Four sign at PDCCC

Published 9:51 pm Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Paul D. Camp Community College is opening its baseball program for the first time, and four Suffolk baseball players have signed to be a part of it.

Last month, David Mitchell stepped down as Nansemond-Suffolk Academy baseball head coach to pursue another coaching opportunity. He took the job as the head baseball coach at Paul D. Camp Community College in its first year with a baseball program. In his first recruiting class, he has signed four Suffolk graduates and a transfer in Myles Geller, Chase Lewis, Patrick Crossman and Bryce Jones.

Geller, a recent graduate and outfielder for the Nansemond River High School baseball team, is excited about the opportunity. He was familiar with Mitchell and some of the other players he was recruiting. With this being a first-year program, it’s an opportunity for him to come right in and make a name for himself. Geller had one of the highest batting averages on the Warriors’ team this year.

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“I was looking at different colleges, but Paul D. just seemed right for me,” Geller said. “I get to play ball with some great ball players. It’s exciting that this is going to be a first-year program.”

Jones is a transfer from Virginia Wesleyan that will play for PDCCC. He graduated from King’s Fork High School in 2015 and signed to play for the University of Virginia-Wise. From there he transferred from UVA-Wise after a year to be closer to home. After being a part of the team for a year, he decided it was best to attend PDCCC.

“I wanted to go to a community college and get my associate (degree) and be a part of a new and upcoming program,” Jones said. “Build relationships with these guys.”

Lewis, a recent graduate of Lakeland High School, is excited about having another opportunity to be able to continue his career. The whole process was straightforward and easy for him, as everything happened within a few days. Mitchell called and asked him a few questions about his season, and Lewis visited the campus and, shortly after that, committed to the program.

“I’m glad about having another chance to play,” Lewis said. “I’m just looking forward to this next chapter. I get a chance to earn a degree and transfer somewhere else and finish it.”

Crossman is a 2016 graduate of NSA. He was an integral part of the successful 2016 season and is familiar with Mitchell, since he played under him for a couple of years.

With the baseball program being started for the first time, it is refreshing for everyone involved. Excitement has surrounded those signing, and Mitchell is happy to give athletes an opportunity in his first month on the job.

“Everything is being done for the first time, and it’s exciting,” Mitchell said. “Having our facility made and getting school colors and logos trademarked is a fun process. When we recruit, we want to focus on the Tidewater area. Suffolk is a big part of that, and we want to keep those guys close.”

Mitchell is hoping, with the signing of these three players, it will generate more opportunities for recruiting in other Suffolk schools. He believes as the program continues to grow and build, the excitement will grow and evolve as well.