Central’s Paynter makes all-state

Published 6:00 pm Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Central High School senior outfielder Josh Paynter was recently named to the 2016 Virginia High School League Group 1A all-state second team.

“I was really proud of Josh making that,” Chargers coach Michael Atkins said. “It’s the second year in a row he was selected second team all-state. He was also a second team all-state selection as a junior.”

Paynter finished the season with a .443 batting average, a .535 on base percentage and a .629 slugging percentage. In 70 at-bats, he had 31 hits, including eight doubles, a triple and a home run, 21 runs batted in and 23 runs scored.

“I don’t know the last time the program had an all-state player, and for us to have one two years in a row was outstanding, and he’s certainly deserving of it,” Atkins said.

Paynter has received recognition multiple times now for the season he had this year.

“When you’re a first team all-conference selection and Conference (42) Player of the Year and a first team all-region and a second team all-state selection, that’s something to really be proud of,” Atkins said. “I think he ended his senior year on a very high note and can look back on his baseball career at Central in a very fond, positive way.”

Atkins credited Paynter with helping turn the Central varsity baseball team into a winning program in the last four years.

The Chargers finished the 2016 season with a 13-9 record and advanced as far as the Region 1A East Tournament quarterfinals, where they fell 9-6 to eventual regional champion and state runner-up Windsor High School.

Central players receiving all-region accolades along with Paynter included sophomore third baseman Nate Nowlin and sophomore outfielder Jeffrey Goodwin, who each made the second team. Sophomore pitchers Ethan Hoover and Christian Hall received honorable mention.