The Saline Courier
Hornet duo to play at next level
BRYANT – Two Bryant Hornets pitchers will continue their baseball careers at the next level as seniors Aiden Adams and Will Hathcote signed letters of intent last week in Bryant. Adams inked with the Tarleton State University Texans, located in Stephenville, Texas, while Hathcote will head to Missouri after signing with the Three Rivers College Raiders (Poplar Bluff, Mo.).
Hathcote has been a vital part to the Hornets success as he did not allow a run in his sophomore season, going 1-0 and giving up just three hits and no walks while striking out 11 in 6.1 innings pitching behind a pitching staff with the likes of Will Mcentire, Peyton Dillon, Logan Grant and Coby Greiner.
“He has been an ultimate competitor for us,” Bryant Coach Travis Queck said. “He’s been put in those spots since his freshman year. Every time we put him in a tough spot, he would come through with flying colors.”
In last year’s season cut short due to COVID-19, Hathcote was off to a very good start with a 1-1 record, 2.11 ERA and 18 strikeouts in 13.1 innings pitched.
“Being who he is and a competitor and always eager to get better is a testament to him, then you add the fact that he’s consistent,” Queck said. “He constantly answers the challenge, and that’s the key. That’s why he’s getting the opportunity to go to Three Rivers and prove himself again.”
Hathcote started off his senior year with three straight wins, but has struggled of late, though he still has 18 strikeouts in 12.2 innings pitched.
“He’s got a lot of movement to dang near all his pitches to a point where it freezes the hitter and falls out of the strike zone,” Queck explained. “His ability to drop a fastball in on the hands and then throw something to get the outside part of the plate, and then also dropping something straight down off the plate playing in the Missouri Community College Athletic Conference, which plays in the National Junior College
For the left-hander Adams, he joins a Division I Texans squad which plays in the Western Athletic Conference.
Adams usually gets off to slow starts with the Hornet baseball team as he also plays basketball.
“He’s a vital part of the varsity basketball team so we got him late into it, so he was always in catchup mode and you wouldn’t see him until early to mid-april by the time we got his arm in shape,” Queck said of previous seasons. “Last year we didn’t get him because he was still in basketball and then we got shut down.”
For his senior season, Adams got a jumpstart and has been an excellent reliever for the 14-1 Hornets.
“Aiden came to the realization in early September that this was his last goround, last opportunity in high school baseball,” Queck said. “As a senior, you can’t just come straight from basketball cold. Since September Aiden has been working with us. During the basketball season he would come in the mornings and throw. He’s put a lot more preparation into it this year. The day we got him back we put him in against Benton. I’ve put him in a couple times since then and he’s done a really good job. I’m eager to see what he’s going to do for us moving forward.
“Aiden is just a competitor out there. It’s good to have those guys on the mound.”
Not seeing much action in previous seasons with the deep pitching staff and COVID last year as he was still in basketball, Adams has shined this season as a lefty reliever going 1-0 with a 1.98 ERA in 7.1 innings, striking out 10.
“He’s got a two-seam (fastball) that has a lot of late life,” Queck said. “If he can bury that sucker up on the righties’ hands, or make them think it’s coming up on their hands when it breaks late into the catcher’s mitt, that’s a tough pitch to hit. He can throw a changeup off that as well. He’s a dynamic guy. When he can locate all of his pitches, he’s fun to watch and fun to play behind.”