Throughout their largely up and down season, Coach Cory Hamilton and his Canyon Randall Raiders have never lost sight of their goals.
“We’re trying to make the playoffs,” Hamilton told Texas Scorecard. “We’re right in the middle (6-5 in 5A Region 1 District 3) of trying to qualify.”
Now in his 11th season at Randall and with well over 300 career wins under his belt, Hamilton is hoping to use last season’s strong showing (21-12 overall, 13-2 in District) as a glowing example to his veteran team of just what they’re capable of.
After a 1-3 start to the season, the Raiders recently righted the ship for a time with a five-game winning streak where they outscored opponents 30-13.
“We’ve played everyone in the District and lost to Amarillo and Cornado twice,” Hamilton said of two of the district’s top teams. “Everyone else we need to compete with and if we do that we will be in the chase for the playoffs.”
At 15-12 overall, the Raiders are led by senior hurler Eian Schrader and senior shortstop Hagen Escoto, named 3-5A defensive MVP last season.
Tabbed all-district last season, senior outfielder Jacob Bartlett is also back, joined the junior trio of outfielder Cooper Brice (3-5A Newcomer of the Year last season), pitcher Trevor Scott and infielder/pitcher Elijah Velasquez.
The Raiders wrap up the regular season with three of their final five games at Randall, and also face off against Amarillo yet again in a critical April 23 road showdown.