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Star athlete excels on Team USA
Special Photo
Grayson High School’s Austin Meadows was
the lead-off batter and starting center-fielder position on
Team USA, 2011 16U Team USA Baseball.
By Lacy Leathers

Austin Meadows has athletic talent like no other, and he most definitely utilizes his incredible abilities. Austin started playing baseball when he was just three years old, and he has played all of his life from then on. You could say that he really fell in love with the sport, for he surely has a true and sincere passion for the game itself. His father, Kenny Meadows, played baseball and football at Morehead State University in Kentucky, and his mother, Staci Meadows, played fast-pitch softball on a scholarship at Georgia Southern, then finished out her seasons at Georgia State University. Athletics seem to run throughout the Meadows family, for Austin’---s younger brother, Parker, also plays on a travel baseball team as well, and they recently won the Grand-Slam World Series in Panama City Beach, Florida.
This past summer, Austin started a remarkable season with his travel baseball team named Team Elite White. They traveled to Jupiter, Florida to compete in the USA Baseball East Championship and Junior Olympics tournament.
Throughout this tournament, many different scouts from Team USA had clandestinely been watching all of the competing players and teams in order to select fourteen boys from the East coast to come participate in the Team USA baseball try-outs held in Cary, North Carolina in early August. After one of Austin’s games, a scout approached him and his parents and asked if he would like to come to North Carolina in August to try-out for Team USA. Elated at the offer, the Meadows family signed off that Austin would fly out to Cary to join thirty-nine other boys in the hopes of making a spot on the legendary Team USA baseball program, which has won the gold medal five consecutive years in a row for their 16U team.
When August arrived, Austin packed up and flew out to Cary, North Carolina to begin the try-out session. As one week went by, Meadows impressed the coaches and staff enough that he landed the starting center-fielder position on Team USA, as well as becoming the lead-off batter. Out of the original thirty-nine that initially arrived, 20 boys from all over the country made the official team. To start off week two in Cary, North Carolina, the newly established team practiced and trained together and by the end of the week, they flew out to Lagos de Moreno, Mexico to compete in the Pan-American Stadium for a gargantuan worldwide tournament. They played against ten other international teams which included Australia, China-Taipei, Cuba, Venezuela, and many more. This tournament started August 19th, and ended on August 29th. Meadows batted left-handed and also threw left-handed. He has an arm like no other, and his batting is exceptional according to his coaches on Team USA. He was first recognized in the very beginning for having such phenomenal and rare batting skills.
In the last game of the tournament, Team USA defeated Cuba 9-0 and won the gold medal yet again! On August 29th, Austin flew in late that afternoon from Mexico, and his family and friends surprised him with a sweet ‘welcome home’ party. Austin returned back to school at Grayson High School on August 31st. He plans on starting back to help his football team continue and maintain an exciting and entertaining season this year. Meadows plays outside linebacker, running back, and is also a punter for the varsity football team. Coach Mickey Conn has been very supportive of Austin’s flourishing career in baseball and the Meadows family thanks Coach Conn and the football team for their on-going support.
Meadows states that his favorite part about playing for Team USA was meeting and forming new bonds with his teammates. He says that it is neat in the fact that he gets to keep those friendships with so many of those guys who live all over the United States in different places. One of Austin’s favorite baseball players, Freddy Freeman, was also on Team USA when he was Austin’s age. Freeman currently plays for the Atlanta Braves.
Austin plans to play baseball for his team at Grayson High School again in the spring, and then continue on to play with his travel team again next summer. He states that he is excited for what lies ahead of him, and he is extremely grateful to have been given such a wonderful opportunity to play for such a fantastic and well-known team such as Team USA.
Austin came home to family and friends along with homemade signs welcoming him home.

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