Gainer looks to lead EHS Tigers in tournament

ELKINS – Tiger’s standout Colby Gainer has been doing it both at the plate and on the mound for Elkins all season.

EHS coach Adam Roth hopes Gainer and the crew can keep the magic alive today and pick up a victory against Hampshire in the first round of sectional tournament play.

The Tigers (13-9) host Hampshire (12-9) at 5 p.m.

“He’s contributed for us for the past four seasons,” Roth said, of Gainer. “He got his first varsity pitching start as a freshman and he’s played a key role his entire high school career.

“He’s a great leader and he always works hard. He’s vocal and he leads by example. Those are attributes that you look for in a player.”

So far this season, Gainer is batting .460, with eight doubles, two triples, three home runs, 22 RBIs and 21 runs scored.

“He’s a hitting machine,” Roth said. “All year long, he’s done a great job of driving in runs and scoring runs. He can hit for both average and power.”

Gainer has also turned in some quality performances on the mound, earning a 4-2 record with one save. He’s pitched 41 innings, striking out 42 batters. His ERA is 1.08 and opponents are only hitting .208 against him.

“He’s also been solid at the top of our rotation,” Roth said. “He always gets the toughest assignments and rises to the occasion. He’s got a very deceptive motion that fools a lot of hitters.”

When he’s not on the mound, Roth says Gainer also plays well defensively at third base.

“He plays a solid corner,” Roth said. “Not only can he make the routine plays, he can flash the glove at times and make special plays.”

Last season, Gainer was named to the Big 10 All Conference First Team and selected to the Second-team All State squad.