Bulldogs remain perfect in Special District 2 play

Getting off to a good start was not only the hope, but a realistic goal for Nick Viggiano and his Culver baseball team. And his guys have not let him down.

After sweeping a doubleheader with Waldport Monday, the Bulldogs are a perfect 5-0 in Class 2A/1A Special District play with the meat of the league schedule to come.

"I was fairly confident going in to league; we were lucky with the front end of the schedule," Viggiano said.

That is code for Culver, now 7-2 overall, not having to face state powers Country Christian, Kennedy or Regis, all state ranked, right off the bat. By easing into league play, the Bulldogs have been able to get experience and consistency under their first-year coach.

It was worked to perfection so far.

Culver opened league play by beating St. Paul, Santiam and Western Mennonite last week and with the wins over Waldport, sit atop the conference standings.

Viggiano said all that is due to his guys' approach both in the field and at the plate.

"We've been producing up and down the lineup," Viggiano said. "Everybody in the box is ready to go; they are taking it as a challenge."

No one has been hotter than Joe Daugherty. In the three games last week, Daugherty was 8-12, with five extra base hits, drove in three runs and scored eight times.

"Joe has been carrying us," Viggiano said. "He is doing a great job of leading."

It hasn't been all Daugherty. Freshman catcher Mack Little has 10 RBIs on the year so far, while guys like Clay McClure, Colton Tanner and Wyatt Rufener have also been swinging hot bats.

But the Bulldogs are getting solid pitching as well. Adam Knepp has been solid since the season opener and Kyle Bender got his turn last week and tossed six solid innings. Bender and McClure teamed up to toss a two-hit shutout against Santiam, striking out eight in the process.

All of this has optimism high as the tough part of the schedule looms. Culver plays host to Country Christian Monday at 4:30 p.m.

"If we can keep hitting the ball like we have been, we have a chance," Viggiano said.

CHS fastpitch gets on the board

Cheryl Aldred threw a complete game, three-hitter last week to help the Culver fastpitch team earn its first win of the season, and the Bulldogs followed that up by splitting a Monday doubleheader with Waldport, 11-7 and 7-13.

The Bulldogs, who had started the year 0-9, moved to 2-11 overall and 2-2 in Class 2A/1A Special District 3 play.

"I am feeling a little bit better about things," coach Jack Layton said. "But we still have a lot of work to do."

Jaymie Brown drove in three runs for the Bulldogs, while Marie Schumacher and Shealene Little knocked in two each against Toledo while Aldred struck out four and walked none.

The Bulldogs play host to Central Linn Friday.

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