With 52 wins in the last three seasons, counting the current one, you might hope someone involved with the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association’s voting process might recognize Kilgore High School.
That has happened this week. And so did another win.
The THSBCA poll of the state’s 4A top 10 finally includes Kilgore, whose performance this season includes just one loss in the last dozen games, and a third straight season with a district championship. The Bulldogs are ranked ninth in the latest 4A poll, released Monday, with only a couple of other East Texas schools in there.
Voting is done, of course, by the coaches who are members of the THSBCA.
Kilgore coach Eugene Lafitte is about to finish his second full season on the job, and the Diamond ‘Dogs are planning to end it maybe even better than they did last year, when they came in just one win shy of making the state tournament. Kilgore lost to Argyle just a round shy of state, and that same Argyle is currently ranked first in the 4A poll (see the top 10 with this story).
The Bulldogs are 20-5 so far this season, and this is the last week of the regular season. They’ve already clinched the District 16-4A title, and finished the district schedule Tuesday night with an 11-0 win over district newcomer Cumberland Academy in Tyler.
New Diana plays Kilgore here at Driller Park on Friday night at 7 p.m., and the Bulldogs play at Rusk on Saturday, a time still to be announced, in the regular season finale.
Against Cumberland, Cole Thompson homered for KHS and had 2 RBI. Khalon Clayton also had 2 RBI, and a hit, as did Jayce McFarland. Conner Martin went 2-for-4 and Gus Witt went 2-for-2. Dalton McElyea had a hit, and Chase Hampton did, as well, with an RBI. Cade Pippen had an RBI.
Witt got the win on the mound. He pitched three innings, allowed no hits, and struck out three. McElyea also pitched, going two innings and allowing two hits, and had a strikeout. Neither KHS pitcher allowed a walk.
Nate Harris took the loss for CA, allowing six runs, five of them earned, on four hits and five walks over four innings. He struck out one. Jackson Gullatt also pitched for CA, an inning, and allowed five runs on five hits, a walk and had a strikeout.
Cumberland, who committed six errors in the game, had two hits: one by Aaron Mills, and one by Harris.