By Jon Gremmels
Herald Sports Editor
CAMANCHE — If the Camanche Indians can continue to play the way they have the second half of the baseball season, they believe they can have some say about who advances out of the Iowa Class 2A District 10 tournament.
“It’s going to take us playing flawless baseball,” Camanche coach Darryl Cochran said. “I think the hitting’s there. If we get good pitching, like we’ve been getting, and we just clean it up in the infield a little bit, that’s what it’s going to have to take to get us to that next level.”
Of course, Northeast and Wilton share Camanche’s feelings. Wilton (24-6) is ranked fourth in the state in Class 2A, and Northeast (25-7) is 9-0 against the other five teams in the district, including a 3-2 win against Wilton, the district tournament host.
“WIton’s a nice facility,” Cochran said. “I like playing there; the kids like playing there. We went down there last week and played OK. Wilton is a very good team.”
Class 1A teams also begin postseason play tonight, with Prince of Peace taking on Easton Valley in a 7 p.m. game at Calamus-Wheatland.
While Northeast and Wilton have first-round byes, Camanche will open play at 5 tonight against Tipton in Wilton. Tonight’s winner will face second-seeded Northeast in Tuesday’s semifinals.
“We set some goals, and we’ve exceeded those goals,” Cochran said. “We wanted to have at least 11 wins, and we did that a little earlier. We wanted to have the third seed, and that’s what we got. We were expecting some good things. I think now we have to push through that and take that next step to be one of those elite teams like Northeast is.”
The Indians certainly took a big step in the second half of the season. They have won 13 of their past 18 games to improve to 15-14 on the season.