Story by Griffin Pritchard | Publisher
CENTRAL ALABAMA SCOREBOARD OFFICE – Wetumpka High hits the diamond with seven soon-to-be collegians and a chip on their shoulder after losing in the first round of the AHSAA 6A playoffs. The Indians – last season – rattled off 22 wins and return eight starters from that squad and have the depth for days at pitching, returning a quintet of hurlers.
“We are an experienced and veteran club,” said Indians Skipper Michael Dismukes. “We should have a fun season with the same expectations every year. We expect to compete and give ourselves a chance to be successful.”
Kyle Morrison (Troy), Ty Brooks (South Alabama), Noah Jones (Southern Union), Dawson Fuller (Southern Union), Garritt Terrell (Snead State), Doug Johnson (Southern Union), Jaxon Shineflew (South Alabama) and Davis Wells (Southern Union) have all made their post-Wetumpka-High plans. Dorian Jackson is leaving his options open.
With a roster that is college-bound, the Tribe’s not going to be able to sneak up on any opponent. The folks at www.prepbaseballreport.com wrote this: “Speaking of that returning talent, the Indians will bring back eight of their nine positional starters from last year’s team, and five pitchers who saw time on the mound last spring. 3B/RHP Kyle Morrison (Troy) returns to the middle of the lineup after serving as one of the primary run producers as a junior on last year’s team. Morrison, one of the top left-handed hitters in the senior class, has impressive gap-to-gap power and looks poised for his best year yet heading into his senior season. He was also up to 90 mph on the mound earlier last spring. MIF Noah Jones (Southern Union CC) will be back towards the top of the order in his final season for the Indians. Jones is a really consistent bat with smooth hands and pop to all fields from the right side of the box. He & Morrison both came up with some big hits last spring, and they’ll be asked to do the same this year. LHP/1B Dawson Fuller (Southern Union CC) is another senior who has played a big role for the Indians over the past few years. Fuller, a four-year starter, should return to the top of the rotation this spring using his fastball that has been up to 87 mph and his excellent feel and command for his changeup. He will also hit in the order when he’s not pitching and play first base.
C Garrit Terrell (Snead State CC) & OF/RHP Doug Johnson (Southern Union CC) are both seniors, like Fuller, who have been starters for Wetumpka ever since their freshman year. Terrell has been very consistent behind the plate defensively, while Johnson is an athletic outfielder who will also throw some big innings this spring. SS Ty Brooks (South Alabama) is a returning starter as a junior who is regarded as one of the top defensive infielders in the state, regardless of class. He’s got quick & smooth hands defensively and is also a quality left-handed leadoff hitter using an approach that finds consistent line drives. LHP Jaxon Shineflew (South Alabama) really emerged as a top arm in this rotation last spring, and he continued to show that throughout the summer. The southpaw led the team with the best ERA last spring and should see his workload increase this year. He’s been up to 86 mph with an easy, low-effort delivery. The Indians also have some talented younger players in their program who will fight for potential playing time this spring. Expect Wetumpka, the No. 6-ranked team in Class 6A in our Preseason Top-10, to be right in the thick of it in Class 6A towards the end of the season.”
Dismukes: “Our schedule is very competitive so it will be a challenging year due to the schedule we play.”
The Indians slide into 2022 by hosting Robertsdale High Friday and then Opelika Tuesday. Dates against Tallassee (2/25 at Southside Field), Clark County and ACA (both on 2/26) and Central-Clay County (2/28) move the Indians into March.
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