The Kentucky Wesleyan College men's basketball team will add Stewart Currie and Wyatt Battaile to the 2019-20 roster, as announced by head coach Drew Cooper on Wednesday. The duo joins Jo Griffin and Ben Sisson who already signed with Wesleyan earlier this spring.
Currie is a 6-foot-7 forward from Owensboro and previously attended Daviess County High School. Currie returns home after a baseball career that started at the University of Louisville in 2017. While at Daviess County, Currie averaged 23.6 points and 13.3 rebounds per game. He scored 1,438 points in his prep career, which stands as the fourth most in school history.
"Stew is a long, physical basketball player," Cooper said. "He only knows one pace to play and that is as hard as he can go. He has had a significant layoff (from basketball), but I am confident that with his work ethic and athletic ability, he will be polished and ready to compete. He plays with an energy that is effective when you talk about affecting the interior. We are happy to have another local product that fully respects and embraces the unique history here."
The Academic All-State honorable mention finished his career as Panthers' second all-time shot blocker (131) while also establishing the single season record for rebounds (358) and made free throws (139). While at Louisville, Currie made three relief appearances in 2018. His baseball career eventually ended with a pair of arm injuries.
"I picked Kentucky Wesleyan because it's home," Currie said. "My family is here, and my support system. Basketball has always been my passion and I am glad the coaching staff here was willing to take a risk on me. I am glad to be back doing what I love in the town I love."
Battaile comes to Wesleyan after one season at the University of Louisville. Battaile saw action in seven games over the course of his freshman year. The 6-4 shooting guard went to Pikeville High School where he averaged 24.1 points, 8.6 rebounds, and 4.3 assists his senior season (2017-18). Pikeville went 25-10 that season, earning their second consecutive trip to the Kentucky Sweet 16.
"We recruited Wyatt out of high school and we are happy we won out on him this time around," Cooper said. "He is long, strong, and an athletic wing that shoots the ball very well. He is a natural scorer at his position and we are comfortable he will fit right in to how we like to play."
In his prep career, Battaile scored 2,211 points while converting 139 three-point baskets. Battaile earned several honors while at Pikeville, in 2017 and 2018 he was named the 15th Region Tournament Most Valuable Player. In addition to, Battaile earned back-to-back 59th District Player of the Year awards. A two-sport athlete, he also helped Pikeville to a state football championship in 2015 as he threw for 1,330 yards on 76 of 95 passing with 20 touchdowns.
"In their year together at University of Louisville, he and Jo (Griffin) became close so I am confident that helped," Cooper said. "We owe a debt of gratitude to Coach Mack and his staff for not only coaching and developing Griffin and Battaile, but for their communication and assistance during the recruiting process.
The Panthers finished 10-16 in Cooper's first season at the helm with a 8-12 mark in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference.