MONTGOMERY, W.Va. — There’s a reason student comes first in the phrase student-athlete.
Gallia Academy senior Anthony Sipple signed his letter of intent to join the WVU-Tech baseball team next season, but the choice to join the the Golden Bears had more to do with classroom than the diamond.
“WVU-Tech speaks to me because it has a real hometown feel,” Sipple said. “I fit pretty well into their program and they offer both types of engineering that I want to major in. Schooling came first, I picked my school off of what I wanted to major in, instead of what I wanted to play.”
Sipple will double-major in mechanical and electrical engineering with future set on aerospace engineering. Anthony already has an associates degree from Rio Grande in general studies.
On the baseball field, Sipple has wants to play catcher, where he spent time on-and-off at GAHS.
“Being able to continue my baseball career after high school is probably one of the happiest things in my life,” Sipple said. “I’ve loved baseball since I was a little kid, it’s a great privilege and I’m really excited. I can’t thank the coaches enough giving me the skills and the opportunity to get to the next level. I’ve had excellent coaching, I’ve had excellent guys come in to show me how to play and be the best at the position I’m playing at, and I think that’s the way Gallia Academy has helped me out the most.”
Sipple was a three-year varsity baseball player at GAHS and the Blue Devils went 49-24 in that span. Anthony helped the Blue and White to one Southeastern Athletic League, one Ohio Valley Conference and one sectional title in his tenure.
Sipple was a two-time All-SEOAL first team selection and was an all-district first team selection as a junior. As a senior, Sipple batted .420 and drove in 20 runs for the Blue Devils.
“Offensively, Anthony was our guy in the 3-hole for the last two years,” GAHS head coach Rich Corvin said. “He led us in a majority of offensive categories, including average and RBIs, anything you’d want out of your 3-hole guy. At the next level, he’s got some work to do, but I think he’ll be alright. He’ll be able to hit, which is his strength, it’s why they got him. Defensively, I think he’ll either be a corner guy, either a first or third baseman, in my opinion.”
Anthony also excelled in football and wrestling in high school. On the gridiron, Sipple was a two-time All-SEOAL first team selection, a one-time all-district first teamer, a one-time all-district special mention and a one-time All-Ohio special mention. On the mat, Sipple qualified for districts twice in the 195-pound weight class.
“We are excited with addition of Anthony to our roster,” WVU Tech head coach Lawrence Nesselrodt said. “His proven athletic and academic accomplishments exemplify the type of student-athlete we want representing our program. His work ethic, versatility, strength, and talent level will be a great addition to our program.”
Sipple will join a WVU Tech squad that went 40-16 this season, including 21-7 in the KIAC. The Golden Bears have set a new program record for wins in three of the last four seasons, including this spring.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.