Gatesville High opens the postseason later this week, as the Hornets face Athens in the Class 4A bi-district playoffs. First game is scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday in Athens. Game 2 will be played at 2 p.m. Saturday in Gatesville, with a third game (if necessary) to follow. "I am excited for our players and the opportunity they have," said Gatesville coach David Truss. "I thought early in the season that we had the chance to be better than last year because of the number of experienced players we had returning." Athens is 16-12 overall and heads to the playoffs as the No. 1 seed from District 18-4A. Those Hornets pocketed the 18-4A title with a perfect 8-0 mark and are in the playoffs for the eighth year in a row. "Athens is a feisty team that plays with a lot of emotion," noted Truss. "They have some talent, which is what you expect from a team that has won five straight district titles." Gatesville started the current campaign slow but has since caught fire and may be playing its best right now. After posting just one win in its first 10 outings, GHS is now 8-17 overall. The Hornets went 6-6 in 17-4A to finish fourth behind Robinson, China Spring and Lorena. Truss' squad split its two games with China Spring and swept both games versus Lorena. "This year's team has played good defense, and when we have been good on the mound we have been very competitive," he said. "We have also benefited from having a couple of guys at the top of the lineup develop into very tough outs...guys that get aboard and run the bases well." Gatesville's likely starting lineup for Friday will include: Derrfick Bayer, Chase Williams, Ryan Stovall and Jared Butler in the infield, Peyton Bates, Colton Washburn and Billy Latham in the outfield, Zach Mueller behind the plate and Chase Mundkowsky on the mound. HORNET NOTES - The GHS-Athens winner advances to next week's area round to play Salado or Caldwell...GHS is making its third playoff trip in the last four years. The Hornets lost in bi-district in 2014 and 2015...Directions to Athens High School baseball field: From Gatesville, take Hwy. 84 to Waco. In Waco, take Loop 340 east, then go north on I-35. In Bellmead, take Hwy. 84/31 exit to Corsicana. Follow Hwy. 31 through Corsicana to Athens. In Athens, keep on Hwy. 31 into town. In downtown area, go right on S. Palestine Street, then left on Madole Street.
Baseball - Mon, May 1, 2017