NEW LONDON — Two years ago, Rhett Lowder used his talent to help the North Stanly Comets during the abbreviated COVID-19 season.
He’s now moved on to even bigger and better things as a sophomore starting pitcher for the Wake Forest Demon Deacons.
Lowder became the first Wake Forest player to be named Atlantic Coast Conference Pitcher of the Year this season, and the righthander was named an All-American, earned his university’s Arnold Palmer Award (Male Athlete of the Year), made the All-ACC Academic Team and earned a spot on the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team.
Starting as a member of the Stars and Stars Training Camp at the USA Baseball’s home facilities, Lowder made the final cut for Team USA’s roster.
On July 15, Team USA defeated Japan 4-3 to secure the bronze medal in the Honkbalweek Haarlem International Tournament in The Netherlands. Lowder — a 2023 MLB Draft prospect — allowed one run and three hits in three innings in a 3-2 loss to Curacao on June 14.
His sophomore season at Wake Forest has been heralded as one of the best by a Demon Deacons pitcher.
The Albemarle native led the ACC in wins while posting an 11-3 record and ranked second in both ERA (2.61) and innings pitched (93) while finishing third in strikeouts (98). He concluded the regular season with a complete-game performance against NC State to become the first Demon Deacons pitcher since 2017 to go all nine innings in a win.
Lowder was the only pitcher to rank in the top three in wins, strikeouts and ERA in ACC play. He held the lowest ERA (2.60) and pitched the most innings (65.2) in addition to earning the second-most wins (six) and fourth-most strikeouts (63) in conference play.