Two years ago, Wall left the 2017 state championships with a state finalist finish. That is better than over 200 3A schools across the state of Texas, but the Hawks were simply looking to achieve one thing in 2019 – win a state championship.
On Saturday morning from the Dell Diamond in Round Rock, that goal was accomplished as the Hawks (39-1) scored two runs late and held off Blanco (33-5) for a 2-1 win.
“It’s surreal,” said Wall head coach Jason Schniers, which has headed the program now for a decade. “It’s what you dream about and you never know what it’s going to feel like. To say we are state champions, it’s really a dream come true.”
Pitching and defense generally wins out at the state tournament, and it did throughout all three 3A classification games the past two days. Through five innings of play, neither team had managed to score a run. Wall finally broke through in the bottom of the sixth, pushing two across the plate for starter Luke Young.
In the 6th, a Colton Deibitsch single to center, Kye Herbert sacrifice bunt, Ryan Gully single, Tanner Seider walk, Caleb Heuertz RBI sacrifice fly and Gage Weishuhn RBI single led to the two runs.
Young pitched 6 innings of scoreless ball, earning him most valuable player honors. “I just knew if I threw it and they put it in play, my teammates would be there to get it,” said Young, who stuck out 3 while letting his defense work. “There was some nerves, but I knew that my teammates were behind me and I could be calm and collective.”
Young suffered his first loss of the season last week against Brock in game two of the region I finals, but his coach believes it better prepared him for what was the bigger moment.
“Luke Young was stellar today,” Schniers said. “He wasn’t his best in Brock in game 2, but I think it drove him today to compete the way he did and be himself. I could not be more proud of that young man.”
With runners on first and third and nobody out, Young gave way to Ryan Gully, which had just finished off pitching 4 scoreless innings in yesterday’s semifinal win over Kirbyville. Gully shut the door on the rally, striking out the final batter of the game.
“We’ve been dreaming about this since we first put on the green and the white,” said Gully. “It’s a dream come true.”
Wall had to work for the offense they got. Blanco made every routine play look easy in addition to making three exceptions plays on the run.
“Man, their outfield is fast and good,” said Schniers. “We hit the ball hard at times and they made some spectacular plays, and I didn’t know if we would ever get one to fall. Luckily we were able to scratch a couple across and were able to hang on.”
This group will be one to remember for some time in the community of Wall – the first to win a state championship.
“This is the first group to knock the door down and they are a special group,” Schniers said. “I have had these kids since they were in junior high. They are driven and are competitive and have that fire about them. They are good kids and helped us get this accomplished.”
Wall’s Top Performers
Ryan Gully, 2-3, 1 R – 1 IP, 0 H, 1 K
Gage Weishuhn, 1-3, 1 RBI
Caleb Heuertz, Go-Ahead RBI
Luke Young, 6 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 7 BB, 3 K
Blanco’s Top Performers
Eddie Calzoncit, 2-2, 2 BB
Zack Wisdom, 6 Ip, 5 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 2 K