Former Smoky Mountain baseball player Zebby Matthews saw his freshman season at Walters State end after the Senators tied for third in the National Junior College World Series.
Meanwhile, another former Mustang, Cal Raleigh, is playing for the Modesto Nuts of the Advanced Class A California League.
Walters State reached the winners’ bracket finals of the Junior College World Series in Grand Junction, Colorado, before losing 11-8 to Iowa Western. The Senators led 8-3 after five innings and were still up 8-7 after eight, but they allowed four runs in the top of the ninth.
In an elimination game against Central Arizona, Walters State scored three runs in the bottom of the ninth to force extra innings tied 5-5. Central erupted for seven runs in the top of the 10th to win 12-5.
Matthews pitched in the 10th inning of that game. Although he gave up four runs, they were all unearned.
He finished the season with an 8-2 record and a 2.79 earned run average. He made 19 appearances on the mound, including 10 starts.
Raleigh is in his second season of minor league baseball in the Mariners organization. The catcher was chosen by Seattle in the third round of last year’s draft and is listed as the Mariners’ 13th best prospect.
Raleigh is tied for the team lead in home runs (seven) and RBIs (29) while batting .226.
He hit .288 with eight homers and 29 RBIs last year for the Everett (Wash.) AquaSox in the Class A Short Season Northwest League.
Modesto entered the week with a 25-32 record and in third place among the four teams in the California League’s North Division.