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Bothell’s Travis Dohr hits unlikely home run against O’Dea in memory of friend
Travis Dohr and Josh Dickerson were good friends. The two athletes met and shared a common love of baseball.
So it was difficult for Dohr when Dickerson was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. His close friend battled the disease for three years.
“He passed away last year,” said Dohr. “I played with him two years ago on a select baseball team. When I look back it is hard to picture him not here.”
Their bond also had to do with a shared competitive spirit.
During the high school baseball season, Dickerson played for O’Dea and Dohr for Bothell High School. Bothell’s second game of the season this year was against O’Dea on March 14 and the Cougar senior knew it would be special. The starting pitcher hoped to throw against the Fighting Irish.
“We were just trying to set up the pitchers for the rotation and it just worked out,” said Bothell High School baseball coach Paul Moody.
The start for Dohr was even more emotional as his friend and summer ball teammate Dylan Wade started for O’Dea. Wade was also Dickerson’s best friend.
“I was really happy,” said Dohr. “I wanted to beat them like (Dickerson) was there. I really enjoy pitching against my friends.”
Dohr stole the show in a 12-0 romp, throwing four innings and striking out four batters to earn his first win of the young season.
“It gave me a little extra drive,” said Dohr.
But it was his at-bat against Wade that made the most impact.
After stepping into the batter’s box Dohr took two balls from Wade and then, with the count in his favor, took a big swing. He hit the ball over the fence and rounded the bases for the first time since eight grade.
“I don’t hit home runs at all,” said Dohr. “I was really surprised.”
Dohr’s father said that Wade and his son spent a quiet moment together after the game.
“I know (Wade) felt it too, Josh’s presence,” said Dohr.
Travis’s father Jim was happy for his son.
“Travis was fortunate for the opportunity to start that game in Josh’s memory, though, and he was blessed to perform as he did,” said Jim Dohr. “I’m not sure that Josh would have truly wanted Travis to beat his best friend and his alma mater … but he would have given anything to be on that field last night with his friends.”
Dohr got roughed up in his next start but pitched well against Inglemoor on Monday, going six innings, giving up two earned runs, with four strikeouts and two walks to earn the win. He has had interest from Everett Community College and Clark College in Vancouver, Wash. He is also hoping that the Cougars can make a run at a state title this year.
“The team nearly fell apart (after the O’Dea game),” said Dohr. “We had a team meeting and played better. But we can accomplish a lot more.”
Despite the rigors of the season looking to college, he is keeping things in perspective.
“I am just happy to wake up and get to play every day,” said Dohr.