The Cleburne Yellow Jackets received big efforts from Dylan Schneider and Jacob Martin in an 8-0 victory over the Burleson Centennial Spartans on Friday night to improve to 4-0 in District 8-4A play.
Martin, who played with the Spartans last season, and Schneider led the Jackets at the plate, and Schneider held Centennial’s offense in check from the mound.
“It felt really, really good [to come back to Centennial and get this win],” Martin said. “They’ve been talking a bunch of crap on Twitter, saying ‘Oh, we’re going to beat ya’ll’ and things like that. And I decided I wasn’t going to say anything — I was just going to prove it with my bat and glove out there.”
Martin did let his play do all of the talking as he was 2-for-2 with a double, a triple, two RBIs, three runs scored and he also reached base via a hit-by-pitch and a walk.
Schneider was 2-for-3 with two doubles, four RBIs and a walk.
“I think the biggest keys were Dylan Schneider did a great job [pitching] and Jacob Martin and Dylan did a great job at the plate,” Cleburne Coach Ross Taylor said. “Those two guys carried us tonight, without a doubt.”
With two outs in the top of the first inning, Martin doubled and Schneider followed with a double of his own to put the Jackets on top, 1-0.
“It’s always important to lead — I’d rather lead than follow,” Taylor said. “Those were two really big hits back-to-back right there.”
The Jackets added two runs in the third and seventh innings and three runs in the fifth inning.
On the flip side, Schneider held the Spartans in check at the plate as he cruised to an efficient complete game with five strikeouts, no walks and only four hits allowed.
In Cleburne’s previous two district games, the Jackets allowed their opponents to put a couple of runs up in the final inning, but Schneider and the Jacket defense played until the final out on Friday — something that was important to Taylor, who said Cleburne still has room for improvement.
“It was important [to close it out],” he said. “Last year, we had really kind of reached our peak at this time of the year. And I think because of that, it seemed like we were playing better earlier. I don’t think that we’ve reached our peak yet. I think we’ve still got a long way to go. We still going to get Tyler Fowler back into the lineup as soon as he recovers from his ankle injury. When he does, that’s going to add another big bat in the middle of the lineup for us. We’re really looking forward to some big things this year.”
Stevan Martinez was 1-for-3 with a walk and two runs scored for Cleburne.
Jared Thacker got the start for Centennial on the mound and received the loss.
The Spartans fell to 2-2 in District 8-4A play.
In other District 8-4A action, Crowley beat Burleson, 1-0, in eight innings on Friday. The Jackets (16-3, 4-0) are one game ahead of Crowley (3-1) in the district standings, and the two teams square off at 7 p.m. Tuesday in Cleburne.