Canton Grad Corey Lee Excelling at Misericordia (2012-03-23)
Swoyersville, PA - For kids coming out of high school and looking to continue their athletic career in college, an obvious factor in the decision of WHICH college they’ll attend is how early they feel that they can start contributing to that team. Kids who are good enough to play a sport at the next level are not accustomed to sitting around, waiting their turn. Most will work hard to learn how to play at the collegiate level during their freshmen, sophomore and even junior seasons, accepting smaller roles than they are used to. That, hopefully, leads to a role that puts them into the lineup on a more consistent basis, becoming the everyday player that they grew up being.
For Canton graduate Corey Lee, that path has been put on fast-forward! When Lee committed to attend Misericordia University, he was well aware of the successful 2011 season that the Cougars had enjoyed. That success included a 30-16 record, a Freedom Conference MAC Championship and a trip to the winner’s bracket final of the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Tournament.
Misericordia’s success looked to continue this season, as they were returning 24 lettermen, including 10 pitchers and 9 starters. It would have appeared that Lee would be following the routine of waiting his turn to become a consistent contributor to this stacked lineup. Instead, Lee has been thrust into a prominent role, helping the Cougars get off to a 14-2 start and a 20th ranking on the d3baseball.com poll.
As a reliever, Lee currently holds a 2-0 record, with 1 save. He is tied for the team lead among the experienced staff with 5 appearances and has allowed only 1 run, despite being used in less-than-ideal circumstances.
“They are bringing me in when our pitcher has gotten into a bad situation,” Lee explains. “But I’ve also been used as a closer a couple of times, so I have to be ready at any time.”
While obviously focusing on developing Corey as a pitcher, his success in that role hasn’t stopped the coaching staff from continuing to allow Lee to play as a position player.
“I still get to take batting practice and work in the outfield,” Lee says. “But they are really focusing on my pitching for this season. We are loaded in the outfield!”
In the Cougars’ recent 9-0 win over Scranton, Lee did get some time in centerfield.
Lee, who in high school sustained an elbow injury requiring the infamous and previously-career-ending Tommy John surgery, says that his arm is holding up just fine.
“It has felt good, so far. It doesn’t feel as well in cold weather, but even that has gotten better.”
Corey had options when deciding on which college he would attend after high school, and he seems happy with the choice that he made. The trip is a couple of hours, which Lee says has allowed his family and friends to see him play “a bunch”.
Based on his early success, Lee’s family will be seeing him play more and more as his career continues.
Starting today against Manhattanville, Misericordia is scheduled to play four games over the next three days.