JU pride night at Tennessee Smokies promotes university,community

KODAK— Friday the Johnson community gathered at the Tennessee Smokies Stadium for a night of baseball, fun and promotion of the university. Kevin Ewing, the new Royals recruit, threw the first pitch of the night.

Ewing signed as a left-handed pitcher for the Royals. He said this is not the first time he has thrown the first pitch in a game.

“It was exciting— I got to go to the Tropicana Field in Saint Pete. and throw out the first pitch for the Rays game,” Ewing said.”It was cool just to be able to come out there and do it again and just to experience that feeling again was really fun.”

Ewing is an alumnus of Inspiration Academy in Bradenton, Florida and will continue to pitch for the Johnson Royals team this season. Ewing threw the first pitch despite the weather and field conditions.

The game started out with light rainfall but gradually cleared up. Despite the rain, everyone still came out to the game to support the university. Johnson student, Justin Sutherland, said he came to show his support for Johnson.

“I have loved being around these people,” Sutherland said. “Even though baseball is not my sport, I came to show my Johnson support.”

The Advancement Office organized the night as an opportunity for the university to have a community presence. Matt Shears, the director of alumni relations, said this event was an act of promotion and community involvement.

“The Advancement Office put this together as a means to promote our name in the community and also to host a fun night for alumni, students and staff, ” he said.

President-elect Tommy Smith also said this event was an opportunity to get more students involved in the community.

“One of the things that we have really made a goal is to be good citizens in the community and this is a good way to do it,” Smith said. ” Some students come and they never really enjoy the activities in the area. So this is just a good way to get out and get off campus with your friends and have fun.”

To stay up to date on the Johnson Royals and other Johnson University athletics, visit the Johnson University Royals page. View highlights of the night below.

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