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May 24, 2012

Former Blue Devil hopes to be picked in MLB draft

In less than two weeks, from June 4-6, Major League Baseball will be holding its 2012 draft, fulfilling the dreams of several athletes who have worked for that moment most of their lives.

One such athlete will be Tifton native Christian Glisson, who has just finished up his senior season at Valdosta State, and spent his first two years of high school at Tift County High School before transferring to Lowndes High.

“It’s always been a dream of mine,” said Glisson. “It’s something that I think a lot of people dream about from the time they are little kids.”

Glisson was named the Gulf South Conference Player of the year, after leading the league in nearly every offensive category, including batting average (.420), slugging percentage (.747), on-base average (.508), doubles (20) and total bases (121).

That ranks as the most memorable moment of Glisson’s career so far. The second moste memorable came when he was wearing a Tift County Blue Devils jersey.

“Up until this year my most memorable moment was hitting a walk-off homerun my sophomore season at TCHS to give nationally-ranked Starrs Mill their first loss of the season,” said Glisson of his two-out, two-strike, two-run homer that gave the Blue Devils a 4-3 win over the No. 2 ranked nationally Starrs Mill Panthers.

Between those two moments Glisson has faced, and overcome, a lot of adversity.

After that sophomore season he transferred to Lowndes, where he not only starred on the baseball field, but also was the starting quarterback his junior season.

His play on the diamond was enough to earn him a scholarship to play baseball for the University of Georgia.

Before heading up to Athens he had Tommy John surgery during his senior season. Earlier during this 2012 season he suffered from tendinitis, but still managed to put up monster offensive numbers.

After playing two seasons for the Bulldogs, Glisson transferred back to Valdosta for his final two years of college ball. During his sophomore season at UGA he batted .342, second best on the team.

Fighting through the bad times is part of what has motivated him though.

“I think just the challenge in itself motivates me. Life is all about overcoming obstacles and facing adversity,” said Glisson. “Whether it be getting that last rep in the weight room, making a certain grade on a test or trying to make your way through a minor league farm system, it’s all the same to me. It’s about a challenge that is going to test my limits and give me the opportunity to learn and get better.”

Glisson has been working hard since the season ended to prepare for the draft, working in the weight room to put weight on, while also hitting and throwing to stay in top  baseball shape.

While Glisson is hopeful to get drafted, it will come down to whether or not a team believes his arm can hold up to a major league schedule. Glisson sees the bigger picture though.

“There is no way I would be in the spot I am right now without my spiritual background,” said Glisson. “Having it helps keep me grounded. I’m able to keep my eyes and thoughts on a greater purpose and realized that life about more than just baseball.”

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  • public safety awards.tif

    Pictured are the honorees of Thursday night's annual Public Safety Officer Appreciation and Awards Banquet by the Tifton Elks Lodge. Shown, from left, are Louise Spradley, who organized the banquet, Eddie Brown with the Tift County Emergency Medical Services, Sgt. Debbie Pyles with the Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College Police Department, Sgt. Bart Walker with the Omega Police Department, Officer of the Year honoree Thomas Catanzarita with the Tift County Sheriff's Office Jail Division, Deputy Jonathan Toledo with the TCSO, Brandi Conway with the Tifton-Tift County Animal Shelter, Georgia State Patrol Trooper Ben Taylor, Officer Brian Shockley with the Tifton Police Department and volunteer Firefighter Brian Fincher with the Chula Fire Department.

    LEOs and first responders honored at banquet

    A room full of local law enforcement and first responders were honored Thursday night by the Tifton Elks Lodge at their annual Public Safety Officer Appreciation and Awards Banquet for their service in the community.
    Prior to the awards being given out, Louise Spradley, who organized the banquet, welcomed everyone, and the invocation and pledge were led by the Tift County Sheriff's Office Honor Guard.

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