The Diamond ‘Dogs officially capped their 2014 campaign with Monday’s postseason banquet within the confines of the THS cafeteria.
No tears were on tap; just plenty of praise, including recognition of the middle school team, which won its second straight divisional championship on March 25.
“We’re excited about what we’re getting in the coming years,” THS coach Erik McDougald told the crowd.
The coach then conferred a series of individual awards to the Bulldogs baseball team.
Among the recipients include:
— First-year lettermen: Bayley Wright, Matthew Green, Eli Croley, Thomas Rayburn, Josh Milam, Caelin Wilson, Hiram Smith, Austin Clark, Michael Fromkin, Garett Hasty.
— Second-year lettermen: Morgan Meyers, Zach Zolt, Oren King, Chapman O’Quinn.
— Fourth-year lettermen: Payton Dixon and Hunter Donalson.
— Iron ‘Dog Award for the athlete who lettered in three different sports in the same calendar year: Matthew Green, who played baseball, golf and swam.
–– Defensive awards for any player who earned a .950 fielding percentage or higher: Morgan Meyers (1.000), Hunter Donalson (.983), Garett Hasty (.967).
— All-region team, which is collated by 1-AA coaches based solely on statistics: Hunter Donalson and Chapman O’Quinn were named to the second team, and Payton Dixon was honored among the first team.
— Captain Award: Hiram Smith.
— Scholar athletes for each grade: freshman Jacob Cone, sophomore Austin Clark, junior Zach Zolt and senior Payton Dixon.
Following the individual awards, McDougald thanked his coaches, then gave his most gratifying recognition to the parents.
The coach then concluded the ceremony with a distinct direction to the seniors: “Those of you walking out with a boatload of awards – those are going to collect dust. You’re letterman jacket is going to shrink. Guess what’s still going to be there? You’re memories. Wins and losses dry up, but your friends will stay with you. That’s part of the experience, and the beauty of it.”
THS finished its season 13-11 (5-7), and fell just short of qualifying for the AA state tournament.
The team’s summer baseball schedule will release in the coming week.