Tom Cantrell has lived in Dacula for years, driving to Dahlonega for his duties as North Georgia College and State University's head baseball coach.
While his drive to work isn't short, a good number of his recruiting trips don't stray too far from home.
Cantrell has relied heavily on Gwinnett talent dating back to his days coaching at Georgia Perimeter College/DeKalb College. That hasn't changed even with the coach's move 10 years ago to a school away from metro Atlanta.
This year's roster is no different. A total of 13 Gwinnett players are on the Saints' 2009 roster.
Four of Cantrell's top five hitters are from Gwinnett, led by senior Anders Oster. The Brookwood grad boasts a team-high .469 batting average with four home runs, 19 RBIs and a team-high .518 on-base percentage.
Brookwood grad Jordan Erisman, a freshman, is hitting .341 with four homers and 18 RBIs and Parkview's Craig Brisson, a junior, is right behind at .325 with two homers and eight RBIs. Duluth grad Brad Hall, a sophomore, also is a big part of the offense (.316, team-best six homers, 25 RBIs).
Duluth's Garrett Lussi (4.67 ERA in 10 relief appearances), Brookwood's Nick White (3.38 ERA, one save in six relief appearances) and South Gwinnett's Mark Thomas are among the pitchers logging heavy innings for Cantrell.
North Georgia's roster also includes Ross Book (Duluth), Logan Sharrett (North Gwinnett), Troy Snitker (Brookwood), Aaron Trammell (Greater Gwinnett), Eric Hicks (Mill Creek) and Cody Clickner (Mill Creek).
Squeglia picks up first win
Freshman Nick Squeglia had a clutch relief pitching performance on Sunday, giving Georgia State a 12-9 win and series win over William and Mary.
The Collins Hill grad (2-0) pitched 42/3 innings of relief for the Panthers, allowing six hits and giving up just two runs. The Georgia State bullpen was worn down after pitching 10 innings of relief the previous day.
"(Squeglia) was really the man of the hour," Georgia State coach Greg Frady said. "He did a great job to shut them down after they had a big second inning."
Hagans selected to NAIA All-American team
Brenau Univeristy Ashley Hagans has been named to the NAIA Division I Women's Basketball All-American team as an honorable mention selection.
Hagans, a Shiloh grad, is the first All-American in the three-year history of the basketball program at Brenau.
The junior posted some incredible stats in her first season with the Golden Tigers (17-13, 10-10) after transferring from Georgia Perimeter Community College. She finished as the leading scorer in the SSAC and the nation with a 21.17 point average, led the conference in steals with 3.6 per game and was No. 7 in the nation.
Kulavic named an All-American
Oglethorpe senior Katie Kulavic, a Norcross resident, has been named to the NCAA Division III State Farm Coaches All-American Basketball Team. The St. Pius grad averaged 15.6 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.9 assists last season, finishing her career as the top scorer in school and Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference history.
Gwinnett Grads is a column that runs on Saturdays spotlighting the achievements of past Gwinnett standouts. Coaches and parents are urged to send suggestions via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or via fax to 770-339-8081.