Gatesville intends to end its postseason drought this year.
After missing the playoffs for three consecutive seasons, the Hornets are eager to return to their winning ways.
From 2005 through 2010, Gatesville made the postseason every year, reaching the regional quarterfinals in 2006 and 2010, but things have not worked out in their favor since.
Last season, the Hornets produced a 21-14 overall record and went 5-5 in District 8-3A play, but it was not enough to reach the playoffs.
Gatesville landed eight players on the all-district list, including first-team selections Cullen Mayhew (catcher) and Matthew Wallace (second base), and second-teamers Tyler Jaynes (pitcher) and Hunter Dean (outfield).
Unfortunately for the Hornets, all four were seniors and graduated from the team.
Nevertheless, Gatesville returns lots of talent highlighted by senior outfielder Wyatt Crum, who was placed on the all-district first team last year. Additionally, Andrew Wallace, Christian George, Jeff Speer, Mitchell Chartier, Scott Shults, Seth Martin and Tristan Harbour are all returning to the Hornets’ lineup.
Gatesville is 2-2-1 through the first five games of the season, advancing to the championship game of its home tournament before falling to Clifton 10-2 on Saturday to finish second in the six-team field.
The Hornets travel to Copperas Cove tonight to face the Bulldawgs under the leadership of first-year coach Dusty Brittain, who graduated from Gatesville before spending the last four seasons as an assistant at his alma mater under current head coach Graig Keeton. The game is set to start at 7 p.m.
Gatesville officially begins its trek back to the postseason when it opens district play March 18 at Burnet.