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Seniors will have good memories from season

Cody Ewest, Drake Smallwood and Korey Austin walk away from Thomson High School with a lifetime of memories when it comes to their last year of playing baseball.

The trio of seniors, who recently graduated, became only the second baseball team at THS in 42 years to make it as far as they did in this year's state baseball playoffs.

Thomson went to the semifinals where they lost the series, two games to one, against the Columbus Blue Devils last week.

The only team to fair better than this year's Diamond 'Dogs was the 1968 Thomson Bulldogs' baseball team.

Ewest has been a starter since he was a freshman. He began his prep career as right fielder for the Bulldogs before moving to the infield.

This year, Ewest was selected as the Region 3-AAA Player of The Year.

"We got better every year," recalled Ewest following the 'Dogs semifinals series loss to Columbus last Tuesday. "Nobody ever expected us to get this far this year. We did it because everybody worked together."

Ewest, who recently signed to play baseball at Gordon College, hit a career-high 12 homeruns this season.

The season was most special for Drake Smallwood -- a player who had seen limited action prior to this season.

Smallwood, in fact, became the starting right fielder for the Bulldogs.

Smallwood made several outstanding catches in the outfield during the regular season and his abilities to make exceptional catches continued during the four-rounds that Thomson played in the state playoffs.

In addition to his defensive skills, Smallwood also became a good hitter for the Bulldogs.

"We had a great season," said Smallwood. "I was glad to be a part of it all."

Korey Austin, a starting pitcher and relief pitcher, was another one of those players who didn't see a lot of action before this season.

One of his greatest memories, no doubt, would have to be how he pitched against the Cairo Syrupmakers in Game 2 of the second round of the Georgia Class AAA state baseball playoffs.

Austin performed his slider pitch to perfection in relief that night as Thomson went on to sweep the series and advance to the third round.

Austin struck out five of Cairo's last nine batters with his special pitch.

"It was a great experience playing baseball at Thomson High School," said Austin.

Web posted on Thursday, June 03, 2010

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