PRCC, Picayune native earns an All-State team honor

Published 7:00 am Thursday, May 26, 2016

Peyton Lee earns All-State second team honors.

Peyton Lee earns All-State second team honors.

Pearl River Community College announced seven players to be recognized in the 2016 MACJC All-State Baseball Team on Monday, one of which is from Picayune.

Freshman Peyton Lee was named second-team All-State, along with Jonathan Turner, Carter Hankins, Lucas Scott, Graham Hackbarth, and John Carter Sanner. Zachary Clark was the only player to make the All-State first team from PRCC.

“I’m excited for the kids, first and foremost. They are all great players and I think they will all have good careers in this game,” said Josh Hoffpauir, Head Coach at PRCC.

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Hoffpauir enjoyed seeing Lee develop his game during his first year, calling him “baseball savvy.”

“[Lee] is a pretty easy-going guy, but very competitive when it comes to playing. He really understands the game and has a great appreciation for someone his age,” said Hoffpauir.

Lee shocked most of the coaching staff and players with his offensive play coming into the season.

“Coming in, we thought he was going to be more of a pitcher, but he ended up leading us in hitting. Opening day he was hitting ninth in the lineup and toward the end he was in our third slot,” said Hoffpauir.

Lee led the Wildcats with a .391 batting average with seven doubles, three triples, 24 RBIs and drew 13 walks during his freshman year, according to PRCC press release.

Lee’s older brother, Braxton, was All-State and All-Region both years he played at PRCC. After, he went to Ole Miss for a year before going pro and is currently playing with Montgomery in the Tampa Bay Rays organization.

“Peyton is very similar to his brother, but also very different. The two players are the most consistent players I’ve coached, they don’t take days off. However, Braxton’s style was more finesse, and Peyton’s is more power,” said Hoffpauir.

Hoffpauir said only time will tell if Lee will follow in his brother’s footsteps, mentioning he has to improve just like any player his age, but when it comes to working, he said there is no question that Lee will grind as hard as he can.

When asked who Lee reminds him of in the MLB, Hoffpauir said Hunter Pence, right fielder on the San Francisco Giants.

“Not everything [Pence] does is pretty, but everything he does is right. We have been comparing the two during the entire season. Lee understands the game better than a lot of other players and is always in the right position, making the right decisions,” said Hoffpauir.

The Wildcats finished the 2016 season 25-21 overall and 10-18 in conference play. The next season will start in early February.