The West Kootenay Diamondbacks had their bats working Saturday when they traveled to Spokane to take on the Lakeside Eagles.
In the first game of a double header Diamondback pitcher Chris Whyte went the distance, giving up 10 hits, while striking out nine and walking three in an 11-7 victory.
The score was tied 3-3 until the third inning when the West Kootenay nine exploded for seven runs.
Danny Crantz and Tanner Johnson led the way on offence with Johnson going 3 for 3 on two singles, a double and a walk and driving in three runs. Crantz also was perfect at the plate going 3 for 3 with a walk and one RBI.
Coach Kelly Johnson is impressed with his team’s performance considering the minimal practice time they’ve had.
The American teams are all basically high-school teams that stay together for the summer, says Johnson.
“They’ve been practicing since January or February, we haven’t,” he added. “It just shows that our boys know how to play ball.”
Six players stole bases as the Dbacks belted out 16 hits for the win.
In the second matchup, Evan Poznikoff threw seven strong innings for the complete game win. The right-hander gave up two runs on four hits while striking out five and walking three.
The boys executed well, putting the ball in play and taking advantage of their opportunities, relying on speed and key hits rather than a big bomb to score runs, says Johnson.
Ryan Geisler went 2 for 3 with a stolen base and Tanner Johnson continued his stellar play, going 2 for 3, with a stolen base while driving in one. In the first four games, the 15-year-old is hitting .727, with eight hits in 11 at bats and eight RBI.
The team is off to a great 4 and 1 start and will play a pair of double headers this weekend in Spokane against Rogers and perennial powerhouse Mead.
“Over the next few games, it will tell what we can do,” said Johnson. “These were tough teams but now we have to play the top of our division coming up.”