Hoots Add Georgia State duo Donohoe and O'Neal for 2021 Season

by Zak DeBeaussaert

Columbus, GA - The Columbus Chatt-a-Hoots are announcing two new player commitments for the 2021 Sunbelt Baseball League season, catcher Conner O'Neal and shortstop Jesse Donohoe.

Both O'Neal and Donohoe are committed to Georgia State and are incoming freshmen for the 2021 baseball season. Each of their high school careers were spent in the Chattahoochee Valley. O'Neal with Northside High and Donohoe with Calvary Christian. Donohoe's name in particular may ring a bell for locals as he was a two-sport star at CC also playing quarterback for the Knights last season.

"Conner and Jesse share some similarities in their high school experience as both come from winning programs where each of them were big contributors as underclassmen on state championship teams." Hoots manage Steve Smith said. "The addition of these two players helps to provide two high quality bats from the left side and strong defense up the middle. Their leadership and winning experience will play a big part on our team this summer!"

O'Neal was a part of Northside High School's 2019 State Championship in the 4A division as a catcher and first baseman. He gives good strength to the lineup with his situational hitting ability and his defense behind the plate is good too, having been clocked at a sub 1.9 second pop time.

"Conner has shown an advanced approach at the plate with power and a strong presence behind the plate, defensively" Smith said. "We believe his bat and what he brings at the Catcher position will be a big addition to our club."

"I’m so excited to play for the Chatt-a-Hoots this summer in my hometown" O'Neal said. "We have a lot of talent on this team and can’t wait to see it on the field."

Donohoe was a member of two GICAA state championship teams with Calvary Christian as a shortstop and right-handed pitcher. In high school, Donohoe was a career .379 hitter with 71 RBIs in 70 games played. His senior season (2020-21) was cut short due to COVID.

“I am super excited about the opportunity to play for the Chatt-a-hoots this summer" Donohoe said. "I look forward to being able to play with other athletes from the area as well as playing for Coach Smith. He is one of the best coaches I have seen in my time playing. Overall, I am definitely thankful for the opportunity and am ready for the summer. Go Hoots.” 

Hoots manager Steve Smith had this to say: 

"Jesse is a lefthanded hitting shortstop with exceptional hands and athleticism up the middle.  He has shown the ability to be extremely versatile in the box by hitting for a high average with power, while also having the unique skill set for a cleanup bat to manufacture runs when needed."

The Hoots are extremely excited to add two new young guns to the team and are even more excited about Opening Day which is just over 100 days away! Visit GoHoots.com/tickets to get started on purchasing your season tickets today so you don't miss a single moment of the action when baseball returns to Columbus.