Augusta State University won a homegrown and home-schooled lefty pitcher on Friday when Kip Custer signed a letter of intent to play baseball for the school.
Though Custer had offers from such schools as Kennesaw State, Middle Georgia and Georgia College and State, the decision to play for the Pacers became easy when the university hired his travel ball pitching coach, Auggie Rodriquez, as its pitching coach for next season.
"That pretty much sealed it for me," said the 18-year-old.
Though he didn't play high-school ball, Custer played for the CSRA Crusaders, who have won East Regional and HWSA World Series berths.
"With travel ball, there are so many options and so many teams that I think it's the way to go," Custer said. "I played with one of the best (travel ball) teams I could have ever played with."
Custer is 5-1 from the mound with a 1.04 ERA.
Though he is a southpaw, Custer bats from the right side of the plate with a .325 average, he said.
"Growing up, my Dad had right-handed golf clubs and I think that's where it (hitting right-handed) came from, swinging his clubs when I was young," Custer said.
Custer's Crusaders' coach, Chris Demons, said Augusta State is lucky to have him.
"It's always a bonus when you have a lefty, but Kip is also very consistent," Demons said. "When you play the game of baseball, it's all about consistency. He's very solid in his mechanics."
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