Walker County Messenger - - Sports -

Hop­kins said count­less hours spent in the weight room were an added bonus.

“I think prob­a­bly the big­gest thing that gave me the con­fi­dence was get­ting in the weight room be­fore the sea­son,” he added. “I knew I was big­ger and stronger than I was the day be­fore and once I started throw­ing bullpen ses­sions be­fore the sea­son started, I knew I had a lot more on my fast­ball than I did the year be­fore.

“I started out get­ting one or two in­nings in re­lief and I would look at the re­ports the next day and I saw where I was

strik­ing out four or five bat­ters in two in­nings of work. Then I was able to add on to it from there.”

Hop­kins signed with Hi­wassee Col­lege in the off-sea­son and said he could end up play­ing first base and pitch­ing for the Tigers at the next level.

“No mat­ter where I play, it will be fine, as long as I’m play­ing some­where,” he said.

More than any­thing, he said he would miss the at­mos­phere of game day at Gor­don Lee, es­pe­cially in the play­offs.

“You just know that ev­ery­body in the city of Chicka­mauga is out there watch­ing the games,” he added, “and that’s just the best feel­ing.”

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