Commerce High School senior Robert Hayes signed a letter of intent last week to attend and play baseball at Columbus State University.
Hayes, who has had a strong pair of seasons with the Tigers, says he is thrilled about the opportunity to play for the Cougars.
“I’m really excited to be a Cougar next year,” said Hayes. “I had a lot of schools looking at me at the D1 or D2 level, but I felt like Columbus State had the best program and was probably the best fit for me.”
As a pitcher, Hayes holds a 13-3 record with the Tigers. In his junior season, Hayes boasted an ERA of 1.544 and struck out 55 batters. Hayes has 86 career strikeouts in 81 innings pitched.
Commerce head baseball coach Steve Cotrell praised Hayes for his accomplishments on the field and expects him to be successful at the next level.
“Robert has worked hard since he came in as a freshman,” said Cotrell. “He’s earned everything that he’s accomplished. I think he’s still got room for improvement, and when his body fully matures, we are going to see that. As far as setting an example for the younger kids and showing up every day working, you couldn’t ask for anything more.”
Hayes still has one more season with the Tigers before moving on to the next level, and he hopes that his success will translate into leadership and inspiration for his Commerce teammates.
“I feel like I’ll give some of the younger kids on the Commerce baseball team something to look up to,” added Hayes. “I’m just really excited about playing at the next level.”