BULLARD — The defending champs apparently aren’t ones for drama this season.
Perhaps they prefer comedies.
Bullard Brook Hill dominated once again in the playoffs, turning their TAPPS 3A regional playoff against Lubbock Christian into a laugher with a 14-0 win in five innings on Saturday at Herrington Field.
After two one-run wins in the first two rounds of last year’s playoffs, the Guard (26-3) have put together back-to-back run-rule routs to advance to their third straight state tournament.
“It’s baseball; you can’t go up there and smoke everyone every game, we understand that,” Brook Hill coach Terry Pirtle said. “We know there’s a tight game that’s coming and it’ll probably be the next game that we play.”
It certainly didn’t come Saturday.
The Guard, who will play Austin Regents-Conroe The Woodlands Christian winner Thursday in the state semifinals, led 6-0 after two innings then broke it open with an eight-run fourth.
Brook Hill starting pitcher Drew Robertson — and later Quintin Pile — did the rest, holding the Eagles (19-12) to two hits.
“The kids have worked their tails off,” Pirtle said. “We put them in big tests in non-district to see what they’re made of … and first two games (of the playoffs) have gone just like I thought the kids would react after playing a lot of quality teams.”
Robertson breezed through the first three innings before running into a jam after walking a couple in the third. He battled back to strand the bases loaded before Pile came on to close out the game with a one-two-three fifth.
“He’s been amazing all year,” Pirtle said of Robertson. “He doesn’t overpower you, but he overthinks you and throws strikes.”
The Guard put their first two batters on base in three of their four at bats and the runs flowed thereafter.
In the fourth, every Brook Hill batter reached base and eight of the nine scored. Kendall Kerns lined a single into left field off the third baseman’s glove to score two runs and Collin Mondrik shot a three-run double into the right-center gap to highlight the frame.
“You look up and you have runners at first and second or second and third with less than two outs, you really can relax as a hitter because all you need to do is get the ball in play,” Pirtle said. “We’ve done a tremendous job of hitting the ball with runners in scoring position the last two games.”
A.J. Minter sent a two-run triple to left-center in the first inning and finished with three RBIs and two runs for Brook Hill.
Robertson aided his cause at the plate with a 2-for-3 day to go with an RBI and two runs. Kerns finished with three RBIs while Dylan Horinek and Michael Greening each scored twice.
Leadoff hitter JB Moss went 3 for 4 with two RBIs and two runs.
“JB obviously was a spark today,” Pirtle said. “He’s done a tremendous job in the playoffs of hitting the baseball. Anytime he gets rolling, everybody gets rolling. He definitely showed that today.”
Brook Hill, which won it all last year after losing the final in 2010, returned all but its designated hitter from last season. Pirtle said it was a relief to return to the state tournament knowing everyone expected them to repeat.
“Our kids expect to win at this point,” Pirtle said. “To their credit, they’ve not put too much pressure on themselves. They’ve gone up to the plate and hit the ball solid and it hasn’t been too many poor at bats in the playoffs. Pitching’s been good and the defense has been great. We’re doing what we expected to do.”
TAPPS 3A Regional Playoff
At Herrington Field
Bullard Brook Hill 14, Lubbock Christian 0
Lub. Christian 000 00 — 0 2 1
Brook Hill 330 8x —14 13 0
Tate Sparks, James Hardberger (3), Will Stephens (4) and Stephens, Braden Sutterfield (4). Drew Robertson, Quintin Pile (5) and Kendall Kerns. W – Robertson (7-0); L – Sparks. 2B – BH: Collin Mondrik. 3B – BH: A.J. Minter, Garrett Moore.
RECORDS — Lubbock Christian 19-12; Brook Hill 26-3.
NEXT UP — Brook Hill vs. Austin Regents-Conroe The Woodlands Christian winner, 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Waco ISD Field No. 2.
Austin Hyde Park Stops All Saints 2-1 In Regional
WACO — In a sterling pitchers duel between All Saints’ William Young and Austin Hyde Park’s Devon Rogers, the Panthers put together just enough offense at the end to steal the win and book a trip to state.
Hyde Park scored twice in the bottom of the seventh for a 2-1 victory over All Saints in their TAPPS 4A regional playoff on Saturday at Waco ISD Field No. 2.
Young held the Panthers (21-9) scoreless through the first six innings and struck out eight while allowing five hits. Matthew Schmidt hit a one-out, two-run double to secure the Hyde Park walkoff.
Rogers held the Trojans (19-7-1) to two hits. Young had All Saints’ lone RBI of the day in the fourth.
The Panthers will play either Midland Christian or Houston Second Baptist in the state semifinals on Thursday. The Trojans will return their entire team next year except for standout senior John Norton.
TAPPS 4A Regional Playoff
At Waco ISD Field No. 2
Austin Hyde Park 2, All Saints 1
All Saints 000 100 0 — 1 2 1
Hyde Park 000 000 2 — 2 5 0
William Young and Chandler Hammond. Devon Rogers. W – Rogers. L – Young (6-3). 2B – HP: Matthew Schmidt.
RECORDS — All Saints 19-7-1; Hyde Park 21-9.
NEXT UP — Hyde Park vs. Midland Christian-Houston Second Baptist winner, 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Waco ISD Field No. 2.
King’s Academy Denied Second State Title
SAN ANTONIO — King’s Academy bid for a second state title in 2012 fell one game short.
A day after throwing a no-hitter themselves, the Royal Knights were held to a single hit in a 9-0 loss to Houston Central Christian Academy in the TCAL Division II state championship game Saturday at Cornerstone Christian School.
The game was called after five innings due to a predetermined time limit.
King’s Academy (8-5) set a school record for wins in the program’s third year in existence. The Royal Knights secured a basketball state title in February.