OK High School Preseason Spotlight: Carl Albert

Diego Solares
Staff Writer

The Oklahoma high school baseball season kicks off on March 2nd, opening day for regular season action under Ossaa regulations. Over the next several weeks, leading up to opening day, we’ll be publishing our team previews ahead of the 2021 spring season, touching on programs spanning all state classifications, leading into a countdown through the official PBR Oklahoma Preseason Power 25 Rankings.

Perennially, we’ve submitted a Preseason Questionnaire to high school head coaches across the entire state. Their responses have been flooding in and we’re using the detailed insight they’ve provided in our team-by-team preseason analysis.

If you would like your team covered, please have your head coach email us at [email protected]

Our 2021 preseason coverage continues today.

Team: Carl Albert
OSSAA Class: 5A
Head Coach: Tim LaValley
Returning Starters: 7
Returning Pitchers: 4

top players

Dondi King Jr., LHP/OF, 2021 

The top-ranked player on this roster, King Jr. is one of a few prospects on this team that represented Team Oklahoma at the PBR Future Games back in 2019. He boasts a proportional 6-foot-2, 200-pound frame that could stand to add even more strength as he continues to physically mature. King Jr. features a three-pitch mix, including both a curveball and knuckleball that he’s shown capable of landing for strikes in the past. He’ll swing it a bit for this Carl Albert squad too, where his switch-hitting presence adds versatility to this lineup. King Jr. is committed to Murray State JC. 

Ezra Gustafson, INF/RHP, 2021

Ranked 42nd overall in the state’s senior class, Gustafson figures to be an impact two-way player for Coach LaValley’s squad. He’s an athletic 5-foot-11, 170-pound prospect that should act as a stabilizer in this Carl Albert’s lineup as well as a quality presence on the mound. Gustafson is committed to Arkansas-Little Rock. 

Gavin Haines, OF, 2021

Haines represented Team Oklahoma at the PBR Future Games two years ago and is now committed to North Oklahoma Enid to continue his athletic career. He’s a 6.72 runner in the 60-yard dash with clean and confident defensive actions as he roams around the outfield. A left-handed hitter, Haines has that table-setter type offensive approach, working best on a line drive trajectory with an advanced feel for the barrel. 

Houston Russell, C/INF, 2021

Another top-50 prospect on this Carl Albert’s team, Russell stands out as a true middle-of-the-order thumper in this lineup. He’s a physical 6-foot-2, 195-pound athlete with above-average raw power and natural feel to elevate the baseball, consistently working into the gaps. He will be relied upon for key offensive contributions this upcoming season. Russell is committed to Seminole State JC. 

Lake Strickland, 1B, 2021

Joining the aforementioned Russell at Seminole State JC is the 6-foot-2, 200-pound Strickland, who’s the 96th ranked prospect in Oklahoma’s senior class. The power potential harnessed within his physical frame is obvious and he, like the other two, can provide run production for this team. 

Mikey Lunsford, RHP, 2021

Built at a sturdy, durable 6-foot-2, 225-pounds, Lunsford looks the part of a key innings eater for Carl Albert this upcoming spring season. It’s been a while since we’ve seen Lunsford, but we expect him to be a contributing arm for this squad in 2021. 

Luke Stout, UTL, 2022 

The talent on this Carl Albert roster trickles down to their junior class with Stout ranked inside the top-30 of Oklahoma’s junior class. Offensively speaking, Stout’s 6-foot, 185-pound upside frame paired with a loose, extremely fluid left-handed stroke equates to a rather high offensive ceiling. He’ll move around the diamond, manning the left side of the infield primarily, but he’s also capable of adequately holding down an outfield spot, offering integral positional versatility for this team. Stout is still uncommitted. 


STRENGTHS: Efficiency in all three phases of the game with an experienced, talented group of players throughout our roster. 


Make sure to follow @PBR_Oklahoma on Twitter for the most up-to-date coverage throughout the 2021 season.