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Dustin Clark will continue his baseball career this fall at Wake Technical Community College in Raleigh. Avery Director of Athletics David Wright, head baseball coach Samuel Phillips and mother Gretchen Holden Blackburn were present during Clark's announcement ceremony. Photo by Jamie Shell



Originally published: 2012-06-13 09:52:12
Last modified: 2012-06-13 09:55:13

Clark to Wake Tech

Jamie Shell / (sports@averyjournal.com)

Avery Vikings baseball standout Dustin Clark has agreed to continue his baseball career at Wake Tech Community College, a member of NJCAA in Raleigh.
Clark plans to play for the Eagles with the desire to transfer to N.C. State University to complete a degree in environmental science and landscape design.
"I decided to go to Wake Tech because it was near Raleigh and I want to transfer into N.C. State. I love baseball, so I decided, 'Why not tryout for the baseball team?'" Clark said. "The tryout went well and I visited the campus and really liked it. Wake Tech also offers classes in the fields of study I'm interested in."
Clark is the first player under Avery head baseball coach Samuel Phillips to continue with collegiate baseball, and he and his staff are thrilled for the opportunity presented to Clark.
"Dustin has always been the kind of kid that a college coach should take a chance on. As coaches, we know that Dustin has the capability to be a great college baseball player and contribute right when he goes in," Phillips said. "I feel that junior college is a great fit for him at this point and he will be an asset to Wake Tech's program. Hopefully he can go down there and blossom as an athlete and a student. I'm looking forward to seeing what the future holds for him, and Coach Oakley, Coach Phillips and I are excited that he will be playing there and furthering his baseball career and education."
Clark's mother Gretchen Holden Blackburn, a teacher at Avery High School, was present at Clark's official announcement on Friday, June 8, and expressed great pride and joy in her son's decision to pursue his education and baseball career at Wake Tech.
"I'm so proud and also kind of nervous at the same time, but I know he'll do well academically and athletically. He always has and we're proud of him," Blackburn said. "I can't say enough about the Avery baseball coaches and how they have helped Dustin athletically. He has really developed in baseball and they have done a fabulous job with him the past two years. I appreciate the effort the coaches put into helping Dustin and pushing him, which has made a big difference in his decision to pursue baseball."
Clark was impressed by Wake Tech's facilities and is excited to start the next chapter of his baseball and academic career.
"It's a long trip there, but it's all worth it," Clark added. "I like the school and the atmosphere there in Raleigh. Everything looked great. I'm going to play the best that I can at Wake Tech, and hopefully we can win a lot."
"Wake Tech is a big community college with four campuses, but the people were all great and very helpful. The coach was great to Dustin and I think it's going to be a good transition for him," Blackburn said.
The Eagles was 15-15-1 in the regular season in 2012, and Clark looks to help the club improve its mark next season.