By Garrett Estrada
Ely Times Staff Writer
At the start of the season, White Pine High baseball coach Quinn Ewell had one goal, to get his team to work hard and to work together. Now that the Bobcats completed their first tournament over the weekend, Ewell is happy to see the progress the team has made from their first scrimmage.
“They are starting to mesh together as a team,” Ewell said. “That’s what really stood out to me is that they are starting to get that team unity and to work hard as a team.”
The team split their first four games 2-2. The Bobcats dropped their first game of the season on Friday by one run to Round Mountain, but recovered to have a 12-run victory over Sandy Valley later in the day. Saturday handed the team a 12-2 loss to Wells as well as a close 10-8 win over the home team Laughlin to finish the Cougar Classic tournament on a high note.
The team showed improvement from its first scrimmage, according to the coach, but the games also showed that the young team still has work to do.
“There is a lot of fundamental stuff that we need to improve on, especially when it comes to routine plays,” Ewell said.
To fix the problems, Ewell said the coaches were going to review each players mechanics in practice to make sure they are starting plays correctly, and build up from there. Another area the coach hopes to see get stronger as the season goes on is the ability to hit the ball further down the field from home plate.
“We need to be able to hit the ball a lot more solid, we had too many hits that trickled into the infield,” he said.
To accomplish this, players swung sledge hammers at large tires stacked on top of each other. The goal for the player was to knock the tires off the stack with the hammer, building strength in their arms to eventually knock balls out of the park. Ewell said he also wants to keep practices moving, with each player hitting more repetitions in their stations.
The Bobcats will next face off against Incline on Saturday. The team’s first home game will be against North Tahoe the following week on March 29.