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HIGH SCHOOL BASEBALL: Blevins leads all-area teams; Simpkins named COY

Lawrence County senior pitcher Bryce Blevins was rock solid all season long for the Bulldogs. He was 8-0 as a starter before suffering a late-season injury. 

Blevins struck out 91 batters and allowed only one walk the entire year as the Bulldogs finished the season a region best 29-7. He gave up just 20 hits and allowed just five runs, finishing with an 0.30 ERA. 

Bevins was honored today as Mountain Top Sports ‘Player of the Year. 

Johnson Central standout Conner Lemaster is captain of the first team after leading the Golden Eagles to the 15th Region championship. He hit .314 with 14 extra base hits, including six home runs.  

Shelby Valley infielder Brady Bentley was chosen captain of the second team. Bentley hit .403 with 15 extra base hits, five of those were dingers. 

Pikeville head coach Shane Simpkins was named coach of the Year after guiding the Panthers to the school’s first-ever All “A” Classic state title. 

Here are the 2022 Mountain Top Sports All-Area baseball teams. The Panthers finished 22-12. 

Player of the Year: Bryce Blevins, Sr., Lawrence County 

Coach of the Year: Shane Simpkins, Pikeville 

FIRST TEAM 

P – Payton Burke, Sr., Prestonsburg 

P – Brady Clark, Sr., Pikeville 

P – Lucas Litteral, Sr., Magoffin County 

C – Keygan Pelfrey, Sr., Johnson Central 

C – Blue Fletcher, Sr., Lawrence County 

INF – Baron Ratliff, Sr., Paintsville 

INF – Ashton Deskins, Sr., Belfry 

INF – Tate Walters, Sr., Pikeville 

INF – Jonah Little, Jr., Letcher Central 

INF – Samuel Brown, Jr., Shelby Valley 

OF – Conner Lemaster, Sr., Johnson Central (Capt.) 

OF – Dawson Mills, Jr., Martin County 

OF – Nick Collinsworth, Sr., Lawrence County 

OF – Jonathan Banks, Jr., Belfry 

UTL – Nic Kidd, So., Prestonsburg 

UTL – Luke Patton, Sr., Lawrence County 

UTL – Steven Banks, Jr., Belfry 

UTL – Cameron Kelsey, So., Johnson Central 

UTL – Jonah Porter, Jr., Paintsville 

SECOND TEAM 

P – Canaan Cunniff, Sr., Letcher Central 

P – Isaac Duty, Fr., Pikeville  

P – Hunter Blevins, Jr., Johnson Central 

C – Caleb Mouton, So., Pike Central 

C – Isaiah Stanley, So., Belfry 

INF – Brady Bentley, So., Shelby Valley (Capt.) 

INF – Chase Preece, 8th, Martin County 

INF – Blake Hager, So., Pike Central 

INF – Jacob Bentley, Jr., Floyd Central 

INF – Sam Wright, So., Pikeville 

INF – Will Lafferty, Jr., Lawrence County 

OF – Max Martin, Jr., Floyd Central 

OF – Seth Fitch, Jr., Prestonsburg 

OF – Brayden Maynard, Jr., Lawrence County 

OF – Quinton Williams, Fr., Letcher Central 

UTL – Aiden Fields, Jr., Letcher Central 

UTL – Andrew Kidd, So., Betsy Layne 

UTL – Dylan Thompson, So., Pikeville 

UTL – Talon Pollock, So., Lawrence County 

UTL – Zach Taylor, Sr., Paintsville 

HONORABLE MENTION: Wes Prater, Dylan Mosley, Floyd Central; Noah Browm, Belfry; Byron Tackett, Cameron Pente, Jordan Frazier, Betsy Layne; Brock Butcher, Brayden Shepherd, Johnson Central; Eli Fletcher, Lawrence County; 

Bradyn Hall, Noah Jarrell, Jackson Hall, Pikeville; Gunner Collins, Paintsville; Hunter Mullins, Jaxson Damron, Shelby Valley; Jon Little, Matt Welch, Prestonsburg; Patrick Mandrell, Zac Crum, Pike Central;  

Dylan Burdine, Hayden Robinette, East Ridge; Evan Crum, Greyden Proctor, Martin County; Steven Layne, Mason Prater, Melvin McCoy, Phelps; Ethan Salyer, Ian McCarty, Magoffin County; Caleb Morgan, John Addington, Jenkins; Kaleb Slone, Preston Helle, Dawson Kincer, Letcher Central. 


Running back Ramon Jefferson transfers to Kentucky

Senior from Sam Houston State ranked fifth in the FCS in rushing yards last season

Former FCS All-American and Sam Houston State running back Ramon Jefferson has signed to play football at the University of Kentucky, head coach Mark Stoops announced Tuesday.

He will be eligible immediately and will have one season of eligibility remaining as a graduate transfer.

Jefferson, a 5-foot-10, 215-pounder from the Bronx, New York, played two seasons at Sam Houston State in Huntsville, Texas, but has had a long and winding road leading to Kentucky.

He began his college career at Maine, coached by under former UK offensive coordinator Liam Coen, where he redshirted in 2017.

In 2018, he saw action in 12 games with seven starting assignments for the Black Bears, totaling 1,037 rushing yards on 182 carries with eight touchdowns, while averaging 86.4 yards per game and 5.7 yards per carry. He also notched six receptions for 50-yards and a touchdown.

He helped lead Maine to the semifinals of the FCS playoffs and was named the Thurlow Cooper Offensive Rookie of the Year.


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