When Dwayne Sapp found out he was going to be a dad, he was on the baseball field.
Dwayne’s wife Mitzi came to let him know and now their son, Palmer, a senior at Dawson County High School has signed to play baseball for North Greenville University.
The Sapp family gathered with friends, teammates and administrators on Nov. 13 to celebrate Palmer’s commitment to play for the Crusaders in South Carolina.
“I have seen from the time he was an infant picking up a bat until now he’s a high school senior which is hard to believe,” said Dwayne Sapp who coaches at DCHS. “As a coach, Palmer can sometimes be a little bit of a pain in the you know what. As a player, he has grown exponentially.”
During Sapp’s junior year he had a .444 batting average with 40 hits and five home runs as well as 29 runs batted in and 12 stolen bases.
He pitched 18.1 innings with three wins and no losses and one save. He also had 17 strikeouts and a 3.200 ERA.
“We are very proud of Palmer and what he has accomplished,” said DCHS Athletic Director Grady Turner.
“It is a great honor to have Palmer here at the high school. We are going to miss him next year,” said Assistant Principal Brody Hughes.
Like most baseball players, it has been a long road to get to this point. Palmer’s mom Mitzi talked about the long days of travel ball and how she looks forward to seeing him play in Greenville.
“It’s exciting,” she said. “It is scary because he is going to be gone. We can go over there every weekend.”
Palmer thanked the friends that have supported him throughout his high school career and the friends he has made at DCHS as he transferred to the school as a sophomore.
“Moving here my sophomore year I left everything I knew,” he said. “It was real easy to come here.”
Dwayne Sapp said that Palmer is one of the smartest baseball players he has ever coached.
“I hate to say it but he may end up in the coaching aspect at some point and I don’t want him to. He has got the game and the smarts for it. As a team we are really going to miss him after this year,” Dwayne Sapp said.
As far as his choice of school, the Sapps all agreed that North Greenville was the perfect fit, from size to location to a program on the rise and coaching staff that Palmer got along with early on.
“A lot of people put the D1 thing on you, and he had opportunities to do that, but he chose a school that he felt fit him and he chose a school he felt comfortable with the coaches at,” Dwayne Sapp said. “Landon Powell played for Oakland A’s and South Carolina and was a first round draft pick. I think they hit it off very well.”
“I met him, I just knew I wanted to play with him,”
Palmer Sapp said. “The whole coaching staff, they are young and they are just
very, they seem like I can play with them.
“The program is coming up. They have won the conference and were runner up the last two years.”
Sapp plans to study biology or sports management.
“It’s been a heck of an experience playing here at Dawson. Thanks for letting me be on the team,” he said.