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Brett Deboer Lakeland Year: Senior Sport: Baseball Position: Pitcher

Thu., May 2, 1996, midnight

It’s a first in the history of our North Idaho Athlete of the Week.

Brett DeBoer and his sister, Sarah, have been named Athlete of the Week in consecutive weeks. Truth be known, Brett could have been honored in any of the three previous weeks.

During that time, the 6-foot-6 left-handed pitcher moved his record to 5-1. Included in that stretch was a dominating performance over Bonners Ferry, when he struck out 20 of the 21 batters who made their way to the plate.

“I was in the zone that game,” DeBoer said. “Every pitch was where I wantedit.”

Equally impressive was an outing last Saturday, when he avenged a 4-0 loss to St. Maries this season by shutting out the Lumberjacks 9-0. DeBoer was dominant, giving up only three hits while striking out 15 batters.

“I had a lot more control than the first game, and I got some runs early that allowed me to go after them,” DeBoer said.

Controlling the strike zone has been a key to his success throughout his career, indicated by his 4-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio. By the time his career is finished this month, DeBoer will hold almost every pitching record in the school’s history. He has a 30-8 career record, and 336 strikeouts in 238-2/3 innings pitched.

He also can handle the aluminum. He’s batting .412, fourth best on the team.

Lakeland coach Ken Busch can relax when he sends DeBoer to the hill.

“Every time he goes out on the mound, we’re going to be in the game,” Busch said.

That consistency will be an attribute to the Hawks when the district tournament begins next week and wins become more important. DeBoer said he has been gearing up for district and has been appearing in less games lately to rest an arm that has been injured in the past.

“Last year I stretched a muscle in my arm, but I’ve been more careful this year,” DeBoer said.

A healthy arm and an intense desire to finish his last season as a champion could spell trouble for the rest of the state. “To walk away with a state title my senior year would be a dream come true,” DeBoer said.

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Photo

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