Former East Newton High standout Sam Swartz signed with Crowder just out of high school, then he played two seasons at Labette Community College in Parsons, Kansas, before he transferred to NCAA Division II University of the Ozarks in Clarksville, Arkansas.

Last month, the American Southwest Conference released all-conference honors and Swartz was one of 10 players from University of the Ozarks who earned second team, third team, or honorable mention. Swartz earned honorable mention at utility.

In 36 games played his junior season, Swartz hit .296 (40 for 135) with 27 runs scored, seven doubles, four home runs, 20 RBI, 24 walks and 16 strikeouts, and three stolen bases in five attempts. Swartz reached base over 41 percent of the time and collected a slugging percentage of .437.

It had been 10 years since the Eagles had earned a playoff win when in the bottom of the eighth, Swartz gave University of the Ozarks a 3-2 lead with a two-run double down the right field line. The Eagles prevailed over East Texas Baptist 3-2 in the conference tournament.

In his sophomore season at Labette, Swartz batted .289 (46-159) with 29 runs scored, six doubles, four homers, 32 RBI, 20 walks and 47 strikeouts, and one stolen base in his only attempt. Swartz tallied percentages of .376 on-base and .403 slugging.

In his freshman season, Swartz hit .229 (15-66) with 16 runs scored, two doubles, four homers, 11 RBI, 12 walks and 30 strikeouts, and one stolen base in his only attempt. He reached base 37.3 percent of the time and finished with a .439 slugging percentage.

At East Newton, Swartz earned all-state first team infielder honors both his junior and senior seasons from the Missouri High School Baseball Coaches Association.

Swartz was reunited with former high school teammate Rocky Liveoak at University of the Ozarks.