Alumni Update: Davidson joins exclusive club before season suddenly ends

Updated: March 15, 2020

What started out to be a promising spring sports season for athletes across the region ended suddenly on Thursday. The NCAA announced that national championships for all spring sports would be canceled because of the corona virus pandemic.

On Friday, the NCAA extended the eligibility of athletes on spring sports teams one year to make up for the season lost to the coronavirus. An athletics official at an East Coast school told The Associated Press that the NCAA Division I Council Coordination Committee sent an email notifying schools of the eligibility decision.

Most prominently, that will impact Brad Debo, the former Orange High catcher who was already underway with his senior season on the N.C. State baseball team.

Also, former Orange lacrosse player Bowen Collins will have another year of eligibility on the Lenoir-Rhyne men’s lacrosse team. The Bears had already defeated Limestone and Adelphi, ranked #1 and #3, respectively, in Division II, when the season was canceled.

Mia Davidson: Davidson ended the year with a bang as Mississippi State softball defeated Southern Miss 7-2 at USM Softball Complex in Hattisburg, MS on Wednesday. Mia went 4-for-4 with two home runs and four RBIs. Davidson came up for her final at-bat needing a triple for the cycle, but hit another home run instead. It was the 41st multi-homer game in Mississippi State history.

Against UT-Martin, Davidson hit a home run to become the 23rd player in Southeastern Conference history to hit 50 home runs. She’s one of nine active players in Division I to reach that mark.

In the final weekend of the season, Mississippi State won the Bulldog Slamboree in Starkville. On March 6, the Bulldogs defeated Bryant 5-1, then shut out Mississippi Valley State 6-0. On Saturday, Mississippi State swept another doubleheader, beating Southeast Missouri State 2-0 and Mississippi Valley State 20-3 in five innings. On Sunday, the Bulldogs edged Southeast Missouri State 2-0.

In the second game against MVSU, Mia reached base in all four plate appearances, scoring three times. She finished 2-for-2 with a double and a single.

Mia ends the 2020 season with a .330 batting average in 28 games. She hit seven home runs and 21 RBIs, and a team-high two triples.

Montana Davidson: Montana started at 3rd base in all five games in the Bulldog Slamboree. She went 1-for-2 in the opening win over Bryant. Montana ends her junior season with a .224 batting average. She started in 27 of the Bulldogs’ 28 games. Mississippi State was supposed to open its SEC slate against Kentucky this weekend.

Brad Debo: The N.C. State designated hitter played in nine games with four starts. He hit .263 with one double. N.C. State finished with a 14-3 overall record, 1-2 in the ACC.

Phillip Berger: Berger played in Division III William Peace University’s final game of the season, a 13-9 win over Dean College at the USA Baseball Complex in Cary. Berger threw two-thirds-of-an-inning, striking out one batter. On March 7, Berger started against Piedmont. He threw six-and-one-thirds-innings, and allowed five runs on eight hits. He took a no-decision as Peace won in the 9th inning 6-5 in Cary. Berger was named the USA South Athletic Conference Freshman of the Week after his victory over Mary Washington on February 23. In that victory, he threw seven shutout innings and allowed three hits. Berger appeared in seven games this season. He finished 1-1 with a 5.79 ERA with 20 strikeouts and four walks.

We’ll have a look at lacrosse, wrestling and basketball players coming up on Monday.

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