Argos falls 3-1 to South Central at Culver Sectional
CULVER — Argos’ baseball team experienced little trouble piling up baserunners against South Central Wednesday.
Pushing them across the plate proved an entirely different matter.
The Dragons stranded 11 runners — five in scoring position — and dropped a 3-1 Class A Sectional 51 first-round tilt to the Satellites at Culver Community.
Play resumes today with the hosts taking on Westville at 5:30 p.m.
“Eleven runners left on base,” Argos first-year head coach Bobby Stout, whose team put men on second and third with one out in the first and failed to score, said. “It’s frustrating. If we execute it’s a different ballgame.
“This team didn’t win a game last year but won five — two against JV teams — this year,” he said. “Five wins coming from zero is a start. We played South Central earlier this year and they beat us 13-3; we had six or seven errors and beat ourselves in that one. When we make routine plays we can stay with anyone.”
Meanwhile, Argos sophomore starting pitcher Dominic Cataldo shrugged off a shaky start and went the distance yielding two earned runs — both in the first — on six hits and four bases on balls. He also fanned three.
Cataldo, consistently missing high to start the game, walked three of South Central’s first four batters in the bottom of the opening frame with an RBI double from Garrett Walter accounting for the other at-bat. After Stephan Shepherd’s run-scoring groundout put the Satellites up 2-0 Cataldo settled down and surrendered just one more run — an unearned tally courtesy of a pair of Argos errors in the fourth — the rest of the way. The Argos right-hander moved his fastball effectively throughout the strike zone, and finished strong with the game’s only perfect half inning in the sixth.
At the plate, Cataldo singled, doubled, walked twice, and swiped a pair of bags.
“(Cataldo) has been my ace all year,” Stout said. “He’s a rock on the mound. He’s very talented and can be dominating. We’re going to get him for another two years. He’s a really hard worker.”
Sophomore second baseman Alex DeWulf singled twice, reached base another time and evaded a swipe tag at home to notch the Dragons’ only run on a Tylor Peters single to right field in the fifth.
“I gave Alex practice off this week because he’s had a back issue,” Stout said. “I might have to do that more often if he’s going to hit like that. He’s another sophomore we’re going to have two more years. He has a good attitude, and he’s just as talented as Cataldo.”
Peters’ RBI single chased South Central starter Adam Clindaniel in favor of Walter with a runner on second and no outs. Cataldo drew a walk to bring the go-ahead run to the plate with nobody out, but Walter escaped unscathed with a strikeout, fielder’s choice to gun down a runner at the plate, and groundout to second.
Walter preserved Clindaniel’s win with three innings of one-hit ball, striking out six.
Argos now bids farewell to seniors Zach Hartman, Anders Teigmoen, and Justin Cunningham.
“Anders Teigmoen is from Norway, a foreign exchange student, and he didn’t even know what a strike was when we started the season,” Stout said. “Then last week during Senior Day he ripped a single. Justin Cunningham didn’t get to play much, but he never said a word. He has a great attitude, came to practice every day and worked hard. Zach Hartman is an everyday player and he really matured this season. I’m looking forward to seeing what these seniors do in the community in the future.”
• SOUTH CENTRAL 3, ARGOS 1
At Class A Sectional 51 at Culver
Argos: 000 010 0 — 1 6 2
South Central: 200 100 x — 3 6 1
Dominic Cataldo (L) and Zach Stockman; Adam Clindaniel (W), Garrett Walter (Sv) and Josh Mohike
2B: Cataldo (A), Walter (SC), Blake Geskey (SC)