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Brock secures third trip to state in four years after hot start against Jacksboro


WEATHERFORD – After facing elimination to the Jacksboro Tigers following a Game 1 loss, the Brock Eagles rolled in the rubber match to claim their spot in the UIL state baseball tournament with a 9-3 win behind a stellar performance from veteran players Cooper Massey and Cam Harris for the Class 3A Region 1 championship on Saturday at Weatherford College.

Brock (33-3) moves on to face Corpus Christi London (39-3) at Dell Diamond in Round Rock at 9 am Friday, A win will put them back in the state title game 24 hours later. It’s a rematch of the 2022 Class 3A final when London beat Brock 16-13.

After dropping Game 1 by a score of 5-1, Brock rallied the troops and evened the series 7-2 to force a third and decisive game. The series marked the first time the Eagles faced elimination during this playoff run, and as the final game portrayed, they handled the pressure in spectacular fashion.

Having already pitched in the opener, Harris, a senior, took the hill for the Eagles looking to punch his third ticket to the state tournament. Harris pitched four full innings to earn the win, striking out eight and adding three RBI in three at-bats.

With Harris pitching the first four innings, along with Ethan Riley pitching the last three, Brock was able to work out of multiple jams, stranding a total of 11 Jacksboro runners.

Offensively, Brock was able to score at least one run in every inning. Sawyer Strosnider opened up the scoring in the first with a ground ball to first. Despite the double play, Jesse Rusinek was able to score, putting the Eagles up 1-0 early.

The second inning was all on Massey, who led off the inning with a triple to right field. After the next two batters failed to reach base, Massey gambled and tried to steal home. He slid in time and just an inch under the tag to extend the Brock lead.

In the third, Strosnider singled in Braeden Ray to add another run. Brock faced a defensive jam in the fourth inning, but Harris finished off his day by getting out of it with a strikeout to his final batter.

Massey continued his impressive performance in the bottom of the inning when he led off the bottom of the fourth with a single. He later scored on a sacrifice fly from Gavin Delmas. Ray then doubled home Cole Stanley to make it a 5-0 Brock lead after five innings.

In the fifth, Harris stepped to the plate with two runners on, and was able to bring in Canon Lightfoot with a sacrifice fly to add one more run. Then in the sixth, the Eagles were able to work the bases loaded. After a passed ball scored another run, Harris polished off his game with a single to center field that scored the other two runners, giving Brock a 9-0 lead.

Harris could have been the winning run by run-rule, but he was ultimately held up at third on a single by Massey. Both were left on the base path.

Brock needed just three more outs to finish the game, but the pressure and fatigue of playing a full three games started to catch up with the Eagles. Riley walked the lead off batter and gave up back-to-back singles to load the bases. Jacksboro’s Tyler Mitchell then gave the Tigers life by doubling down the left field line to score all three baserunners, making the score 9-3.

Despite the late life shown by the Tigers, Riley finished off the game well, and the final out was recorded on a ground out to second base, sending Brock back to the Triple-A home of the Texas Rangers.

It’s Brock’s eighth trip to the state baseball tournament – third in the past three years.

The Eagles will be looking to win their second state title – first since 2006.

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