Jun. 11—Logan Chambers and Landrey Wilkerson knew ahead of time they were selected as All-Americans.
When the time finally came for the NJCAA to release its Division I All-America Team, the two Crowder College standouts had similar reactions on Wednesday afternoon.
“I was pretty amazed and shocked,” Chambers said. “At the same time, I knew I had a good year. and I knew it was a possibility, but it doesn’t change the fact that you actually see your name posted there. It was an exciting moment to see my name. I was looking for other players, not just myself, and to see another Crowder player made it even better.”
“It was amazing,” Wilkerson said. “To be honest, that wasn’t my goal, but everybody wants to be an All-American. I just stayed me and tried to help us win, and I blocked out all the other awards and outside nonsense and just tried to be a good teammate. It all fell into place. My first reaction, I got a hold of Logan and told him congratulations. He worked just as hard to get to this point.”
The two prolific hitters proved to be instrumental in one of the Roughriders’ best seasons in program history. Crowder (55-8) finished third and posted its best showing (3-2) in three NJCAA World Series appearances.
Chambers, a COVID-freshman, set a single-season program record with 107 hits that shattered Elvis Peralta’s previous mark of 100 in 2017. He’s also the new single-season doubles leader with 36, breaking Tim Sheeler’s record of 27 that’s stood since 1994.
The infielder paced the Roughriders with a .404 batting average, 90 runs (two shy of the program record) and drove in 76 runs (four shy of the program record). The left-handed swinger also belted 16 home runs.
“It adds on to the whole team’s accomplishments,” Chambers said. “I know the honor is more of an individual thing, but it really goes to our whole team, because a lot of my success came from not just what I did. It was from what my team did and what they did in the lineup before me and after me, and those things lead into what made me successful this year.
“The culture and the bond will stick with me. What Team 56 had was special. It was one of a kind.”
Wilkerson, another COVID-freshman, now holds the single-season school record with 20 long balls that broke Kyle MacDonald’s record of 15 set in 2017 with a BBCOR bat. He also produced 72 RBI and walked 52 times.
The left-handed hitting outfielder tallied 72 hits and scored 73 runs.
“Team 56 probably will go down as one of the best teams, but I know for a fact there are going to be teams that go further and hopefully soon win the national championship,” Wilkerson said. “I’ll remember the relationships and the ethics, values that they instilled in me. I learned how to deal with success and failure. You can’t get too high and you can’t get too low. I learned a lot, and it’ll go with me in my life.”
With the three-day MLB Draft set to start on July 11, thoughts of potentially hearing their names called on draft day have crept in for both players.
“It’s something I have considered,” said Chambers, who’s signed at Tennessee. “I’m pretty focused on Knoxville, but it’s definitely something with where I’m going, I have to consider. It would mean a lot (to get drafted). With the accomplishments of this team and the success we all had as a whole to see myself or some other guys on our team get that call, it would be very special.”
“I would like to make baseball go as far as it can,” said Wilkerson, who is headed to Arkansas. “And I want to make sure my mom never has to work again. Right now, I’m just taking it one step at a time. It’d be a dream come true. That’s what I’m working for. It would be crazy, but it would be awesome.”
For now, Chambers and Wilkerson, along with the rest of the departing players from Team 56, join a long list of Crowder baseball alumni.
“Once a Roughrider, always a Ghostrider,” Chambers said.