Area prep athletes sign national letters of intent - WSMV News 4

Area prep athletes sign national letters of intent

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Heritage wrestler Landon Reed signed with UTC Heritage wrestler Landon Reed signed with UTC
TJ Binder (left) and Drew Toth (right) signed baseball scholarships at Ooltewah TJ Binder (left) and Drew Toth (right) signed baseball scholarships at Ooltewah

Heritage state champ joins Mat Mocs
Landon Reed grew up watching the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga wrestling program. He'll soon join them on the mat at MacClellan Gymnasium.

The Heritage High senior signed a national letter of intent on Wednesday to wrestle for the Mat Mocs next year. He's seen the program become competitive on the national level in recent years, and he's excited to be a part of its future.

"I love UTC's program. I love the coaches and staff, and I already know most of the wrestlers here," said Reed, who hopes to major in education and one day become a coach. "Growing up around here, I've been to almost all of their matches. I was there when they beat Ohio State a few years ago.

"It's a great school and a great team, and they've got what I'm looking for in academics, too."

Reed won the Georgia state championship at 125 pounds a year ago, and is bumping up to 132 pounds this winter.

At UTC Reed will be reunited with former Heritage teammate Cory Canada, who is a freshman with the Mocs this year. Reed is just the third Generals' grappler to receive a college scholarship, following Canada and Chase Duke (Anderson College).

"This is the epitome of what we want for our high school wrestlers," Heritage coach Kenny Hill said. "I think (UTC) Coach (Heath) Eslinger is getting a great wrestler and a guy who will definitely help out in their (wrestling) room."

Heritage softball also had two players sign scholarship papers in the last week. Senior Renae Johnson inked a national letter of intent to play for Tusculum, and Brandy Goldsmith officially signed up to play for Lee University.

Ooltewah trio signs baseball papers
The Ooltewah baseball team's senior class may lack in numbers, but it certainly isn't lacking in talent.

The Owls have just three seniors on this year's roster, but all three signed college scholarship papers on Wednesday, including two to Division I schools.

Outfielder Drew Toth inked with Tennessee Tech, infielder/catcher TJ Binder signed with Troy and second baseman Cody Rhinehart is heading to Bryan College.

"It's exciting because you've been thinking about colleges since your sophomore year, and it's really good to get it out of the way now and play relaxed," Rhinehart said.

The trio has always been close, and figured a joint signing ceremony Wednesday was the perfect way to celebrate the decisions on their futures.

"We're all three best friends, having played together at Ooltewah ever since freshman year," Toth said. "TJ moved here and I've been playing with Cody since we were little, so it just really means a lot for the three of us to stick together and stick it out and get to play in college."

Ringgold's Crownover makes it official with Clemson
Ringgold ace pitcher Matthew Crownover committed to Clemson almost two years ago, but the talented left-hander finally made his college choice official when he signed a national letter of intent with the Tigers on Wednesday morning.

Crownover was a first-team all-American selection by Perfect Game as a junior last season, and ranked as the group's No. 5 left-handed pitcher in the Class of 2012.

With a good breaking ball and a precise fastball in the low 90's, Crownover is also expected to be selected in the 2012 Major League Baseball Amateur Draft.

Fellow Ringgold stanout Corey Kafka is verbally committed to Mercer. Coach Brent Tucker said Kafka will sign his national letter of intent on Friday.

Three area basketball standouts to play Division I
Two Girls Preparatory School seniors signed national letters of intent to play college basketball next year.

Reigning TSSAA Division II-AA Miss Basketball winner Chadarryl Clay followed through on her commitment to play for Auburn in the SEC. ranks the 5-foot-7 point guard among the top 75 prospects in the country after averaging 15.6 points per game in her junior season.

Fellow GPS star Jeneh Perry also signed to play Division I basketball at Loyola (Maryland). The duo helped lead the Bruisers to a 23-1 season in 2010-11 and the DII-AA state championship.

McCallie point guard C.J. Reese also signed a letter of intent Wednesday with Southeast Missouri State of the Ohio Valley Conference. Reese led the Blue Tornado to a state runner-up finish in Division II-AA last season.

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