Five pitchers and three position players, including Conway’s Tyler Langley, are part of the 2013 signing class for University of Central Arkansas baseball.
"I am very excited about our 2013 early signing class," UCA coach Allen Gum said. "Coach Dallas Black did a tremendous job putting this class together. We have a balance of power arms, left- and right-handed pitching and also speed on the base paths and power at the plate."
The eight signees include six high school seniors, five in-state products and one Mississippi native, and two junior college transfers, one each from Texas and California.
Langley, who led the Conway Wampus Cats to a state championship last season, hit .456 with seven home runs, 26 RBI and stole seven bases. He scored 26 runs and was selected to the Arkansas High School Extra Innings Team. He projects to play either infield or outfield for UCA.
"Tyler is a tremendous and versatile athlete from right here in Conway who we see doing some big things in our program," Gum said. "He’s a quarterback on the football team and is a leader on and off the field."
All three Arkansas pitchers are right-handers from the high school ranks. Connor Gilmore and Taylor Wallace will each come to UCA out of Little Rock Catholic while Will Jacobs hails from Rison.
Gilmore a 6-4, 180 pound righty logged 33 innings during his junior season at Catholic High and went 5-2. He posted an ERA of just 2.73 while striking out 38. Gilmore was selected to play in the Arkansas Extra Innings Showcase and was also invited to play for the East Coast Grays of the East Cobb league out of Georgia last summer.
Wallace, the other Little Rock Catholic product, tossed 56 innings as a junior, tallying five wins and three complete games. One of those complete games was a no-hitter against Cabot. He fanned 60 opposing hitters and finished the season with an ERA of 2.77. This summer, Wallace was selected to play for the Midland Braves of Ohio and the Marucci Elite from Baton Rouge, La.
Jacobs is a 6-f00t-2, 170 pound right-hander who was victorious four times in 41 innings pitched as a high school junior. He had a dominant ERA of just 1.90 while striking out 74 hitters and allowing just nine free passes.
Scott Zimmerle from Danbury, Texas by way of Alvin Community College, and San Francisco, native John Rand out of De Anza Junior College are two southpaws that could make an immediate difference on the mound. Zimmerle, also a first baseman, is likely to add quite a bit of power at the plate for the Bears.
While at Alvin CC, Zimmerle had an on-base percentage of .403 while hitting .301 and driving in 25 runs. Zimmerle also came around to score 28 times, hit eight doubles and drew 19 walks.
Rand is a 6-3, 200 pounder who appeared in 17 games and hurled 52 innings last summer for the Chilocothe Mudcats in the MINK league. He sported an earned run average of just 2.01 while striking out 32.
Bryant’s Jordan Taylor is a 6-0, 170 pound outfielder who hit .418 with 13 doubles and 27 RBI as a junior at Bryant High School. As a pitcher in high school, he struck out 56 in 57 innings of work while compiling an ERA of 3.93.
Chris Townsend, an infielder out of South Panola High School signed his letter of intent after posting a .394 batting average, .488 on-base percentage and a .654 slugging percentage during his junior season. The 6-0, 180 pounder also belted three home runs and recorded four triples. During the summer, he was selected to play for the Midwest Nationals Premier team out of Springfield, Mo.