span, Coldwater baseball coach Brian Harlamert hopes to keep the
success of his program rolling in 2008. With nine returning letter
winners and a talented pitching staff, the veteran skipper harbors high
expectations in the Midwest Athletic Conference, as well as beyond with
a deep post-season run.
“As always, our outlook at Coldwater is high this season,” explained Harlamert. “Our league is very strong again and we also play a solid non-conference schedule, so it will be a challenge. A big key for us this season will be how we play in tight situations. If we can do well in those scenarios, it will go a long way in determining how our season will pan out.”
While last seasons pitching ace, Sam Slavik, graduated and took his 9-2 record with him to the University of Cincinnati , the cupboard is far from bare.
Leading the group is senior Bill Geeslin and junior Corey Klenke. Last spring, Geeslin finished a perfect 4-0 with a 2.29 earned run average, while Klenke went 6-2 with a 1.33 ERA. Also looking to log innings from the mound will be Keith Wenning and Kyle Ahrens, who went 2-1 and 1-0, respectively last year. Jordan Borgerding and Zach Siefring also hope to add depth to the rotation as the spring progresses.
“Our experience that we have returning on the mound, as well as in the field, will keep us in many games,” Harlamert said. “We just need to continue to play consistent baseball in all phases of the game every time we take the field.”
Headlining the Cavalier infield this spring will be Klenke at shortstop. As a sophomore, Klenke batted .465, while knocking over 5 home runs and 26 runs batted in. Wenning, who lettered and earned All-MAC honors last season as a freshman, returns to third base, while senior Justin Goubeaux will look to start full time at first base after splitting time there a season ago. Last spring Goubeaux batted .412 in a limited 34 at bats. At second base will be Alex Geier, while senior Keith Schoenherr returns behind the plate for the Orange and Black.
Although definite spots in the outfield may take a few weeks to iron out, Harlamert has numerous viable options. Ryan Geier (.370 average, 12 RBI) held the centerfield spot for the majority of last year, but concentrated on football during the summer, which left room for Chad Westgerdes to gain valuable time in the lineup. Tony Harlamert also logged time in the outfield last spring and summer, but could shift to second base if Geier is moved into the pitching rotation.
Ahrens and Gavin Keck also hope to see time in the outfield as the spring progresses for the Cavaliers.
“All of our infielders and outfielders have varsity experience,” Harlamert said. “We have two starting infielders back and four others who will see a significant amount of time this spring. In the outfield, we have three starters returning and a sophomore with a lot of experience, so we have proven players at every position.”