Bret Harte collects baseball kudos

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The Bret Harte High School baseball team capped its first Mother Lode League championship season since 1979 by earning two individual honors and placing three more players on the all-league team.

Pitcher Anthony Bennett shared the MLL's Most Valuable Player award with Calaveras' Matt Bicocca on the strength of his pitching and hitting.

On the mound, Bennett finished with a 6-2 record in league play, posting a 1.92 earned run average and striking out 43 in 43.2 innings pitched. Offensively, he helped himself out with a .304 batting average.

Senior catcher Travis Emerson was a near-unanimous pick as the league's Most Outsanding Player after hitting .424 with six home runs, 12 runs batted in, 20 walks and nine stolen bases. He also posted a 1.061 slugging percentage and a .679 on-base percentage.

Both Emerson, who will play baseball at Utah Valley State next year, and Bennett were first-team all-league picks last season.

"Travis definitely stepped up game and was the key to our offense from the cleanup spot," said Bret Harte coach Heath Lane. "And Anthony, pitching-wise, was huge. He was penciled in to be our No. 3 starter and ended up getting all innings when Sean (Nelson) went down. He's a true pitcher, who is able to change speeds and locate."

The Bullfrogs also placed junior shorstop Judd Bales (.429 batting average, 18 runs, .603 on-base percentage) and outfielder Kenny Baptista (.451 batting average, 15 runs batted in, seven stolen bases) on the first team.

Junior pitcher Ryan Carter (3.99 earned run average) and freshman infielder-outfielder Levi Emerson (.361 batting average, 13 runs batted in) were named honorable mention.

Calaveras' Gene Christensen was chosen as Coach of the Year.

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The Union Democrat
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