Tyler Jaynes can’t stand the fact that his Gatesville baseball team missed the postseason this year.He plans on a Hornets return to the playoffs next year, by working hard in the off season.

“My dad keeps tabs on the number of pitches I throw and my pitching coach Clint Smith tells me what to work on and when to throw,” Jaynes said. “Other than that it’s a lot of band work, free weights, stretching and a lot of throwing over the summer.” The junior ace received 1,024 votes and won the KDHpressbox.com player of the week award after pitching a complete-game, one-hit shutout against Waco La Vega on April 13. He tossed 11 strikeouts in the game and scored two runs in the 4-0 win.

“It’s such a huge honor and it wouldn’t be possible without my teammates. They made the plays that kept it a shutout,” Jaynes said. “It’s pretty cool, you know?”

Despite his joy of earning the award, Jaynes’ only focus is to get better as a player so he can help his squad be one of the top three teams in the district.

“I’ll look at what I did as far as pitch location and then work on my velocity,” Jaynes said. “Hopefully I can put it together and get us back to the playoffs.”

Jaynes understands pitching is important but in order for the Hornets to return to the playoffs he knows they need more.

“We have to work on our hitting. We couldn’t get the big hit all year and when there are three ranked teams in your district it makes it hard to win when you don’t get those big hits,” he said.

Gatesville won’t have to worry about overcoming those two teams as it moves to District 8-3A next year where Jaynes expects nothing less than a playoff berth.

“We are going into a new district with Brownwood, Burnet, Liberty Hill, Llano and Lampasas but I fully expect us to make the playoffs next year,” Jaynes said.

LeKesha Jelks of Shoemaker High took second with 725 votes. The senior sprinter won the 200-, 400- and 800-meter runs as the Lady Grey Wolves won the District 12-5A track and field title.

Belton’s Max Hogan and Copperas Cove’s Brandon Hamilton rounded out the voting. Hogan was 4-for-6 at the plate with four RBIs, three runs and a home run as the Tigers beat Shoemaker 10-0 and Temple 7-0. Hamilton finished third in the 100-meter dash and helped the 400 and 800 relays to wins as the Bulldawgs won the District 12-5A track and field title.

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