Tifton Gazette

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June 9, 2014

Panthers players, coach honored at banquet

TIFTON — Tiftarea Academy Panthers' players, coaches, families and friends recently celebrated a very successful 2014 season with a baseball banquet.

The program has enjoyed much recent success. They were state runners-up in the GISA's Class AAA this year with a 22-12 record and for the second consecutive year that Coach Brad Porter has led the Panthers to the Region 3-AAA championship.

Porter was named the region Coach of the Year for the second straight season, while Cade Marlowe was recognized as the Region 3-AAA Player of the Year. Panthers earning 1st team All-Region honors were Marlowe, Rob Flick, Taylor Folsom, Greer Howard, Noah McMinn, Devin Paulk, Thomas Spurlin and Bo Vickers. Marlowe, Flick, Folsom and Paulk were also 1st team All-State selections. Flick and Folsom will represent Tiftarea in the GISA All-Star game.

In addition to the GISA awards, Tiftarea Academy recognized several players for team awards.

Porter presented Marlowe with the Scholar-Athlete award, which recognizes the player with the highest GPA.  He also presented four additional awards voted on by players and coaches. Howard received the Leadership award,  Flick received the Christian Character award,  Marlowe received the Ironman award and Sam Varnadoe received the Teammate award.

The Panthers have recorded 50 wins over the last two seasons for an average of 25 wins per season. The average is one more than the school's best single season win total prior to Porter's arrival.

Three players from the 2013 team went on to play college baseball and at least three more from this year's squad will go on to play collegiately. Howard has signed a letter of intent to play with Emory University while Flick has signed on to play with Middle Georgia College. Folsom is expected to sign with Florida State University in the very near future.

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