Baseball Signs Three Mississippi High School Standouts

Nov. 14, 2007

HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Southern Miss baseball coach Corky Palmer announced today the signing of three high school players, Jake Hawkins (Sumrall, Miss.), Paxton King (Brookhaven, Miss.) and B.A. Vollmuth (Biloxi, Miss.), to letters of intent and grant in aid for the 2008-2009 academic year.

Hawkins, a 5-foot-10 infielder who plays for coach Larry Knight at Sumrall High, batted .457 with 15 doubles, two triples and four home runs to go along with 24 runs batted in last season on a district championship team. Additionally, he walked 32 times, while striking out in just six plate appearances. As a pitcher, he tallied a 7-1 record with a 4.07 earned run average. Hawkins allowed 36 hits over 46 innings of work, while fanning 91 and walking 32 on the hill for the Bobcats.

The three-year letterwinner also won the Best Defensive Player award for his team, as he has been a two-time all-district selection and a second team all-area pick.

"Jake is a good infielder and a tough, competitive kid with great hands," Palmer said. "He knows how to win and has a real feel for the game."

King, a 6-foot-2 left-handed pitcher for coach Randy Spring at Brookhaven High, tallied a 7-4 mark last season with a 1.01 earned run average. He fanned 90 and allowed just 40 hits over 62 2/3 innings, giving up just nine earned runs and walking only 23 batters. At the plate, he hit .320 with nine doubles and 18 RBIs.

The two-time team MVP also garnered all-district honors three times and was the Lincoln Country MVP/Mr. Baseball for 2007. Off the field, King is a National Honor Society member as well as a Lincoln Scholar Athlete. He also won the Kiwanis Club Student of the Month in 2006.

"Paxton is a lefthander that throws 84-85 (miles per hour) and knows how to pitch," Palmer said. "He already has real good command of a changeup. He is really mature for his age and I think he will advance rather quickly in our system."

Vollmuth, a 6-foot-3 shortstop from Biloxi High School, hit .423 last season and collected eight home runs and 23 RBIs as well as tallying a .951 fielding percentage. As a pitcher, he was 5-3 with 46 strikeouts.

A two-time team captain, Vollmuth was the squad's Most Valuable Player last season as well as the team's Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year. A member of the Sun Herald All-Coast team, he also garnered all-district honors and was the MVP for the All-Star game with a pair of homers and two RBIs.

"B.A. is a good athlete, who projects as a probable third baseman, but has played shortstop in high school and may play some short here," Palmer said. "He is a right-handed power hitter with a lot of size for a high school guy. He has a chance to play early. Personally, I think he is one of the top infielders in the state and was probably the No.1 guy that we circled back this summer to go after. I feel good that we got him."

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