Nothing flips a baseball or softball game like the ability to go deep. Chayse Frye and Ashton Whiles were two of the best at hitting the long ball for the Pioneers and Lady Pioneers.
Frye was the hero for the Pioneers back in 2015, earning him a front-page spread in the April 8 edition. Frye hit a pair of homers in a doubleheader, along with adding the game-winning double in a victory over Greenwood.
Whiles – the all-time leader in home runs for the Lady Pioneers – was on the front of the April 8, 2018, edition after going deep against Stone Memorial. Whiles set the school record in 2019, helping her team win the region tournament along the way. Whiles is currently waiting for her softball career to resume at Cumberland University.
April 8 has also been good to the Keele family. In 2016, Jack Keele made the paper as he was helping the WCMS Pioneer dominate the competition. Four years prior, Mahaley Keele was on the front page as a part of the 2012 Lady Pioneer softball team.
In other April 8 editions, the Pioneers struggled in their season opener (1970), David Dunlap was helping coach the football team (1981), Van Buren honored new Hall of Fame members (1988), Jimmy Walker was stunned by calls in a baseball game (1990), Tracey Crutcher hit the deck trying for a single for the Lady Pioneers (1990), the soccer team gathered for a team picture (1990), Rachel Brown held serve for Lady Pioneer tennis (1998), WCHS baseball picked up a pair of wins (2001), Boyd was swept in softball (2001), the Lady Broncos took second in a tournament (2009) and WCHS tennis stayed unbeaten (2011).
Famous April 8 birthdays
1886 – Jim Barnes, three-time PGA major winner
1940 – John Havlicek, NBA Hall of Famer, eight-time champion
1946 – Catfish Hunter, MLB Hall of Famer
1954 – Gary Carter, MLB Hall of Famer
1961 – Mark Clayton, five-time NFL pro bowler
1963 – Terry Porter, two-time NBA all-star
1986 – Felix Herdandez, MLB all-star pitcher
1993 – Viktor Arvidsson, Nashville Predators
National April 8 headlines (AP)
1935 — Gene Sarazen gets a double eagle on the 15th hole to erase Craig Wood's three-stroke lead and goes on to win the Masters.
1943 — The Detroit Red Wings beat the Boston Bruins 2-0 to win the Stanley Cup with a four-game sweep.
1956 — Jack Burke, Jr. comes back from eight strokes behind to beat Ken Venturi by one shot to take the Masters.
1971 — The first legal off-track betting system in the U.S. opens in New York City.
1974 — In the home opener in Atlanta, Hank Aaron breaks Babe Ruth's career record by hitting his 715th home run, connecting off Al Downing of Los Angeles in the fourth inning.
1975 — Frank Robinson, the first black manager in the majors, debuts as player-manager for the Cleveland Indians. Robinson hits a home run in his first at-bat — as a designated hitter — to help beat the New York Yankees 5-3.
1989 — Alex English scores 26 points to become the first player in NBA history to score 2,000 points in eight straight seasons, and the Denver Nuggets beat the Utah Jazz 110-106.
1990 — Nick Faldo becomes the second player to win consecutive Masters, beating Ray Floyd on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff. Faldo joins Jack Nicklaus as the only repeat winner.
1993 — Miami's Brian Shaw sets an NBA record with 10 3-pointers in a 117-92 victory over Milwaukee.
2001 — Tiger Woods claims the greatest feat in modern golf, winning the Masters for a sweep of the four majors in a span of 294 days. Woods, with his winning score of 16-under 272, captures the majors with a combined score of 65-under.
2006 — Wisconsin wins its sixth NCAA men's ice hockey title and first since 1990 with a 2-1 victory over Boston College.
2007 — Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby finishes with 120 points to become the youngest player to win the Art Ross Trophy for most points in a season. Crosby, 19, betters the mark set by Wayne Gretzky, who was 20 when he had 164 points for his first Art Ross in 1980-81. Crosby had 36 goals and 84 assists.
2007 — Zach Johnson makes three birdies on the back nine of Augusta National to close with a 69 for a two-shot victory over Tiger Woods at the Masters.
2008 — Candace Parker, playing with an injured left shoulder, scores 17 points and grabs nine rebounds to help Tennessee capture its eighth women's NCAA championship with a 64-48 victory over Stanford.
2009 — The Cleveland Cavaliers become the first NBA team with two 15-game winning streaks at home in the same season by beating Washington 98-86.
2012 — Bubba Watson wins the Masters on the second hole of a playoff over Louis Oosthuizen.
2013 — Luke Hancock makes all five of his 3-pointers and leads Louisville to its first NCAA basketball championship since 1986 with an 82-76 victory over Michigan. Rick Pitino becomes the first coach to win a championship at two schools, following his title at Kentucky in 1996.
2014 — UConn defeats Notre Dame 79-58, giving coach Geno Auriemma and the Huskies a record ninth women's national championship. The game is the first title matchup between two unbeatens in the history of college basketball.