Stephenville High School baseball coach Justin Swenson really knows how to have a fancy banquet that teenagers can get into.
Instead of having a formal ceremony in the high school cafeteria or at a restaurant, the Yellow Jackets went to a Texas Rangers baseball game.
The team sat in the all-you-can-eat section and feasted on nachos and hot dogs that no kid would turn down.
The team awards for the 2018 season presented that night in Arlington honored Gage Graham as the Yellow Jackets’ overall Most Valuable Player.
The Yellow Jacket Award was presented to Easton Jones, a key pitcher who had to miss his entire senior baseball season because of an elbow injury. Jones showed his loyalty by joining his teammates in the dugout for each game all the way through their five-game playoff run.
Gabe Moore earned the team’s Offensive MVP award.
The team’s Defensive MVP award is shared this year by Derek Gifford and Zane Smith.
Graham batted .305, drove in 14 runs and led the team by a wide margin in runs scored, with 30 in 33 games played.
Moore had a .313 batting average with a team-leading 26 runs batted in. He recorded 11 doubles and scored 12 runs.
Zane Smith finished the season with a fielding percentage of .969, while Gifford’s was .895.
Among the all-district 8-4A selections, which were previously announced, Graham and Gifford were both first-team and Moore was on the second team.
Swenson’s Yellow Jackets earned a playoff berth as the third-place team in their tough District 8-4A alignment, which included state semifinalist Godley as the district champion.
The Jackets finished the season with a 16-15-2 record, when they were eliminated by Region I-4A finalist and eighth-ranked Iowa Park in the area round of the playoffs, 2 games to 1.