While it wasn’t quite the ending the Cougars were hoping for, Cascade’s baseball team finished the season with a host of accomplishments and plenty to be proud of.
The Cougars finished with a 24-11 overall record and nabbed the title in the North Division of the River Valley Conference.
Coach Roamn Hummel said going into the season, he wasn’t sure what to expect, namely because so few of the starters had experience playing at the varsity level.
“There were some big voids we had to fill,” Hummel said. “With this group, when knew we were going to have three-to-five guys that have not played an inning of varsity baseball in their lives, or that much JV baseball, and they were going to be thrown right into it. I thought those guys handled it well.”
This season fielded another strong senior class, Reid Rausch, Wil Roling, Riley Reed, Tom Knepper, Logan Otting and Haris Hoffman, who all made their own contributions.
Rausch, Hoffman and Reed especially played big roles, according to Hummel, and fought hard even when in tough spots.
“We weren’t flashy with our senior guys, but that’s what they were — they were going to hit well and go about their business,” Hummel said.
Two other key seniors, Roling and Otting, unfortunately, weren’t able to play as much as they would have liked due to circumstance. Roling suffered an injury and Otting had to report to football camp at Iowa State University.
Fortunately, both were able to reappear during the final games of the season.
“I felt good going into districts. You have an all-state guy like Logan coming back and you have a solid defender in Wil — throwing those two guys back into the mix made me feel good about where we were going to be and I thought we finished really well,” Hummel said. “We just picked a bad day to have a bad game and we’ve done that the last two years. Hopefully, we can figure out a way to get over that hump.”
As a team, the Cougars knocked in 189, had a team batting average of .281, drew 168 walks, had 250 hits, eight home runs, seven triples, 66 doubles and stole 88 bases in 97 attempts.
Offensive leaders were : batting average — Reid Rausch .404, Riley Reed .362, Logan Otting .361, Haris Hoffman .320, Ted Weber .276; hits — Rausch 42, Reed 34, Hoffman 32, Weber 29, Otting and Kaleb Topping 22; RBIs — Rausch 32, Weber 27, Reed 26, Hoffman 20, Otting 18; stolen bases — Hoffman 16, Rausch 15, Jack Menster 13, Otting and Tanner Simon 10; home runs — Reed 3, Rausch 2, Hoffman, Itting and Eli Green one.
Pitching leaders were: Rausch — 6-2 record, 2.57 ERA, 53 strikeouts, 18 earned runs, 26 walks, 31 hits and opponents batting average of .140; Hoffman — 7-0 record, 1.50 ERA, 53 Ks, 10 earned runs, 10 walks, 43 hits and Opp. BA .224; Kaleb Topping — 3-5 record, 3.47 ERA, 38 Ks, 18 earned runs, 21 walks, 36 hits and Opp. BA 2.06; Green — 6-1 record, .2.92 ERA, 49 Ks, 15 earned runs, 21 walks, 27 hits and Opp. BA .173.