A multi-sport standout for Gilmer will continue his sports career in college.

Dylan Bowman recently committed to East Texas Baptist University in Marshall to continue his baseball career.

Bowman is a four-year varsity letterman for the Buckeye baseball program, which recently won the District 16-3A championship and will play in the postseason for the second consecutive season. He was also a starting safety and senior captain for the Gilmer football team, which reached the 2012 Class 3A Division II state championship game. Bowman has competed for Gilmer's powerlifting team for three years.

Bowman, who will play second base at ETBU, was a first-team all-district punt returner and an all-district selection at safety, but said his heart is in baseball.

"Playing college baseball has been one of my goals for as long as I can remember," Bowman said. "I've always wanted to go to college for baseball over football because even though I liked football, baseball has always been the sport I've loved."

Bowman chose ETBU, an NCAA Division III program, over several schools in the Division II, NAIA, and NJCAA ranks. He plans to major in mathematics and later pursue a career in land surveying to take over his grandfather's business.

Bowman believes his defensive ability will help him transition smoothly to the college game, but that he'll work on his work at the plate.

"There's always room for improvement, but if I had to choose one thing it would probably be hitting because the pitching at the college level is more challenging than most high school pitching," Bowman said.

Gilmer coach Lonnie Henry said Bowman is prepared for a successful college career.

"Dylan is a great young man with a hard-nosed work ethic. He understands the game and knows how to fill his role as a leader and a team player," Henry said. "He is a great student of the game. ETBU is getting a student athlete that is an intelligent, hard-working player. They will be pleased to have him and he will do a fine job for them."