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Elizabeth's baseball team provided a sizable home crowd with a lot to cheer about March 8 as they opened the season with a 5-3 win over Cheyenne Mountain.
The Cardinals led midway through the game but the Indians scored a run to tie the game 2-2 in the top of the fifth inning. Elizabeth retook the lead with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth and added an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth as they won the game, 5-3.
“We are basically a veteran team with 10 seniors on the roster this season,” Cardinals Coach Andrew Melton said. “Most of these guys have varsity experience so we just have to focus on knowing we can win games. We were two games under .500. last season but we are putting that behind us and focusing on winning games by playing good baseball in the field and at the plate.”
Melton said pitching will be a team strength this year.
“We have two guys who are both No. 1 starters. I call them our 1A and 1B starters, plus we also have two or three good arms in line behind them,” the first-year head coach said after the game. “Chase Bauer pitched the complete game for us today, and we will count on him a lot because our other No. 1 pitcher is sidelined for four weeks.”
Bauer threw seven innings and gave up 10 hits and two earned runs. He struck out two and walked two.
“I love baseball and started pitching in middle school,” the Cardinal senior said. “My best pitch is my fastball and it is effective when I move it around in the strike zone.
He said the game against Cheyenne Mountain was challenging because his off-speed and curve weren't working well. So he said he focused on moving his fastball around in the strike zone.
“I just tried to throw strikes because I knew if they hit it, I knew my defense would make the plays and get the outs,” he said. “I want to focus on making all my pitches effective this year because I want to have a winning record as a pitcher and I want to help our team win games.”
The Cardinals banged out six hits by six different players. Four players, Chase Bauer, Garrett Hawkins, Kayne Weidenbacher and Colt Tyler each drove in a run for Elizabeth.
Most of Elizabeth's hits were singles, but Hawkins had a double and Tyler had an RBI triple. Weidenbacher also hit a pair of sacrifice flies.
Sam Staroscik had a hit and a walk and scored two runs for the Cardinals.
Elizabeth is at Falcon March 13 and they are at home March 17 against Alameda. Then the team makes a long road trip for four games against teams in the Glendale, Arizona area March 19-22.
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