FROM STAFF REPORTS
TROY — The Llano High School baseball team got its first Class 3A bi-district championship since 2008 by winning the best-of-three series against Venus on May 3.
The Yellow Jackets crushed the Bulldogs 13-2 in Game 3. They lost the the first game 3-0 on May 1 and won the second game 5-4 on May 2.
Llano now faces Iowa Park in the area round with date, time and site to be determined.
The Yellow Jackets never trailed in the third contest, scoring all the runs they needed in the first inning by taking advantage of six walks. Chance Ware got Llano’s only hit in the inning.
Venus scored its only runs in the third inning courtesy of Anthony Garcia, who got two RBIs with a hit and a Llano error.
In the fifth, Llano’s Brett Sorenson hit one-run double. Later, in the seventh, the Jackets put the game away by scoring eight runs, chasing two pitchers off the mound. In all, Llano had 13 at-bats in that inning.
Llano’s Isaac Hutto hit a two-run single, while Taylor Sorenson, Ware, Kyle Tarter, Brett Sorenson, Jalen Bauer and Tommy Yelvington had an RBI each.
Eight of the nine Llano batters recorded RBIs in the contest.
Llano pitcher Logan Bauer earned the win, giving up two runs off six hits with eight free bases and two strikeouts in seven innings. Venus pitcher Hayden Stanford was credited with the loss, giving up four runs off one hit with three walks and one strikeout in 1/3 inning.
LLANO 5, VENUS 4
LLANO — With his team’s season on the line, senior Isaac Hutto found a way to get the Llano High School baseball team a 5-4 win against Venus on May 2.
That victory tied the Class 3A bi-district best-of-three series at a game apiece. Game 3 is 3 p.m. May 3 at Troy High School, 205 N. Waco Road in Troy.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, Hutto, who was 0-2 in the game, reached base on a single after falling behind 0-2 in the count. He then went to second on a high-bouncing hit by Kyle Tarter.
The Venus shortstop couldn’t handle the ball, so Hutto was on his way to third. He slid, sensing the ball was close. But it bounced into the dugout, allowing the Hutto to trot home for the win.
“I was trying to be smart at the plate,” he said. “You have to have a short memory and focus on the next at-bat.”
The Yellow Jackets trailed 4-0 but came alive in the fifth inning.
Llano head coach Stephen Campbell gave his players advice before the inning started.
“Lighten up and have fun, he said.
Logan Bauer led off with a single followed by a double from Taylor Sorenson. Chance Ware hit a two-run single to trim the deficit to 4-2.
Hutto reached on a fielder’s choice, and Holden Simpson got on base on a double.
Hutto scored on a balk, and Kyle Tarter recorded an RBI single to tie the game 4-4.
Venus scored a pair of runs in the second inning by taking advantage of three Llano errors.
The Bulldogs added two more in the third when Patrick Mathis, a University of Texas commit, came home on a pass ball and Tanner Foy hit an RBI single.
Sorenson earned the win on the mound. He pitched 4 2/3 scoreless innings with one single, four strikeouts and three walks.
He walked two in a row after two outs in the sixth inning. He forced a batter to flyout to end the inning.
“I have a lot of confidence in myself,” he said. “I say I’m going to fix it right here. I have confidence.”
“He calls his own game,” Campbell said. “He’s a smart and intelligent player.”