rounds. The Wildcats finished sixth in the eight-team conference tournament.

Jaxon Smith

JAXON SMITH — University of Maryland (R-So., Woodland HS) … placed fourth in the 197-pound weight class at the Big Ten Championships this past weekend in College Park (Md.). Smith went 2-2 with a win over opponents from Rutgers and Minnesota. His semifinal loss was in sudden victory to Zach Glazier of Iowa and he fell in the third-place match to Silas Allred of Nebraska. He was ranked No. 3 nationally in the weight class going into the conference tournament. Next is the NCAA Championships in Kansas City on March 21-23.


JA’KA’YAH DRAUGHN — Chattanooga State CC (Fr., Cartersville HS) … scored two points and grabbed five rebounds with two assists and one steal on Monday, March 4 in an 82-52 home win over Southwest Tennessee CC. On Sunday in a 78-64 TCCAA tournament win over Columbia State CC, Draughn scored three points with one rebound, one assist, and one steal. The NJCAA 25th-ranked Tigers (29-1) play Dyersburg State CC on Monday in the tournament semifinals. The championship game is on Tuesday.

T.J. PRINTUP, JR. — Tusculum University (R-Fr., Adairsville HS) … grabbed six rebounds and scored two points with one assist and one steal but the Pioneers lost 68-60 to Carson-Newman in the quarterfinals of the South Atlantic Conference tournament last Wednesday. Printup played in 26 games (one start) this season and averaged 5.5 points and 4.4 rebounds per game. Tusculum finished the year with a 14-13 mark.


KILEY ARNOLD — University of West Alabama (Fr., Cartersville HS) … had three pinch-hitting appearances — one at Spring Hill College last Thursday and two on Sunday at home against Valdosta State — but did not reach base. UWA (14-9, 5-7 Gulf South Conference) hosts Georgia Southwestern for a doubleheader on Tuesday and travels to Delta State University for a three-game conference series on Saturday and Sunday. 

LAINEY BAKER — Union University (So., Woodland HS) … made pitching appearances this past Saturday and Sunday at Christian Brothers University. She totaled 6-⅓ innings in the circle and allowed four earned runs (five total) on five hits with no walks although she hit two batters. She fanned eight and received no decision on Saturday but was tagged with the pitching loss on Sunday. In 12 appearances this season, Baker is 5-4 with a 2.66 ERA. The Bulldogs (15-9, 7-5 Gulf South Conference) host Shorter University on Saturday and Sunday for a three-game conference series.

HAYLEE DISHMON — Georgia Highlands CC (Fr., Cass HS) … walked twice, stole one base, and scored one run but was 0-for-4 at the plate in two losses last Thursday at Georgia Military College. The Lady Chargers (3-18, 0-2 GCAA) host East Georgia State CC on Tuesday and play at Andrew College on Saturday.

ANSLEY EVANS — Reinhardt University (Jr., Woodland HS) … went 2-for-6 with two RBIs last Thursday in a home doubleheader sweep of Saint Xavier (Ill.). The Eagles (12-4, 2-0 Appalachian Athletic Conference) play at Brenau University on Tuesday, at Columbia (SC) on Friday, and at St. Andrews (NC) on Saturday.

MEGAN GREGORY — Campbell University (Fr., Adairsville HS) … totaled four innings pitched in two games during a New York swing. She worked 2-⅓ innings in the circle at Fordham last Wednesday in a 6-6 tie and pitched 1-⅔ innings last Friday at Stony Brook in a 6-4 win. Gregory received no decision in either outing allowing one earned run on three hits and one walk. The Camels (11-12-1, 3-0 Coastal Athletic Association) host Towson on Friday through Sunday in a three-game conference series.

ANSLEY HIGHT — University of Southern Mississippi (Fr., Cass HS) … made three starts and saw action in four of six games last week for the Eagles. She was 0-for-8 at the plate as Southern Miss went 3-3 for the week with wins over North Alabama, Detroit Mercy, and Maryland-Eastern Shore. The Eagles (11-12) open Sun Belt Conference play at home this weekend against Louisiana-Monroe.

ALYSSA JARRETT — Piedmont University (Fr., Adairsville HS) … made a catching start at North Carolina Wesleyan last Friday and went 1-for-4 at the plate. Piedmont (4-11) has a doubleheader at Berea College (Ky.) on Sunday.

SADYE JOHNSON — University of North Georgia (Jr., Adairsville HS) … saw action in two home wins over Emmanuel last Thursday and was 0-for-1 at the plate. The No. 1 ranked Nighthawks (23-2, 8-0 Peach Belt Conference) finish their series with Augusta on Monday, visit Auburn-Montgomery on Tuesday, and play a three-game series at Georgia Southwestern on Friday and Saturday.

ERYN LEE — Reinhardt University (So., Cass HS) … went 1-for-4 with one walk in a pair of wins over Saint Xavier (Ill.) last Thursday. Reinhardt (12-4, 2-0 Appalachian Athletic Conference) plays at Brenau University on Tuesday, at Columbia (SC) on Friday, and at St. Andrews (NC) on Saturday.

ALEXIS WOODS — Tennessee State University (Fr., Cass HS) … made starts last week in a Wednesday home win over Detroit Mercy and a Sunday afternoon loss at Morehead State. She was 0-for-5 at the plate with one walk, one RBI, and one run scored. The Tigers (9-10, 0-1) complete a series at Morehead State on Monday, host South Dakota on Tuesday, and entertain Lindenwood in a three-game Ohio Valley Conference series on Saturday and Sunday.


Drew Billings

DREW BILLINGS — Trinity Baptist College (So., Woodland HS) … made two separate relief appearances this past Saturday earning a save and a win in three shutout innings against Aquinas College and Rochester College (Mich.) in games at the Russ-Matt Invitational in Auburndale, Florida. Billings struck out three of twelve batters faced in the two appearances. The Eagles (10-13) have doubleheaders with the University of Fort Lauderdale on Tuesday and Millennia Atlantic University on Wednesday in Jacksonville.

CURT BONNER — LaGrange College (So., Cartersville HS) … made a start Sunday at North Carolina Wesleyan and went 1-for-3 at the plate with a double and one run scored. The Panthers (9-4) host Berry College on Tuesday night and entertain the College of Wooster (Ohio) for two games on Sunday.

MICAH EARWOOD — Georgia State University (So., Cartersville HS) … pitched the sixth inning for the Panthers this past Saturday in a 12-11 home win over Army. Earwood allowed three, unearned runs on one hit and two walks. He also hit one batter and recorded two strikeouts receiving no decision. Georgia State (8-8) beat Mercer last Wednesday and split four games with Army over the weekend. They play South Carolina on Tuesday in Augusta and have a three-game Sun Belt Conference series at South Alabama on Friday through Sunday.

ELLIOTT EASTIN — Covenant College (R-Fr., Cartersville HS) … had a hit and scored a run coming off the bench last Saturday in a 13-3 home loss to the Mississippi University for Women. The Scots (5-9) play at Oglethorpe University on Tuesday and will play three games Friday and Saturday in Greenville against Bob Jones University.

CAL GOSS — Lee University (R-Fr., Cartersville HS) … pitched a scoreless seventh inning this past Saturday in a 13-3 home win over Cedarville University (Ohio). Goss issued one walk and recorded one strikeout. The Flames (15-7, 6-3 Gulf South Conference) play at Carson-Newman on Tuesday and host Auburn University-Montgomery for three games on Friday and Saturday.

COLT McKIBBEN — Lee University (So., Cartersville HS) … made pitching relief appearances last Wednesday at Lincoln Memorial University and at home on Saturday against Cedarville University. He totaled 4-⅓ innings and allowed four runs (three earned) on eight hits, one walk, and one hit batsman. McKibben was charged with a loss at LMU and was credited with the win over Cedarville. Lee (15-7, 6-3 Gulf South Conference) visits Carson-Newman University on Tuesday and hosts Auburn University Montgomery on Friday and Saturday in a three-game conference series.

SAM MELTON — Rockingham CC (So., Cartersville HS) … went 2-for-11 with a double and four RBIs in three games last week — a loss at Gaston College and two wins at Virginia Peninsula CC. Rockingham (7-15, 4-4 NJCAA Region 10) hosts Southwest Virginia CC for a doubleheader on Wednesday and plays a home-and-home, three-game conference series with Surry CC on Saturday and Sunday.

DREW ROTHSCHILD — Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College (So., Cartersville HS) … went 5-for-9 with two walks, a double, and one RBI in three games last week as the Stallions beat College of Central Florida and Jackson College but lost at Gulf Coast State CC. ABAC (8-13) visits Wallace-Dothan CC for two games on Tuesday.

TREY SCOTT — Alabama A&M University (Jr., Cass HS) … retired the only batter he faced in the sixth inning last Tuesday in a 20-9 loss at Tennessee Tech. He also pitched the sixth inning allowing two earned runs on one hit and two walks last Friday in an 11-1 loss at Louisiana-Monroe. The Bulldogs (2-13) host Florida A&M this weekend for a three-game Southwestern Athletic Conference series.

HANK SMITH — Jacksonville State University (R-Fr., Cartersville HS) … made a start last Friday in a 5-4 home win over Iowa as designated hitter. He went 0-for-4. The Gamecocks (6-8) play at Alabama State on Tuesday night, host UAB on Wednesday night, and travel to Southern Illinois this weekend for a three-game series.

SCOTTY SMITH — Covenant College (Jr., Woodland HS) … made a 2-⅔ inning pitching start at home this past Saturday in a 13-3 loss to the Mississippi University for Women. Smith allowed five earned runs on seven hits, one walk, and three hit batsmen. He struck out two. The Scots (5-9) visit Oglethorpe University on Tuesday and play a three-game series at Bob Jones University (SC) on Friday and Saturday.

STEVEN SPELL — Young Harris College (Grad student, Cass HS) … went 1-for-4 on Sunday in a 7-2 home conference win over Barton College. Rain pushed the remainder of the series to Monday. The Mountain Lions (15-4, 5-2 Conference Carolinas) host a doubleheader with Lane College on Wednesday and will entertain Chowan University in a three-game series on Saturday and Sunday.

Preston Welchel

PRESTON WELCHEL — Cumberland University (Jr., Cartersville HS) … went 4-for-10 with two home runs, one hit by pitch, and five RBIs in three home games against Briar Cliff University (Iowa) last Thursday and Friday. The Phoenix won two of three. Cumberland (14-8) hosts Milligan University on Tuesday and a three-game Mid-South Conference series with Georgetown College (Ky.) on Friday and Saturday.

COHEN WILBANKS — Georgia Gwinnett College (Jr., Cartersville HS) … in home starts and victories this past Friday and Sunday against Fisher College (Mass.) and Indiana Tech, Wilbanks was 3-for-6 with a walk and one RBI. The 2nd-ranked Grizzlies (21-2) visit Middle Georgia State on Tuesday before hosting Talladega University and Loyola University (La.) for four-weekend games. 

JORDAN WILKIE — Augusta University (Sr., Cartersville HS) … was 0-for-1 in a pinch-hitting role on Sunday in a 9-6 win at Lander University. The Jaguars (12-11, 3-3 Peach Belt Conference) host Emmanuel University on Tuesday and Claflin University for a three-game series on Friday and Saturday.


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