It was an interesting, successful baseball season for the Brookland-Cayce Bearcats.
“This team showed a lot of resiliency,” said coach Brian Hucks, whose team finished with a 25-7 record.
“We had to overcome losing our field for the first month of the season. This caused a lot of lost practice time and we had to play out first 10 games on the road. But we competed well in the most talented region in 3A and played for the lower state championship.”
Indeed, the Bearcats lost out in the Region 5-3A championship race to archrival Airport, but had a longer playoff stay than the Eagles.
And with just three senior starters departing, expectations will be high again in 2011.
“We look forward to building on the successes this team had this season and hope to be in position to compete for the lower state championship again next year,” said Hucks.
“We return all but one pitcher from our pitching staff. We are losing some key players but we feel we will have players ready to step into those roles.”
Shortstop Kenyatta Castleberry (.379, 32 runs, 13 RBIs), Garrett Williams (.300, 16 RBIs), first baseman Addison Delk (.302, 20 runs, 24 RBIs) and catcher Zack Lambert are the senior starters leaving the fold.
Castleberry made the all-region team.
The returning cast features region MVP Chase Shelton, Michael Gilroy, Tanner Petrey and Zack Warner.
Shelton and Gilroy, both left-handers, were the aces of the pitching staff. Shelton finished with an 8-0 record and one save, a 2.03 ERA and 61 strikeouts in 55.1 innings. Gilroy was 7-4 with a 1.51 ERA. Shelton was also an offensive force, hitting .449 with 33 runs, 32 RBIs, 16 doubles and seven home runs.
Petrey batted .388 with 22 runs and 23 RBIs, and went 4-0 with a 1.67 ERA on the hill. Warner hit .392 with 33 runs and 17 RBIs.
John Long is another key returning hand. He hit .294 with 20 runs and 16 RBIs and was 6-2 with two saves and a 2.75 ERA in 35.2 innings of work on the mound.