WARE SHOALS- Performing at a high level in one sport at the varsity level is an accomplishment in itself. There are only a select few athletes who are able to do so at an elite level.
Shamar Rice is an exception to the rule.
After serving as the starting quarterback for the Ware Shoals Hornets, Rice was an integral part on the Hornets’ basketball team. The senior is now a key contributor to the Hornets’ baseball team, helping lead his team to a 9-5 record thus far in 2013.
“I’ve been doing it my whole life,” Rice said. “I’ve been playing a lot of sports for forever, ever since I was little, so it really hasn’t’ been that tough to adjust.”
According to Ware Shoals Head Coach Troy Cole, Rice’s attitude is what makes the senior star so impressive.
“It says a lot about him as a person,” Cole said. “Shamar’s (Rice) personality is very laid back, very quiet. He doesn’t require much attention like most three sport athletes, or stars of a team would. You would never know he played three sports. He never says much to anyone, but when it comes down to getting intense, he is one of the first ones to speak, and when he does, everyone tends to pay attention.”
Rice, who splits time at third base and left field for the Hornets, is known most throughout the Hornets’ athletic program for his natural athletic ability.
“During football season, when I would throw the ball, my coaches would say that they could tell that me playing baseball had helped me out a lot.”
Currently hitting .256 on the year, Rice has caught fire in region play, hitting .389 over the past six games.
“He (Rice) can play anywhere and his arm is as good as anyone we have on this baseball team,” Cole said. “He hadn’t practiced with us at all, and came right in and started at third base. He hadn’t swung a bat in a year, and his first two at-bats this season, he hit two of the hardest balls we’ve had hit this year.”
The Hornets currently sit at 5-1 in region play, half a game back of first place Dixie. The Hornets will travel to 5-0 Dixie on April 11th, with a share of first place in the region on the line. According to Rice, keeping a motivated mindset will be key as the Hornets hope to improve upon their 9-5 overall record, with six games remaining on the regular season schedule.
“We just need to keep practicing, working hard,” Rice said. “Don’t just come to practice, but come to practice each day to get better.”