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Off the Field – Spring arrives for local teams (March 9, 2016 issue)

By Curtis Carden

A pair of Unicoi County Middle School athletic programs opened their seasons on Monday, March 7, on the diamond.

The UCMS Lady Devil softball team opened the season with a pair of games against Happy Valley and Unaka after The Erwin Record’s press deadline. The UCMS baseball team opened its season against Ross Robinson on Monday.

The UCMS baseball and softball teams are scheduled to return to action on Thursday, March 10. The baseball program travels to T.A. Dugger with first pitch set for 4:30 p.m. The softball program begins tournament play in Greeneville on Thursday with times still to be determined prior to The Erwin Record’s press deadline.

UCMS track and field also get underway Tuesday, March 8, with a meet in Washington County against Liberty Bell.

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Unicoi County High School graduate Connor Simpson didn’t need long to select the next destination of his baseball career. The sophomore relief pitcher at Roane State Community College recently committed to Milligan College where he will continue his baseball career in the 2017 season.

Roane State announced the commitment last week online.

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In the March 2 edition of The Erwin Record, it was inaccurately reported that the UCHS Lady Blue Devil basketball team’s overall record ended at 12-21. The correct record is 13-21.

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Have a special sports story to share? The Erwin Record wants to hear from you. Contact The Erwin Record sports department at [email protected] or call 743-4112 to have a story considered for a future issue of the paper.

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A variety of news hit the Carter County area during the month of February.

In the Three Rivers Conference, the Elizabethton High School Lady Cyclone basketball program received a two-year probation period and a $1,000 fine due to the recruiting violations.

According to a letter released by the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association (TSSAA), the penalties were self-enforced by EHS and accepted by the TSSAA after a student, not enrolled at the school, attended a practice with the team. According to the letter, once the athletic director was informed the player was at practice, she was quickly asked to leave citing the rules put in place by the TSSAA.

Along with basketball, Carter County also saw the Hampton and Cloudland football rivalry add another page to their book with Mike Lunsford being named the new head coach at Hampton High School. The decision came on the heels of Michael Lunsford, Mike’s father and former Hampton coach, accepting a coaching position with Cloudland High School.

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For more information on Unicoi County athletics throughout the week, visit The Erwin Record Sports Facebook online. Readers can also follow along on Twitter at: @CurtisCarden_ER.