Hitting the curve

Senior decides to play baseball at the collegiate level


Submitted photo

Story by Madison Brown, managing editor

After years of dedication and hard work, this senior’s dream has finally paid off. On Nov. 15, senior Chris Lyles signed his letter of intent to play baseball at Southern Arkansas University (SAU).

“I’ve been playing baseball ever since I was four years old,” Lyles said. “My dad got me a plastic bat and ball the Christmas before, and I’ve been playing ever since.”

Although Lyles has impressive athletic abilities in football and track, baseball has always been his calling.

“It’s something about the rush I get when I’m playing baseball,” Lyles said. “When I’m on the field, I feel like I can do anything in the world.”

This passion didn’t take long to be noticed on the collegiate level.

“I was playing in a tournament at Henderson State, and we played against SAU’s starting shortstop,” Lyles said. “About a week later, I got a phone call from Coach Pettigrew saying he wanted to offer me a baseball scholarship, and he invited me on an official visit. I toured the campus, went to football games, hung out with some players and it just felt like home.”

Having a family that supports you is the icing on the cake when you finally achieve your dream.

“My entire family has been my support system throughout it all,” Lyles said. “They’re always at my events, staying on me about my grades and keeping me in line everyday.”

From playing with a plastic bat in his living room, to running the bases on a varsity team, Lyles is ready for this next chapter in his life.

“This means another chance to prove to people that I can play ball at the next level,” Lyles said. “This opportunity is a once-in-a-lifetime deal, and I have to take advantage of it.”