Culver baseball commencing season


   With the winter sports banquets just getting wrapped up this week, Culver High will have no delay in transitioning into spring sports.
   The baseball and softball teams, along with the track and field teams at Culver, will all be in action between March 17 and 21, next week.
   Under first-year coaches, the baseball and softball teams are getting the springs sports activities off to a strong start in Culver next week.
   Athletic director Shea Little will be serving as baseball coach at Culver. His debut in Jefferson County, after coming from Baker High, will be on Monday, March 17, against the Sisters junior varsity squad, which wants to play twice, starting at 2 p.m. There will be games at 4 p.m. later in the week for Culver, when it hosts the Crook County junior varsity on Wednesday, and the Blanchet team from Salem, on Friday.
   Little was getting the players used to his signals and calls for special plays early in the Bulldog's final week of practice before starting into action.
   With some of the team back to compensate for the loss of all-league pitcher and hitter Jared Adams plus all-league catcher Jeff Cloud, there should be a solid battle from Culver tor the district title or a state playoff berth.
   Chris Dix at shortstop and pitcher, Junior Baltazar in the outfield, plus Nick Hagman, likely at first, give the Bulldogs some seasoned players to mix with its newcomers.
   Softball coach Jack Layton will join Little in realizing his inauguration into Culver's head coaching circle on Monday as he will lead the softball Bulldogs into action at Sisters.
   That March 17 game against Sisters, at 4 p.m. at Sisters, will be the only one in more than a week for the Bulldog softball team though.
   Culver's home opener in softball does not happen until March 26, when La Pine visits for what will be the second game of Culver's season.
   While Bree Miller can provide pitching experience from last spring and it has virtually its full infield coming back, along with parts of its outfield, Culver's primary challenge this spring will be to improve its defense. While there were generally strong plays in 2002, the Culver pitchers were also victimized by some unearned runs that prevented more wins by the Bulldogs.