Crusaders News
Baseball - Thu, Jul. 18, 2013

• Tennessee Temple University baseball coach Greg Bartley thinks he has met some specific needs with the seven recruits he's signed for 2013-14, particularly in adding pitching depth. "We had seven or eight guys on our staff last year, and a couple of injuries really hurt us," he said Wednesday. "Five of the seven we've signed can pitch, although most of them play other positions, too. We're going to be more athletic, but most importantly these are good kids who wanted to be in a Christian environment." The seven include two from Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe already reported: right-handed pitcher and third baseman Cole Ellis and middle infielder Bradley Travis. The others are Jan Ramirez from The First Academy in Orlando, Fla., a left-handed pitcher and batter who also plays outfield and first base; right-hander and third baseman Bryant Martin from Faith Baptist School in Fredericksburg, Va.; Gordon Lee catcher Tanner Sexton; Marion County pitcher and third baseman Austin Layne; and LaFayette pitcher, shortstop and outfielder Micah Wyatt. Wyatt "is very athletic," Bartley said, noting that he'll probably play primarily in the outfield. "We needed to sign a catcher, and getting Sexton was a big surprise. He's a huge plus for us," Bartley said. "Layne isn't a big kid but has a good arm. He's probably under the radar, but I feel he's going to help us." Layne said he believed Temple was "a good fit" for him. He also talked to Maryville College, where he would have played one position, and he likes Bartley and the chance to play multiple spots for the Crusaders. Sexton, who also visited Shorter, noted Bartley's professional playing background in addition to his Christian approach, and the member of Parkway Baptist Church said he thought Temple "is going to be a great school for me, both studying about God and playing baseball." Ramirez and Martin both picked TTU because of its national reputation as a Christian school, Bartley said. "It's very satisfying to get those two guys," he added, "and we always want to get good local kids."