Pine’s Knight signs with William Carey

Published 11:53 am Friday, August 3, 2018

Pine’s Ethan Knight has signed a letter of intent to attend William Carey University and play baseball for the Crusaders.
“I was going to there either way,” Knight said. “That’s really the only place I wanted to go. I was going there for education, so that’s really the only place. For baseball, they’re a top NAIA team as it is. It was an easy choice.”
Knight said one of the things that drew him to William Carey was atmosphere.
“It’s a Christian atmosphere, gated, small like Pine, safe, good baseball team. I know a bunch of people there,” Knight said. “It’s where my mom (Crystal Knight) graduated from. I’ve been there many times.”
Knight said he is thankful for the opportunity to go play anywhere, but said that William Carey was his first choice.
“I’m ecstatic about it. I love (head) coach (Bobby) Halford, (assistant) coach (Ben) Smith. Good coaches, good teammates,” Knight said.
Knight, who graduated from Pine in May, was a three-time all-district player. Knight has been a first-team all-district player the last two years and he was second-team in his sophomore year.
This year, Knight was solid at the plate and on the mound. Knight was named the District 9-2A Pitcher of the Year this season after posting a 1.80 ERA in district play with 18 strikeouts, 15 walks and a hit batter in 11-2/3 innings.
Offensively, Knight hit .429, reached base at a .541 clip and slugged .643 in league play. Knight posted 13 RBIs and 12 runs scored. He totaled four doubles and a triple.
Knight said he will be a position a player at William Carey.
When Knight was asked about his key to success, he said it was hard work.
“All of the time, me and my dad would come up here, weekends, days I had off, just anything,” Knight said. “It’s just repetition. Baseball’s something you just can’t put down. You cannot put it down and be good at it. I learned that. One summer, I took off and I came and I was not that good and I had to just get back to it, just throwing, long tossing and hitting everyday.”
Knight was part of history with Pine’s baseball program.
“I was lucky. I started as a freshman and that was our first year ever going to the playoffs,” he said. “Every year, we got more competitive, more competitive and we kept going to the playoffs and this year was our first playoff win (7-4 over Avoyelles Public Charter).”
Pine coach Blake Dillon said that the coaching staff is excited about Knight getting to go to William Carey.
“He’s a hard working kid,” Dillon said. “It’s really the school that I think he’s wanted to go to the whole time to kind of stay close to home. They’ve built a good program out there. He knows some of the current players and he’s just excited to get the opportunity to go and prove himself. It’s a rare opportunity for a high school kid to get to go play on the next level and we’re excited about it. He’s excited about it and we just wish him the best of luck.”
Dillon said that Knight was the leader of his team.
“He’s going to go over there and be a leader. He’s going to be a hard worker. Great first baseman with really good feet and great glove and an above average hitter with power and doesn’t strikeout much, and (he) draws walks. He’s really good at the plate also,” Dillon said.
This season, Knight struck out just nine times in 112 plate appearances. He coaxed 22 walks.
Knight plans to major in pre-pharmacy.