14s complete full circle
Tom Davey's coaching career has come full circle.
In 1989 in his first season as a tournament coach for Janesville's youth program, Davey guided a 13-year-old team to a state championship and a berth in the Ohio Valley Regional. The team went 1-2 at Henderson, Kentucky.
Wednesday morning, Davey's current 14-year-old state championship team leaves for the Ohio Valley Regional. The site? Yep, you guessed it. Henderson, Kentucky.
“It's kind of funny how things turn out,” Davey said. “I remember that '89 team like it was yesterday. We had a real good team, but lost to a very good Cincinnati team to knock us out of the tournament.
“And I'm just as excited about this team. There is a lot of talent on this team, too, and they've come a long way as far as discipline and chemistry from where they were last year when we got second at state.”
The team is 25-4.
Davey's 2014 team is a nice blend of talent from both sides of town. Nick Cramer, who pitched a complete-game shutout in the state title game, will be a sophomore at Janesville Craig. Cramer is 6-1 with a 0.71 ERA. He has struck out 43 while walking only nine.
Brodie Klukas is 5-0 and also has a 0.71 ERA. He has struck out 24 while walking seven.
Noah Berghammer, who has bounced back from injuries, has struck out 15 in just 16 innings.
Jacob Pfeiffer rounds out a talented starting rotation with a 6-0 record, including a perfect game and a one-hitter.
Klukas, who will be a freshman at Janesville Parker, is the team's catcher when he's not pitching. Tyler Kulas catches when Klukas pitches, and the pair did not allow a single stolen base in six state-tournament games.
Sam Garvoille, another incoming Parker freshman, has led the team in hitting. The outfielder's six homers is the most of any player Davey has coached.
Garvoille is hitting .569 with 35 RBI.
Jaydn Ellis, another outfielder, is hitting .488 with three HRs and 21 RBI.
Kyle Birkett, the team's second baseman, is hitting .440 with 17 stolen bases.
“These kids have really bought into what it takes to play winning baseball, down to the smallest details,” Davey said.
“And with Jim Kauss, Nolan Stearns and T.J. Bell helping me, I'm in a perfect situation. I've got great kids, a great group of parents and a coaching staff that is second-to-none.”