Rapid City Post 22 has exceeded the expectations of even its own first-year head coach thus far as the Hardhats have racked up a 27-4 record after winning their opener at the Creighton Prep Tournament in Omaha on Thursday. And while it has obviously been a team effort that has propelled the Hardhats to that record, head coach Kelvin Torve isn't even a little shy about pointing to a certain senior shortstop as the catalyst.
Torve said, "You know, Cooper Bowman has been our best player all year long and it's just fun to watch him play. I mean, he makes all the plays at shortstop and I don't know what he's hitting but it's pretty high. Offensively and defensively he's just been carrying us all year."
The Hardhats picked up an 8-5 win over the Bryant Black Sox after ringing up four runs in the top of the inning. Jace Caldwell went 3-for-4 with 5 RBIs for Post 22, which then went on to defeat Creighton Prep 5-2 to remain unbeaten through two days in Nebraska. Dylan Richey picked up the win on the mound with a solid 6-1/3 inning effort.
And at the Goldsmith Gallery Tournament in Billings, the Post 320 Stars dropped the Shadle Park Highlanders out of Spokane, Washington 4-2 as Zane Salley had three hits and Ian Krump added two hits and two RBIs. The Stars, now 17-6 on the season, put all four of their runs on the board in the top of the fifth inning to come back from two runs down and get the win. 320 will be back in action Tuesday in Gillette.