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Local Sports

Miscues costly in loss for Cardinals

Second baseman Mike McCormick throws to first base in the first inning against 
Oskaloosa Wednesday night.
Second baseman Mike McCormick throws to first base in the first inning against Oskaloosa Wednesday night.

For the second night in a row, Newton received one of its pitcher’s best starts of the season.

Unlike Tuesday, the Cardinals couldn’t convert that performance into a win Wednesday night against Oskaloosa.

Newton starting pitcher Chandler Sturtz’s five solid innings soured in the sixth when back-to-back errors altered the course of the game. Those miscues by the Cardinals helped the visiting Indians score the winning run in what became a 3-2 victory at Eversman Field.

A one-out error by Newton left fielder Brandon Tish kick started Oskaloosa’s sixth and allowed TJ Boyle to advance to second base on a single. Andrew Landgrebe, who pinch-ran for Boyle, scored shortly thereafter following an error by Newton shortstop Tyler Wood.

The sequence proved costly for the Cardinals, and Sturtz in particular. After delivering the game-winning hit against Dallas Center-Grimes Tuesday night, Sturtz pitched six innings against Oskaloosa for his second-longest outing of the season. The right hander did so without issuing any walks and retiring the side four times.

Sturtz breezed through the early innings. He sat down nine of the first 10 batters he faced and worked around a first-inning error by second baseman Mike McCormick.

Both teams found their offense in the fourth inning. Oskaloosa took a 2-0 lead thanks to four hits in the top half, although neither of the Indians’ runs came off hits. Nick Rutledge scored the game’s first run when he stole home and Mitchell Schaffner later crossed home plate on a passed ball.

Newton tied the game in the bottom half of the fourth. Sturtz scored following a single from senior Evan Shimon. Three batters later, Derek Wrage drove in pinch-runner Connor Gholson on a ground out to second.

That was it for the Cardinals offensively against Rutledge, the Indians’ pitcher. Rutledge benefitted from two double plays in the final innings, one to end the fifth and one to end the game. Both occurred with a Newton runner on second base.

Rutledge finished his complete-game performance having allowed four hits. Sturtz gave up five in defeat.

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