Prep baseball: David Kocher leads Highland's playoff push

Prep baseball • Highland started region play 1-7.
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Ballplayers always talk about the work, but Highland's David Kocher just does it.

From extra swings in the batting cage to fielding an extra bucket of balls, the Rams' senior shortstop is trying to salvage Highland's season when the team needs him the most.

The Rams are on the outside looking in for the playoffs, and Kocher knows that the work done away from the field will be the difference in recognizing Highland's postseason dreams.

"Every game for the rest of the season are must wins," Kocher said. "We're going at it during practice with the mindset that we are not going to lose — to have the mentality that we can't be beat."

With Ephriam Shulte and Will Courless pitching well, Kocher knows that the defense has to step up. As a captain, he works with the infield to develop good communication and trust to make critical outs.

"I love playing shortstop because it is one of the key parts of the defense," Kocher said. "I like having the weight on my shoulders knowing that I'll have to make the plays."

Kocher believes that the talent of his teammates and the quality of coaching have made a big impact on him personally. He credits coach Mario Cisneros for teaching him the game and helping him mature into a more rounded player.

"Baseball at Highland has developed my work ethic 100 percent, and that's because of coach Mario," Kocher said. "We're taught to work hard for what we want and to work as a team."

Cisneros thinks that Kocher represents the best of Highland baseball. Although the Rams have lost a couple of close games, Cisneros said his team has the talent and potential to make a run at a the postseason berth. He trusts Kocher to be the difference maker in close games.

"David has played exceptional," Cisneros said. "He's a real team leader. Good fielding, good hitting — he's doing really well for us." —

Kocher file

David Kocher plans on studying criminal justice at college.

A three-year varsity starter, he played third base his sophomore year.