Coeur d’Alene High baseball coach Brian Holgate doesn’t expect his team to put up multiple-run innings like it did Wednesday.
Nor does he expect his team to go hitless like it did in a non-league game last weekend.
So Holgate was pleasantly surprised that his team responded to his challenge as the Vikings topped Post Falls 14-1 in a run-rule shortened Inland Empire League opener at Brett James Memorial Field.
“We were way too tentative last weekend,” Holgate said of two losses by the 10-run rule to Pasco (Wash.) on Saturday. One of the defeats was a no-hitter.
“The big emphasis (Wednesday) was to come out and swing the sticks,” Holgate added. “It’s an attitude, and we had the attitude.”
CdA’s biggest loss to graduation was power hitting and run production. If Wednesday was an indication, the Viks shouldn’t have any problem scoring this season.
The Viks (3-3) used a nine-run fourth inning to blow out the Trojans (2-1) when they sent 13 batters to the plate.
CdA shortstop Bret Whiteman had the biggest hit in the inning when he poked a three-run homer into the teeth of the wind blowing in from left-center field.
CdA staked left-handed starting pitcher Kirk Gosch to a 5-0 lead through three innings. Gosch, a junior, helped himself out with two hits and three RBIs.
Gosch (2-0), who Holgate said has emerged as CdA’s ace, allowed three hits and one walk while striking out 11.
“He started for us in the (state) championship game last year and that loss left a bad taste in his mouth,” Holgate said. “He’s been solid since Day One. He worked hard in the off-season. He’s a leader through determination.”
The win was a good tuneup for CdA’s first test Friday when the Viks travel to perennial power Lewiston for a doubleheader.
As for Post Falls, it’s back to practice.
“It can’t get any worse than that,” John Pettoello said, trying his best to put a positive spin on a game loaded with mental mistakes. “They need to learn to bring their practice to the game. I’m very disappointed. We didn’t compete.”
Pettoello hopes to see a turnaround Friday when the Trojans travel to Rathdrum Prairie rival Lakeland in a nonleague game.
Coeur d’Alene 14, Post Falls 1
Coeur d’Alene 212 90 - 14 12 2
Post Falls 001 00 - 1 3 4
Gosch and Ross; Pettit, Ursillo (4) and Hocking, Mann (4). W-Gosch (2-0). L-Pettit (1-1).
HITS: CdA - Hoorelbeke 3, Gosch 2, Crain 2, Seccombe, Rupp, Whiteman, Rossi, Ross. PF - Mann, Ursillo, Pettit. HR - Whiteman. 2B - Seccombe, Hoorelbeke, Ross, Mann.
, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Color photo