Cardinals begin playoff series Thurs.
After an exciting three game quarterfinal series with Dist. 21-3A companion Orangefield Bobcats, the No. 3 ranked Bridge City Cardinals move on to face the No. 1 ranked Longview Spring Hill Panthers in the Region III semifinal round. Game One is Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at Lufkin Hudson High School.
Game Two will be played Saturday at Angelina Junior College in Lufkin starting at 1 p.m. Game Three, if necessary, will be played 30 minutes following the conclusion of Game Two.
The latest rankings are from the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association.
The Cardinals (24-4) defeated the Orangefield Bobcats at Vidor High School 2-1 in the quarterfinal series to move to the next level. The Dist. 17 Panthers (28-2) defeated No. 2 ranked Robinson in the first two outing of their quarterfinal series in Ennis.
Now just sixteen teams remain standing in Texas 3A baseball and just four in Region III. Carthage, Taylor, Bridge City and Springhill all begin play this week just two brackets away from the UIL State Baseball Championship tournament June 11-12 at UFCU Disch-Falk Field in Austin.
Longview Spring Hill touts ace pitcher, left-hander Garrett Methvin. Methvin scattered three hits and struck out nine through the first six innings in Game Two against Robinson.
The Cardinals, however, balance that with junior right-hander Matt Hicks (1.25 ERA) who is second in the state with 11 wins on the hill and 126 strikeouts for the season.
“This will be our most challenging opponent of the season,” said Bridge City head baseball coach Chad Landry. “They deserve their No. 1 ranking.”
“I don’t think that we will change the way we will mentally prepare for this series,” Landry said, “Our guys have a pretty even keel about them and that is certainly something that they have had throughout the year.”
According to Landry, Methvin is a “tall kid” that has four good pitches in his arsenal. “We will have to be aggressive with our approach, because he is going to be around the plate and throws strikes. Spring Hill is full of team speed and also hit for a lot of power.”
Longview Spring Hill romped through Dist 17 undefeated and entered the playoffs with a victory against Mexia in the area round.
“It is going to take us playing flawless defense and minimizing the strikeouts,” Landry said, “If we do that we will have a punchers chance.”
Landry complimented Bridge City Cardinal fans, “I hope that we have a great turnout from our fans this weekend. They came out in droves in the quarterfinal series and we fed off their energy. Our fans are great and we really appreciate all their support.”
See the upcoming issue of The Record newspapers for photos and more.