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PITCHER OF THE YEAR: Kevin Martin

Jeff Hurndon Photography
Eagle's Landing Christian senior Kevin Martin was named the Southern Crescent Pitcher of the Year after compiling a 12-1 record with a 1.20 ERA to lead the Chargers into the quarterfinals of the Class A playoffs.

Jeff Hurndon Photography Eagle's Landing Christian senior Kevin Martin was named the Southern Crescent Pitcher of the Year after compiling a 12-1 record with a 1.20 ERA to lead the Chargers into the quarterfinals of the Class A playoffs.

Question: What was this season’s biggest highlight?

Answer: “My favorite memory of the year was probably the region championship game when we beat our biggest rival, Landmark Christian. I threw a no-hitter. And with it being my senior year, I thought that was pretty special.”

Q: How did you improve your game this season?

A: “We worked the most on mechanics, getting everything to stay fluent. Nothing jerky or anything like that. Once I figured that out that helped me tremendously to hit my spots and throw the majority of my pitches for strikes. A couple days before [Strong Rock] we went through mechanics, and Strong Rock was the game where I just stayed fluent and hit my spots.”

Q: What was this season’s biggest challenge?

A: “I knew we were going to be a young team, so I knew it was going to be much harder for us. But we actually came through in our team bonding and great team chemistry. That really helped us. And our whole mentality was we were never going to give up no matter what the score was. We really didn’t, and it showed with making it to the Elite 8 with that young of a team.”

Vitals: The left-hander finished 12-1 with a 1.20 ERA. He struck out 152 batters in 82 innings, leading ELCA to a 25-7 record and the Class A quarterfinals. Martin was named the Region 9-A player of the year. He signed with Tennesse Tech.

Why Martin: Perhaps no single pitcher was more crucial to his team than Martin. The only senior on ELCA’s roster, Martin took the mound in virtually every big game for the Chargers and rarely, if ever, disappointed. He beat region rival Landmark Christian twice in one week to help the Chargers win the region title. In the Class A tournament, Martin allowed just three runs, pitched two shutouts and was a perfect 3-0.

Coach Doug Campbell on Martin: “I knew he would be solid. I knew he would be our guy. I knew he would pitch all our main region games and be the guy we were behind. I didn’t know how well he would throw. I knew he would do a good job, but I didn’t know he would step up the way he did and be so dominating.”

Others considered: Union Grove’s Travis Bergen, Luella’s Kendal Hill and Mundy’s Mill’s Corey Harmon.

Where are they now: Harmon won the award as a junior, and led Mundy’s Mill to the second round of the Class AAAA tournament this season. He is this year’s Clayton News Daily/Henry Daily Herald Player of the Year.

— Compiled by

Brian Paglia