Coastal Carolina has been on Marshall right-handed pitcher Will Brooke’s list of top schools since last year. He visits Myrtle Beach, S.C., several times a year to see family, and the school is located just 20 minutes away from the beach in Conway, S.C.
From June 20-22 Brooke’s Stars 17U Blue team played at Coastal Carolina in the Firecracker Tournament where Brooke pitched several innings. When he wasn’t seeking strikeouts on the mound, Brooke, who is a rising senior, toured the campus and saw the baseball facilities.
One week after the event, he called Chanticleers Coach Gary Gilmore to inform the coach he was very interested. Gilmore offered him a scholarship during that phone conversation and Brooke orally committed.
“I really liked the coaches. They seemed very into me and very knowledgeable,” Brooke said. “Their campus was getting redone — they have a brand new baseball field and the facilities were great.”
Brooke initially began contact with the Big South school at the Cincy Flames Tournament of Champions June 11-15. He pitched just one inning in Cincinnati, but drew the attention of Coastal Carolina pitching coach Drew Thomas. He had a good feel for his fastball on the mound in the tournament. His fastball has touched 87 mph and is consistently in the mid-80’s
Outside of his four-seam fastball, Brooke mixes in a two-seam sinker, split-changeup and a curveball. But he said he mostly uses fastballs in different spots to obtain strikeouts.
Brooke went 6-1 with a 1.28 ERA in 48 innings and struck out 45 batters for the Conference 13 champion Statesmen this spring.
“I won’t throw the hardest or have the best stuff, but I really like to win,” Brooke said. “I don’t like to leave games without feeling I did all I could to help my team win.”
The 6-foot-3, 175-pound right-hander will get to be near his family and the beach when he suits up for Coastal Caroline in the spring of 2016.
“My family and I thought it was a good choice, and they have a really good baseball program,” Brooke said. “It’s probably better than most schools within the same distance away, and I thought it was a good fit.”