HICKORY FLAT - Hickory Flat senior decided not to hang the cleats up for good following his senior season. Smith signed with the Blue Mountain College junior varsity baseball program last Friday, May 10 during a ceremony held inside the Hickory Flat Attendance Center auditorium.
"It means a lot to me. This has been my dream all of my life," Smith said of playing collegiate baseball. "It's just one of those things not many people get to do."
Smith was a versatile member of the Rebels squad over his tenure at Hickory Flat. Smith toed the rubber many nights while also seeing time at catcher and first base. In his senior season, Smith led the team with 55 strikeouts from the mound and held a .300 batting average with one home run and a team-high 23 RBI.
"Clayton did a lot for us," Hickory Flat head coach Andy Dillard added. "He did whatever we asked him to do and to the best of his ability. BMC is getting a good baseball player and an even better kid."
Smith will attend college just 15 minutes down the road, something that means the world to him as his brother Chris finishes his last two years of high school baseball.
"Being close to home means I can commute and they can come see me whenever and I can come back and see Chris play," Smith said.
Smith said that the BMC coaching staff will continue to use him on the mound for the most part but will have the opportunity to prove himself as a hitter while playing first base. Smith added that he is working on changing his body to better himself and his stamina before entering the collegiate ranks.
Smith will enroll at BMC in the fall.