Marcus Pingleton packed a lot of accomplishments into his Western baseball career.
The Panthers, with Pingleton playing a big role, compiled a 68-17 record over the last three years, won the Class 3A state championship in 2012 and reached the final four this year. They also won Mid-Indiana Conference titles in 2011 and ‘13.
Individually, Pingleton was a Class 3A all-state pick by the Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association in 2012 and again this year — and on Monday, the Panther center fielder received one more award as the IHSBCA announced Pingleton had been selected to play in its annual North-South All-Star Classic on July 12-14 at Wabash College.
The All-Star weekend brings together 50 of the best seniors in the state for a banquet and three games. Pingleton will play for the North squad.
“I’m definitely looking forward to it,” Pingleton said. “Hopefully I can show all those other kids that I can play.”
Pingleton capped his Western career with a terrific senior season, leading the Panthers to a 23-6 record. He was Howard County’s leading hitter, finishing with a sizzling .565 batting average, and also was tops in on-base percentage (.680) and runs scored (50). He had five home runs, five doubles, two triples, 10 stolen bases and 27 RBI.
Pingleton’s selection adds to a rich Western tradition. He is the ninth player to earn North-South selection under longtime coach Ty Calloway, a group that includes former teammate Adam Bolen (2012) and assistant coach Quentin Brown (2005). Brown is replacing the retiring Calloway as Western’s skipper.
“I think I did a pretty good job of carrying on Western baseball like they did,” Pingleton said, referring to Bolen and Brown.
“It’s definitely a cool way to go out, especially being all-state and North-South All-Star,” he added.
Kankakee Valley coach Doug Greenlee will lead the North team. The assistant coaches are Andy McClain of Norwell, Rob Fisher of Muncie Central and Troy Miller of Northfield.
Pingleton will continue his career at Heartland Community College in Normal, Ill. He plans to report to campus Aug. 10.
“I’m extremely ready to play under coach [Nate] Metzger. He seems like a really laid-back dude and all the guys I’ve talked to said they liked him, he’s a good coach, so I’m looking forward to it,” he said.