Prep Softball

Softball notes: Anamosa has a new coach (again) and a 12-0 record

Brad Holub is the fourth coach in 4 years for the Raiders

Brad Holub is the fourth softball coach in four years at Anamosa. The Raiders are off to a 12-0 start. (Daryl Shepanski/Anamosa Journal-Eureka)
Brad Holub is the fourth softball coach in four years at Anamosa. The Raiders are off to a 12-0 start. (Daryl Shepanski/Anamosa Journal-Eureka)

Success hasn’t been the most pressing challenge for the Anamosa High School softball program.

Stability has.

For the fourth straight year, the Raiders are guided by a first-year coach. This time, it’s Brad Holub.

“My youngest daughter graduated from (Cedar Rapids) Prairie a couple of years ago, and I needed something to do to keep me out of trouble,” he said.

“I knew they had some good pieces and were relatively young. The core was there; they just needed some focus and some confidence.”

At 12-0, Anamosa is one of 15 remaining unbeatens in the state (prior to Wednesday’s action), one of six in Class 3A.

Anamosa didn’t open with a “barn burner or a schedule,” Holub admitted, but a 10-0, six-inning rout of Wilton on Tuesday proved the Raiders are legit.

Holub had been active on the ASA scene for years as a coach of the Cedar Rapids Blue Devils.

The Raiders were 13-17 last season and are in their first school year in the River Valley Conference. They’ve risen rapidly under Holub’s eye.

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“We’re getting really solid pitching, but it can still get better,” he said. “We’re making contact, and we’re putting pressure on our opponents.”

Six players are batting .400 or better, led by senior Jessie Frasher (.568, 23 RBIs) and eighth-grader Emily Watters (.563, 21 runs, 12 stolen bases).

Frasher is nine months removed from a torn ACL.

“She’s a senior leader, and she needs to be in there for us,” Holub said.

Watters “comes in with a lot of ball savvy,” Holub said. “She’s going to be special.”

Junior Kalli Minger (8-0) is the ace of the pitching staff. She has struck out 51 batters against six walks (in 41 1/3 innings) and owns a 1.69 ERA.

“She has above-average speed, but does a really nice job changing speeds and going in, out, up, down in the zone,” Holub said.

The schedule’s degree of difficulty continues to rise. The Raiders host Iowa City Regina (the 2018 Class 2A state runner-up) Thursday. Next is a Saturday classic at home, then Camanche (13-0) comes to town Monday.

City High bomb squad

Class 5A fourth-ranked Iowa City High (10-0) has hit 17 home runs this season (second most of any team in any class). The power surge hit a climax Thursday, when the Little Hawks blasted 10 home runs in a pair of 12-2 conquests of Iowa City West.

City hit four homers in the first game (two by Sydney Fellows), then two shots each by Ella Cook and Carey Koenig highlighted a six-homer outburst in Game 2.

Cook and Ayana Lindsey have four homers each this season.

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Unbalanced Wamac

With the reduction of teams (now 14) in the Wamac Conference, all teams now play each other, including interdivisional games.

So far, it was been a landslide shifted in favor of the East Division. East teams have won 25 of 30 games against the West.

Five teams in the East are above .500 in conference play, led by West Delaware at 8-0 and Solon at 9-1. Only one team in the West has a winning conference record; Williamsburg is 4-2.

l Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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