Austin Lampley has made the most of his opportunities on the mound for the Forrest Rockets.After having the 2020 season cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Lampley made several appearances during …
Austin Lampley has made the most of his opportunities on the mound for the Forrest Rockets.
After having the 2020 season cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Lampley made several appearances during the 2021 season and appeared in big games for Forrest.
With the sky as the limit as his potential, Lampley popped on the radar of LeMoyne-Owen and recently made it official as he signed his letter of intent to continue his baseball career with the Magicians.
“We knew from the time Austin was a freshman, just from how tall he was, his build and kind of the ways he projected himself to be a pitcher in the future that he was going to be special,” Rocket coach Andy Burkett said.
For Lampley, it’s just a sigh of relief that allows him to focus on the 2022 season and have a strong finish at Forrest.
“It feels great to sign after being scouted. I’m just relieved,” he said.
The signing came through a bit of chance as Lampley was playing on a field near Memphis, which happened to be owned by one of his dad’s friends.
As word got out about the lanky righty from Chapel Hill, the LeMoyne-Owen coaches were able to watch Lampley pitch and the rest was history.
While his path will eventually take him to Memphis to play for the Magicians, Lampley got his start by watching his older brother play.
“I started when I was four because of my brother. He was playing when I was younger and I just wanted to play and follow right behind him,” Lampley said.
While he appeared in limited roles a year ago, he still posted a 4-0 record and recorded a pair of saves.
His favorite memory on the mound came while pitching against Lewis County.
“All I remember was I was playing first base and Coach B (Burkett) told me to get warmed up. I came in the game in the next inning and started dealing,” Lampley said.
“He was a guy that would have seen a lot of time in 2020, but took advantage of his opportunities in 2021.
He pitched in some huge games. He pitched against Marshall County High School, he pitched against Lewis County, he pitched against Page on their senior night and shut them out over seven innings,” Burkett said.
While he’s played some first base, Lampley says his favorite position has always been pitching and he figures to continue as a starter at the college level, potentially even as a freshman.
“He’s a guy that does it his own way. He throws a lot of good breaking balls. He mixed pitches in the zone and throws a great cut-fastball as well. He’s one of those weird guys that’s kind of a left-handed pitcher, but he’s right-handed. He does a lot of different things for you that way,” Burkett said.
While he had another offer on the table, once he met with the LeMoyne-Owen coaching staff, he knew where he wanted to play college ball.
“It wasn’t what I wanted. LeMoyne-Owen gave me the best offer and I took it. The coaching staff was so welcoming,” Lampley said.
With his senior season underway, the stresses of finding a spot on a college roster are out of the way and Lampley says he can give 100% of his focus on the Rockets’ season.
“I’m really excited because I don’t have to worry. I just get to relax a little bit more,” he said.
Lampley plans to pursue a degree in art.
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