PROSPERITY — Mid-Carolina High School baseball player Corey Stone has signed to play baseball for the University of South Carolina as a left-handed pitcher.
The 17-year-old Stone has been playing baseball since he was about 3 years old. He’s been on the varsity team at Mid-Carolina since he was a freshman. He plays centerfield when he does not pitch.
Before deciding on USC, Stone was looking into a few different schools. Stone’s father, Eddy, said he had contact with other schools, four of which wanted him to play baseball, while a few others wanted him for football. Some Ivy League schools were looking into Stone for his academics.
“He maintains a 4.3/4.4 GPA,” said his mother, Melanie Stone. “He is over a 4.0, is in honor classes and AP classes.”
Corey Stone said he picked the University of South Carolina because it was close to home and he liked the coaches and the atmosphere.
“This past weekend was my official visit weekend. I got to meet all the guys and get to know where they were from, got to become good friends with them,” he said.
Up until the ninth grade, Stone played three sports — baseball, basketball and football. Eddy Stone said this is why he was discovered late.
“He was doing the other sports,” he said. “It is funny — coaches talk about they like that, but sometimes I think that keeps them from seeing some of the guys, but USC did a pretty good job of finding him.”
Corey Stone has worked hard to get to this point. He said he plays baseball year round and plays on travel teams, adding that he is always practicing, no matter where he is.
“We had a batting cage in the yard, pitcher’s mound in the yard, I actually used to coach him at home,” Eddy Stone said. “He works hard for what he gets. We did the dad-son thing in the yard. They (Corey and his sister) were never forced to play. It was by choice that they played.”
Corey Stone played quarterback on the Mid-Carolina High School football team, which he said this helped build up his arm strength, allowing him to be a better pitcher.
While attending USC, Stone plans on majoring in sports management, he would like to use that degree to become an athletic director or a coach.
“I just love sports, and I wanted to stay around them. I think being around sports will give me some background knowledge on it,” he said. “I have talked to a couple of our coaches (at MCHS) who are kind of around it to see how they like it.”
Stone’s father is a Clemson fan, but says when it comes to his son, he is a Corey fan and will pull for the team he is on.
“I am going to support him. Wherever he decides to go, he will be supported,” Eddy Stone said. “Melanie went to Carolina, our daughter played at USC Sumter, played softball there for two years. She is doing nurse practitioner now at USC Aiken.”
Now that Corey Stone is in his senior year, he says leaving is going to be bittersweet, but he is ready to move on and play at the next level.
“I will miss playing with a couple of my good friends that I have always played with,” he said.
Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on Twitter @ TheNBOnews.