Lubbock Christian School’s Eagles not only represent the second straight Eagles team Ovilla Christian School will face in as many weeks, they are the only thing that stands between OCS and its goal of reaching the TAPPS 3A state title game.
Just like last year.
The OCS Eagles will face familiar foes during the regional semifinals at 4 p.m. Tuesday at Houston USA Baseball Field, many that helped Lubbock Christian spoil Ovilla Christian’s state-bound run last season.
“Our think our game is surrounded by pounding the zone from the mound, letting our defense work and getting our rhythm and momentum. If we do that, I think we can beat any team we face,” said Aaron Morales, an OCS Eagles’ multi-tool player. “We played some public school tournaments I think prepared us for the playoffs. If we play our game, we can definitely give Lubbock the ‘L.’”
The OCS Eagles will need more of Morales’ hitting prowess — he hit when they meet their arch nemesis
OCS may be a more dangerous offensive team after maturation from seniors Morales, Donovan Williams, Jackson Glenn and Jacob Webb and sophomores Luke Glenn and Trevor Fowler and the addition of pitcher and third baseman Caleb Bly.
Jackson, Bly, Williams and Morales are first, second and fourth in RBIs this season and Jackson, Bly, Williams and senior Ricky Eubank have combined for 23 home runs in 25 games.
The combination of Webb, Bly and senior Austin Smith have pitched 122.1 of the 133.3 innings of baseball Ovilla Christian has played this year, striking out 195 batters and compiling a collective .842 earned run average.
“Our goal is to go out there and take care of business as a team. They don’t want to go home early and I don’t want them to either,” Bly said about possibly pitching on Tuesday after the regional quarterfinal win against Lake County Christian School. “I didn’t get to feel that pain last year, but I definitely don’t want to feel it this season. Jacob and I are going to come out aggressively and get the job done on the mound and keep them from scoring runs.
“We have a really good chance of beating them and the whole team is hungry to get the dub and go to the championship game. If we play our game, we can win.”
Lubbock Christian’s Eagles have been equally dominant during their TAPPS district 1-3A run to the state tournament, however.
Lubbock Christian finished 26-10 overall and was undefeated in district play. During the final 10 games of the season, the Eagles defeated their opponents by a margin of 132-42 and held three teams scoreless in blowout fashion.
They are also the defending TAPPS 3A champions after beating Sugarland, Texas Logos Preparatory Academy 4-1 in May 2015.
If Ovilla Christian beats Lubbock on Tuesday, they will advance to the state championship game at 3 p.m. Wednesday at Houston USA Baseball Field.
Regardless of the outcome and aside from the relief of meeting the expectations reaching the regional semifinal again, Greg Hayes, Ovilla Christian’s head baseball coach, said he has one of the best groups in high school baseball at any level.
“We’re blessed to have been this good every year,” said Greg Hayes, Ovilla Christian’s head baseball coach. “They love the game of baseball. Some players are multi-sport players and other sports have a priority over baseball. For these guys, God, faith, family and schoolwork come first, but after that, it’s all baseball. It’s so easy to put that baseball talent and pure love of the sport on the field and turn it loose.”