SANTA FE

Following one of the most frightening experiences imaginable, Santa Fe’s Rome Shubert just wanted to put it behind him, and that he did, as the Indians ace pitcher and 2019 Galveston County baseball player of the year had an outstanding junior season.

“I really don’t think it changed me at all,” Shubert said. “I just wanted to forget it and move on, and just get everything back to normal. I didn’t want it to affect me too much.”

Shubert was among the 13 injured in the May 18, 2018 shooting at Santa Fe High School, which also left 10 people dead, as he was hit in the back of the head during the melee. Just two weeks later, though, Shubert was back to working on baseball, and three weeks later, he was back to playing the game that he loves with his summer league team.

“The first couple weeks was kind of tough, but then I got back into baseball about two weeks later,” Shubert said. “It really helped me, getting back to baseball in the summertime. Playing really helped me move on.”

After recovering from his injury and leading up to the 2019 season with the Indians, Shubert, a University of Houston commit, said he worked on a lot of little things in order to improve upon what was already a strong sophomore season a year ago.

“I improved placing my pitches a little bit better, like getting the curveball down, and in 0-2 counts, keeping the ball down more,” Shubert said. “With my changeup, I had a little bit of trouble last year, but then I got it at the end of the season, and this year, I really felt like it was on. It was doing more movement than it normally does for me.”

The result of the hard work and tenacity was a junior season that saw the right-hander Shubert post an 11-1 record on the mound with a microscopic 0.86 earned runs average and a whopping 84 strikeouts in 73.1 innings pitched.

Shubert was no slouch at the plate either, as he posted a .291 average, a .413 on-base, a .435 slugging percentage, 12 extra-base hits and was tied for the team lead in runs batted in with 23. Playing first base in games when he wasn’t on the mound, Shubert had just two errors in the field all season.

In addition to a pair of 14-strikeout outings during the year, one of Shubert’s finest performances of the season came in the District 22-5A opener against arch-rival Ball High. Shubert needed only 66 pitches to get through seven innings in a complete game shutout win, with five strikeouts and no walks in the 1-0 victory.

“That was definitely one of my highlights,” Shubert said.

In Game 1 of the Indians’ best-of-three Region III-5A semifinal playoff series, Shubert helped lead Santa Fe to a 6-1 win over the then-No. 1 ranked team in the state, Georgetown. It was only the third loss all season for Georgetown and the Eagles’ first of the playoffs.

“Going into that game, I knew they were a really tough group, but that doesn’t really phase me,” Shubert said. “I face a lot of tough teams year-round, and just knowing they were No. 1 gave me that extra edge.”

Georgetown eventually rallied to win the series and end Santa Fe’s season, but as the leader of a strong class of 2020 for Indians baseball, Shubert is looking forward to what next season will bring.

“I think it’s going to be a really good year,” Shubert said.

James LaCombe: 409-683-5242, james.lacombe@galvnews.com or on Twitter @JamesAtGalvNews

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