The Longhorns, 36-2 last season, finished at the top of the national poll after winning the 6A Georgia state title. The Longhorns won 29 games in a row before suffering its first loss of the season during the Georgia playoffs. Georgia plays 3-game series during its playoff process.
Four seniors and four juniors who were starters last year return. However, the team lost a couple of key players from last year and have a new head coach in Drew Ferrer. Jamie Corr left at the end of the season to coach at Florida Southwestern College.
Six players have either signed or committed to a Division 1 university and several others are going to smaller colleges.
The top returnee is Louisville Slugger HS All-American RHP/OF Seth Beer, a junior. He hit .589 with 21 doubles, 10 home runs and 56 RBI. On the mound, he was 6-0 with a 0.69 ERA, 43 strikeouts, 23 walks in 39 1/3 innings.
Top seniors include 3B/P JD Dutka (11-1, 2.50 ERA, 47 K, 72 IP, .361, 5 HR, 34 RBI), LF Jeremy Johnson (Auburn, .360, 6 2B, 17 RBI, 8 SB) and Eric Furphy (Georgia Southern, .214, 5 2B, 22 RBI, 6 SB).
Other top juniors are OF Tucker Maxwell (.404, 7 2B, 6 HR, 27 RBI) and C Kyle McCann (.404, 7 2B, 3 HR, 31 RBI).
The biggest strength of this year’s team is senior leadership and experience, according to Coach Ferrer.
“Having had the success they’ve had and having been there before is going to really benefit this team,” said Ferrer. “They work hard and get along really well.”
The Longhorns will once again play top nationally ranked teams as they are scheduled to participate in the National HS Invitational tournament this March.
“This should be good competition for us and will help us prepare for our region and conference,” Ferrer added.
|Collegiate Baseball’s National H.S. Poll|
|(Pre-Season, January 23, 2015)|
|Rank School City/State||Record|
|1. Lambert (Suwanee, GA)||36-2|
|2. College Park (Pleasant Hill, CA)||27-3|
|3. JSerra Catholic (San Juan Capistrano, CA)||22-8|
|4. Buford (Buford, GA)||30-5|
|5. Plant (Tampa, FL)||23-6|
|6. DeSoto Central (Southaven, MS)||28-10|
|7. Bryant (Bryant, AR)||33-2|
|8. Flower Mound (Flower Mound, TX)||34-11-2|
|9. Farragut (Knoxville, TN)||35-13|
|10. Walsh Jesuit (Cuyahoga Falls, OH)||26-1|
|11. North Florida Christian (Tallahassee, FL)||24-6|
|12. Coppell (Coppell, TX)||21-12|
|13. De La Salle (Concord, CA)||21-7|
|14. Hamilton (Chandler, AZ)||30-3|
|15. San Clemente (San Clemente, CA)||22-11|
|16. Puyallup (Puyallup, WA)||28-0|
|17. AC Flora (Columbia, SC)||28-4|
|18. Providence (Charlotte, NC)||27-4|
|19. St. Rita (Chicago, IL)||37-5|
|20. Huntington Beach (Huntington Beach, CA)||22-5|
|21. Olympia (Orlando, FL)||25-3|
|22. College Station (College Station, TX)||36-8-1|
|23. Jackson Prep (Jackson, MS)||33-4|
|24. St. Xavier (Louisville, KY)||30-10|
|25. Spanish Fort (Spanish Fort, AL)||39-6|
|26. Joliet Catholic (Joliet, IL)||28-8|
|27. St. Thomas More (Lafayette, LA)||31-5|
|28. Concordia Lutheran (Tomball, TX)||25-10|
|29. Gloucester Catholic (Gloucester City, NJ)||25-6|
|30. Southlake Carroll (Southlake, TX)||31-6|
More Information: Complete statistics on the top players who return for ranked teams and other pertinent information can be found in the Jan. 23, 2015 edition of Collegiate Baseball. This issue also includes the 2015 Louisville Slugger Pre-Season H.S. All-American team and a list of top high school players state-by-state across the USA, plus much more. To order a copy of the January 23, 2015 issue, CLICK HERE.