Maryville College junior shortstop Nick Dean from Mineral Bluff, Ga., was voted the USA South baseball player of the year for 2014, and regular-season champion Covenant Cllege had five first-team selections, two second-teamers and a third-team choice. The Covenant first-teamers were second baseman Will Cleland, third baseman Perry Rigby, outfielder Will Carlton, designated hitter David Lockwood and pitcher Garrett Kriston. First baseman Scott Gillespie and outfielder Chris Rollins made the second team, shortstop K.C. Simons the third. Paul Phillips was Covenant's all-sportsmanship representative. Dean, a Fannin County High School graduate, led the USAS with a .401 batting average and a .563 slugging percentage in the regular season, and he had 57 hits and 80 total bases. He batted .430 in league games. Lockwood and Carlton were first and second in the league with 44 and 38 RBIs, Lockwood with a .319 average and 21 doubles and Carlton with four home runs, while Cleland hit .343 with six triples, 18 stolen bases and 31 RBIs and Rigby hit .324 with three homers and 30 RBIs. Kriston has seven wins, a 3.00 earned run average and 71 strikeouts in 69 innings. Gillespie hit .354 with 16 doubles and 29 RBIs, Rollins batted .331 with three homers, 12 doubles and 29 RBIs, and leadoff man Simon hit .323 with 30 walks, a .438 on-base percentage and 25 RBIs.
• Chattanooga's Wesley Cash and partner Mark Vines of Lynchburg, Va., won 6-1, 6-2 over Stuart Chase of the United States and Martin Cornish of Great Britain in the men's 55 division of the International Tennis Federation Seniors World Championships on Thursday at Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., and play in the quarterfinals today. Another local resident, Sue Webb, representing her native Great Britain, reached a women's 50s singles quarterfinal against sixth-seeded Marie-Christine Calleja of France with a bye, a 7-5, 6-4 defeat of the third seed from the Netherlands and a 6-3, 6-4 win over the 12th seed from Germany and with Denis Dumas of Canada reached the 50s mixed doubles quarters against eighth-seeded Americans Erika Smith and Rick Leach with three wins: 6-4, 6-4; 7-6(4), 6-4; and 7-6(5), 6-0. Webb and Fran Chandler of the United States are seeded seventh in women's 50s doubles.
• Former McCallie School player Logan Yerbey made the All-Southern Athletic Association men's tennis second team along with the two Sewanee players (and one Sewanee first-teamer) reported Thursday. Yerbey went 10-5 this season in singles -- 2-2 at No. 1 and 8-3 at No. 2 -- and was 12-3 in doubles.
• Matt Hill became the first former Georgia Northwestern Technical College athlete to go into the school's sports hall of fame -- a surprise addition to Thursday's annual sports banquet at the school's campus in Calhoun. Hill, who thought he was at the dinner just to make some remarks, was joined in the GNTC Bobcat Hall of Fame by Jeff King as the inaugural honorary member. King was one of the college's vice presidents when it started intercollegiate sports with men's basketball, and he fought to keep the program when it was in jeopardy during moves throughout the state's technical college system, according to Bobcats basketball coach and athletic director David Stephenson. King also served as interim president and provost and remains a supporter in his current part-time role as special projects manager. Hill, a Trion High School graduate, was a power forward and captain on the first two teams and also represented the Bobcats well in academic and character considerations, Stephenson said.
• An under-the-net volleyball save by former Boyd-Buchanan star Rachel Harper, completed by Cleveland's Kristen Pickett, was honored as the Carson-Newman play of the year at the Jefferson City, Tenn., school's inaugural Frosty Awards this week, and freshman Tiana Mills from Girls Preparatory School had the female performance of the year in breaking three school track and field records in the PowerSox Invitational. Harper and Mills also were candidates for female athlete of the year, and Harper and softball player Sara Kelley from Ooltewah were nominated for top performance. Basketball player Ish Sanders from Cleveland and track and field athlete T.J. Davis from Ooltewah were nominated for men's Frostys. Kelley and shortstop Brittany Hefner, by the way, made the SAC softball all-tournament team from the Lady Eagles, and senior first baseman Caitlyn Lance from Ridgeland High was announced Thursday as a CoSIDA Academic All-District honoree. She's a biology and health professions major with a 3.61 grade point average, and she batted .316 with 14 extra-base hits this season and became the program's career leader in putouts.
• Senior cross country and track standout Kuersten Gallivan of Sandy Springs, Ga., and North Springs Charter High School signed a national letter of intent this week with Dalton State College. She has recorded a time of 18 minutes, 50 seconds for a cross country 5k and has run the 800 meters in 2:19 and the 1600 in 5:21. "She is a fabulous addition and a good find for our program," Roadrunners coach Andy Meyers said in a DSC release, referring to her as "an SEC/ACC type talent" and adding that "she recently excelled in a highly competitive sectional of north Atlanta schools to make it to state." Olympic gold medalist Antonio McCay helps coach Gallivan at North Springs and said, "Things have really started to click for her, and she has a great future ahead."
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