Joe Petrea played baseball for Salem High School before attending Kaskaskia College from 1977-79. Joe was a baseball Southern Illinois Collegiate Conference selection in the fall of 1977. Joe’s batting average was .354 in fall of 1977, .306 in spring of 1978, and .303 in spring of 1979. While at Kaskaskia College, Joe held a career batting average of .288, fifteen doubles, eight triples, one home run, forty-nine runs batted in, and a .432 on base average. Joe stole eighteen bases out of twenty-three attempts and had two triples in one game. He was also solid in the field with a fielding average of .979 handling 620 chances.
Joe played for the South Team in the All-Star Game at Wrigley Field in the spring of 1979 and continued his career at Middle Tennessee State University after receiving a baseball scholarship. Joe had a career batting average of .321 with forty-five runs batted in, twenty-one doubles, three homeruns, and one triple. Joe’s stats were all achieved using a wooden bat. Joe was a great defensive first baseman with a .985 average handling 624 chances. Joe was selected to the All Ohio Valley Conference Team his senior year when his team played in the South Regional with a chance to go to the NCAA College World Series.