With a 9-0 win at Decorah July 11, the West Delaware baseball team is as hot as the July temperatures as it heads into post-season play.

Winners of five of their last six, the Hawks led 8-0 after two innings thanks to a seven-run second inning against the Vikings.

Ben Ridenour was 3-for-3 for the Hawks with a run scored. Kyle Cole and Nick Casey each doubled in four at bats, with each driving in a pair of runs. Isaac Fettkether went 2-for-4 with an RBI, a run scored and a stolen base. Christopher La Rosa was 1-for-2 with two runs scored and a stolen base.

West Delaware used four pitchers in the game, with Casey earning the win with two innings of work. Casey allowed no hits and struck out five. Cole followed, throwing two innings and striking out three. Jared Voss allowed one Viking hit over two innings, while Logan Woellert threw the final frame.

Head coach Nate Lahr said using four pitchers was always the game plan. “Since we only had one game this week, we wanted to keep everyone sharp with post-season approaching. We tried to get everyone some work who could possibly pitch in the tournament.”

Lahr said his team is playing better as the tournament approaches. “We feel pretty good winning five of six. We are playing better than we have been and have cleaned some things up that we have struggled with throughout the year. We have some quality wins of late. Hopefully we can keep the momentum going.”

The Hawks are 14-22-1 with one regular-season game remaining before they face Independence (11-25) in Class 3A, District 7 at DeWitt Friday, June 19 at 5 p.m.

The game will be the rubber match for the two teams, who split a doubleheader at Independence June 13, with the Hawks winning, 7-3, and Independence winning, 6-5.

Lahr knows what his Hawks will need to do to stay alive in the tournament. “We are going to have to put up four or five runs against Independence. I would feel pretty good about winning that one if we can do that.

“We’ll have our work cut out for us, but I feel pretty confident with our pitching and our defense. We’re just looking forward to continuing to compete and see what we can do in the postseason.”