South Warren’s Evans bolts for WKU
The Hilltoppers added another Region 4 talent to their 2019 baseball signing class on Wednesday evening as South Warren catcher Hunter Evans signed his letter of intent to play baseball at WKU.
Joining fellow 4th Region alumni Tyler Robertson (Russell County HS), Ben Morrison (Bowling Green HS), Michael Darrell-Hicks (South Warren HS), Luke Brown (Bowling Green HS), Caleb Bruner (Russellville HS) and Austin Tibbs (Greenwood HS) on the WKU roster, Evans stresses the importance of those players in the transition from high school to college.
“Going in [to WKU] knowing guys, it helps me acclimate to the environment,” Evans said. “Even me being there with some of the players right now I feel like will really help.”
The Hilltoppers are recovering from a last-place finish in Conference USA last season, posting a 16-39 record including 6-24 in conference play.
However, Evans still likes what he sees.
“I’ve gone to quite a few of [WKU’s] scrimmages,” Evans said. “They’ve got some good guys that came in and I think that will really help them out this year. It’ll be a pretty good year for them.”
The senior catcher will bring a lot of tools to the table for the Hilltoppers after he plays his final season with the Spartans. In his career, Evans has proved as a reliable force on both sides of the baseball.
“Right away, I think he is a Division One-type defensive catcher,” South Warren head coach Chris Gage said. “He’s got all of the tools to be a great catcher. The scouts that I have talked to are really impressed with his receiving skills. His hitting is already off the charts for a high school player, and he’s just going to keep getting better and better.”
As a sophomore in 2016, Evans helped the Spartans to a 14th District Championship title and an appearance in the Region 4 final hitting at a .347 batting average with one home run and 11 doubles.
As a junior in 2017, Evans helped South Warren to an 18-17 record while batting .330 with a home run and 15 doubles, and he has only improved from there over the off-season.
“I think he’s gained at least 20 pounds from last season,” Gage said. “He’s worked really hard in the weight room and I think that will benefit him this upcoming year and when he goes to WKU next fall.”
As far as the decision to choose WKU as his means of continuing his baseball career, Evans’ cited the proximity as the clear advantage over other schools.
“It’s close to home. It’s not hard to get there,” Evans said. “My parents can come watch me every game, they have nice facilities and they’re on the up and up in baseball.”
Aside from his skills on the field, Gage believes that the Hilltoppers are getting much more than just a great player.
“Some of the best players aren’t always the nicest kids, but we have been fortunate to have classy kids like him here,” Gage said. “I’ve never heard anyone saying anything bad about him. I constantly get compliments from umpires and other coaches about how nice of a kid he is.”
Evans will get one more year as a Spartan before beginning a new chapter on the Hill and hopes to take South Warren back to being one of the top team in the 4th Region.
“We have a tough schedule for the first 20 games,” Evans said. “We need to not play outside of what we are and try to win as many games as we can to try to get to region or even state.”
As of now, the Spartans are slated to being the season on March 23rd against Christian County in the Spartan Classic at home (according to KHSAA.com).
“We’re going to make [his last season] last as long as possible,” Gage said. “It’s very rare to have a Division One-type kid in your program and sometimes you get a little bit complacent, but you have to remember that it’s special and to enjoy the ride.”