Chowning sees role as a freshman

Kurt Carson

There’s been a new face on the diamond as of late for WKU.

With injuries and lack-luster offensive production affecting the team, Head Coach Matt Myers has had to reach deep into his bench to search for answers.

One player that he’s inserted into the Toppers’ lineup over the last week is freshman infielder Kelby Chowning.

Chowning made his starting debut on April 14 against Arkansas State and has two hits and one walk in nine plate appearances.

Myers said he wanted to mix things up during the series with Arkansas State, and he thought Chowning should be rewarded.

“I thought at Arkansas State we needed a punch in the arm, and he’s worked his butt off,” Myers said. “He deserved an opportunity, got it, and did a good job.”

Chowning came to WKU after a stand-out prep career at East Robertson High School in Cross Plains, Tenn.

He finished his high school career with a .630 batting average and .780 on-base percentage.

Chowning said he embraces the opportunity to start, especially being a freshman.

“It feels good to get to start,” Chowning said. “I’ve worked hard all season and I’m just waiting for my time.”

Myers said Chowning’s effort in practice and energy has allowed him the chance to start for WKU.

“He works, works, works — he’s the ultimate team player,” Myers said. “He deserved the opportunity and I’m glad he had success. He’s a great kid.”

Fellow teammate and hunting buddy — senior right-hander Ross Hammonds — said Chowning is simply “the perfect teammate.”

“He’s a great teammate and a great player to have on your team,” Hammonds said. “Everybody loves him. He never complains and is always cheering in the dugout.”

Hammonds said those traits are what makes him even happier to see Chowning get playing time in his first season at WKU.

“He comes out, works hard and brings it every day,” Hammonds said. “It’s awesome to see him come out and get the chance to help our team.”

Chowning’s goal for the remainder of the season shows just what kind of player he is in the clubhouse.

“My focus is to just go out every day, work as hard as I can and help the team in any way I can,” Chowning said. “That’s all that matters.”