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May 22—Parker Stampley’s excellence in baseball has helped him punch his ticket for higher education, and the Fox Creek High School baseball standout has Limestone University as a major part of his plans for the next four years.

Stampley, a 6-foot-1, 150-pound pitcher, was the honoree in a May 21 celebration at the Edgefield County charter school as he confirmed his plans to head for Gaffney and put his talents into action on behalf of the Saints, competing in the South Atlantic Conference. His baseball days go back to age 4, he noted.

“One of my coaches went to Limestone, and he sent videos to their coach, and they liked me and gave me a scholarship,” he said, adding that he plans to major in business, possibly en route to a career in running a fitness center.

“He really put in a lot of work throughout the off-season,” said Jake Smith, the Predators’ coach. “I just knew he was a competitor the whole time. He’s not a guy who’s going to go out there and blow people away with velocity. He knows how to pitch, and he’s not afraid to compete.”

The right-hander’s challenges in the past year included undergoing Tommy John surgery — ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction, to allow him to get his throwing arm back into shape for months of intense service on the mound. Stampley was in action for Fox Creek in 13 games this season, pitching 38 innings and administering 44 strikeouts for an earned-run average of 2.8.

Smith said, “I enjoyed coaching him, just from all facets, and … he always puts his head down and would go to work every day, and he’s very coachable. Easy kid to coach.”

Teammate Caleb Baynham, a senior who served in right field and also on the mound, made similar comments and confirmed that Stampley is “a really good teammate” and throws plenty of strikes.

Fox Creek, in the 2021 season, wound up going 14-11 overall and 5-5 in Region 5-AAAA.

Limestone’s conference, the SAC, covers portions of the Carolinas, Virginia and Tennessee, including such schools as Anderson University, Catawba College, Mars Hill University, Newberry College and Carson-Newman University.