Brahmas seek good show against Bishop
May 23, 2012 at 12:23 a.m.
HALLETTSVILLE - One of the beauties of baseball is the defense, and more specifically the pitcher, possesses the ball.
The bevy of starting pitching Hallettsville and Bishop have at their disposal means this weekend's Class 2A regional semifinal series will likely be determined by those young men who take the mound.
Hallettsville (26-8) has three starters that head coach Shorty Cook trusts to get outs in any situation. Juniors Carson Schindler, Reagan McAda and Chris Jones are a combined 19-3 for the Brahmas.
"Our defense has held teams to a very small amount of runs," said McAda, possessor of a perfect 8-0 record. "Our defense has been the difference maker in our games. Everyone comes together and plays defense and we have scratched a few hits across the board."
Cook said putting the ball in play will be paramount against a team that does not allow free base runners- whether via walks or errors.
Bishop (26-6-1) will counter with Joseph Rubio and Dylan Horner. Rubio is 10-2 with a 0.93 ERA while Horner is an unblemished 11-0 with a 1.49 ERA in 61 innings. The two Badger aces have combined for 49 walks in 131 innings this year.
The Brahmas finished third in arguably the toughest district in 2A baseball this year. They believe their regular season schedule, and their penchant for finding ways to win close contests will help them as they march toward the state tournament.
"It's helped us out a lot," Jones said. "We've played really tough competition. Schulenburg and Weimar are tough teams. They battle a lot and they make us work to win. When we are in the playoffs we know when we are down we can come back and win."
Of the 80 varsity baseball teams, across five classifications, vying for UIL state championships only 10 finished third, or lower, in their district. Seven are in Class 5A, two are in Class 4A - and then there is Hallettsville.
Cook said the strength of his current group is their love for the game. They are not solely a pitching team, or a group that will slug an opponent into submission. He said the Brahmas are a team that has grown up together and enjoy winning together.
Five pitchers have at least 10 appearances this year for a team with a combined 2.10 ERA. Collectively the Brahmas hit .347 and have driven in nearly 85 percent of their 286 runs this season.
"We have a good balance," said junior first baseman Will Wallace. "We have plenty of pitching. On offense when we have one person going it gets everyone going. On defense we stay together pretty well and keep the errors to a minimum."
Considering both teams allow fewer than three earned runs a game, defense might have a maximum impact on the series.