Kaleb McCurry Newest Addition To Mars Hill Baseball Team 11-18-13
Cougar Pitching Ace Signs with Mars Hill by David Grindstaff
Cougar pitching ace/ first baseman Kaleb McCurry, a senior at Heritage, inked a deal to play baseball at Mars Hill University in ceremonies at Bubba's Good Eats in Burnsville on Thursday evening.
With his mother Renee, father Ken, brother Gray, sister EmmaLee, Cougar Baseball Coach Rick Flynn, Heritage Athletic Director Joey Robinson and several of his teammates watching, Kaleb signed to play for the Lions after considering offers from several other universities.
Coach Flynn praised his star pitcher for his past performances and all of the hard work that he put in to get to where he is on the baseball diamond and in life in general. “Things like this just don’t happen, Coach Flynn said.
Kaleb, who was the MVP for the Cougars this past year, was also was an All-WHC performer last season when he recorded 80 strikeouts in 65 innings on the mound. As a junior he represented Mountain Heritage and Western North Carolina at the Powerade State Games held at UNC Charlotte and Battle of the Borders at Appalachian State this past summer.
Wearing number 27, Kaleb set a JV record for strikeouts in a single game against Thomas Jefferson. Later that season he was promoted to the varsity squad where he went 1-0 with 2 no-decisions. He received the Cougar "Rookie of the Year" award for the varsity team for his efforts.
In his sophomore year at Heritage Kaleb led team in wins, (6) on a squad that finished 11-7 with a record of 6-1 vs conference opponents. He had 50 strikeouts in 36 innings (1.39 per inning) and helped the team reach state playoffs. In a March 25th game vs Avery County he recorded 15 strikeouts, one shy of the school record, while hitting .294 with a .480 on base percentage at the plate.
Last season the Heritage standout was voted All- Western Highland Conference and was an Honorable Mention to the All-Western North Carolina team. He was the WLON Radio Player of the Game vs East Lincoln in the Cougar’s 1st round of state playoffs game.
As a junior Kaleb led the team in wins, (5) on a squad that finished 10-10. He had 80 strikeouts in 65 innings pitched with a 1.61 ERA with 2 shutouts. Opponent batting average was 1.81 against Kaleb’s pitching last season when he worked 8 complete games, the most complete games pitched in the state of NC last year.
Kaleb pitched a 3 hit shutout to help Mountain Heritage win its first baseball playoff game since 1993 to advance the second round of state playoffs.
Baseball has been a yearlong endeavor for Kaleb who has competed on travel teams, the Diamond Mine and the Asheville Smoke since entering high school.
“Years of preparation and sacrifice by Kaleb, his teammates and his family have allowed for a opportunity for another young man from our community to go to college, and that’s one of the things we strive for with athletics here at Mountain Heritage, Coach Flynn said