The Appalachian League will be down another locality this coming year.
Officials from the Princeton Baseball Association announced last week the Princeton Whistlepigs will no longer be part of the league.
According to a statement from the PBA, “the growing demands of the Appalachian League have exhausted the financial and philanthropic return that the Princeton Baseball Association, its donors, volunteers and citizens have grown to expect.”
Princeton has had an Appalachian League team since 1988, serving as an affiliate for the Pirates, Reds, Devil Rays and the renamed Rays before becoming the Princeton WhistlePigs in 2011 when the Appalachian League became a college summer baseball league.
The Appalachian League announced the 2023 All-Appalachian League Team. This year’s group is led by Johnson City’s Logan Sutton, the Appy League’s Player of the Year, and Kingsport’s Ricky Reeth, who earned Pitcher of the Year honors.
The All-Appalachian League Team features five infielders, four outfielders, three pitchers, one catcher, one designated hitter and a two-way player. Eight of the 10 Appy League teams are represented this year, with Johnson City and Kingsport’s three selections leading the way. Bluefield, Bristol and Burlington had two selections, while Elizabethton, Greeneville and Pulaski had one each. Fourteen of the 15 selections are either from or committed to Division I schools, and Elon and Tennessee are the only programs with multiple selections.
UTL IF: Sam White, Pulaski (West Virginia)
White hit .317 (44-for-139) with three home runs, 12 doubles and 25 RBIs in 38 games. He posted a .382 OBP and .482 SLG and was 6-for-7 in stolen-base attempts. White tied for second in the Appy League in doubles and third in hits, thanks in part to 15 multi-hit performances, and he ranked fifth in total bases (67). He went 3-for-3 with a home run, three RBIs and a season-high three runs scored against Burlington on July 13. Facing Princeton on July 31, the final day of the regular season, White went 3-for-4 with three doubles, three RBIs and a stolen base. He had an RBI, scored a run and was one of two East players to collect multiple hits in the 2023 Appy League All-Star Game, going 2-for-3 as the team’s starting third baseman and cleanup hitter.
CHS wrestler scholarship winner
The third annual Kip Nininger Benefit golf tournament at Botetourt Golf and Swim club, included a special presentation. Not just another big scholarship check, but the 100th check handed out to one of our local athletes. Botetourt golf Pro Jeff Sprinkel introduced Kip’s dad–Chris Nininger to award the scholarship in his son’s name. This year’s scholarship winner is Christiansburg wrestler Parker Ferrell, a Virginia Tech commit. He is currently the Seventh ranked heavyweight nationally in the 2024 recruiting class by FloWrestling, and someone with a personal connection to Kip.
The Third annual Kip Nininger benefit golf tournament raised $59,460 dollars for the scholarship fund.
Virginia Tech director of swimming and diving Sergio Lopez Miro announced recently the hiring of Reka Gyorgy as director of operations, Antonio Nuñez Alvarez as an assistant swim coach and Ryan Hawkins as an assistant dive coach.
Gyorgy is very familiar with the Virginia Tech swim and dive programs because she was a member from 2017-2022.
During her time on the team, Gyorgy was a two-time ACC champion and a two-time NCAA Division I All-American. While she found success at Virginia Tech, she also found it internationally as part of the Hungary national team. Gyorgy represented Hungary at multiple European Championships and at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.
Alvarez brings his coaching experience from Delta State University to his new position as an assistant coach.
While at Virginia Tech, Hawkins was a four-time NCAA All-American and was the 2014 VT Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year. He was also a member of Team USA in 2012, 2015 and 2017. In January of 2021, Hawkins became the club director of New River diving. This year he joins Virginia Tech as an assistant dive coach.
The Virginia Tech men’s swimming and diving recruiting class for 2023 has been ranked 15th in the country by SwimSwam.
Tech’s class is headlined by a pair of versatile sprinters who specialize in freestyle, as No. 10-ranked Brendan Whitfield is joined by Lithuanian Daniil Pancerevas as the Hokies stock the cupboards for the future.
Whitfield is the only swimmer in the class to be sub-20 in the 50 free (19.4), sub-43 in the 100 free (42.6) and sub-1:34 in the 200 free (1:33.9), making him immensely valuable both individually and on relays. He’s also one of the fastest in the 100 fly (46.2) and a notable backstroker (47.6/1:46.6).
Pancerevas heads to the NCAA after representing Lithuania at the 2023 World Championships, brining a similar freestyle level to Whitfield with long course best times of 22.9/49.6/1:48.9. He’s also 48.0/1:45.0 in SCM, and has some fly (24.6/54.6) and IM (2:02.8) ability in LCM.
The third top-tier recruit in the class is Indian distance specialist Vedaant Madhavan, who has potential with 8:17/15:50 best times in the 800/1500 free in long course.
Zac Ouzilou adds some depth as a versatile sprinter (20.6/45.4 free, 48.9/1:48.2 back, 49.2 fly).
The CSCAA announced today the first top 25 rankings of the season and the Hokies are ranked in both the men’s poll and the women’s poll.
The Tech women start the season ranked No. 17 overall and No. 6 in the ACC. The last time the Hokies were ranked this high was the 2020-2021 season. Last season, they were first ranked No. 24 in October but rose throughout the season to finish No. 20 overall.
The Tech men are starting the season ranked No. 11 overall and No. 2 in the ACC. This is the same place the men started last season; however, they rose throughout the season finishing No. 9 overall.