THIS IS THE SECOND IN A SERIES OF PREVIEWS FEATURING HIGH SCHOOL BASEBALL TEAMS IN EAST TEXAS:

MARSHALL

Mascot: Mavericks

Coach: Derek Dunaway

District: 15-5A (Pine Tree, Longview, Texas High, Mount Pleasant, Sulphur Springs)

2020 record: 5-8

Top returning players: Hayden Kelehan (.389, .488 OB percentage, 9 SB; 24 strikeouts in 16 innings pitched) ... Garrett Cotten (.382, .475 OB percentage, 9 SB; 21 strikeouts in 14 innings pitched) ... Jim Weaver (.387, .486 OB percentage) ... Dante Enrriquez ... Andrew Phillips ... Dylan Thurmon ... Henry Roth ... Brayden Robbins ... Jacob Oden ... Peyton Paul

Newcomers to watch: Brent Burris ... Dallan Shaw

You can count on: “A tight knit group that genuinely cares about one another. Unselfish players that will compete for the better of the team.” — Dunaway

Needs work: “Although the roster is filled with upperclassmen, we lack some varsity experience due to missing over half the season last year. We look to gain valuable experience with a tough non-district schedule.” — Dunaway

Did you know: Dunaway has a 128-117 career coaching record, including an 87-79 record at Marshall ... Enrriquez has signed with Wiley College

LUFKIN

Mascot: Panthers

Coach: John Cobb

District: 16-5A (Nacogdoches, Whitehouse, Tyler, Jacksonville, Huntsville)

2020 record: 5-10

Top returning players: Spencer Alexander ... Reid Hensley ... Julio Flores ... Alex Luna ... Coby DeJesus ... Hunter Ditsworth ... Sam Flores

You can count on: “Our team defense should be really good. Our infield defense has a chance to be special.” — Cobb

Needs work: “Figuring out who our district arms will be. Experience in big games.” — Cobb

Did you know: Cobb has a 103-57 career coaching record ... This is the final season for Lufkin playing at Morris Frank Park. The team is scheduled to move into a new complex during the season

PLEASANT GROVE

Mascot: Hawks

Coach: Riley Fincher

District: 15-4A (Pittsburg, Gilmer, Pleasant Grove, Liberty-Eylau, Paris, North Lamar)

2020 record: 9-4

Top returning players: Tucker Anderson ... Coe Bain ... Alex Murphy ... Brock Bearden ... Josh Brown ... Alex Galvan

Newcomers to watch: J.M. Long ... Brenton Clark

Did you know: Fincher has a career coaching record of 193-56, including a 149-29 record at Pleasant Grove ... Anderson has signed with Ouachita Baptist

CARTHAGE

Mascot: Bulldogs

Coach: Jason Causey

District: 17-4A (Hudson, Jasper, Rusk, Center, Palestine)

2020 record: 10-3

Top returning players: Austin Morgan … Craig McNew … Sawyer Smith … Javarian Roquemore … Braeden Wade

Newcomers to watch: Braden Smith … Noah Paddie … Conner Cuff … Brooks Brewster

You can count on: “I like our athleticism. I think we have some depth on the mound, and I think we should be solid defensively.” – Causey

Needs work: “We need to keep working hard and come together as a group. We are still figuring each other out, but I like our group.” — Causey

Did you know: Causey led Beckville to the 2018 Class 3A state championship

RUSK

Mascot: Eagles

Coach: Ross McMurry

District: 17-4A (Carthage, Center, Jasper, Hudson, Palestine)

2020 record: 9-4

Top returning players: J.D. Thompson (.404 average) ... Mason Cirkel (0.61 ERA) ... Landon Gates (.303) ... Bryce Lenard (.440) ... Wade Williams (.303) ... Zack Blackmon (.250) ... Tarant Sunday (.301)

Newcomers to watch: Brett Rawlinson ... Will Dixon ... Carson White ... Trey Devereaux

You can count on: “Great pitching and defense.” — McMurry

Needs work: “Hitting.” — McMurry

Did you know: Thompson has 21 Division I college offers on the table

ATHENS

Mascot: Hornets

Coach: Aaron Carroll

District: 14-4A (Brownsboro, Canton, Mabank, Van, Wills Point)

2020 record: 4-11-1

Top returning players: Juan Garcia ... Trevor Deupree

You can count on: “Great team chemistry.” — Carroll

Needs work: “Experience.” — Carroll

Did you know: Carroll has a 20-22-1 record in his coaching career, all at Athens

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Follow Jack Stallard on Twitter: @lnjsports

Sports editor

I've covered sports in East Texas since 1987, starting as a 21-year-old sports editor at the Kilgore News Herald before spending seven years at the Lufkin Daily News and the past 23 years at the Longview News-Journal.