Dara Kolar played third base as a freshman for Post Falls’ state championship team in 2010.
More impressive to her coach, Jack Foster, Kolar batted a school-record .556 last season as a junior catcher for a team that finished 0-24.
“She figured out that she could help the young kids and make them better,” Foster said. “It was great to watch her grow as a person. She was frustrated by not winning, but she looked to see what else she could do.”
“I became a better catcher in the long run because I learned to communicate with pitchers in a different way,” Kolar said.
Kolar, an Idaho State University recruit, has been sidelined this season by tendinitis in her wrist. She saw her doctor on Thursday with the hope of being cleared to play in today’s doubleheader at Coeur d’Alene.
The improved Trojans started the season 2-7, but Foster said Kolar’s presence would have been worth another couple of wins.
Kolar has attended every Trojans practice and game this season, but she’s limited to fielding grounders. She’s been hesitant to risk a quick comeback because of her ISU commitment.
“One reason I want to get back so fast is I feel I’m letting down the team,” Kolar said. “As a catcher you’re always a little bit hurt, but this was the first one to take me out.”
Kolar’s biggest softball influence has been her father, Jim. She plays club ball with Mosquito Squad 18U Gold of Federal Way, Wash.
She also played baseball, as one of two girls on the team, until she was 11.
Kolar carries a grade-point average of 3.94 with honors classes in math and science.
“My main interest is in becoming a coach,” she said. “I hope to be a grad assistant after four years at Idaho State.”
Sandpoint christens new field
Sandpoint inaugurated its new on-campus softball field on April 9 with a 2-0 loss to Lakeland.
The Bulldogs have long played at Travers Park, a city field. The new field is technically next door on the middle-school campus, the site of the old Sandpoint High.
Work on creating the field began last summer. Eighth-year Bulldogs coach Derek Dickinson said former athletic director and current assistant principal Tom Albertson, district facilities director Matt Diel and volunteer Jeff Johnson were crucial in completing the project.
“It drains really well,” Dickinson said. “Aesthetically, it’s a nice field. It’s nice to be on campus. We take care of it … and it feels more like home.”
Dickinson said the Bulldogs are taking their time before officially naming the field. Boosters donated money for a storage shed and the team hung banners for the first time.
“It’s been fun watching things develop,” Dickinson said.
The field will be dedicated during Senior Night, April 30 against Priest River.
Senior Casey Stangel struck out nine and hit a three-run homer Tuesday as Lake City (11-0) defeated Coeur d’Alene 9-1 in a rematch of last year’s Idaho 5A state title game. Lindsey Willmon and Dakota Wilson also homered for the Timberwolves, who will play a doubleheader at CdA (9-2) on Tuesday. Stangel also threw a five-inning no-hitter Monday as Lake City beat visiting Lewiston 10-0 in the first game of a doubleheader sweep. … Senior Leanna Carr hit her first career homer on Tuesday, a three-run shot in the fifth inning, to snap a 3-all tie and ignite host Colville to a 9-3 win over Deer Park. … Sophomore Megan McDowell threw her first no-hitter as Cheney defeated visiting Clarkston 10-0 in five innings Tuesday. … Senior pitcher Jess Mitchell homered and had five RBIs on Saturday as visiting West Valley defeated Cheney 17-5 in the first game of a doubleheader. … Wilbur-Creston’s Meagan Kane went 4 for 4 with five RBIs during a 16-9 win over visiting Northport in the first game of a doubleheader Saturday. W-C’s Hannah Haglin homered in both games. … Lakeside (Nine Mile Falls) sophomore third baseman Madi Naccarato had four hits, including a homer, and seven RBIs during a 16-7 win at Medical Lake last Friday.