HS BASEBALL: Buffs get second no-hitter, building season resume

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Derek Hatridge, McAlester News-Capital, Okla.
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Mar. 29—The Buffs have done it again.

After an 11-0 no-hitter win last Wednesday behind Trent Boatright, McAlester repeated the feat just days later in a 9-3 win over Ada on Saturday with a combined effort from three Buffs.

Blake Martin, Bryson Martin, and Gage Dollins used their combined prowess to send the Cougars back into their den without a single hit on the day for Ada. McAlester coach Brian Shackelford said it's been important for the Buffs hurlers to hone in on the mechanics of their pitching, and has resulted in some early season successes.

"We're just trying to get as many guys as possible locked in and throwing strikes, along with being able to work on their breaking ball," he said. "You're starting the year breaking guys in and getting arms in shape...it's just being able to get to develop them and what strengths work for them."

McAlester has been building upon each and every game, and it's something that Shackelford said has become more noticeable as they continue on through the grinding season with an eye to the playoffs.

"It definitely helps," he said. "Especially with pitchers, getting work in and playing catch with them, and getting them an understanding and a plan for when we go out that day of one or two things we're going to focus on."

Pitching wasn't the only thing making waves, as the Buffs bats were hard at work as well. Dollins finished the day 2-4 at the plate with three RBIs, while Caden Lesnau and Gage Mullins added in four combined RBIs themselves.

All of those things are combining to give McAlester a hefty resume as they look ahead toward the playoffs. Shackelford said as they continue to learn and grow, there will be challenges. But they're facing those challenges head on, and together as a team.

"It's seeing who can do what in varying situations, and what they need to work on," he said. "That's what we're trying to focus on, getting ahead, staying ahead, and hitting the strike zone."

The Buffs will continue their tear through district play with a home-and-home series against Collinsville on Monday and Tuesday before jetting off to play in the Ft. Gibson Tournament Thursday thru Saturday.

Contact Derek Hatridge at dhatridge@mcalesternews.com.