JACKSON County’s Patrick Overstreet had a big game April 21 against Hart County — one that perhaps secured his college baseball future.
Overstreet went 3-for-3 with a clutch homer and two RBIs in a performance that opened the door for conversation between him and Truett-McConnell coach Mike Croley.
“He came to the game to look at another player, and I happened to show out,” Overstreet said. “He just talked to me after the game and said he liked how I played.”
Now, just weeks later, Overstreet has signed with Truett-McConnell after originally committing to Andrew College.
“We started talking and I ended up liking there better than I did Andrew,” said Overstreet, who celebrated his signing with a ceremony Tuesday.
Croley had actually seen Overstreet in the fall for a workout, but observing him in the game against Hart County certainly made an impression on the coach.
“I show up here late this spring, and I see this guy hitting bombs and running around the field,” Croley said to those on-hand at Overstreet’s signing ceremony. “And I’m like ‘goodness gracious, what was I thinking? I need to get on that sooner.’”
Overstreet now leaves Jackson County after one incredible season with the Panthers.
Transferring from Winder-Barrow for his senior year, Overstreet hit over .360 with eight homers and 32 RBIs as Jackson County reached the first round of the Class AAA playoffs for the second-straight year.
“It was a good year,” Overstreet said. “I thought I did really well, especially at the plate. Defensive-wise, I could have done better, but I was happy with the outcome.”
Panther coach Tommy Fountain said Overstreet certainly fit in well at Jackson County.
“You never know how kids are going to fit when they’re brand new,” Fountain said. “Particularly as a senior, you never know what you’re going to get, but he’s been a blessing to the program. He’s done everything we’ve asked for him to do. We’re excited that he’s getting a chance to go play college baseball.”
Overstreet expects to play either shortstop or third at Truett-McConnell — most likely at shortstop since the Bears’ shortstop is graduating.
“More than likely, he’ll start me at short, and that’s probably where I’ll stick, and he said (batting) around the middle of the order — kind of like I was this year,” Overstreet said.
Overstreet said several factors lured him to Truett-McConnell, which is located in Cleveland (Ga.).
“One, it’s closer to home,” Overstreet said. “The distance thing, that was a factor. Another thing was that their field and their facility was nice. The school is really nice and the student-teacher ratio is what I was really looking at. It’s like 14-1, so it will be nice to be there.”
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