The Carolina Reds Baseball Organization is hosting and participating in a 100-inning baseball game -- The Lee Killian Marathon Baseball Fundraiser -- on July 18 to raise money to assist the Killian family with medical and travel expenses.
Killian, an 18-year-old, recently graduated from Clover High School and was the Blue Eagles' top pitcher. On May 21, while on the way to his girlfriend's academic awards banquet, he lost control of his truck and struck a utility pole head-on. Killian was airlifted to Carolinas Medical Center.
He suffered injuries to the neck, face and spinal cord and is paralyzed from the waist down. Killian was planning to play baseball for Spartanburg Methodist College and was preparing to play summer baseball for the Carolina Reds 18-and-under team.
Killian is undergoing assisted therapy at Atlanta's Shepherd Center. The Reds are in Atlanta this weekend for a tournament. The players visited Killian Thursday and treated him to a pizza party.
The players from each of the Reds' eight teams are seeking pledges from friends, families and businesses. All funds received from sponsorships will go directly to the Killian family medical account.
Players are requesting pledges in the amount of $.10, $.25, $.50, $.75 or $1 per inning for the 100-inning fundraiser game. Those translate into pledges of $10, $25, $50, $75 or $100. The game will be played at Northwestern High School's baseball and softball fields, beginning at 5 p.m. and lasting until 100 innings are played.
The public is invited to come out and support the boys for this worthy cause. Concessions will be served and those proceeds will also go to the Killians.
Please make your contribution payable to the Lee Killian Medical Fund. Contributions can be mailed to Rocky DuBard at 2088 Poinsett Drive, Rock Hill, S.C., 29732.
• MORE KILLIAN: The good folks in Clover are doing their part to help support the Killian family.
The Clover Diamond club is selling tickets for a fish fry on July 15 at Courtney's BBQ from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Friends of the family had a bake sale and raffle on June 30 in front of Killian's Service Center, run by Killian's dad, Jimmy.
Clover's girls basketball team announced their 50/50 raffle at home football games this fall will go to benefit the family. Friends of the family are also selling T-shirts in support of Killian and selling rubber wristbands with his name on them.
Killian's Web site has had more than 33,000 hits and has 1,091 messages. His mom, Robin, has been responding to the messages. To send Killian an email, go to www.caringbridge.org and click on "visit a CaringBridge site." When the page comes up, go to the site name block and type in "leekillian." He'll be glad to hear from you.
• TEAM USA: Fort Mill High School's Tyler Miller, a rising junior and two-year starter on the baseball team, has been selected for the USA Baseball 16-and-under national team trials Aug. 4-11.
Miller is the only player from South Carolina selected this year and only the second player from the Palmetto State to be invited to the trials. The other was Clemson outfielder Brad Chalk, who recently signed with the San Diego Padres.
The 36 finalists were selected from a pool of more than 2,500 players recently at the Junior Olympic Championship tournaments in Peoria, Ariz., Surprise, Ariz., and Palm Beach County, Fla.
They will be flown to Cary, N.C., Aug. 4 to begin the trials process at the brand-new USA Baseball National Training Complex.
The players will be divided into two teams and participate in workouts and scrimmages during the ensuing week. At the completion of the week, the coaching staff will name the final 18-man roster that will remain in Cary for a few days of training before departing for Barquisimeto, Venezuela, to compete for Team USA in the IBAF World Youth Championships Aug. 17-26.
• MORE STARS: Two more South Carolina football players have agreed to play in the ESPNU High School All-American Game Jan. 5 at the Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Fla.
A.C. Flora's Kenneth Page, a 6-foot-5, 280-pound OL, and Bamberg-Ehrhardt's Daquan Bowers, a 6-4, 265-pound DT who committed to Clemson, are the latest to commit.
Previously, Chester's C.C. Whitlock and Summerville's A.J. Green accepted invitations. The game is a new ESPN owned-and-operated annual all-star football competition spotlighting the nation's top high school seniors. It will be broadcast nationally on ABC (cable channel 4 in Rock Hill).
• GROBE: Wake Forest football coach Jim Grobe accepted an invitation to be the guest speaker for the Shrine Bowl Coaches and Players Awards Banquet at 7 p.m. Dec. 13 at the Marriott Renaissance Park Hotel and Conference Center in Spartanburg.
"We are most delighted to have coach Grobe speak to our coaches, players, parents and fans of the Shrine Bowl Of The Carolinas," said York's Billy Benfield, Chairman of the Shrine Bowl Board Of Governors. "As one of America's premier collegiate coaches, his personal commitment to discipline and the importance he places on the standards of excellence on and off the field is extraordinary.''
Banquet tickets are available for $40 each by calling the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas office at 1-800-648-BOWL (2695).