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Burnet baseball is set to renew rivalry with Salado

The Burnet High School baseball team will resume an old district rivalry for a bi-district championship when the Bulldogs meet Salado in a best-of-three series in the area round of the Class 4A playoffs.

Game one is set for Thursday, May 4, in Salado, while game two will be played Thursday, May 5, at Bulldog Diamonds on the Burnet High School campus. Both contests start at 7 p.m. If necessary, game three will begin at 1 p.m. Saturday, May 6, with site to be determined.

“We’re excited about getting in the playoffs and excited to go,” Burnet head coach Russell Houston said.

Last season, the Bulldogs (District beat the Eagles two games to one in District 19-4A.

Salado’s (15-8-2, 6-3 District 23-4A third place) offensive production comes from Drew Bird, who is batting .378 with 28 hits, which includes a home run, 5 doubles and 2 triples, and 17 RBIs; Caden Strickland, who has a .377 batting average with 26 hits, 10 of which are doubles and a triple, and 15 RBIs; and B.J. Amann, who is batting .369 with 24 hits and 18 RBIs. As a team, the Eagles have 47 stolen bases led by Logan Flores’ 12.

The Bulldogs will counter with a pitching staff of Jesse Bachmayer, Braden Ellett-Clark, Dash Denton, Kurt Kassner, Will Johnson, Kade Shaw and Gibby Valdez.

Salado pitcher Flores (5-1) leads the staff with an ERA of 0.83, allowed 5 earned runs off 21 hits, 6 walks and struck out 77. Strickland (3-3) has a 1.37 ERA with 9 earned runs off 28 hits, 18 walks and 82 strikeouts.

“They have two really good arms,” Houston said. “One is a righty, who throws hard and gets strikes. They also have a crafty lefty who throws a lot of strikes.”

Burnet has a tendency of scoring runs after two outs and has received key hits from Bachmayer, Denton, Johnson, Kassner and Tanner O’Hair.

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