College Baseball: Gibson Co. slugger is bound for Bethel
Posted: Friday, July 1, 2011 12:02 am
The Bethel University baseball team has added a trio of players to its squad.
Gibson County’s Lee Whitaker, Goodpastures Harrison Hawkins and Jackson State Community College’s Brian Ferrell all signed papers to play for the Wildcats.
Whitaker said he is looking forward to playing for Coach Rusty Thompson and the Wildcats.
“I love the whole place,” Whitaker said of Bethel. “I felt like it was the right place for me. I know I’m going to have to step up (in college) and try even harder.”
Whitaker’s co-high school skipper at GC, Corry Essary, said the signing was the culmination of a long-time goal.
“From the first day I met Lee, all he wanted to do was to play college ball,” said Essary, who previously served as the parks director in Dresden. “He’s well deserving of this.”
Pioneer co-skipper Ken Covington was also pleased with Whitaker’s decision to go to Bethel.
“He’s worked very hard and had a great work ethic all season long” Covington said.
Whitaker finished the season with a batting average of .357, a .415 on-base percentage and a .625 slugging percentage.
He was also named to the All-District 13AA team,
Whitaker also received the team’s Silver Slugger Award for 2011.
Hawkins won his team’s 2010 Gold Glove award and MVP award. He can play third base, second and shortstop.
Hawkins hit .317 and drove in 20 runs as a senior at Goodpasture.
The engineering major is the son of Chuck and Cheryl Hawkins of Nashville.
Ferrell, who prepped at Libery in Jackson, was the District 13AAA MVP his senior campaign.
While at JSCC, Ferrell made the TCCAA second team his sophomore season when he hit .394 with 20 doubles and three triples.
He drove in 48 runs and scored 42 times.
Ferrell was also an all-academic selection at Jackson State.