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Lawhon headed to Darton State

Wildcat standout was perfect 6-0 in 2014

POSTED: July 26, 2014 9:00 a.m.

After three seasons as a position player, Richmond Hill High School senior reliever Josh Lawhon, center front, made his only year of pitching for the Wildcats count in 2014 by going 6-0 and not allowing a run in region play. He’ll play for JUCO powerhouse Darton State College now after signing Thursday. Shown with him are, front row, his parents, Kathy and John Lawhon; in back are RHHS coach Stacy Bennett and RHHS athletic director Mickey Bayens.

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Richmond Hill High School senior reliever Josh Lawhon was so dominant in 2014 he went 6-0, didn’t allow a run in region play and was the only relief pitcher to be named All-Region 3-AAAAA by coaches.
Now, Lawhon will take his talents to junior college powerhouse Darton State College after signing Thursday afternoon to play at the school in Albany.
“I can’t wait to get down there and play some ball,” said Lawhon, who had other offers but liked the coaches, facilities and campus at Darton.
That’s good news for Cavaliers coach Scot Hemmings, who in three seasons has won 129 games and this spring led Darton (44-20) to the brink of the National Junior College Athletic Association World Series.
Hemmings said the right-handed Lawhon reminds him of the Cavalier’s top reliever and spot starter from 2014, Davis Adkins.
“Davis was the best arm we’ve ever had and he had that internal fire about him” Hemmings said. “Josh reminds us a lot of him. He’s got the same temperament and the same mentality.”
Lawhon also has a three-quarters throwing motion, meaning his pitches come at batters from about 2 o’clock.
“He’s a guy who has what we call a deception to his ball. He’s not off the top, he’s not sidearm in his delivery,” Hemming said. “He can throw his slider at any count at any time. He has right makeup. He doesn’t have a cocky attitude, he’s just got that ‘ice water in his veins’ demeanor.”
Lawhon also should only get better, coaches say, given his limited time on the mound in high school. Lawhon spent his first three seasons at RHHS as a position player for coach Stacy Bennett.
“Last summer he came to us and said ‘I want to pitch,’” Bennett said. “He committed himself to doing it. He got in the weight room, he ran, he put in the work and was just real relentless in the pursuit of his dream. And it showed during the year.”
And what a year it was for the Wildcats, who finished 20-9 and made it to the second round of the state Class AAAAA tournament, and for Lawson, who was named the team’s top pitcher.
“We’re extremely proud of him, as a school and as a program, and our players are excited for Josh and his family,” Bennett said.
Lawhon, the son of John and Kathy Lawhon, said he may study business management and hopes to take what he learns at Darton move on to a four-year school — either Georgia Southern or Georgia.
He’ll apparently get plenty of work for the Cavaliers right from the start.Hemmings said Lawhon should see plenty of action as a freshman on a team with high expectations.
“Josh is coming into a very good program,” Hemmings said. “We’re bringing him here to step right in and pitch.”

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