Argos knocks off Cavs at Culver Sectional

CULVER — Culver Community rallied, but the runs came too little, too late.
The Cavs plated three runs with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, but it wasn’t enough to undo an 8-1 Argos lead, and the Dragons held on to knock off defending sectional champion Culver, 8-4 on the Cavs’ home field Saturday.
“I think we hit the ball well today. We’ve been playing well the last six or eight games,” said Argos head coach Lowell Hatfield. “We came out and hit the ball, we were aggressive on the bases and did what we had to do to win a baseball game.”
The victory was a reprisal for an earlier regular-season loss at the hands of Culver.
“We had talked to the boys about Argos. I think they took it for granted because we beat them pretty good the first time around this season, and I think they kind of looked past them,” said Culver coach Ron King. “We kept warning them Argos is much better than what we saw that day, and on any given day anybody can win.”
Argos scored two in the top of the third off an outfield error and another error on a pickoff attempt to second.
The Dragons broke it open with four hits, a walk, and a hit batsman during a four-run fourth inning.
“A lot of little things in baseball,” said Hatfield. “I just told the guys we’ve got to take advantage of what they give us, and I think we were able to do that in the fourth inning. It was a real good inning for us. We took advantage of some things, we hit the ball when we needed to, we ran the bases well.”
Argos plated another two runs over the next two innings to stretch its lead to 8-1.
Culver didn’t rally until the seventh, when the Cavs got RBI singles from Shawn Russel and John Robbins and an RBI double by Everett Krueger, all with two outs.
But it was a case of too little, too late for the Cavs.
“I’m proud of the guys for hanging in there. We made some good plays, we made some dumb plays, but we didn’t give up and that says a lot. Earlier in the season we would’ve dropped our heads and who knows how many runs we would’ve given up? Today we kind of take one or two bad innings there, and picked our heads back up,” said King.
Everett Krueger took the loss on the mound for Culver giving up 10 hits with four walks and two hit batsmen while striking out five.
Tyler Peters got the win for Argos, striking out nine while surrendering three walks and six hits lasting 6 2/3 innings.
“He really threw well. He did a real nice job for us on the mound, obviously gave us a complete game, which helps us for Monday,” said Hatfield.
“We knew he throws hard and he mixes in a good offspeed pitch,” said King of Peters. “He had his game today. The first time we saw him he walked quite a few guys, and we knew he was a better pitcher than that as evidenced today. I told the young man as he came to third base after the game what a great job he did.”
Argos advances to play South Central, an 8-2 winner over Oregon-Davis in the early semifinal Saturday, in the sectional championship game today at 5:30 p.m.
“We’ve got South Central on Monday,” said Hatfield. “We did face them earlier in the season, and we were short some guys. We’ll be fully staffed, and we’re looking forward to that match-up when we’re fully staffed. We’re excited for that match-up.”
Culver closes out the year at 5-17, meanwhile. The future looks bright for the Cavs as they graduate just three seniors from this year’s squad.
“We started four sophomores and a freshman and two guys that have never played the game,” said King. “We’ve got a lot of young, inexperienced guys. We’re optimistic based on just how we finished the season. We’re 4-2 in our last six games.”
At Culver Sectional
Argos: 002 411 0 — 8 10 2
Culver: 001 000 3 — 4 6 4
WP: Tyler Peters; LP: Everett Krueger
2B: Shawn Russel ©, Peters (A), Krueger (C)