Owasso Baseball Signees

Seven Owasso seniors were recognized Wednesday, Nov. 20, for signing to play college baseball. From left, Keaton Ranallo (Seminole State), Pepe Casey (Seminole State), Conley Rae (Cowley College), Jack Hammond (Kansas), Nate Wohlgemuth (Arkansas), Nate Ackenhausen (Eastern Oklahoma State College) and Gabe Russell (NEO) each signed letters of intent.

SHAWN HEIN/Owasso Reporter

Baseball is the platform that will provide Jack Hammond and Nate Wohlgemuth with scholarships to Division I universities.

But growing up, neither believed baseball would be the sport thought bring them success.

“I started playing basketball when I was 6,” Wohlgemuth said. “I thought I would play basketball in the NBA.”

Hammond’s early athletic achievements came in wrestling. Hammond had 10 state championships to his credit and was a state qualifier for Collinsville as a freshman. He was a nationally-ranked grappler but a concussion ended those dreams as Hammond joined the Owasso baseball program prior to his sophomore season.

“It kind of opened my opened my eyes,” Hammond said. “Wrestling made me tougher for baseball and life in general.”

On Wednesday, Nov. 20, Wohlgemuth, who will join the Arkansas program next season, and Hammond, a future Kansas Jayhawk, were two of the seven Rams who were celebrated for signing on the dotted line in the second floor of the Owasso Athletic Office.

Nate Ackenhausen (Eastern Oklahoma State College), Pepe Casey (Seminole State), Conley Rae (Cowley County) Keaton Ranallo (Seminole) and Gabe Russell (NEO) will also continue their baseball careers in college. The seven-member group was joined by family, friends, coaches and teammates for the celebration.

The hard-throwing Wohlgemuth was also pursued by OU, TCU and other SEC schools but the Razorbacks were the best fit.

“The past 3-4 years I’ve really watched them closely,” said Wohlgemuth, who committed to Arkansas in Sept. 2018. “The atmosphere and fans they’ve got going. You’ve got the facilities and probably the best coaches in the entire United States.”

Hammond, a steady glove in the middle infield and consistent bat at the top of the Ram lineup, said OU, OSU, Kansas State and Missouri State were other programs he considered.

“I just felt at home right when I got there,” Hammond said of KU. “I was welcomed with open arms by the coaches and players in the program.”