SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Sioux Falls West fell short of a state tournament appearance in 2020, but with a lot of returning talent, the sky is the limit for Post 15 West.
Sioux Falls West finished 2020 with a 10-19 record, falling in the first round of the playoffs to Harrisburg. A year later, Post 15 returned nearly their entire starting lineup.
“It’s just expectations, right, just what we want from our guys as a coaching staff and what the guys expect from us,” Sioux Falls West coach Charlie Dubanoski said. “It has really been a lot easier with only four newcomers on the team. We have basically everybody back, basically the entire starting lineup.”
Through the first half of the season, Post 15 West sits at 14-6, landing them third in the class ‘A’ legion baseball standings.
“I think we’re really starting to gel as a team and I think it’s a lot of credit to work that we’ve put in as a team through academy in the offseason, I think it’s been great,” Dubanoski said. “We’ve come together quicker than we typically do with West and I’ve been really happy with the first month.”
“I mean, we’ve just been rocking out this summer and I think that is going to carry us on into the final half of the season,” West player Ethan Behrend said.
Sioux Falls boasts three of the top pitchers in class ‘A’ baseball featuring Charlie Jensen, Camden Gadbois and Ethan Behrend.
“It takes a lot of stress off of a head coach, it’s pretty nice. It’s pretty nice handing the ball to Charlie, Cam or Ethan and feeling like you know they’re going to throw strikes and they’re going to give you a great outing,” Dubanoski said. “It’s really nice.”
“We kind of feed off of each either, I mean, we all have confidence in our pitchers,” West shortstop Michael Zemen said. “Especially in our one, two, three that go out there. So when we’ve got a guy like Charlie going out there, it just gives me confidence when I get that ground ball. We kind of feed off each other.”
With their returning talent, the expectations are quite high for 2021.
“I would say the expectations are pretty high for this group. Kind of like you said, with all of the returners coming back and kind of taking our licks last year, but knowing that we had some good pitching and that really top to bottom we felt really strong,” Dubanoski said.
Post 15 West will return to action on Tuesday, July 6 at 7:30 against the Renner Royals.