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COMMITTED: Way ‘excited’ to join Cleveland Community College on diamond

From Raider to Yeti: Cameron Way committed to Cleveland Community College this week and will play first and third base. (Kyle Pillar, sports editor)

HAMLET — A spring and summer of tearing the cover off the baseball helped Cameron Way get recruited to the college ranks.

A recent graduate of Richmond Senior High School, Way decided this week that he will play at Cleveland Community College the next two years.

“I’m excited for this opportunity,” Way said. “I went to a couple other junior colleges, but when I got to Cleveland, it felt right. Me and the coach meshed together really well, I liked the facilities and they say when you know, you know. And I knew at that point it was the right choice.

“This team did well last year and went to the conference championship,” he added. “That’s great to see and I hope by playing there I can help them continue to win.”

Donning the green and gold as a varsity player for the Raiders for three seasons, Way also was a key contributor for the Hamlet American Legion baseball team this summer.

It was during one of those Post 49 games that Way helped punch his ticket to joining the Yetis and head coach John Grigg.

In an 8-5 win over Pleasure Island Post 129 on July 5, Way did damage at the plate, going 2-for-4 with a double, a home run and a game-high five RBIs. He also pitched four innings and allowed just one run on three hits and added five strikeouts.

Sitting in the stands that night was Cleveland assistant coach Chris Sherrill, who was there to scout Way. Following the game, Way met with Sherrill and set up a visit to the school a couple weeks later.

Way also had interest from Rockingham Community College, Southeastern Community College and Surry Community College. He went on official visits to all three schools before deciding on Cleveland.

A jack-of-all-trades on the diamond, Way batted near the top of the order for both Richmond and Hamlet this year. Defensively, he played second and third base, shortstop and also pitched for both squads.

Looked upon as a leader in the dugout by his teammates, and known to play the game the right way and put in the extra effort, Way has been recruited as a corner infielder (first and third base) by the Yetis. He’ll also join Post 49 teammates Ra’Nes and Ra’Nik Little, who redshirted last season.

“I’m really looking forward to the work ahead of me,” Way explained. “I know that I will have to continue to put more work in to get better, and I’m excited to face good competition. 


“Playing third and learning a new position at first will be fun, and I hope to make an immediate impact.”

Cameron Way connects for a hit for Hamlet Post 49 earlier this summer. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

Cleveland, which competes in Region 10 of the National Junior College Athletic Association, went 31-23 last season. The Yetis went 4-2 in the conference championship tournament, finishing runner-up to Catawba Valley Community College.

Deciding to go the junior college route, Way said he listened to advice from coaches and other players when making his choice. One of the benefits is that he hopes to maximize his playing time.

“My travel baseball coach, Coach (Ricky) Young, talked a lot about the JUCO route and said a lot of players have success with it,” Way explained. “I want to play a lot of baseball in my first two years and then be able to go onto a bigger university and be successful.

“My goal is to learn as much as I can and develop into a better player while at Cleveland,” he added. “The plan is then to go to a four-year university and play my last two years and earn my degree.”

While at Richmond, Way was a two-time All-Sandhills Athletic Conference selection during his junior and senior seasons. This past spring for the Raiders, who went 14-9 and made it to the second round of the NCHSAA 4A state playoffs, Way was tied for the team lead in hits (22).

He smacked five doubles, which was also tied for the team lead, and batted .301 with 12 RBIs and 12 runs scored. Way had a .400 on-base percentage and added a .370 slugging percentage, and tallied 13.2 innings of work on the mound and struck out 11 batters.

During Post 49’s summer campaign, Way started every game for Hamlet, as he did for the Raiders. Hamlet recorded a 14-10 record and made it to the second round of the Area 2 playoffs, with Way serving as a key player.

At the plate, Way hit an impressive .441 with several team-high stats, including: hits (26), home runs (3), triples (2), RBIs (19) and runs scored (22). He also led the team in on-base percentage (.566) and slugging percentage (.746).

“Playing at Richmond meant the world to me,” Way shared. “Those three years were some of the most fun I’ve ever had playing baseball. Playing with my friends was great and we made a really good run my senior year. I couldn’t ask for anything more and I’m thankful for my time there.

“Post 49 was also a great experience,” he closed. “Coach (Chip) Gordon was really adamant about getting good players, winning and building the program. It was a lot of fun this summer and it helped me get recruited.”

When Way reports to Shelby, N.C., later this summer to start his first semester, he plans to major in exercise science.

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Kyle Pillar is a 16-time North Carolina Press Association award-winning sports editor with The Richmond Observer. Follow the sports department on Twitter @ROSports_ for the best in-depth coverage of Richmond County sports.