Thursday, November 13, 2014
- by B.B. Branton
McCallie senior Tyler Payne helped lead the Blue Tornado to the TSSAA D-II state baseball championship this past spring and a year from now looks to use his talents on the diamond for Lee University.
Payne committed to Lee in March and made it official Wednesday by signing scholarship papers with the Flames which compete at the NCAA D-II level.
“I have one more year of high school baseball here at McCallie, but am excited about playing at the next level,” said Payne who is also a wide receiver on the football team and takes on MBA in the state quarterfinals Friday in Nashville.
“My freshman year at Lee I will be playing second base and then probably move to shortstop my sophomore year.”
Payne was a key figure at shortstop on the championship Tornado team this past spring as he batted .349 and led the state in stolen bases with 49 and also won five games with two saves as a pitcher.
This past summer he played second base and shortstop for Team Tennessee (batted .320) as the Volunteer state squad placed to Texas in the Junior Sunbelt Series in Oklahoma.
“Prior to this summer I had not played second base since the eighth grade and there are some distinct differences in the two positions, but I can adjust my game to either position.”
contact B.B. Branton at email@example.com